The Devil's Queen

The Devil's Queen by Jeanne Kalogridis
Jeanne Kalogridis
St. Martin's
Release Date:

Rating (0 - 10 scale)

Age Level
Young adult

Flamingnet Content Rating
Content Rating

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Flamingnet Student Book Reviewer  MDG
Caterina de Medici, the Italian duchess of Florence, has witnessed betrayal and hardship at a young age. As a prisoner of the rebels who wanted to take over Florence, she has suffered through hunger, cold, and the plague. With the help from a horoscopist and prophet, Cosimo Ruggieri, Caterina was able to escape from her captors and be placed in the favor of her uncle, Pope Clement VII. In a political power play, Clement married her to a French prince, where she was forced learn a new language, customs, and name: Catherine, queen of France. But to get what she most desires, first, children, and later, for her children to remain on the throne, Catherine must delve into the black arts and do everything in her power, short of selling her soul.

I learned about Catherine de Medici briefly in history class, when we were discussing the evolution of Protestantism in France, and I decided to read this book to see what else I could learn about her. Jeanne Kalogridis does a great job of using a lot of detail and information to describe Catherine's life. The book is really long, and I felt like I was living Catherine's life along with her as I turned the pages. Upon completion of the novel, I did some research on Catherine, and not everything in the book is accepted fact. A lot of what the author wrote, mostly regarding the black arts Catherine is involved in, are rumors, so they could be true or untrue. Even though the book wasn't completely historically accurate, I liked that I could get a different view on Catherine than what is normally written about her, since Catherine is considered to be a ruthless monarch. Putting aside the disputed authenticity of the book, I can definitely say that The Devil's Queen was entertaining, and any fans of historical fiction will enjoy it.

Reviewer Age:17

Reviewer City, State and Country: Aston, Pennsylvania United States


Flamingnet Student Book Reviewer  SBell_LBMS
This novel is about the long, powerful life of France's own Queen Catherine de Medici. The book starts at her childhood when she had to run for her life as revolts chased her and eventually imprisoned her. Readers learn of all her hardships, and how she came to be Queen of France. All her struggles to keep her children on the throne and the smart wits she possessed are revealed. This book tells all about real events in French History from Queen Catherine's point of view, from the revolts of citizens to the lavish court life in France's famous castles.

The Devil's Queen is one of the most well-written, descriptive books I have ever read. Every single character introduced had a certain personality original from any other character. Jeanne Kalogridis, the author, has a rare ability that makes her able to have the reader loathe one person and fall in love with the next. She cleverly intertwined the element of fantasy into the heart of French History. This is definitely not a book for children, as it is extremely descriptive, as a life time of history in its pages and has suggestive themes. I felt too young while I was reading it; I would recommend it to older teens and adults. The book overall had a interesting interpretation of Catherine de Medici's life.

suggestive themes

Reviewer Age:13

Reviewer City, State and Country: Lake Bluff, IL United States of America


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