Robin Maxwell's articles @ Huffington Post
Signora da Vinci JANE Augie Appleby
Mademoiselle Boleyn
When young Anne Boleyn is sent to French court with her father and sister Mary, she believes she's going for an innocent adventure. But when the ambitious Ambassador Thomas Boleyn leads them into the highly sophisticated and sexually permissive court of Francois I, Anne quickly learns that they are merely pawns to be used for their father's own political purpose. Since all good English girls are expected to do their father's bidding, Mary becomes mistress to the outrageous French king and is ultimately seduced into his dangerous world by the luxuries of court. But Anne has a different fate in mind.
Anne is younger, cleverer, and stronger willed than her elder sister, and with the guidance of chosen, powerful allies and unlikely friends, such as Leonardo da Vinci, she learns how to navigate the challenges, passions and betrayals of court. As she grows into a beautiful young woman, Anne undergoes her own sexual awakening, each daring exploit taking her one step closer to the life that is her destiny.
"Historically plausible account of Anne Boleyn's adolescence in France as a courtier of King Francois. Maxwell's prequel to her first novel (The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn, 1997) explores Anne's upbringing far from England.Lavishly imagined detail-regarding entertainment, dress and habits of the time-adds depth to this work.accomplished rehabilitation of much-maligned Anne as an empowered woman."

— Kirkus Reviews
"The author of The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn and The Queen's Bastard returns with a look at the future queen of England before Henry VIII comes into her life.The budding romance between Anne and her paramour Percy is feelingly described, and all the more poignant when one knows the outcome. Maxwell delivers a ripping piece of historical romance."

Publishers Weekly

"In this prequel to her Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn, Maxwell writes in the remembered voice of a child -- a tricky feat indeed.From scrawny younger sister of torrid Mary Boleyn, Anne buds into a smoldering beauty whose pert brain and witty tongue make it easy to see why Henry VIII waged his long siege on her virginity...

Readers will find much to delight in, from finely drawn secondary characters like Leonardo da Vinci, to scintillating descriptions of the French glitterati and the royal court.Frothy and French as its main setting, Maxwell's work nevertheless conveys a gravitas that foretells Mademoiselle Boleyn's eventual fate, especially in the novel's exploration of the motives of Anne's first love, Henry Percy."

— Vicki Leon, author of Working IX to V and the Uppity Women of history series
"Reading Maxwell's brilliant new novel, it's easy to see why Anne is the 'Boleyn girl' who changed the course of history, and why she is the source of never ending fascination.  We are finally able to catch a glimpse of Anne Boleyn before her enemies vilified her, while she was still just a young woman looking for true love. I couldn't put it down."

— Michelle Moran, bestselling author of Nefertiti
"In Mademoiselle Boleyn, Robin Maxwell offers a fascinating glimpse at the ambitious girl who will grow into the infamous queen.  An unforgettable blend full of scandal, intrigue, and history that will keep readers spellbound as Anne's inevitable destiny unfolds."

— Susan Holloway Scott
"Absolutely superb! Mademoiselle Boleyn is one of the most lush and beautiful historical novels I have ever read, I seriously could not put it down."

— Diane Haeger
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