A SCRIBNER PAPERBACK FICTION READING GROUP GUIDE Tales of Passion, Tales of Woe
Sandra Gulland's second installment of her history of Josephine, Empress of France, is that rare phenomenon: a second novel even better than the first. Gulland casts a strong spell, weaving reality and myth...seductive.
Nancy Wigston, The Toronto Star
Following the bestselling The Many Lives & Secret Sorrows of Josephine B.,
the first volume in the trilogy depicting the life of Josephine Bonaparte, wife of Napoleon Bonaparte, the first Emperor of France, author Sandra Gulland continues her narrative with Tales of Passion, Tales of Woe.
As previously, Ms. Gulland creates her historical novel in the form of Josephine's private journals, filling pages with her unguarded thoughts, fears, joys and sorrows. Imagining Josephine's voice, Gulland provides a unique portrait of a clever and charming woman who married a man of great passion and power and who suffered the consequences of the union.
Beginning on the day after her marriage to the "Corsican" Napoleon, we meet a mournful woman, beset by doubts, fearful of her children's reaction to her marriage and what the future may hold for all of them. For France is in a state of flux. Though the dreaded Reign of Terror was ended and its architect Robespierre was dead, political intrigue is a plague on the land. Only two days after their marriage, Napoleon leaves Paris to take command of the Army of Italy; a