Customer Reviews


6 Reviews
5 star:
 (3)
4 star:
 (1)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INCISIVE AND THOROUGHLY RESEARCHED
Remembered today in narratives of the past, heralded in poetry and song, Madame de Pompadour, born Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson in 1721, continues to be a fascinating and enigmatic figure.
The daughter of a mother noted for her beauty and high spirits, Jeanne inherited both of these qualities. In addition, a fortune teller predicted that the little girl would one day...
Published on 18 Sept. 2002 by Gail Cooke

versus
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very dry history book.
As written on the back cover of this edition, Madame de Pompadour was one of the most fascinating and influential women of 18th century France.
The all-powerful mistress of a depressive, moody and lazy Louis xv, the Marquise has always been a familiar name to French schoolchildren like myself.
A patron of the Arts she also acted as an unofficial Prime Minister...
Published 20 months ago by Michel Boucaud


Most Helpful First | Newest First

29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INCISIVE AND THOROUGHLY RESEARCHED, 18 Sept. 2002
By 
Gail Cooke (TX, USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Madame De Pompadour (Hardcover)
Remembered today in narratives of the past, heralded in poetry and song, Madame de Pompadour, born Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson in 1721, continues to be a fascinating and enigmatic figure.
The daughter of a mother noted for her beauty and high spirits, Jeanne inherited both of these qualities. In addition, a fortune teller predicted that the little girl would one day be the mistress of Louis XV. This foretelling Jeanne later told Voltaire "struck her with the force of a thunderbolt." And, it was a prophecy that the young woman seemed hellbent on fulfilling.
Christine Pevitt Algrant's comprehensive and cogent portrait of the woman who would, indeed, become the most potent force in the court of Louis XV is a welcome addition to the annals of history, as it includes a telling picture of a troubled France.
Courtiers were shocked when the humbly born Poisson became recognized as the king's maitresse declaree. After all, the king's prior inamoratas had all been members of the elite, born of royal lineage. However, it was one thing to become his lover, and quite something else to become his sole confidante and the power behind the throne. A title was purchased for her thus the transformation into Madame de Pompadour was complete. She was reviled by many, and obeyed by all.
With Versailles as her backdrop she became an important patron of the arts, nurturing such luminaries as Voltaire, Diderot, Rousseau, and Boucher. It was she who masterminded the building of the Petit Trianon Palace at Versailles.
Yet as a part of the world continued to be torn her quest for power was unsatisfied. France and England were at odds, and she cast a pall over the treaty allying France with her hated Austria. She succeeded in removing her enemies from positions of influence, and replacing them with trusted friends. Her creation of an opulent court incurred public wrath, and her political maneuverings created foes in court.
Nonetheless, the king's trust in his paramour never waned.
Incisive and thoroughly researched "Madame de Pompadour" bursts with color and intrigue. It is fact even more fascinating than fiction.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very dry history book., 21 Sept. 2013
By 
Michel Boucaud (Newcastle Angleterre) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France (Paperback)
As written on the back cover of this edition, Madame de Pompadour was one of the most fascinating and influential women of 18th century France.
The all-powerful mistress of a depressive, moody and lazy Louis xv, the Marquise has always been a familiar name to French schoolchildren like myself.
A patron of the Arts she also acted as an unofficial Prime Minister for many years.
Unfortunately this book by Pevitt Algrant leaves much to be desired.
Undoubtedly well-researched, it is a pretty boring account of the lady's life. The author's decision to follow a chronological order from her birth in 1721 to her death in 1764 is very disappointing. I would have preferred a better structure, a selection of themes. Furthermore it is never as captivating or engrossing as it should be. Too few anecdotes, too little humour, the past never really comes alive. Why for instance write so little about her sex life ? She was after all a scheming beauty who used her looks to get to the sex-mad king's bed !
It is sad to report that in my view the best part of this 300 page long book lies in the very final chapter and especially in the 5 page long Afterword. What a waste !
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating and informative biography of Madame de Pompadour, 21 April 2010
By 
J. Duggan "old lady" (galway ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Madame De Pompadour (Hardcover)
This book should be required reading for any student of the French Revolution. Christine Algrant has a masterly grasp of the politics and personalities of the court of Louis XV and a light touch in passing her knowledge on to us.
It is true that we never really get close to Madame de Pompadour herself, but she probably didn't know what she was really like herself. What she did know was how to to wield power, but not how to use it for the benefit of the State and its inhabitants!
If you want to understand how gargantuan a task Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette faced when they came to the throne in 1774,read this book;it is a litany of lost chances, wasted time and frivolity taking the place of statecraft, whilst France drifted ever closer to 'The Deluge'.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars fishy, 6 Dec. 2012
By 
M. Baerends - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France (Paperback)
Fairly detailed account of the life of the subject person & her lover Louis XV. What struck me most in this book is what a lousy king Louis really was. Aside from his dealings with underage girls (with Mme de Pompadour acting as his pimp) the guy seems to have been absolutely useless - during the 7 year's war, when France got kicked around really bad, he simply could not be bothered to do anything else than hunting. While Pompadour may have had her flaws (less than ideal choices for her 'favorites' to run the country) at least she did something. I found neither her nor Louis very fascinating personalities which is why I found this book a bit less captivating than the one about Philippe d'Orleans (the regent) by the same writer.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good at first., 30 Jun. 2007
By 
This review is from: Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France (Paperback)
As I have read about Marie Antoinette and her children I wanted to know a little more of what went on before the French revolution. I bought this book because I didn't know anything about Madame de Pompadour and the book does give a good insight into the childhood and early years of Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson. But as we are taken into the life at court this insight gets clouded and Jeanne disappers to give way to an inpenetrable view of Madame de Pompadour. Madame is difficult to get close to and we are told more about the politics of France, the different politicians and the troubles of the king than we are of Madame de Pompadour. What we are left with is a woman who doesn't get along with the important men at the court and who seems to be vindictive. But the book does give a good indication of why things later went so bad for Louis XVI. It all started at the time of Madame de Pompadour. All in all the book is interesting and a fairly good read but expect a lot on politics.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 14 Jan. 2015
By 
I. Pisarek (uk) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France (Paperback)
good
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France
Madame de Pompadour: Mistress of France by Christine Pevitt Algrant (Paperback - 22 July 2011)
£10.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews