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38 Reviews
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Multitasking Marie
This is my first read from Michelle Moran and I will be coming back for more! Madame Tussaud - A Novel of the French Revolution tells the story of Marie Grosholtz (later to become Marie Tussaud) from 1788 until 1802 and is set against the vivid backdrop of the French Revolution. Marie's talents as a wax modeler attract the attention of both the royal family and the...
Published on 26 Sep 2011 by Lovely Treez

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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointment
I am a massive fan of Michelle Moran's books, so when this came out I ordered it immediately.
Expecting the same vibrant settings and colourful characters I started to read it as soon as it arrived, but found that after two chapters I was already bored.
The story is focused mainly on the French Revolution and is a tale of how that pans out, rather than the...
Published on 6 May 2011 by Anon


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5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating, 15 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Kindle Edition)
Very well written and a fascinating story. Characters are well developed and the era and related problems are described effectively.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great read!, 26 Jan 2014
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Easy to read, with fascinating insight into the French revolution. Hope there's a sequel at some point to see what happened next.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Madame Tussaud, 11 Jan 2014
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This has given me an insight into the terror of what innocent people must have lived through, quite unthinkable today. 3 stars
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very well written, 20 Sep 2013
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Brilliant! loved it and couldn't put it down, really interesting as the story includes alot of history of he French revolution
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4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating subject, 25 July 2013
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Kindle Edition)
I have read all of Micelle Mora's books; I liked them all. This one is particularly interesting, it covers a chaotic time in French history. I think Micelle Moran put a good spin on the story as a whole, and she really made her characters come to life. Most readable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant and heart-wrenching novel, 21 July 2013
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Paperback)
I will start by admitting that novels of the French Revolution always become an emotional read for me. The amount of people who were slaughtered in the name of liberty is atrocious, and I am always struck by how things escalated out of control. The original call for a constitutional monarchy was a far cry from the Reign of Terror that descended upon Paris.
This novel was no different in how it affected me emotionally. However, what made this novel so brilliant was that it was so much more than just an account of the events of the revolution. This novel brought to light how people such as Marie Grosholtz (Madame Tussaud) struggled to keep their livlihood in existence in spite of the events that transpired around them. Marie's courage was astounding. Ms Moran portrayed her as an ambitious woman who was intelligent enough to see the benefit of 'straddling' the line between the royalists and the patriots at the beginning of the revolution, and to be cautious in her actions as the patriots began to assume control. Her wax-modelling skills meant that she was called upon to be an artist of death, with the focus on preserving facial features in death inside of in life. Some of the things that Marie was made to do in the name of the people were chilling and as the novel progressed the reader could clearly see the effect it was having on her.
The brilliance of this novel was that it showed the French Revolution and the subsequent Reign of Terror from multiple angles. In her uncle's salon Marie rubs shoulders with revolutionaries such as Marat, Desmoulins, and even Robespierre himself. In her tutoring of Madame Elisabeth at Versailles she also comes into contact with Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette. Then there are the people of Paris; the 'commoners' whom the revolution was supposed to be in the name of and who ended up becoming the main victims of it's tyranny. Seeing the events from each perspective made for an absorbing and detailed novel that will stay with me for a long time. Michelle Moran is a brilliant writer. Her character development is incredible.
I definitely recommend Moran's novel 'The Second Enpress' which is set in the later years of Napolean's court. Chronologically I read these novels in the wrong order, but each one is a stand-alone novel complete in itself
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4.0 out of 5 stars A readable overview of the Reign of Terror, 6 April 2013
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Kindle Edition)
Madam Tussaud is the story of a woman driven by the need for financial security and acceptance. She has a rare talent for remembering faces and a gift for wax modelling - combined this means she creates life-like replicas in wax of the 'celebrities' of her day.
The first chapters skillfully show how Marie aligns herself to the French royal family at a time of flux when rebellion is in the air. The book maps how the rise of Marat, Robespierre and Danton, at the expense of royalty and the old regime. As the revolution gathers momentum we find Marie's family finding it increasingly difficult to evade the finger of suspicion being pointed at them as royalist supporters. It is only Marie's skill at wax modelling, and hence recording great leaders of the revolution, that save her from jail, but as the story progresses she discovers even she has limits.

Madame Tussaud is a well written and evocative book, that brings to life the horror of the French Revolution. Some of the passages (the massacre of the Palace guard) were difficult to read but hit the right balance between gore and Marie's bravery in going to find her brothers' bodies. What remains with me after finishing this book is the sense of how the revolution gained momentum it sacrificed morality.
I highly recommeneded, if somewhat disturbing in places, read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read, 20 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Kindle Edition)
I loved this book. Well written and fascinating before reading this I knew very little of the French revolution or Madame Tussaud and wouldn't have bothered with a history of either. I loved the story telling and couldn't put this book down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Read, 29 Dec 2012
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Helen Jones (Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Madame Tussaud (Kindle Edition)
Enjoyed this book. Gave one a feel of what it was like to live in time of French Revolution, and the politics of the time. Would reccommend to read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Evocative atmosphere, 10 Dec 2012
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Well-researched and well-paced novel, spelling out the choices faced by one family struggling to survive the tumult of the French Revolution.
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Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran
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