Charlatan by Kate Braithwaite

CHARLATAN is based on the Affair of the Poisons that scandalized Paris in 1679.

charlatan

In a hovel in the centre of Paris, the fortune-teller La Voisin holds a black mass, summoning the devil to help an unnamed client keep the love of Louis XIV.

Three years later, Athenais, Madame de Montespan, the King’s glamorous mistress, is nearly forty. She has borne Louis seven children but now seethes with rage as he falls for eighteen-year old Angelique de Fontanges.

At the same time, police chief La Reynie and his young assistant Bezons have uncovered a network of fortune-tellers and prisoners operating in the city. Athenais does not know it, but she is about to be named as a favoured client of the infamous La Voisin.

*********

Charlatan is an enthralling work of historical fiction set in the late 1600s in France. From a black mass held in the centre of Paris to the opulence of the court of Versailles, a story – part intrigue, part drama – unfolds that has the reader turning the pages on the edge of her seat.

What motivates an author to write historical fiction? The telling of stories untold? A revisioning of the past? Retrospective justice? Charlatan is all these and more. Told in richly descriptive and highly engaging prose, the work portrays in vivid details the torture, hangings and burnings of witches and their accomplices, including numerous priests. The author clearly knows her subject, the work as much informative as it is entertaining. Told from three points of view – the King’s mistress, the investigating police officer, the priest – Charlatan provides a fascinating insight into the occult underworld of Paris, its popularity, its secrecy, and the various motivations of those involved.

The premise of the story is the limitations of justice in a system riven by poverty and privilege, and it is a theme that plays out perfectly through masterful storytelling. The dialogue is impeccable and the pace never falters, the various storylines carefully woven into a seamless whole. Charlatan makes for confronting reading at times, but it’s all the stronger for not shying from the realities of the times. With Charlatan, Braithwaite makes a valuable contribution to raising awareness of a controversial subject.

Published by isobelblackthorn

Isobel Blackthorn is an award-winning author of mysteries, thrillers and historical fiction. She holds a PhD in Western Esotericism for her groundbreaking study of the Alice Bailey books. She has a passion for social justice, philosophy, current affairs, books and art.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Soul to Spirit: The New Spiritual Psychology

Becoming Human, Becoming Soul, Becoming Spirit

The Dark Side from the Inside

Writing and Reviews from Dark Places

Bookinton

Book Blogging , Short Stories , Reviews , literary web-series and EVERYTHING FICTION !

The Book Decoder

Book Reviews By A Geek

Mitch Horowitz

Author • Lecturer • Narrator

The Hard Hat Book Site

Book Reviews, Author Interviews, Ideas and Scandals

ARMAND ROSAMILIA

Author of Thriller, Horror, Nonfiction stories and more

BOOKS FROM DUSK TILL DAWN

Each night I TRAVEL THE WORLD, I LIVE IN THE MIND OF KILLERS AND WALK AT THE SIDE OF HEROES

Passport Overused

Showing the beauty of this world through the people, places and culture

Booknvolume

For the Love of Words, Laughter, Inspiration (and the odd sexy split infinitive.)

THE BLOGGING STATION

LIFESTYLE, BEAUTY AND EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN

This Is My Truth Now

Author, Inspirational Blogger, Book Reviewer & Promoter (James J. Cudney)

Frankly Wright

I give you my opinion whether you ask for it or not.

a good book, a good life

comments on books by Ann Creber

Carmel Bendon - author

Writing tales of then and now and the in-between

%d bloggers like this: