Sex with the Queen: Nine Hundred Years of Vile Kings, Virile Lovers and Passionate Politics —by Eleanor Herman
Nonfiction / History
How come history wasn't this much fun when I was in school? Queens were rarely, if ever, mentioned—it was all about the Kings, the men, the knights, the male of the species. Only now and then were the females of the species mentioned, and usually because they died rather out of sorts. Marie Antoinette, the stupid little twit who uttered the famous phrase, "Let them eat cake." And the innocent Anne Boleyn. Catherine the Great who brought Russia into the then modern age—and a slew of lovers into her bed.
Not mentioned were the Kings who were imbeciles (literally), or impotent, or the wives forced upon them who were actually (well, for the most part. We can't totally ignore Marie Antoinette) intelligent and better able to run the country than their spouses.
Women, especially princesses raised to become queens, were taught to read and write, at least a little, mostly they were taught to sew, embroider, and to spawn as many children as possible. They received little, if any, instruction on what to expect in married life, other than to remain chaste, and loyal to their husbands.
Oh, my. When those delectable young women found themselves in bed with a boor, is it any wonder so many of them strayed? And, they often strayed with the blessing of the government, if they were smart enough to choose the right lovers, and several were.
This book is about scandal on a royal scale. It is history. It is funny. Oh, at times, sad. But I guarantee you, it's history like you never learned in school. Is it true? I dunno, but it sure was fun! Gossip on a royal scale, all of it old, some ancient. Who really knows if it's true or not. And who really cares if Marie Antoinette really said, "Let them eat cake." This book is just downright fun!
I can hardly wait to read Sex with Kings and her other books.