Welcome to Book Lovers Paradise

Welcome to my attempt at blogging. I am a true to heart bibliophile. Here I will discuss and review books as I read them. You are welcome to do the same. The only rules are no profanity, no politics, no religion, and have fun!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

presenting her book


about the book:

Henriette d'Entragues isn't satisfied with simply being the mistress of Henry IV of France; she wants a crown, too. Despite his promises to marry her, the King is obliged by political necessity to ally himself with a rich Italian princess. But Henriette isn't one for giving up easily.

I do not like Henriette.  "OFF WITH HER HEAD" kept running through my mind while reading this book.  I have a soft spot for the Medici women, they were pawns in the political games of the times.  Marie de Medici is no exception.  
This is actually the third book in a series.  I encourage you to read all three.  Not much is written about this time period, and Ms Lightfoot has done a great job with her research. Book one is THE HOSTAGE QUEEN and deals with Henry of Navarre and his wife Margot,  Book two is THE RELUCTANT QUEEN and we meet Gabrielle d'Estrees and of course, book three
THE QUEEN AND THE COURTESAN deals with Henry IV and his wife, Marie de Medici and his mistress Henriette d'Entragues.

and now...my interview with 

Donna: Thank you for joining us here at book lovers paradise.  I'd like to ask you a few questions about your books and about your writing.   What is your inspiration?

Freda:  The Queen and the Courtesan is the last in the trilogy about Marguerite de Valois and Henry IV of France. It’s the story of one of his many mistresses, Henriette d’Entragues, who rather fancied wearing a crown. Before agreeing to become his mistress she insisted upon a written promise that if she provided him with a son, he would make her his queen. Of course, it all becomes far more complicated than she expected. 
The inspiration for this series came when I found an old book on my shelf. It was a biography of Marguerite de Valois called ‘The Queen of Hearts’. I’d bought it at some second hand book shop years ago, picked it up to read one night to discover she was the daughter of Catherine de Medici and led a fascinating life filled with scandal and intrigue. That set me off researching what became ‘Hostage Queen’, and then ‘Reluctant Queen’. And in this last book ‘The Queen and the Courtesan’, Margot, as she was known, returns from her life in exile at Usson, to spend her last years back in Paris. I did feel rather sorry for Henry’s new Queen, Marie de Medici, as she had a mistress and an ex-wife to deal with.

Donna:  Can you see yourself as any of your characters?

Freda:  I’d rather not see myself as any of the characters in this series as they really were quite dangerous times. Plots festered, intrigue was rife, and you never knew if you were going to keep your head, or whether this goblet of wine was safe to drink.

Donna:  What is the best advice you would give to a new writer?

Freda: The best advice I could give any new writer is to write what you love. Take no notice of current fashions, they come and go too quickly to chase. Write from the heart, with sincerity, and keep the reader turning the pages.

Donna: What is the best advice someone gave you?

Freda: The best piece of advice I received was that it was my job to entertain and keep the reader from her sleep. And judging by the number of my ebooks bought during the night, I’d say there are plenty of insomniacs around.

Donna:  Who are your favorite authors?
Freda:  I love historical fiction. I fell in love with the genre reading Anya Seton, Jean Plaidy and Norah Lofts. Now I enjoy Susan Holloway Scott, Elizabeth Chadwick, Susanna Kearsley, Dianne Haegar, and many more.

Donna: If you could meet any 4 people, living or dead, who would you choose?

Freda:  I’d certainly like to meet the characters from my books: Marguerite de Valois, because she was a feminist before her time, Gabrielle d’Estrees to find out if she was as innocent and na├»ve as she seems, and of course Henriette, a right little madam. Oh, and Henry IV himself. What a charmer! His grandson, Charles II of England, was definitely a chip off the old block where women were concerned.

Donna: Any other books in the works?
Freda:  I’ve just finished a book about Dorothy Jordan, a famous comedic eighteenth century actress, a real celeb in her day, who became mistress to the Duke of Clarence who later became William IV. They lived together for almost twenty years, and she gave him ten children, yet managed to keep her career going throughout. Another feisty, independent woman, but with a soft and generous heart which was her undoing.

The paperback of The Queen and the Courtesan, published 29 June, can be found here:
Most of my titles are now up as ebooks on Amazon, Kobo, Smashwords etc. Links to them can be found on my website:

Hope this is OK. 
Best, Freda

Freda, Thank you for joining us today.  Good luck with your writing.  I am a lover of history and completely enjoyed your trilogy!!


  1. Thank for having me on the blog, Donna. Thoroughly enjoyed my visit and the post looks great.
    Best wishes,

  2. Hi Donna, Great interview! Interesting to learn more about Freda. I am a bug Henry the VIII fan- and love the Phillpa Gregory books, with the exception of The Red Queen. I just couldn't get into that one. I will have to check these out! Thanks : ) ~ Jess