The Orange Grove By Kate Murdoch

The Blurb:

Blois, 1705. The château of Duc Hugo d'Amboise simmers with rivalry and intrigue. Henriette d'Augustin, one of five mistresses of the duc, lives at the chateau with her daughter. When the duc's wife, Duchesse Charlotte, maliciously undermines a new mistress, Letitia, Henriette is forced to choose between position and morality. She fights to maintain her status whilst targeted by the duchesse who will do anything to harm her enemies. The arrival of charismatic tarot reader, Romain de Villiers, further escalates tensions as rivals in love and domestic politics strive for supremacy.In a society where status is a matter of life and death, Henriette must stay true to herself, her daughter, and her heart, all the while hiding a painful secret of her own.

The Story:

The story of The Orange Grove takes place in the 18th century. In a château, Duc Hugo d’Amboise lives with his wife and five mistresses. Letitia is the new mistress, young and beautiful, whose presence affects Duchesse Charlotte, wife of Hugo, the most. Living a life with her husband and his mistresses isn't easy but the Duchesse manages it quite well and has a good reputation. It doesn't bother her much when her husband brings in young Letitia until he is in love with her and wants her to have his child, an heir. The Duc and Duchesse have a daughter but no son, also the more she wishes to have children the more she can’t. Romain de Villiers, a charismatic tarot reader and friend of the Duchesse, shares a secret with her. It’s a century where everything is done for status and reputation, so what will the Duchesse do to maintain her status? Will she accept it just like she did before with the other four mistresses or this time will it be different?

My take: 

Author Kate Murdoch has described the era beautifully, whilst reading it was easy for me to imagine myself in that era with silk gowns, drinking tea, hiding my face in a fan as I laughed, and many such small things that made the book more interesting than it already was. I love the way the author has written this book with a story that does not only revolve around the Duc, Duchesse and Letitia, but around each character. All the characters, Duc and Duchesse, the five mistresses, along with the children and other side characters, everyone had their backstory explained. Everyone has secrets of their own and just like us, there are many mysteries and secrets hidden in this book, which will leave you shocked. The difficulties and emotions are described beautifully and with care. The highlight of the book was the backstory of Henriette and her love story.

Overall, the book is great and will transfer you to a whole new era of the 18th century. Where you will feel love, jealousy, betrayal, loyalty, mistakes, regrets, sacrifices, and reality. It’s a great read and I would recommend others read The Orange Grove. Click on the link and discover for yourself the story of The Orange Grove: 


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