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Download Catherine De Medici Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Catherine De Medici Audiobook, by Leonie Frieda
3.77 out of 53.77 out of 53.77 out of 53.77 out of 53.77 out of 5 3.77 (30 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Leonie Frieda Narrator: Anna Massey Publisher: Orion Publishing Group Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2008 ISBN:
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Catherine de Medici was half French, half Italian. Orphaned in infancy, she was the sole legitimate heiress to the Medici family fortune. Married at 14 to the future Henri II of France, she was constantly humiliated by his influential mistress Diane de Poitiers.

When her husband died as a result of a duelling accident in Paris - Leonie Frieda's magnificent, throat-grabbing opening chapter - Catherine was made queen regent during the short reign of her eldest son. (He was married to Mary Queen of Scots and, like many of her children, he died young.) When her second son became king, she was the power behind the throne.

Leonie Frieda has returned to original sources and re-read the thousands of letters left by Catherine. There has not been a biography in English of Catherine for many years, and she believes that the time has come to show her as one of the most influential women in 16th-century Europe. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maria | 2/18/2014

    " Very good biography of Catherine. Well researched and logically written, it reads easily. It is not over run with too many characters. I really enjoyed this biography. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carmen | 2/14/2014

    " After a trip to through the Loire Valley, I was very curious about Catherine de Medici as her name is associated with so many of the chateaux. Frieda's book is well-written, such that what could be very dry subject matter is told in an engaging style. She presents a well-rounded portrait of Catherine. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Daisy | 2/10/2014

    " Catherine de Medici was the daughter of a rich merchant, not born very rich since her parents were died. She was also of no royal blood. She was no beauty either. However, she did end up being one of the most famous Queens of France. She understood that she's no beauty and there was nothing she could do to change that,so she practiced on her manner, her elegancy, her way of speaking. All of those made it up for her. Moreover, she always acted humble. During the reign of her husband Henri II, she tolerated Henri's mistress Diane de Poitiers with not one word of compliant. That was the reason why she could survive in the royal court. At that time, a wife who kept whining to her husband could risk being set aside forever. Since she was acting like such a pity, her enemies never really paid much attention to her, for them, she was nothing but a royal Queen who had nothing to say. She did what most famous monarchies did: lay low and strike only when everything is sure. After her husband died, she had no choice but to protect her children from the ambitous courtiers such as Guise family. She also studied closely her father-in-law and his courtiers, through him she learned a lot. Her determination of religous peace also earned her respect from even her enemies. She also manipulated her enemies to give her the power. It is true that whatever you do, you have to understand your enemies before you try anything funny. Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer, you never really know who's going to strike you back and who's going to retaliate against you. Catherine certainly did what Machiavelli's Prince suggested: TO be a Great prince one must sometimes violate the laws of humanity" "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy Bielski | 2/2/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book. There was a lot of information, but it read like a narrative. It was easy to follow all of the different people Frieda mentioned. She gave some really great accounts of what life was like in the 16th century, including really graphic descriptions of death/assassination attempts. Overall, a pretty good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 EP | 1/27/2014

    " Ah! a good biography is often more entertaining than fiction. Well written, with always a good mise en scene, to understand the background of the situation. Gives me the interest to read more historical biography... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jen Noble | 1/12/2014

    " Interesting but a bit difficult to read with all the footnotes. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peter | 1/12/2014

    " The detail of the Wars of Religion was new to me. A vile mess of a conflict! Author's bias against the Huguenots clear (they were so lower class!) And how she could admire this stupid women, whose only concern was for her ridiculous offspring. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elysium | 12/12/2013

    " Interesting and well re-searched book of strong and complex woman who would do anything for her sons to be kings of France. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melisende d'Outremer | 12/1/2013

    " I love this re-telling of the life of Catherine de Medici - this was my third reading - and still happy to indulge my interest. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul Vilarino | 11/27/2013

    " to many dates and facts, yeah I know that's why it's not fiction but I like my history severed hot, and dates, place names etc just don't do it "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Delta | 7/12/2013

    " Interesting but a loooong read "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mark Gaulding | 6/15/2013

    " This was an important book in my understanding of French history. Or rather, it filled in a missing gap. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew Thibodeau | 3/9/2013

    " Went in with no expectations, dry at points, learned some history we never got into in high school. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 3/2/2013

    " Excellent book, extremely detail-oriented, takes a long time to read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 missinggarden | 11/18/2012

    " This is a biography, but I liked how Leonie Frieda managed to show a more human aspect of Catherine de Medici: she does not minimize what she did, but at least she tries to give a less judgemental account of her life. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Grace C | 4/29/2012

    " One will understand why Catherine de Medici earned her name as the Serpent after reading this book. She was vividly portrayed as a neglected woman, queen, queen dowager, and mother. History has made her one of the hated women in France, and yet I can still symphatise with her. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karin Le Blanc | 4/6/2012

    " Fact stranger than fiction? The ancient battle between Catholics and Protestants, (mass)murder, sex betrayal and in the end you leave with nothing. The writer's style reminds me of the books by Anthonia Fraser, I am sure I will reread it again in the future. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tracey Richardson | 2/14/2012

    " I loved this book. I felt that it helped me to understand the history of that time period. I had previously read the Serpent and the Moon by Princess Michael and this book was a perfect compliment to the other side of the love triangle. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lisa Beth | 4/20/2011

    " the book was well written, and had lots of interesting timbits of history that i didn't realize co existed! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 4/1/2011

    " This was a very entertaining book. It did not have one boring page, and I would have given it four stars, except the author just could not seem to resist trying to make Catherine out to be a saint. More objectivity would have been nice. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 missinggarden | 3/26/2011

    " This is a biography, but I liked how Leonie Frieda managed to show a more human aspect of Catherine de Medici: she does not minimize what she did, but at least she tries to give a less judgemental account of her life. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 10/15/2010

    " Went in with no expectations, dry at points, learned some history we never got into in high school. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Delta | 9/14/2010

    " Interesting but a loooong read "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul | 9/14/2010

    " to many dates and facts, yeah I know that's why it's not fiction but I like my history severed hot, and dates, place names etc just don't do it "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Faye | 7/14/2010

    " Took me a long time to read this book, but I am glad that I did. Overall I enjoyed it but was a tad slow in a lot of places. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 5/28/2010

    " Very enjoyable non-fiction account of the life of Catherine de Medici. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 12/26/2009

    " Excellent book, extremely detail-oriented, takes a long time to read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elysium | 7/30/2009

    " Interesting and well re-searched book of strong and complex woman who would do anything for her sons to be kings of France. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peter | 6/16/2009

    " The detail of the Wars of Religion was new to me. A vile mess of a conflict! Author's bias against the Huguenots clear (they were so lower class!) And how she could admire this stupid women, whose only concern was for her ridiculous offspring. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cynthia Karl | 3/17/2009

    " Excellent biography of Catherine de Medici - amazing what happened at the French court during the 16th century. Having read a great deal of English history of the 16th century, this rounded out the picture for me of what was happening in Europe at that time. "

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