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Extended Audio Sample Josephine: A Life of the Empress, by Carolly Erickson Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (294 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Carolly Erickson Narrator: Anna Fields Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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When, in 1804, Josephine Bonaparte knelt before her husband Napoleon to receive the imperial diadem, few in the vast crowd of onlookers were aware of the dark secrets hidden behind the imperial façade. To her subjects, she appeared to be the most favored woman in France: alluring, wealthy, and with the devoted love of a remarkable husband who was the conqueror of Europe. In actuality, Josephine’s life was far darker: her celebrated allure was fading, her wealth was compromised by massive debt, and her marriage was corroded by infidelity and abuse.

Josephine’s life story was as turbulent as the age—an era of revolution and social upheaval, frenzied hedonism and the guillotine. With telling psychological depth and compelling literary grace, Carolly Erickson brings the complex, charming, ever-resilient Josephine to life, carrying us along every twist and turn of the empress often thorny path, from the sensual richness of her childhood in the tropics to her final lonely days at Malmaison.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An intimate, richly detailed, and candid portrait.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Carolly Erickson tells [this story] with all the flair it deserves...Exquisite writing.”

    Houston Chronicle

  • “The focus is always on Josephine, whose psychology is discussed at length. Erickson succeeds in making her subject an attractive figure, if hardly an exemplar of moral rectitude.”

    Amazon.com editorial review

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Nancy | 1/31/2014

    " An intersting biography of Empress Josephine, Napoleon's consort, that focuses on her personal life rather than on French history. Lush descriptions of her wardrobe, entertainments, homes, food and parties, and Josephine's continuing promiscuity even after their marriage make this an entertaining popular biography rather than a work of scholarly research. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Marco | 1/28/2014

    " I cried... not kidding. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Jennifer | 1/26/2014

    " Very good biography; not too heavy, but enough detail. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Angie Seffker Cope | 1/18/2014

    " Great. Love the historical context, well written, organized. Just great. "

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