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Publisher's Summary

The year is 1788, and a revolution is about to begin….

Marie Tussaud has learned the secrets of wax sculpting by working alongside her uncle in their celebrated wax museum, the Salon de Cire. From her popular model of the American ambassador Thomas Jefferson to her tableau of the royal family at dinner, Marie's museum provides Parisians with the very latest news on fashion, gossip, even politics. Her customers hail from every walk of life, and when word arrives that the royals themselves are coming to see their likenesses, Marie never dreams that the king's sister will request her presence at Versailles as a royal tutor in wax sculpting. Yet when a letter with a gold seal is delivered to her home, Marie knows she cannot refuse---even if it means time away from her beloved Salon and her increasingly dear friend Henri Charles.

As Marie becomes acquainted with her pupil, Princess Elisabeth, she is taken to meet both Marie Antoinette and King Louis XVI, who introduce her to the glamorous life at court. From lavish parties with more delicacies than she's ever seen to rooms filled with candles lit only once before being discarded, Marie steps into to a world entirely different from her home on the Boulevard du Temple, where people are selling their teeth in order to put food on the table.

Meanwhile, many resent the vast separation between rich and poor. In salons and cafes across Paris, people like Camille Desmoulins, Jean-Paul Marat, and Maximilien Robespierre are lashing out against the monarchy. Soon, there's whispered talk of revolution. Will Marie be able to hold on to both the love of her life and her friendship with the royal family as France approaches civil war? More important, will she be able to fulfill the demands of powerful revolutionaries who ask that she make the death masks of beheaded aristocrats, some of whom she knows?

©2011 Michelle Moran (P)2011 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Moran is a sprightly and gimlet-eyed writer, so this should be fun - and a possible breakout." (Library Journal)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Story

Really incredible account of the French Revolution

Although I didn't love this book as much as I did the Heritic Queen or Nefertiti, I thought account of history for both the main character and especially the French Revolution was incredible. If you like historical fiction, recommend this book.

  • Overall
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  • Story

The first audible book I almost didnt finish

What disappointed you about Madame Tussaud?

The story was dry and not very entertaining. I did listen to the whole thing but it took me a looong time. I am glad its over!

Has Madame Tussaud turned you off from other books in this genre?

No, I do generally enjoy historical fiction but not this particular story.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

Yes.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Madame Tussaud?

Most of it. Maybe the story would have been better if it was told from another characters prespective.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

How much is true?

It was ok, but historical fiction can be annoying. How much was fiction and how much was true??

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Mediocre at best

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. The only interesting part of the book is the description of how Trussaud modeled her work.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Patch
  • marietta, GA, United States
  • 09-19-12

I hate accents on audio books!

I love Michelle Moran and got this book without listening to a sample. If I had I would not have purchased. I may try to read this on my kindle b/c I love the author's other books so much. I could not get past a few chapters of this book b/c of the heavy french accent. I don't need the accent to make it feel authentic. This drives me crazy and ruins good books! If you really wanted it to be authentic then wouldn't it be spoken in french, and not english with a french accent? Oh wait, it was written in english by an American author...

1 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Joanna
  • Hillsboro Beach, FL USA
  • 03-15-11

Disconcerting

Don't know how to rate this since I haven't finished it, however, I am finding it a bit disconcerting that the reader, who must be British, has the French King & Queen, as well as other French characters, speaking with a British accent, even though the reader's French pronunciation of names is very good. What was she thinking? Hope the story eventually makes me forget the accents!

4 of 18 people found this review helpful