Well written and very well researched novel about the French Revolution which refreshingly included a couple of characters who are not amoung the usual suspects when reading about the revolution. Besides the well known Danton and Robespeirre and the slightly lesser known Manon Roland and Nicolas Condorcet, we also follow Claire Lacombe and Pauline Leon who founded the first all women's political organisation (the Revolutionary Republican Women) so there's a nice mix of point of views from men and women, moderates and radicals, petty nobles, educated middle class and city poor.
I have wavered between giving this 4 or 5 stars for a couple of days but finally plumped for 4 as the book did have a couple of weaknesses including a slow start (took about 50 pages to get going but once it did it was very hard to put down), some minor but jarring use of modern language and an ending that felt a little tacked on and not entirely in keeping with the rest of the story. However, none of this was enough to seriously annoy and it was an otherwise great read.
This is a wonderfully detailed novel if you want to learn more about the French Revolution in an enjoyable way and while my favourite French Revolution novel is still Hilary Mantel's A Place of Greater Safety this one comes in a pretty close second.
Thanks to my GR friend Kim for suggesting this book for our buddy read and French Revolution binge as otherwise I might never have read it :-).