Book Review | The Game of Hope

The Game of Hope by Sandra Gulland

The Game of Hope
The Game of Hope by Sandra Gulland, Canadian Author

When Sandra Gulland’s The Game of Hope opens in 1798, Hortense de Beauharnais is 15. Her father was guillotined during the last days of the Terror in France. Josephine, her notorious mother, is married to Napoleon Bonaparte. He is away in Egypt leading the French army, and Hortense lives at a boarding school for aristocratic girls. There, she nurses her talents, her sorrows and her secrets passions.

What does the future hold for the timid daughter of a beautiful woman; the step-child of a ruthless man?

Hortense de Beauharnais’s Hope

With The Game of Hope, Canadian author, Sandra Gulland, returns to the French Revolutionary era. She tells Hortense’s story from her point of view during the momentous events during the rise of Napoleon from leading General to First Consul.

Hers is the story of every young woman – influenced by momentous events, yet shaped much more by the incidents of her own life — her guilt over her father’s death, her sorrow over the loss of a school friend, her passion for music. While Napoleon and her mother conduct their busy lives, we experience daily life with Hortense, her friends and her beloved maîtresse, Mme. Campan.

Hortense is a well-rounded character, who grows in maturity over the two-year period of the novel. The setting seethes with the flavour of the era and the history weaves seamlessly into the story. Without giving anything away, the story ends on an uplifting note, as Hortense grows in empathy.

Delightfully written, as we expect from Ms. Gulland, though perhaps a trifle slow-paced at times, The Game of Hope is perfect for young adults, especially those who love for history and delicate romance.

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Sandra Gulland, Canadian Author
Sandra Gulland, Canadian Author

The Game of Hope: Book Details

Title: The Game of Hope

Author: Sandra Gulland

Publisher: Viking

Length: 384 pages

Available in Canada and the US at various prices through links on Gulland’s website

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