Stachniak, Eva Garden of Venus

ISBN 13: 9780007180448

Garden of Venus

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9780007180448: Garden of Venus

An alluring, exotic novel set in the early nineteenth century, based on the life of the famous and much-painted courtesan, La Belle Phanariote.

‘Stories precede her. Whispers of delighted amusement at her exotic beauty, her mysterious past. Some swear she has been a Sultan’s odalisque. Others that she is a Greek princess. Princes praise her exquisite manners and her pleasing ways. And the King of Poland leads her in the polonaise.’
Sophie, the Countess Potocki, is travelling with her entourage from St Petersburg to Paris, to consult with French doctors, when she stops at the Berlin palace of her friend, the Graf von Haefen.

There, her whole extraordinary life during one of the most turbulent periods of European history comes back to haunt her – the many strands of her life, the many roles in which she has presented herself, the many biographies she has made up, the many lovers and protectors she has cherished and deceived. And still she continues to attempt to manipulate the lives of those around her.
Brilliantly written, cleverly constructed with a strong cast of characters, both real and fictional, and vivid scenes, Garden of Venus is an alluring, sensuous and exotic saga which will delight readers of Tracy Chevalier, Philippa Gregory and Isabelle Allende.

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From the Back Cover:

An alluring, exotic novel set in the early nineteenth century, based on the life and world of one of the most celebrated courtesans.

Sophie, the Countess Potocki, is travelling with her entourage from St Petersburg to Paris, to consult with French doctors, when she stops at the Berlin palace of her friend, the Graf von Haefen. There she will play her final role.

Sophie’s whole extraordinary life during one of the most turbulent periods of European history comes back to haunt her - the many strands of her life, the many roles in which she has presented herself, the many biographies she has made up, the many lovers and protectors she has cherished and deceived. Needing always to assure her survival in a harsh world, using her beauty, learning her charm and social skills, she could not afford the luxury of loving. But one man did hold her heart.

Now she uses the lessons that she has acquired to manipulate the lives of those around her. But two of them, her Polish lady-in-waiting and the French doctor summoned to her, have been brought up in a different, more modern era. Her lady-in-waiting survived the terrible wars that tore her family apart, and the doctor is a child of the revolutionary spirit that burnt through Europe from Paris. Both have very different ideas than the Countess Potocki on how to lives their lives, and how to survive the turmoil in the beginning of this new century.

BACK

‘Stories precede her. Whispers of delighted amusement at her exotic beauty, her mysterious past. Some swear she has been a Sultan’s odalisque. Others that she is a Greek princess. Princes praise her exquisite manners and her pleasing ways. And the King of Poland leads her in the polonaise.’

BACK FLAP

Eva Stachniak was born in Wroclaw, Poland. She emigrated to Canada in 1981, on scholarship to McGill University in Montreal. In Poland she taught English Literature at the University of Wroclaw. She teaches at Sheridan College, in Oakville, Ontario. Her fiction is the result of her fascination with the ways history and culture shape our lives. She lives in Mississauga, Ontario, with her husband and is currently working on her second novel.

About the Author:

Eva Stachniak was born in Poland and now lives in Canada. She has been a teacher and librarian. This is her first novel.

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Stachniak, Eva
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2005)
ISBN 10: 0007180446 ISBN 13: 9780007180448
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Stachniak, Eva
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2005)
ISBN 10: 0007180446 ISBN 13: 9780007180448
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