Daughter of the King
Defying the Crown Series - Book One
by Kerry Chaput
This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Pub Date 16 Dec 2021 | Archive Date 30 Jan 2022
La Rochelle France, 1661. Fierce Protestant Isabelle is desperate to escape persecution by the Catholic King. Isabelle is tortured and harassed, her people forced to convert to the religion that rules the land. She risks her life by helping her fellow Protestants, which is forbidden by the powers of France. She accepts her fate — until she meets a handsome Catholic soldier who makes her question everything.
She fights off an attack by a nobleman, and the only way to save herself is to flee to the colony of Canada as a Daughter of the King. She can have money, protection and a new life — if she adopts the religion she’s spent a lifetime fighting. She must leave her homeland and the promises of her past. In the wild land of Canada, Isabelle finds that her search for love and faith has just begun.
Based on the incredible true story of the French orphans who settled Canada, Daughter of the King is a sweeping tale of one young woman’s fight for true freedom. Kerry Chaput brings the past to life, expertly weaving a gripping saga with vivid historical details. Jump back in time on a thrilling adventure with an unforgettable heroine.
A Note From the Publisher
“If you enjoy swashbuckling adventure, romance and stories set in exciting and dangerous times, then you’re going to love Daughter of the King.” –Naomi Lisa Shippen, women’s fiction author
“Rich in historical detail, this compelling story celebrates the survival and indomitable will of the lovely Isabelle.” –Joyce Predmesky, Historical Fiction Writer
Average rating from 19 members
Do you love adventure stories based on true events? Historical fiction? Woman-centered story? With a bit of romance? Can you handle reading about torture?
I loved escaping to 17th century France and learning about the plight of the Huguenots. History unfolded through the eyes of a loyal and fierce 19-year-old, Isabelle Colette from La Rochelle and I eagerly soaked it up! Protestant Isabelle has been harassed, tortured, and intimidated because of her religious beliefs and is desperate to escape persecution by the Catholic King. When a chance comes, it’s an impossible choice: she’ll have to adopt the religion that killed her family and branded her an outcast.
Betraying everything she believes in, Isabelle flees to Canada as a Daughter of the King and reluctantly accepts money, protection and a fresh start. In short, to populate the colony of New France, orphans and poor single women like Isabelle were sent to marry trappers/settlers/soldiers. It isn’t an easy life and Isabelle’s angst over difficult choices continues to plague her in the new world.
I loved the theme of triumph over adversity running through this novel as well as the focus on Canadian history. Canadian Grade 10 Social Studies students learn about the settlement and Les Filles Du Roi but are not educated about the previous life the orphans faced. I was shocked. It’s interesting to think that the French Canadians today are descendants of these 800 brave women!
This first in the Defying the Crown series is a must for historical fiction lovers. A slight warning for those who are queasy about torture or find a ‘foot in the door’ romance uncomfortable.
Drafted in 2017, shelved for 2 years, and finally resurrected, Kerry Chaput’s five-star debut was worth the wait. Isabelle has been patient in waiting to tell her story. I can’t wait for book 2.
Publishes December 16, 2021.
I was gifted this advance copy by Kerry Chaput, Black Rose Writing and NetGalley and was under no obligation to provide a review.
I knew about the history of the protestants of France, in la Rochelle, in 1661, but this author has brought it to life for me, and it was a very painful history. Narrated in beautiful prose, the author tells the story and her heroine suffers a great deal, and her fellow protestants as well. I found it deeply moving. Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for giving me a copy of the book.
"You've always been bright and warm like the sun, despite the dark places you've seen. You're a magnificent creature, Isabelle. I'm proud to call you my friend."
This is exactly how I felt after finishing <b>DAUGHTER OF THE KING</b> and glimpsing into the life of our heroine, Isabelle Colette.
Isabelle used to have the life most of us dream about, even in today's day and age. She had a family with wealth and status, but all of that was taken away during the long conflicts between Catholics and Huguenots and her life went from having a future to planning each day by day. A series of events that took place between her nineteenth and twenty-fourth years left her to escape her life as a converted Catholic and a fille du roi.
Filles du roi, or the king's daughters, were hundreds of girls and women who immigrated to the colony of New France in the 17th century to help populate the colony with themselves as well as their offspring with their chosen husbands. This was probably my main reasoning for requesting this book as I've always wanted to delve deeper into these stories and timelines. Although this story is fictional, Chaput weaves masterful history and storytelling into one colorful and emotional blanket that just covered me with warmth and satisfaction. Knowing that this is the first of a series really excites me, but I am a little bummed that I have to wait awhile for the next installment! I definitely recommend this novel for any fan of historical fiction, romance, and literary fiction.
Reviewer notes: be aware of themes of sexual and physical abuse and torture throughout this novel.
It's historical fiction like this is that makes me read until I finish! Isabelle is facing religious violence, fear, tragedy and survival in a harsh world both in France and Canada. Her story is hard yet full of courage. It is incredible to think these young women, called Daughters of the King, helped build a nation. The history is well researched and I enjoyed reading this and am looking forward to the next book in the series!
There are some scenes that may be difficult for some readers - and this is not a romance at all despite some romance scenes. I was hoping for more of an ending with a HEA which is why I do not give it five stars.
Isabelle Colette is a Huguenot in 17th century France. Life has not been kind to her and other Protestants – they face starvation, torture and death. Living a life of fear and secrecy, they are cast from their homes and villages. When faced with the same, Isabelle is saved by James, a Catholic soldier. Questioning everything she has ever known, she eventually finds herself on a ship as a Fille du Roi – a Daughter of the King. Landing in Canada, Isabelle is given opportunities she never thought would be in her reach. But she soon learns that only those with fire burning in them will survive in the wild and hostile land.
Even though I’m Canadian, I really only knew about the Filles du Roi in passing. I read a Dear Canada book about them, but we never learned anything about these amazing young women in school. This book really put into light what they went through and how, for the very first time, these women had a say in their own lives and futures.
This book is heart wrenching. The descriptions of how the Huguenots lived and how they were treated are brought to life and show the horrible realities thousands of people had to face. Isabelle sees it in her everyday life and experiences it first-hand, but her spirit never dies. She’s an incredibly strong character, though not without her faults.
I enjoyed the bittersweetness of this novel. It kept me on my toes and even at 90% read, I couldn’t guess how it would end. It’s left open to a sequel and from the author’s site, it looks as though this will be a series. I can’t wait to read the rest of the books.
Thank you to NetGalley and Black Rose Writing for the opportunity to read an ARC in exchange for an honest review!
Daughter of the King introduced me to a part of history that I was unaware of. Learning about the brave young women who immigrated to New France (Canada) was worth picking this book up. The storyline itself is fast paced and gritty dealing with the best and worst of mankind. The main focus of the novel is on Isabelle, a Huguenot in 17th century France. who has a "wild spirit" and refuses to convert to Catholicism. Circumstances in her life lead her to flee overseas and the reader is thrust in a brutal, ruthless world that Isabelle approaches with hope and courage. There are plenty of incredible action-packed scenes describing the dangers of traveling and colonizing a new world, in my opinion this is where the book excelled. The romantic angle was frustrating to me since Isabelle was otherwise a strong character. Thanks to Netgalley and Black Rose Writing for a copy of this fascinating historical fiction story. The review is my honest opinion. If you love strong female characters who shaped history I highly recommend reading this gem.
Historical fiction is rapidly becoming my favorite genre. Daughter of the King takes place in the 1600’s in France and then in Canada and covers an event that I really knew next to nothing about.
At this same time, France is trying to colonize Canada. It needs women to become wives of the rugged settlers in New France (Quebec.) The King of France has the idea to send peasant girls who can withstand the harsh conditions and aren’t afraid of hard work. They are called The Filles du Roi and there were about 800 of them sent to Canada.
The story begins in France where the protestants are being prosecuted, tortured and killed by the catholics. The only way to save yourself is to convert to catholicism, which is what our main character, Isabelle Collette does. But it is a conversion in name only, she remains a protestant at heart. However, she is one of those chosen to become a Filles du Roi.
What I liked and disliked about the book:
This was a time in history that I know little about and I was afraid it would be bogged down with dates and timelines and lots of names and facts. It’s not. It tells you enough of what’s going on so that you do learn about the settling in Canada, the treatment of Huguenots and the perils of the early settlers, but it doesn’t go into extreme detail.
The characters were a bit stereotypical, but still relatable.
There was a love story carried throughout with plenty of longing and anguish.
I enjoyed the book and since it says “Defying the Crown Book 1” I am assuming there will be more in this series. I will definitely read them.
A great historical novel that revealed so much about religion freedoms that I was not aware of. There is so much we can learn from reading these types of novels. I love the way the author weaved so much truth and history into the story. I look forward to rereading this one and reading more from this author. That you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and review.
I am descended from French Canadians through Acadia and know much of the history of the settlement of New France, but I discovered something that I did not know in Kerry Chaput's new novel Daughter of the King - the story of the Filles du Roi. As the French settled in Canada, making their mark in the new world and engaging in the fur trade, men were plentiful, but women were not. What woman would want to make the treacherous trek across the Atlantic Ocean to start anew in a wild and dangerous land full of peril? Not many, as it were, which is where the Filles du Roi came in. The Filles du Roi (Daughters of the King) were often girls and women who were down on their luck - orphaned, penniless, "ruined," persecuted - who were given a second chance at life through this program. They were made honorary "daughters of the King," and were given respect, power, and privilege in exchange for moving to the New World, marrying, starting a family, and helping France gain a foothold in North America.
Daughter of the King, the first novel in the Defying the Crown series, follows Isabelle Colette, a French Protestant who is finding herself persecuted in the Sun King, Louis XIV's, rule over France. "Huguenots" are being tortured, maimed, and killed for their beliefs. So far, Isabelle has resisted the pressure to convert to Catholicism, but she feels she is running out of choices, which is why she agrees to become a Filles du Roi. As a Catholic convert (who secretly holds on to her Protestant beliefs), Isabelle travels to the Quebec colony, where she is expected to make a match. But life in New France holds its own host of problems, which Isabelle soon discovers, including matters of the heart.
One part historical fiction, one part romance, Daughter of the King is a sweeping, adventurous novel of a not often talked about piece of history. I loved learning about the Filles du Roi through Isabelle's story, and I also found my eyes opened to the plight of the Huguenots, with which I was also not familiar. Chaput writes of the persecution that the Huguenots faced with such raw and unflinching heartbreak, and brings to life the tension that was felt throughout France in the 1600s. Isabelle's time spent as a Filles du Roi and her life in New France is not written as vividly as that of her Huguenot storyline, but is still intriguing; for those who enjoy love stories, this is where the story takes on a more romantic tone as Isabelle tries to choose between two men.
Daughter of the King is a strong start to the Defy the Crown series. Readers should know that the end of the book is very much-so set up for a sequel, so don't expect things to be tied up at the end of this richly detailed read.