Review Type: Spoiler Free
Title and Author: Enchantée by Gita Trelease
Genre and Subgenre: YA Historical Fantasy
Buy it here.
Paris in 1789 is a labyrinth of twisted streets, filled with beggars, thieves, revolutionaries—and magicians…
When smallpox kills her parents, Camille Durbonne must find a way to provide for her frail, naive sister while managing her volatile brother. Relying on petty magic—la magie ordinaire—Camille painstakingly transforms scraps of metal into money to buy the food and medicine they need. But when the coins won’t hold their shape and her brother disappears with the family’s savings, Camille must pursue a richer, more dangerous mark: the glittering court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.
With dark magic forbidden by her mother, Camille transforms herself into the ‘Baroness de la Fontaine’ and is swept up into life at the Palace of Versailles, where aristocrats both fear and hunger for la magie. There, she gambles at cards, desperate to have enough to keep herself and her sister safe. Yet the longer she stays at court, the more difficult it becomes to reconcile her resentment of the nobles with the enchantments of Versailles. And when she returns to Paris, Camille meets a handsome young balloonist—who dares her to hope that love and liberty may both be possible.
But la magie has its costs. And when Camille loses control of her secrets, the game she’s playing turns deadly. Then revolution erupts, and she must choose—love or loyalty, democracy or aristocracy, freedom or magic—before Paris burns…
A gorgeous romance in 18th Century Paris? Heck yes. Strong female protagonist supporting herself and her sister in an unforgiving world? Yasssss queen. Magic, gambling, intrigue and an intoxicating atmosphere around every corner? Yes, yes, yes, and oh my gosh yes. Was my mind blown? Also a resounding YES!
Going into this book I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect, but I heard the words ‘18thcentury Paris’ and ‘Stephanie Garber recommended’ and I already knew I was in. As soon I started reading one of my first thoughts was- holy crap, Gita Trelease knows her stuff. This book was clearly very heavily researched, you truly feel like your stepping through time- all of the senses brilliantly captured.
If I had one criticism it would be that the beginning was a little slow, it took a hot sec to get to the meat of the story. But once we get into the world of Versailles and La Glamour, the magic of the story truly begins. I can definitely see why Stephanie Garber was a fan, guys (and that’s saying a lot because she is queen).
Once the book picks up, you’ll be swept up in a world of mystery, romance, flight, fancy and (of course) la magie. Not only is the story magical, but it also covers several really important themes that are still applicable today- the class system, toxic familial relationships, deception, fantasy vs. reality, and so much more. If that wasn’t enough for me to fall in love, there’s even an adorable gay couple in the cast of characters (woo LGBTQ+ pride!). Also, it teaches you French through context clues so I basically speak French now, nbd.
All and all, this was a fantastic read that comes highly recommended from the RI&W sisters. Stephanie Garber fans especially will adore this book and all of its balloon flying, Versailles gambling, class revolution majesty. I checked on Goodreads and a sequel has been confirmed, but (not going to lie) I’m sad I can’t pick it up immediately. I suppose I’ll just have to use my sorrow to perform la magie until the sequel is released…
Thank you so much to Gita Trelease and Flatiron/Macmillan Publishing for including us in this blog tour! Check out the schedule below to follow the rest of the blog tour. Until next time, book fam!