Book Review: “The Accidental Empress” by Allison Pataki

May 19, 2015 at 12:06 am | Posted in Books | Leave a comment
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Allison Pataki in her new book, “accidental Empress book coverThe Accidental Empress” published by Howard Books introduces us to Fifteen-year-old Elisabeth, “Sisi,” Duchess of Bavaria who becomes the “Fairy Queen”.

From the back cover:    New York Times bestselling author Allison Pataki follows up on her critically acclaimed debut novel, The Traitor’s Wife, with the little-known and tumultuous love story of “Sisi” the Austro-Hungarian Empress and captivating wife of Emperor Franz Joseph.

The year is 1853, and the Habsburgs are Europe’s most powerful ruling family. With his empire stretching from Austria to Russia, from Germany to Italy, Emperor Franz Joseph is young, rich, and ready to marry.

Fifteen-year-old Elisabeth, “Sisi,” Duchess of Bavaria, travels to the Habsburg Court with her older sister, who is betrothed to the young emperor. But shortly after her arrival at court, Sisi finds herself in an unexpected dilemma: she has inadvertently fallen for and won the heart of her sister’s groom. Franz Joseph reneges on his earlier proposal and declares his intention to marry Sisi instead.

Thrust onto the throne of Europe’s most treacherous imperial court, Sisi upsets political and familial loyalties in her quest to win, and keep, the love of her emperor, her people, and of the world.

With Pataki’s rich period detail and cast of complex, bewitching characters, The Accidental Empress offers a captivating glimpse into one of history’s most intriguing royal families, shedding new light on the glittering Hapsburg Empire and its most mesmerizing, most beloved “Fairy Queen.”

Let me start off by saying that “The Accidental Empress” is history at its finest. Allison Pataki has done huge amounts of research to bring us an excellent view of a royal court in the 19th century. “Sisi” is a wonderful character who grows from a fifteen year old girl into a woman who is ruling an empire.   Emperor Franz Joseph and his reign was barely taught in History class so I remember very little. However Ms. Pataki has done a memorable job in bringing all the players in this true historical drama to life.  “The Accidental Empress” is full of details that make you feel you are there and witnessing these events as they happened.  The characters are marvelous and they live and breathe on these pages.  If you want to know about a time in History that will never happen again then this is the book for you.

You can find “The Accidental Empress” at a discount at

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Howard Books.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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