In the second part of The Vicomte de Bragelonne 1661 approaches, Princess Henrietta of England arrives for her marriage, and throws the court of France into complete disorder. The jealousy of the Duke of Buckingham, who is in love with her, nearly occasions a war on the streets of Le Havre, thankfully prevented by Raoul's timely and tactful intervention. After the marriage, though, Monsieur Philip becomes horribly jealous of Buckingham, and has him exiled. Before leaving, however, the duke fights a duel with M. de Wardes at Calais. De Wardes is a malicious and spiteful man, the sworn enemy of D'Artagnan, and, by the same token, that of Athos, Aramis, Porthos, and Raoul as well. Both men are seriously wounded, and the duke is taken back to England to recover. Raoul's friend, the Comte de Guiche, is the next to succumb to Henrietta's charms, and Monsieur obtains his exile as well, though De Guiche soon effects a reconciliation. But then the king's eye falls on Madame Henrietta during the comte's absence, and this time Monsieur's jealousy has no recourse. Anne of Austria intervenes, and the king and his sister- in-law decide to pick a young lady with whom the king can pretend to be in love, the better to mask their own affair. They unfortunately select Louise de la Valliere, Raoul's fiancee. While the court is in residence at Fontainebleau, the king unwitting overhears Louise confessing her love for him while chatting with her friends beneath the royal oak, and the king promptly forgets his affection for Madame. That same night, Henrietta overhears, at the same oak, De Guiche confessing his love for her to Raoul. The two embark on their own affair. A few days later, during a rainstorm, Louis and Louise are trapped alone together, and the whole court begins to talk of the scandal while their love affair blossoms. Aware of Louise's attachment, the king arranges for Raoul to be sent to England for an indefinite period.
Meanwhile, the struggle for power continues between Fouquet and Colbert. Although the Belle-Isle plot backfired, Colbert prompts the king to ask Fouquet for more and more money, and without his two friends to raise it for him, Fouquet is sorely pressed. The situation gets so bad that his new mistress, Madame de Belliere, must resort to selling all her jewels and her gold and silver plate. Aramis, while this is going on, has grown friendly with the governor of the Bastile, M. de Baisemeaux, a fact that Baisemeaux unwittingly reveals to D'Artagnan while inquiring of him as to Aramis's whereabouts. This further arouses the suspicions of the musketeer, who was made to look ridiculous by Aramis. He had ridden overnight at an insane pace, but arrived a few minutes after Fouquet had already presented Belle-Isle to the king. Aramis learns from the governor the location of a mysterious prisoner, who bears a remarkable resemblance to Louis XIV - in fact, the two are identical. He uses the existence of this secret to persuade a dying Franciscan monk, the general of the society of the Jesuits, to name him, Aramis, the new general of the order. On Aramis's advice, hoping to use Louise's influence with the king to counteract Colbert's influence, Fouquet also writes a love letter to La Valliere, unfortunately undated. It never reaches its destination, however, as the servant ordered to deliver it turns out to be an agent of Colbert's.
Porthos, in the meantime, has been recovering from his midnight ride from Belle-Isle at Fouquet's residence at Saint-Mande. Athos has retired, once again to La Fere. D'Artagnan, little amused by the court's activities at Fontainebleau, and finding himself with nothing to do, has returned to Paris, and we find him again in Planchet's grocery shop.
I read the entire Musketeers series about two years ago. The first book, I loved, and the second was also very entertaining. But when I read Ten Years Later, I was disappointed.
I found the reason I was reading it was for the characters of d'Artagnan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis, but unfortunately these charcters were on the sideline for most of the story and I don't even think they ever shared a scene together.
I also felt a bit cheated by all the walk-on characters who were the sons of walk-on characters from previous novels.
Despite this, it was enjoyable on its own (that is, when I forgot about the musketeers) and the sequence with d'Artagnan and Athos in England and Holland was one of the most memorable of all the musketeers adventures.
All I can say is that Ten Years Later is a good novel, but it suffers a bit from 'sequel syndrome'. Still, I recommend anyone who hasn't read it to have a look.
I have been reading another version of the "Ten years Later" by A. Dumas...
Question is why is there a difference in the content of this writing and the other writing which I have been reading. I would be greatly appreciative if anyone can tell me why the same author has 2 versions of the same book. And which is correct.
I have decided to read this book after reading Two of Dumas's earlier works. I have read both The Three Musketeers and Twenty Years After. Both stories I felt were well written and could be read as a stand alone book as well as in tandem with each other. However, when I began to read this book, it sort of left a large void. It took nearly 5 chapters of reading to really get the story line going. So in that aspect it was a bit disappointing. With that considered, it remains true to Dumas' style of adventure writing, with plenty of action and mystery. With the exception of the begining of the book, I would whole heartedly recommend this read to anyone.
well, isn't this neat.........im the first person to comment on this book.........although i haven't read it yet...............it seems liek a good book
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