I, Jacqueline

Written by Hilda Lewis
Review by Wisteria Leigh


I, Jacqueline is the story of Countess Jacqueline of Bavaria, daughter of Count William VI and sole heir to the throne of Holland. If you have ever dreamed of being a princess, the life of Jacqueline of Hainaut would not be an ideal choice. She was born to a cold, unloving mother who had ambitions far beyond her daughter’s affections. Driven by ambition, power, and money, Margaret of Burgundy has a penchant for deceit that only serves to further her lofty aspirations and those of her brother, the Duke of Burgundy. But Jacqueline’s father adores her, and on his deathbed in 1417, he forewarns her against her mother’s intentions. Jacqueline learns quickly that she must fight for her property and her right to rule.

Jacqueline comes close to becoming the Queen of France as a result of her first marriage. When her husband dies, she enters into a loveless union with her cousin of Brabant, an impotent, adulterous cad who relishes tormenting her with his concubine. Love evades Jacqueline, and she vows to rule her kingdom as their prince, but her mother and uncle are ready to pounce on any misstep she makes. Her father has one other daughter, Beatrix, who becomes her only real companion and a constant source of love, devotion, and happiness for Jacqueline.

Lewis provides many descriptive details for each character, molding them into a colorful cast of personalities that come alive as you read. Lewis provides symmetry between the sensitive historical drama of a tragic heroine and European history as a whole. I, Jacqueline will touch your heart.