Category: Drama, Romance
First woman of champagne, Veuve Clicquot, battles pandemics, mental illness, sexist laws, wars and Napoleon to forge her champagne empire. “A strong, determined woman who defies Napoleon to make champagne.” (Historical Novel Society, Editor’s Choice)
“This effervescent historical novel paints a richly detailed portrait of the enterprising Veuve Clicquot. The twinned plots of Clicquot and Napoleon Bonaparte’s rise and fall are filled with detail that give life to this far-off time. The prose is light, yet detailed, and peppered with moments of wry humor. Napoleon’s characterization is well-crafted and give his character new life. Clicquot’s character is charming, and readers will love getting to know her. Rosenberg has a superb eye for blending humor with drama.” (Publisher’s Weekly BookLife Prize)
From triple-gold award-winning author, Rebecca Rosenberg: Champagne, France, 1800. Twenty-year-old Barbe-Nicole inherited Le Nez (an uncanny sense of smell) from her great-grandfather, a renowned champagne maker. She is determined to use Le Nez to make great champagne, but the Napoleonic Code prohibits women from owning a business. When she learns her childhood sweetheart, François Clicquot, wants to start a winery, she marries him despite his mental illness.
Soon, her husband’s tragic death forces her to become Veuve (Widow) Clicquot and grapple with a domineering partner, the complexities of making champagne, and six Napoleonic wars, which cripple her ability to sell champagne. When she falls in love with her sales manager, Louis Bohne, who asks her to marry, she must choose between losing her winery to her husband, as dictated by the Napoleonic Code, or losing Louis.
In the ultimate showdown, Veuve Clicquot defies Napoleon himself, risking prison and even death.