Favourite character ElisabethLeast favourite character Aunt SophieFavourite line N AMini Review I loved how at the end, the last 1 2 to 3 4 of the book was historical notes about the real Elisabeth, with pictures of her and her husband, other family members I loved finding out that her husband s nephew and heir was the Ferdinand who was assassinated and basically started World War I.
For my next Royal Diaries book, I decided to read about Empress Elisabeth of Austria I don t really know anything about her, so I didn t have any preconceived expectations or anything like that.
I ve read a fair number of Royal Diaries books including this one on Elisabeth, I have read 12 of the 20 books in this series , so from my experience so far, I think this book is the most put together one Some of the other diaries were just, well, diaries, where the princesses talked about their day to day activities and barely any plot happens This series is meant to educate kids about not only these historical figures, but also about what life was like back in their respective time periods, so I understand why some of the books were written that way I was very pleased to find, when reading this book, that it managed to fit in an actual story as well, instead of just talking about what Elisabeth did every day.
This book on Elisabeth begins with herself, her mother and her sister being summoned to meet the Emperor of Austria and his mother, Princess Sophie The reality of the meeting is that the mothers have paired up the 23 year old emperor with Elisabeth s 18 year old sister However, when everyone met, the Emperor found himself smitten with Elisabeth instead He asks for her hand in marriage, which shocks Elisabeth She had not expected this at all, and what s worse, she s afraid her sister will hate her for this However, she, too, really likes this handsome young emperor so she accepts well, also because her mother really wants Elisabeth to accept so at least ONE of her daughters can become Empress of Austria.
Even though Elisabeth is happy to be marrying the Emperor, she is absolutely intimidated by her future duties as an Empress As the day of the royal wedding approaches closer and closer, Elisabeth finds herself and uncomfortable with imperial life Yet, she must endure Like I said, it was great that this book actually had a story and I enjoyed reading it It s extremely short, only about 100 pages the rest of the book is the epilogue, historical notes, family tree and pictures, which is roughly 50 pages on its own While the story presented in this book is interesting, Elisabeth s life after she was married would have made an even fascinating story, I think In a tragic sort of way Of course, the Royal Diaries series focuses on the princess and queens childhoods since it is a series aimed at children.
Anyway, I digress This is definitely one of the better Royal Diaries books of the series, short and sweet Author Barry Denenberg Brings Us Into The Whirlwind That Is The Life Of Princess Elisabeth Of Austria A Free And Impetuous Spirit, Elisabeth Is Chosen At The Age Of Fifteen Over Her Older Sister To Be The Wife Of Franz Joseph, Emperor Of Austria From That Moment On, She Is Thrown Into An Intimidating World Of Restrictions And Tremendous Responsibilities Feeling Lonely And Alienated, Elisabeth Is Forced To Rely Upon Her Own Personal Strength, Which Eventually Leads Her Down The Aisle And Into An Uncertain Future Fifteen year old Princess Elisabeth, called Sisi, is the daughter of Duke Maximilian Joseph of Bavaria and his wife, Princess Ludovica She has had a carefree childhood in the Bavarian countryside She spends as much of her days as possible horseback riding, her favorite pastime But everything changes in the summer of 1857 Sisi s older sister, Helene, has been chosen to marry their cousin, Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria Their mother is taking Helene to meet Franz Joseph, and has decided to take Sisi along in hopes of finding a husband for her as well But when Franz Joseph meets Helene and Sisi, he decides it is Sisi he wants to marry Sisi becomes engaged to Franz Joseph, but she is far too young for the responsibilities she suddenly finds herself facing as the future Empress This is not one of my favorites from the Royal Diaries series, but I still think readers who love the series will enjoy it I liked the story, but I wish the book had been longer it just felt too short, I would haved liked to read about Elisabeth s life this is like a 3.
5 star read but they don t allow half stars so I ranked it up to 4 I would have given this book 4 stars except I would have liked backstory on Elisabeth s family and position and at 93 pages, the book definitely had space to do so I mean, I didn t even know Poppy was her father until she mentions him having other children I also felt like there was a big disconnect between the diary portion and the historical note and not just because the historical note doesn t really focus on Elisabeth Elisabeth apparently became known as a fashion icon later in life, so why not introduce little nuggets like this in the diary part Make a stronger connection to the actual historical figure.
Sometimes when I read The Royal Diaries series I get most men wont pick it up because it says words like princess , royal , diary but look past that and realize these women had extraordinary lives and some, like the title character, die in an assassination These are not the type of books for girls who think you life is easy if you re a princess or similar titles There are at least three other books in the series where the female monarch is assassinated or beheaded something Disney would never allow in a princess life of false joy Good book for historical value lousy book for your princess fantasy.
Wow That was surprisingly short and depressing This story is like the story of Cinderella if it had a sad ending While it s not surprising and royal marriages in the past were rarely based on how the couple felt about each other It is amazing that the emperor could be so impulsive and choose to marry a 16 year old girl or less on a whim Still, Elisabeth herself managed to live a fairly productive life as a style icon and stood up for herself and her children.
I was really disappointed with this book and I m sure I would have been had I read it when I was twelve I ve just discovered Sisi or the Empress Elisabeth of Austria for a few years now and am aware of the basics of her life I wasn t planning on reading this preteen book and getting an indepth look at Sisi but I was looking forward to reading carefree, happy child preteen even as Denenberg chose to focus on the year leading up to her marriage to the Emperor Fine, Denenberg Fine But Sisi had two attentive parents and seven siblings and countless staff and extended family but not one sibling is mentioned aside from Helene Then he had the nerve to mention a random sibling about fifty pages from the last time he mentions them and uses their nickname on top of that so the reader has no clue who he s mentioning And poor Helene Its bad enough that she ended up the jilted sister in real life but Denenberg casts her aside just as flippantly as the Emperor He writes about the understandable rift between the sisters after Franz Joseph picks the wrong sister but never has them make up apart from Sisi mentioning it in the most offhand way There s no dialogue in this short story except a bit at the beginning and it really suffers for it At the very least Helene and Franz should have their own voices What s the reason Sisi falls in love with Franz other than he s the handsome Emperor He s silent and bland and the only time he has a personality is when he scowls Elisabeth towards the end What a jerk in real life and an awfully written character.
I m not sure how this got past the editing phase.
I loved the Royal Diaries books when I was younger, and along with the Dear America series and American Girls, they started a lifelong love of history for me As an adult, I have no qualms about occasionally reading one or two when nostalgia kicks in, because they re generally well done and I still enjoy them Anyway, I m on a search for good historical fiction about Empress Elisabeth Sisi and thought this would be worth picking up never got around to reading this particular RD volume when I was a kid, somehow.
It is quite short, even for a YA book the story covers just 93 pages The author chose to focus on the short time period when 15 year old Sisi caught Franz Joseph s eye and became engaged to him Her diary details her time with her family, her meetings with the Emperor, and her bewilderment at being unexpectedly chosen as his bride The author captured the viewpoint of a 15 year old girl well and incorporated some of Sisi s signature personality traits including her vanity, dreaminess, and independence However, I didn t feel any real emotion in the narrative For example, Sisi repeatedly states that she is attached to her father Poppy and her siblings, but there aren t many scenarios fictional or otherwise presented to add depth to these assertions Additionally, I picked up on a bit of a disconnect between the girl presented in the diary and the woman the author discussed in the Afterword Sisi was intelligent, gifted with languages, and passionately devoted to the cause of Hungarian independence, but these important aspects of her are barely touched on in the story Perhaps my view of the novel is colored by the fact that I m no longer the target demographic for this series, but I don t think that I would have been satisfied with it even as a younger reader I ll allow that this would be a decent and age appropriate introduction to a fascinating historical figure for a much younger audience, but I didn t find it satisfying.
I wasn t sure who this one was about but I am glad I picked it up I never realized how long the Hapsburg s ruled Austria I felt kind of bad for Elisabeth s sister Helene because she had worked so hard to my a good empress and then when they arrived the Emperor didn t want anything to do with her it was all very sad I had hoped that since Elisabeth and Franz Joseph actually started out in lust with one another that maybe they would be one of the few royal couples to have a happy ending but alas it was not to be I disliked her Aunt Sophie and couldn t figure out what the big deal was with her dislike of Elisabeth As far as I could tell Elisabeth was polite than she had any reason to be to her husbands mother and it was also extremely frustrating that Franz Joseph wouldn t stand up for Elisabeth to his mother Momma s boys are so unattractive I also think it is sad that her life ended by being stabbed I mean where were her guards at that crucial moment I think I will have to start reading up on the Hapsburg s now I didn t realize how important they were until this book.