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New Orleans, 1795. In the wake of the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror, Alix de Morainville Carpentier—a former lady-in-waiting to Marie Antoinette, now married to her gardener—seeks peace and security in the Spanish colony of Louisiana. But her journey into the man-eating swamp called Attakapas reopens the wounds of her old life in France. Alix is forced to reckon with the choices that saved her life at the cost of her honor—and perhaps her soul.

In revolutionary France, the Old World is dying; the quest for liberty, fraternity, and equality has become a nightmare where the price of dissent is blood. In the wilderness of Spanish Louisiana, a new civilization is beginning to emerge—but in this budding New World, the slave trade perpetuates the systems of oppression that sparked the revolution. Caught between old and new, scarred by trauma and grief, will Alix ever find a home where she can truly be free?

To Crown with Liberty is a historical novel based on riveting legends from George Washington Cable’s Strange True Stories of Louisiana (1888).


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  1. Kathryn Bochman

    Where to begin? Karen Ullo’s To Crown With Liberty certainly defied my expectations. History, danger, sacrifice, love, war, and adventure all worked in harmony to create a story that held me spellbound. With the French Revolution as a backdrop, Ullo whisked me away to a time that caused my heart to ache and my head to spin. Her characters were true to life and entrenched themselves in my soul, telling a tale that I will not easily forget.

    Redemption, faith, forgiveness and restoration fill the pages of this book. Ullo can certainly weave a story that resonates!

    I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

  2. tarynmdelong

    You’re going to want to read this book!

    “To Crown With Liberty” is an exciting, romantic (and clean!), and beautifully told story about the French Revolution and what it did to the Church and to human beings. It’s also the story of love, adventure, and mercy.

    I love historical romance but struggle to find novels in this genre that I feel good about reading. “To Crown With Liberty” is much more than a romance, but it does have a romance in it, and I found it aligned with my Catholic values without hitting me over the head with it.

    (Disclaimer: I received a free e-book in return for an honest review.)

  3. Talita Adendorff

    A very interesting read!

    This was my first novel by Karen Ullo and one of the reasons I signed up for the launch team was because I find the French Revolution interesting. It is well written and the storyline kept you reading. It has a split timeline and it took me some time to get used to it, but once I made sure to check the date and location at the top of each chapter I got into the story.

    It is well-researched and I learned a lot about the French Revolution. I was aware that it is a Catholic novel, but I did not expect as much Catholic jargon and although it does fit in with the historical setting, as a Protestant, a lot of it went completely over my head.

    I would recommend this book to anyone interested in historical fiction, especially the French Revolution, and I feel that it is a well-written, excellently researched, and well-thought-out novel with a beautiful story and interesting characters.

    I was given a complimentary copy of this book, but the views and opinions are my own.

  4. phillipians4_8

    An artfully written masterpiece! Mesmerizing and beautifully written, To Crown with Liberty filled a need for a read I didn’t realize I had. Karen Ullo brings to life oft-forgotten places and time. I saw a gilded and tottering France, and a frightening frontier. I smelled the perfume and excrement of Versailles, the raw terror and stench of the Revolution, the fear of a new beginning in the swamps of Louisiana. Karen Ullo brought me into the life and heart of Alix. I felt her joy and despair, saw her crumbled dreams and hopes, and wished to weep with her. This book invoked a sense of longing for times and places I have never been and people I have never met. The dual timeline meshed perfectly as I watched Alix break and heal simultaneously as her old and new lives collided. To Crown with Liberty will bring you an experience you will not soon forget or wish to forget.

    Content warning: Makes mention of marital intimacy, prostitution, leering gazes, several kisses-not detailed. One kiss and touch- semi-detailed.
    Also of note, this book is published by Chrism Press. So if Catholicism isn’t your cup of tea, this may not be for you.

    I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

  5. Laura Cisson

    Full of rich and heartbreaking history, this story takes the reader from the halls of Versailles to the swamps of early Louisiana.

    I love the way the author wove this story together, exploring events from the past side by side. The dual timeline was genius.

    The characters were well-developed and, despite tragic circumstances, held onto their faith. If you enjoy historical fiction, this is a great read.

    Thank you to Chrism Press for a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

  6. 7graftcl

    I really enjoyed this novel by Karen Ullo. It is a story that weaves past and present. Pre and Post revolutionary France as well as the tale of immigrants trying to forge a new life in the Louisiana Territory.
    While the view is past and present, I wouldn’t consider this a split time.

    It follows the aristocracy pre-French Revolution and some of the drawing room conversations. Our heroine, Alix is unloved by her mother owing to a difficult birth and subsequent birth injury, but much loved by the caretakers family. Until she comes of age and is sent away to a convent for schooling and then into an arranged marriage.

    She witnesses life at the French court as a lady in waiting as well as the stirring of the revolution due to her husband’s political leanings.

    We watch the revolution rise and fall through her eyes and the effect on her family, friends, and other loved ones, the Royals, as well as the Church.

    It is a tale of wrestling with faith and beliefs, sacrifice and loss. Alix eventually comes to terms with her past, acknowledging her inner strength and finding forgiveness, love, and peace in her future.

    I received a complimentary copy this book from the publishers. I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

  7. Megan Lakner (verified owner)

    This book will stay with you long after you turn the last page. Before reading it I had only a cursory knowledge of the French Revolution, more the broad strokes of it than any of the finer details. I really appreciated how the author brought such historical detail to her story while keeping me completely immersed in the characters and their story. I also really appreciated the Catholic faith woven throughout the story as well, not only does it ring true historically but it added further depth to a somewhat heavy storyline.

    The novel goes back and forth between just before the French Revolution, the years leading up to it, and the years after it was over when Alix and Joseph had fled to Louisiana. I appreciated seeing a story take place in a time period that not many stories feature. The author did a great job weaving it all together into a very compelling story. I kept turning the pages, needing to find out how it would all end.

    I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves historical fiction. There is some romance involved, though is not the main focus of the story necessarily. The author paints the picture of how dark a time the French Revolution must have been for those living through it, without becoming overly graphic about it either.

    I received a free advanced copy of the book from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.

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