The Queen of the Night

Front Cover
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Feb 2, 2016 - Fiction - 400 pages
 National Bestseller
New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice | An Indie Next Pick

A Best Book of the Year from NPR, Boston Globe, Buzzfeed, Esquire, San Francisco Chronicle,Time Out, Self, Jezebel, The Portland Mercury, Electric Literature, and Entropy Magazine

“It just sounds terrific. It sounds like opera.” —Joan Acocella, The New Yorker

“Sprawling, soaring, bawdy, and plotted like a fine embroidery.” —Scott Simon, NPR

 
“Dazzling.” —Wall Street Journal | “A brilliant performance.” —Washington Post
 
“Sweeping, richly detailed.” —People | “Masterful.” —Wired | “Spellbinding.” —BuzzFeed

 
A “wild opera of a novel,”* The Queen of the Night tells the mesmerizing story of Lilliet Berne, an orphan who left the American frontier for Europe and was swept into the glamour and terror of Second Empire France. She became a sensation of the Paris Opera, with every accolade but an original role—her chance at immortality. When one is offered to her, she finds the libretto is based on her deepest secret, something only four people have ever known. But who betrayed her? With “epic sweep, gorgeous language, and haunting details,”** Alexander Chee shares Lilliet’s cunning transformation from circus rider to courtesan to legendary soprano, retracing the path that led to the role that could secure her reputation—or destroy her with the secrets it reveals.

“If Lilliet Berne were a man, she might have been what nineteenth-century novels would call a swashbuckler: the kind of destiny-courting, death-defying character who finds intrigue and peril (and somehow, always, a fantastic pair of pantaloons) around every corner.” —Entertainment Weekly
 


  
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - asxz - www.librarything.com

It's a big glorious novel, but I never felt as fully engaged with the heroine as I might have hoped. Perhaps the opera themes are what kept me out. But I couldn't help feeling that a bunch of the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - miyurose - www.librarything.com

The Queen of the Night is the story of Lilliet Berne, a woman who went from being an orphan in the American Midwest to one of the most famous opera singers in France during the Second Empire (mid- to ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

The Cave of Queens and Courtesans
69
Un Ballo In Maschera
145
First Love
259
The Undoing
421
Epilogue
550
Back Matter
554
Back Flap
563
Back Cover
564
Spine
565
Copyright

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About the author (2016)

ALEXANDER CHEE is the author of Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night. He is the recipient of a Whiting Award and an NEA fellowship in fiction. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, Tin House, and on NPR, among others, and he is a contributing editor at the New Republic.
 

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