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Saint Martin's Summer

Rafael Sabatini

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I am ready, monsieur," said she, and her boyish voice had an intrepid ring. "I will come with you as I am."

"Then, in God's name, let us be going."

They moved together towards the door, with never another glance for the Dowager where she stood, patting the head of the hound that had risen and come to stand beside her. In silence she watched them, a sinister smile upon her beautiful, ivory face.

Then came a sound of feet and voices in the anteroom. The door was flung violently open, and a half-dozen men with naked swords came blundering into the room, Marius bringing up the rear.

With a cry of fear Valerie shrank back against the panelled wall, her little hands to her cheeks, her eyes dilating with alarm.

Garnache's sword rasped out, an oath rattled from his clenched teeth, and he fell on guard. The men paused, and took his measure. Marius urged them on, as if they had been a pack of dogs.

"At him!" he snap. . . Read More

Community Reviews

St Martin’s Summer features a different protagonist as compared to many other Sabatini novels: he has a bad temper (He makes D'Artagneon in the first parts of The Three Musketeers appear positively restrained.), rather misogynistic, and middle-aged. Despite what some of the other reviewers have stat

This is not your average Sabatini novel. Though there are plenty of sword fights, evil plots, bad guys and royals - our hero is singularly different. Not only is he over 40, but he does not particularly like women. He sees them as the root of much trouble. He is a deputy for the Queen Regent in Fran

"The life of an heiress is in jeopardy and her only hope is to place her trust in the wiles of a middle-aged swordsman with no use for "women's troubles." As the plots of the conspirators converge it will take all the wiles and accumulated wisdom of Martin Marie Rigobert de Garnache [to] uncover the

Was on the hunt for something not overly taxing and this light adventure/historical romance hit the spot. Don't feel overwhelmed by an urge to rush out and read everything Sabatini's ever done but this was definitely a fun way to give my brain a break. So long as you don't take it too seriously, the

Hey, it's been (almost) a year. Time to reread this delightful book!

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The life of an heiress is in jeopardy and her only hope is to place her trust in the wiles of a middle-aged swordsman with no use for "women's troubles." As the plots of the conspirators converge it will take all the wil

3.5*

Saint Martin's Summer, published in 1909, is a historical romance. This is Sabatini's signature style. Think of it as a very high-toned beach book…
Spoiler alert: if you think you’re going to get a big helping of heaving bosoms and sweaty ravishment, maybe you should pick another book…
Here's my take

A gripping, romantic masterpiece, which starts a little slowly, then generates such suspense that it is a real page turner. Adventure, romance and brilliant writing. This is possibly my favourite Sabatini, although the two Scaramouche books, and the Venetian Masque are strong contenders.

It's odd that I love this book so. Why? At times, I wonder that it is Sabatini, when the writing is poor. I wonder if his editor took a vacation. How many times can he say "white" or "supple"?

And yet - by the time I reach the end (this is the second time) my heart is full of emotion. Martin is the h

Not the masterpiece that is SCARAMOUCHE, but it's fun to watch Martin Marie Rigobert de Garnache--fortyish, misogynistic, and hot-tempered to boot--fight his way out of one predicament after another. And (of course) do the one thing he's sworn all his life to avoid: succumb to the charms of a woman.

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