‘Drazin tells the story with an agreeably light touch ... He writes with insight and with sympathy for Foucquet, sympathy the reader is liable to share’ – Literary Review
‘Drazin’s colourful and sure-footed biography takes this figure out of the shadows and paints a court where high culture and low cunning always danced in step’ – Independent
Sometime late in 1664, the musketeer D’Artagnan rode beside a heavily-armoured carriage as it rumbled slowly southwards from Paris, carrying his great friend Nicolas Foucquet to life imprisonment in the Alpine fortress of Pignerol. From a glittering zenith as the Sun King's first minister, builder of the breath-taking chateau of Vaux-le-Vicomte, collector of books, patron of the arts and lover of beautiful women, Foucquet had fallen like Icarus. Charles Drazin’s riveting account brings to life the rich and hazardous world in which Foucquet lived. His charm, cunning and charisma enchanted those around him and inspired the most beautiful building in France, but planted too the seeds of his eventual destruction.