She was a princess, the daughter of perhaps the most hated king in Europe. He was just a lowly hussar. Their love affair in turn-of-the-century Vienna was to scandalize a continent.
The story of Princess Louise of Belgium and Geza Mattachich, stepson of a minor Croatian count, began with no more than an exchanged glance in a park. Yet the princess and her soldier, divided by wealth and status, pursued their devotion to one another through scandal, ruin, madness and imprisonment. Dan Jacobson's brilliant imagining of this forgotten episode of the Hapsburg court brings to life one of the century's great love stories.