Donna Woolfolk Cross
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"Engaging . . . Pope Joan has all the elements: love, sex, violence, duplicity, and long-buried secrets."
--Los Angeles Times Book Review
For a thousand years men have denied her existence--Pope Joan, the woman who disguised herself as a man and rose to rule Christianity for two years. Now this compelling novel animates the legend with a portrait of an unforgettable woman who struggles against restrictions her soul cannot accept.
When her older brother dies in a Viking attack, the brilliant young Joan assumes his identity and enters a Benedictine monastery where, as Brother John Anglicus, she distinguishes herself as a scholar and healer. Eventually drawn to Rome, she soon becomes enmeshed in a dangerous mix of powerful passion and explosive politics that threatens her life even as it elevates her to the highest throne in the Western world.
"Brings the savage ninth century vividly to life in all its alien richness. An enthralling, scholarly historical novel."
--Rebecca Fraser, Author of The Brontës
From the Trade Paperback edition.
This book is engaging and makes one wonder about the current teachings and "truths" of modern Catholicism.
What a great, well-written story. I could not wait to pick it up and see where the story went next. The characters are interesting, the plot takes a number of unexpected twists and it really made me think on a number of different levels. Whatever your religious affiliation, this will be most enjoyable.
Seriously, one of the best, most engaging books I have read in a long time. I couldn't put it down. I love a great historical novel--especially one based on fact or legend--and this one grabbed me from the start. Really well written, with all the aspects of a gripping novel, but also historically accurate. I can't recommend BookBub enough. Great service. I paid $1.99 for this book, based on their recommendation.