Friday, June 3, 2016
#REVIEW: The Beautiful Thread by Penelope Wilcock
Author: Penelope Wilcock
Series: The Hawk and the Dove #8
Published Date: Feb 19, 2016
Publisher: Lion Hudson
Genre: medieval fiction
Buy It Link: Amazon
Synopsis: William, the capable former cellarer (administrator), has returned to St Alcuins at Abbot John's request to help his replacement learn the ropes. But William's return coincides with a bishop's visitation, a regular event. The bishop, a zealous churchman with a large entourage, has heard rumours of St Alcuins having had in their community one William de Bulmer, who is said to have attempted suicide and left the order - attempted suicide is a felony, and breaking monastic vows is a grave sin. (For those unfamiliar with the series, the bishop is entirely correct). The bishop wants to know where this man is so he can be arraigned before an ecclesiastical court, and wishes to discover what happened and what part Abbot John played in those events. His suspicions are well founded. As the story unfolds, the beautiful thread of the Gospel weaves quietly through the contrasting colours of human frailty, religious zeal and social pretension.
My Rating: 4 stars
My Review: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This is the second of this series that I have read right after Breath of Peace, and this author keeps impressing me! I wasn't quite sure if the author would be able to continue to keep my interest, but she makes reading this series absolutely realistic. I found myself (yes, reading during lunch at work), gasping and wincing at the absolute depravity of one of the characters we meet in this book.
The newly installed abbot, Abbot John, the very same brother of Madeleine, William's wife, that we met in previous books, is now in a pickle. A society wedding, and the bishop's inspection visit all at the time same. After having just finished an inspection of my work place myself, I can completely empathize with the stress that Abbot John is going through. On top of that a society wedding...I am truly surprised this poor abbot didn't keel over from the stress!
I can't help but love the realistic writing of the author, how much I felt I was in the whole book, how I cheered for characters, cursed others, and laughed at certain places.
This is a book that is well-driven by the character development and the personalities, rather than action and adventure.