Author: Nancy Bilyeau
First Published: 2012
Joanna Stafford, a novice Domincan nun, is caught up in the turmoil and viciousness of England in the sixteenth century. Upon learning her favorite cousin will be burned at the stake, she rushes to bear witness, thus putting in motion events that will change her life forever. United in their search for the legendary crown of King Athelstan, but divided in their loyalty, Joanna must decide who to trust and how far she is willing to go for love of her family and her priory. Interwoven with the stories of the Bishop of Winchester, two Dominican friars and the amazingly handsome Gregory, Joanna must find her own path and try to save herself, her family and the lives of those she loves.
Bilyeau’s masterful storytelling seamlessly weaves the fictional with the historical, following complex and well developed characters through a story that gripped me from start to finish. Taking several threads from tumultuous 16th century England, Bilyeau adds fascinating characters and the feel of an epic adventure to take the reader through the events from a completely new perspective.
For lovers of historical fiction and those who enjoy a tale with a fantastic female protagonist, this novel is certainly a must read.