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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Luther and Katharina by Jody Hedlund

Political and religious intrigue in the 16th century is the setting for this historical work of fiction. Katharina von Bora is a nun at an Abbey and has no hope for life in the outside world until she began to read the writings of Martin Luther that were smuggled in to the  Abbey. She along with some of her fellow nuns escape during the night and are cared for by Martin Luther and his followers.

Luther's sweeping condemnation of the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church at that time period and his reformation of the Church puts his life and the lives of those closest to him in danger. Although attracted to each other, Katharina and Martin deny their feelings for one another. Martin, because he does not want to risk someone's else's life when his is in danger and Katharina mainly out of pride. The difference in their social status also plays a part in their hesitation to marry each other.

The historical context of the conflict between the peasants and nobility and the ongoing impact of Martin Luther's reformation of the Catholic Church makes for a fascinating background of their stories. The times were tumultuous and so is their relationship.  

I enjoyed this story and also discovering what life was like during that time period. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Second Street Station by Lawrence H. Levy

In the late 1800's, women are protesting to get the right to vote and also to be employed as police officers. Mary Handley from early on has desired to be a detective. She gets her chance by being hired by the New York Police Department to solve the murder of Charles Goodrich. This historical work of fiction is based on historical events and famous people of the time such as J.P. Morgan, Thomas Edison, and Nikola Tesla. The story gives you a glimpse of that time in New York City as well as the darker side of life there.

Mary herself is based on real person which makes the story all the more interesting. The plot keeps you engaged throughout the book and the activities of a hired killer makes for added suspense as well as the search to find the killer of Charles Goodrich.

This is an enjoyable historical mystery and the ending leads you to believe it will be the first in a series of adventures of Mary Handley.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.