Friday, June 3, 2016

Review of The Inquisitor's Niece by Erika Rummel

The Inquisitor's Niece by Erika Rummel is featured on this blog as part of a Virtual Authors Book Tour blog tour.  The novel is a historical fiction piece full of carefully researched details that brings the setting of Spain during the Inquisition to life as the backdrop to a touching love story.

The novel follows the story of Luisa and Alonso, two seemingly star-crossed lovers who overcome life-threatening odds to be together.  Luisa originally has dreams of becoming a nun, however her ambitious father has dreams of marrying her off to a prominent man. Being a woman in the 16th century means that she has little to no say in her future, so marriage it is.  On the advice of the Cardinal, her father arranges a marriage to Deodatus, a prominent scholar and poet who is wealthy and famous.  However, Deodatus is attracted to men only, and Luisa finds herself trapped into a loveless, sometimes abusive relationship.  Alonso is a Jew who was forced into conversion by the Inquisition, but even this wasn't enough to save his father, who is eventually killed, leaving his family in shame and penniless.  Alonso barely escapes losing his livelihood as a doctor by receiving a pardon from the Cardinal upon recommendation of Natale, a sneaky spy of the Inquisition.  Natale's scheming, back-stabbing tendencies play an integral part of the story and nearly bring about the demise of Alonso.  As I'm not a fan of spoilers, I will leave details about how Alonso and Luisa meet, how her marriage to Deodatus ends, and what happens at the end, for readers to discover on their own!  And, as part of the blog tour, here is your chance to win a copy of the novel:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Erika Rummel is a scholar, author and historian from Vienna, Austria.  She earned her PHd from the University of Toronto and went on to teach Renaissance history there, as well as at Wilfrid Laurier in Waterloo.  To learn more about her, check out the BTWA interview with her on this blog's Author Interviews page.

The Inquisitor's Niece embodies what I love the most about reading historical fiction:  the ability to learn about a time period in history while being entertained with a delightful plot.  Rummel's background as a history scholar is evident in the amount of painstaking research that obviously went into recreating the life of Christians and Jews during the Inquisition in Europe.  Luisa and Alonso are endearing characters who are vividly brought to life and their quest to be together will win readers' hearts.  I look forward to reading forthcoming works from Erika Rummel and am excited to once again participate in a Virtual Authors  Book tour.

1 comment: