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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 againstrestrictions 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, asBrother 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 Bronts