Happy Feast Day of Saint Sebastian! "Sebastian is a patron saint of archers, athletes, dying people, enemies of religion, police, and soldiers. He is a great example for all of us who are part of this parish. Saint Sebastian gave all he had, his very life, in witness to Christ, for the glory of God and the good of God's people. We are constantly reminded that we are called to give of our time, talent, and treasure for the glory of God and the good of the Church. May Saint Sebastian inspire us to follow his example. Saint Sebastian, pray for us!"
I have been so blessed by my relationship with Catholic Publishers. Recently, one of my favorites, Pauline Books & Media, sent me a few books to review. The first one I read is called Treachery and Truth. From the beginning of this book, I knew it was going to be spectacular. I love historical fiction. Stories that happened, but there is some creative license taken by an Author to fill in the gaps. If I'm honest with myself, I'm happy I live in the times of better toilets/toiletries and air conditioning/heat. But it sure is kind of romantic to think about how it would be to live "back then".
Ok, I've digressed, let me give you my review. And then after, you can read my son's review. It's his very first. So exciting!
Treachery and Truth, by Katy Huth Jones, is set in tenth century Praha, Bohemia (now Prague, Capital of the Czech Republic), and narrated by faithful Poidevan, Prince Vaclav's servant, is a glimpse into how dangerous it was to be a Christian, back in the Dark Ages.
Poidevan, the narrator, made a slave of Dragomira's as a child, worked hard and aligned himself with the right people. The reader (I) could see God working in his life, from the beginning of the story.
Brutal pagan Duchess Dragomira tortures and steals from the peasants, but worse, she kills Christians and displays their heads publicly. She rules by fear and has raised her youngest son, Boleslav, to be the same.
Her oldest son, Prince Vaclav, rightful heir of the kingdom, spends much time away from his evil mother. He has been influenced by his Grandmother, the Dowager Duchess Ludmila. Vaclav is a Christian and he is determined to bring Christianity, peace, and joy back to his war-torn and savagely-ruled kingdom.
One of the most powerful pieces of this book is the humble and loving Christian example of Prince Vaclav and the Priests who serve him, his body guard Zito, and of course, my favorite Poidevan.
Katy Huth Jones takes us through a series of secrets, history, and cruel events. But while you are reading this book, and offering it to your pre-teens and teens to read, I want to make sure you know that --- as it always is with Our Lord - HE triumphs in the next generation of the family, when Christianity is publicly restored.
While I think boys and girls alike will love this easy-to-read and exciting novel, I think that especially boys have several strong figures to look up to and model. Strong, faithful and protective men. We need characters like these. That they are real people is a huge bonus.
Two things I want to point out that were instrumental for my son and I, while reading this book.
- The Cast of Characters and People, Places and Things in The Tenth Century - Pages. These pages help readers pronounce names and give a little information about each person, place or thing.
- The Author's Note. It was here, we realized that this story was about King Wenceslaus, a Catholic Saint. We just about jumped up and down with excitement.
Before I leave you, here is my son's review of the same book. He is 12.
Name: C.A. Davis, Grade/Age: 6th Grade/12
I liked the story line mainly because its about a boy servant Poidevin who lost his parents, and was forced into slavery at Castle Praha by infamous Dragomira, and later in the book was saved by her son Prince Vaclav.My four favorite characters are Prince Vaclav, Pribislava, Poidevin, and Zito. I like Prince Vaclav because he believes in God, he is a very good mentor to Poidevin, and he is a kind and just ruler. I like Pribislava because she knows Vaclav is trying to mentor Poidevin but she doesn’t tell anybody. Boy, would I be lucky to have a sister like that! Poidevin, I like because he is courageous and very humble, and he thinks a lot like me. However, Zito is my favorite of all of the characters he is strong, faithful, he is also very protective of his master.
I would recommend this book to all of my friends. I absolutely LOVE THIS BOOK! It only took me a couple days to read it. But I think anyone ten and older would really enjoy this book.
I thought the fact that Ms. Jones tells the reader how to say the names of people and places, and gives explanation of the history, in her Author’s Notes, was very helpful.
Pauline Books & Media provided me with a free copy Treachery and Truth in exchange for an honest review.
Well done, Katy Huth Jones. Well done, my fellow Catholic and Texan. (You see how I just claimed her for Texas! That's how we roll). LOL
Have a great rest of your day. And.... go get this book.
Hugs & Blessings,