I know. I know I didn't post on Monday but you have to believe when I say that Monday was very manic and I did it for a good, literary cause. I went to my first/last book club meeting of the year. After months of trying to go, I finally made it! Aren't you proud of me? We discussed books and had good food. It was wonderful.

Don't feel bad though because I'm making it up to you right now with this review. Of a new book. So new in fact that it came from the new fiction section and I could only take it out for seven days instead of the normal two weeks. Impressed? I should think so because it was a total fluke. 

I usually only browse the new fiction section when I have left my book list at home and can't remember a single book title or author that was on it. I stand in front of the car picking up books at random. Sighing at some and chewing my lip at others. Then I find one that grabs my attention and says: OH! READ ME! and I take it home. 

The Maid said those very words to me mostly because it is a novel of Joan of Arc. That's what it says on the front: A novel of Joan of Arc. I've always enjoyed Joan of Arc. There is a lot of mystery and intrigue surrounding her life. Though this book is a work of fiction the author does try to keep to as much as the facts as possible (which are outlined in a handy summary in the Author's Notes). She also does a great job of telling the story. You are not bogged down by the facts, you just float, letting the current of the story take you along and turn them over like stones.

There is some swearing in the books which comes up only when the soldiers are around (though Joan says that they have to stop swearing or God will not fight with them) and Joan is called some nasty names by the English (Joan gives them more then one chance to surrender and they don't, so she beats them in battle). 

I'm not sure if she really heard from the saints but I do know that she gave France hope and Kimberly Cutter paints a wonderful picture of the girl who defied her social status to bring victory to her country. Even if she was captured in the end and betrayed... that darn king.

The Maid was an unexpected novel that stood its worth. Even when picked from the new fiction book cart at random...

The Wakeful Dreamer 

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