2012. 258p. 978-1-44245-344-9.
Gr 7 Up–The time is 1453 and the boundaries of Christendom are being defended against the heretics, the Muslim world, and the more mysterious world of the unseen and magical. Isolde, 17, is forced into an abbey by her greedy and deceitful brother after their father’s death, and then accused of witchcraft. Her only friend is Ishraq, who has been her companion, servant, and guardian since the two were children. The abbey becomes overrun with strange happenings and the Church sends in an investigative team. Luca is also 17 and has a questioning mind, which could be dangerous in 15th-century Europe, but he has been noticed by The Order of Darkness and is sent on a mission from his monastery to the abbey to root out the truth and uncover plans to undermine the Church, only to end up helping Isolde escape. The strong, smart teen characters will appeal to both girls and boys and the historical mystery is solidly constructed. This title would also be a welcome supplement for those looking at the role religion has played in world history.–Genevieve Gallagher, Charlottesville High School, VA
Luca has been recruited by a shadowy figure to serve the Catholic Church as an inquisitor and root out evil in Christendom. His first duty is to investigate a nunnery where claims of stigmata and visions point to witchcraft. While some of the solutions are obvious, the richly drawn medieval world and strong secondary characters add clever layers to the mystery.

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