Voices: The Final Hours of Joan of Arc

208p. HMH. Mar. 2019. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781328987594.
RedReviewStarGr 8 Up—A prominent figure of the Hundred Years' War, Joan of Arc dually stands out in history as a leader of the French army and a woman scorned for her "unseemly" deeds. From receiving visions of Saints at 13, to leading the Dauphin's army at 16, to death by burning at 19, Joan's story is swift yet deftly packed with captivating moments of 15th-century France. Although her life ends in flames, there is much more to glean from her final hours than ever before imagined. Elliot delivers another hit (following Bull) with a bold and unapologetic heroine whose voice springs to life through her fervor for God and country. Filled with various (medieval and modern) poetic forms, Elliot's novel in verse not only revitalizes the tale of the Maid of Orléans but showcases a gorgeous storytelling style that flows in an effortless fashion. The ingenuity in utilizing people, objects, and concepts affiliated with Joan to aid narration enhances the novel. Snippets of the Trial of Condemnation and Nullification are interspersed throughout, staging events perfectly as Joan recounts her life. Author's notes bookend the work, providing context and enrichment to the medieval setting.
VERDICT A glorious tribute to a woman who dared, defied, and defended her truth. A must-have.

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