Thursday 5 May 2016

Book Review - The Master And The Maid @LauraLibricz

“Listen to me! You see this child? If they find the child they will kill her. If they find me with this child, they will kill me to. They’ve already killed her mother. Syball saw them do it. But they won’t kill you. I’ll see to it. But you must swear to care for the child as your own. Never tell a soul where she came from or I will slit your throat.”

I was privileged to receive an ARC of The Master and the Maid by historical fiction author, Laura Libricz. Before I talk about my feelings for the book, lets have a closer look at the story.

She's lost her work, her home and her freedom. Now, harboring a mysterious newborn, she could lose her life.

In 17th Century Germany on the brink of the Thirty Years War, 24-year-old Katarina is traded to the patrician Sebald Tucher by her fiancé Willi Prutt in order to pay his debts. Forced to move into the Tucher country estate, Katarina is met by a crazed archer, Hans-Wolfgang, carrying a baby under his cloak. He tells her a confused story of how his beloved was executed by a Jesuit priest for witchcraft right after the birth and makes Katarina swear on her life to protect the child. She could fall in disfavor with her master. She could be hunted by the zealots who killed his beloved. Can Katarina's love for the baby and Sebald Tucher's growing desire for her keep the wrath of the zealots at bay?

Set in Franconia, The Master and the Maid is an accurate, authentic account of a young woman's life in Germany in the 1600's, illustrating her struggle for freedom and her fight for those she loves.

What did I think of the book?

Historical Fiction at its best.

Was ever there a story more captivating and charming than The Maid and the Master? The attention to detail was exquisite - I felt like I had travelled back in time to 1616. The story telling was spellbinding to say the least. Once I started reading this book, I could not put it down.

The protagonist of the story, Katarina, is a young woman who has foolishly given her heart to the wrong person. Her situation is precarious – she is a fallen woman, living with a man whom she is not married to, but she is honest and ever hopeful that one-day fate will deal her a better hand. But alas, her beloved “trades” her to pay off a debt to his landlord and Katarina finds herself at the mercy of her new master, Herr Tucher. I thought Katarina was beautifully portrayed. She was totally believable and I really came to care about.  Through her, Libricz depicted how hard it was for a woman in a time of religious unrest.

Ralf, a career obsessed priest, will stop at nothing to open his Jesuit school. He will even go as far as to commit murder to achieve his aims. Ralf really made my skin crawl – he was cruel, devious, manipulative and vicious. Libric painted a very dark picture of this evil man. He was the perfect antagonist. I really began to fear what this horrid man was going to do next.

I would really like to commend Libricz on such a masterpiece. This book really ticked all of the boxes for me - Fleshed characters, fantastic plot and the most beautiful prose. I cannot wait for the rest of the trilogy. I Highly Recommend this book.

Where Can I purchase this fabulous book? 

About the author
Laura Libricz was born and raised in Bethlehem PA and moved to Upstate New York when she was 22. After working a few years building Steinberger guitars, she received a scholarship to go to college. She tried to 'do the right thing' and study something useful, but spent all her time reading German literature.

She earned a BA in German at The College of New Paltz, NY in 1991 and moved to Germany, where she resides today. When she isn't writing she can be found sifting through city archives, picking through castle ruins or aiding the steady flood of Höfner musical instruments into the world market.

Her first novel, The Master and the Maid, is the first book of the Heaven's Pond Trilogy. The Soldier's Return and Ash and Rubble are the second and third books in the series.
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  1. Thank you so much for having me here today!

  2. Great review and what a unique concept and time period for the book. Always glad to see others who share my love of history.

  3. Thanks Lissa and thanks to Mary Anne for such a great review


See you on your next coffee break!
Take Care,
Mary Anne xxx