Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Book of the Maidservant by Rebecca Barnhouse

Barnhouse, Rebecca. The Book of the Maidservant, 231 pgs. Random House, 2009. $16.99. Sexual Content: PG; Language: G; Violence: PG.
Johanna is a servant to Dame Margery Kempe, who is renowned (or despised) for excessive holiness and weeping. When Dame Kempe’s father dies, she decides to go on a medieval pilgrimage to the holy land. Dame Kempe brings Johanna along to clean, cook, and care for her and others on the trip. The company is attacked by robbers. There is dissent within the group. An exhausted Johanna hopes to make it home alive; with or without the hypocritical Dame Kempe. Author Rebecca Barnhouse bases her story on a medieval text The Book of Margery Kempe. The story is mostly fictional, but the details are well researched and the book is well written. Recommend to fans of author Karen Cushman.
MS – ADVISABLE. Samantha, Public Librarian.

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