Yes, today is Halloween, but did you know that it is also Reformation Day? October 31 commemorates the day that Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the church door in Wittenberg. In honour of this momentous moment in history, I would like to share my review of Jody Hedlund’s Luther and Katharina.
Se was a nun of noble birth. He, a heretic, a reformer…an outlaw of the Holy Roman Empire.
Katharina von Bora has seen nothing but the inside of cloister walls since she was five. In a daring escape, Katharina finds refuge with Martin Luther and seeks his help to pair her with the noble, wealthy husband she desires.
As class tensions and religious conflicts escalate toward the brink of war, Martin Luther believes that each day could be his last and determines he will never take a wife.
As the horrors of the bloody Peasant War break out around them, the proud Katharina and headstrong Martin Luther fight their own battle for true love, in one of the greatest love stories of history.
Martin Luther is not a historical figure that most authors would associate with a great love story. But then, most do not have Jody Hedlund’s adroit research skills to suss out the most captivating and underrepresented historical narratives. Hedlund takes us beyond the textbook and church history texts in to the perilous and chaotic life of the Protestant Church’s most famous reformer.
Martin Luther is humanized through Hedlund’s intimate portrayal. Readers come to know him as a man who faced devastating physical and spiritual persecution with resolute and honourable conviction. Katharina von Bora is a name absent from my knowledge of the Reformation and it was a delight to walk alongside this devoted and courageous woman. A force to be reckoned with, she is a match in will and passion for Martin; their reluctant love blossoms out of the purity of friendship and shared convictions. While not classified as historical romance, the commitment and love between Martin and Katharina is a compelling love story to be cherished.
Another resounding success for Jody Hedlund!
**Disclosure: review copy provided by author**