Tuesday 5 April 2022

BLOG TOUR: Virgin & Child - Maggie Hamand

A genre-busting, gender-bending Vatican thriller. What happens when everything you know is thrown into doubt?

And you’re the Pope?

The recently elected Irish Pope Patrick has plans for his future Church. Then he is attacked in St Peter’s Square. Cardinals turn against him. Shocking revelations threaten his traditional status and his faith. In this novel where nothing is as it seems, Catholicism and modern morality are held in tension. Pope Patrick has to face challenges and make choices he could never have imagined.

What did I think?

I was so intrigued by the synopsis of this novel that I just had to read it and I am so pleased that I did as I have never read anything like it.

Patrick is set to make history as the first Irish pope but his tenure may be short-lived when he finds himself in an impossible predicament.  The church will not survive such a scandal but its position is clear so Patrick has quite a dilemma.  Does he go against the church and his own beliefs or does he bring down the church and papacy?

What a dilemma!  It's so easy for people in power to make and enforce rules when it doesn't apply to them, but as soon as it affects them they want to break the very same rules.  It feels like almost every action and thought is a sin in Catholicism, but hypocrisy is more of a sin than the original sin, in my opinion.  I'm being purposefully vague about the highly original plot as it's really one to be experienced for yourself.

Maggie Hamand's groundbreaking novel is beautifully written and completely enthralling.  Brave, bold, powerful and incredibly thought-provoking, Virgin & Child prompts so much debate that I have continued to talk about it long after turning the final page.

I received an ARC to read and review for the blog tour and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating:

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About the author:

Maggie Hamand is a London-based novelist, journalist, and non-fiction author. She was the winner of the first World One-Day Novel cup and her novel, The Resurrection of the Body, has been optioned for film and television. Maggie followed a degree in Biochemistry and a Master’s in Theology with a PhD in Creative Writing, and lectures at the University of Hull.

Maggie has also taught at Morley College, Holloway Prison, and London University of the Arts. She pioneered creative writing teaching in London through The Complete Creative Writing Course at The Groucho Club, and is the author of the best-selling Creative Writing for Dummies and Creative Writing Exercises for Dummies. As a publisher, Maggie founded and ran the acclaimed independent The Maia Press. Maggie’s home is in Hackney, while Normandy provides a writing retreat. For more information visit: www.maggiehamand.com

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