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Come Rack! Come Rope!
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Come Rack! Come Rope!

4.31 of 5 stars 4.31  ·  rating details  ·  132 ratings  ·  13 reviews
Perhaps the best known of Msgr. Benson s works, this novel has been reprinted many times since its publication in 1912. The drama and the characters therein have their basis in the real life account of a Catholic family, and of the sufferings of Catholics in general, under Elizabeth I of England. In this story of deep tragedy and terror Msgr. Benson portrays the conflict b ...more
Hardcover, 377 pages
Published 1995 by Neumann Press
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Jeff Miller
Having read two of Robert Hugh Benson's novels I have been looking to read Come Rack! Come Rope! which has been highly recommended. When I was looking over the new Catholic Digital Downloads section at Aquinas & More Catholic Goods I noticed they had this novel available and so bought and downloaded it.

This historical novel takes place during the reign of Elizabeth I of England with a mixture of fictional and historic figures such as St. Edmund Campion. This is the time of the Recusants wher
Naomi Young
This is a historical novel that takes place during the Elizabethan persecution of Catholics. The two protagonists are Robin and Margaret. As the book begins, they are sweethearts, but Margaret increasingly comes to believe Robin is called to the priesthood -- a destiny he comes to accept. From that point their love is transformed into a deeper, more spiritual love, like that of Saints Francis and Clare. Robin goes abroad to become a priest and returns as a covert outlaw to minister the sacrament ...more
Echelon Camfield
A painful reminder of the current soullessness of the world. Not even in a religious sense, although that is the most obvious parallel but publicly and privately the world today is a pale faded remnant when compared to the days when faith was a reason to die and something to die for. The hysterical shrieking and self righteous claims of modern Christians that they are being "persecuted" seems even more of an insult after thinking too deeply about people who had to pay for the privilege of worshi ...more
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
I stumbled across this after receiving one of those e-mails that takes text from public domain ebooks to make them seem less like the spammy cruft they are. It was interesting to start with, but then it sort of foundered, and then I realized ... well. Downer ending! (Though really, the title should have been a tip-off.)
An excellent and heroic story of a young priest's rise to glory in Protestant England. I found this book very enjoyable (yes, I know I took forever to read it) and much better than Benson's other books, such as "The Kings Achievment" and By "What Authority?" which I found to be long and somewhat boring.
An absorbing account of the lives of fictional and historical characters blended in an accurate portrayal of Elizabethan England. This book is a tragedy, but an enlightening one. This novel is also available unabridged and illustrated from Lepanto Press.
Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson is one of my favorite authors. He writes with such profound knowledge of the human condition, and also writes so beautifully. His characters struggle and doubt, but ultimately make the right decision. This book is mainly about Robin and Marjorie. There are several secondary characters and I admit to getting those mixed up from time to time.
While Robin is the hero of the story, I felt a HUGE connection to Marjorie. She is the the first character in years to make me put
A gripping read. Read this review before I started, and it gave some context:
I like this book alot
Overall, a very imaginative and intense portrayal of the lives of recusants under Elizabeth I. The narrator is sympathetic even to many of the antagonists, drawing careful distinctions between them. He especially gives a clear sense of the stress brought to bear on recusant circles, infiltrated by spies, harassed by fines, and threatened for their lives.

The story is generally very well told, the Msgr. Benson sometimes gives a bit more narrative explanation that I like. I would definitely recomme
Julie Davis
Two things made this tale of Catholic persecution under the rule of Queen Elizabeth I stand out to me. First was the creeping nature of it, from people all turning a more-or-less blind eye to their Catholic neighbors bringing in priests to celebrate Mass which steadily progressed to active persecution, torture, and martyrdom. Second was the author's skillful accounting of a priest's torture from his own point of view. He didn't sugar coat it but I felt that his representation of the priest's mud ...more
This is definitely a religious-themed novel, but even though I'm not Catholic, it felt believable and not preachy to me; I could understand and sympathize with the characters. The setting was great--it seemed very authentic, like I was in Renaissance England. As an older book, it is a bit dense, but not nearly as bad as some others written in the same era.
Gregory Graham
This is an engaging story about Catholics in Elizabethan England, where the practice of their religion was illegal, and Catholic priests were in danger of torture on the rack and execution.
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Robert Hugh Benson (18 November 1871 – 19 October 1914) was an Anglican pastor who joined the Roman Catholic Church (1903) where he was ordained priest in 1904. Youngest son of Edward White Benson (Archbishop of Canterbury) and his wife, Mary, and younger brother of Edward Frederic Benson, he was lauded in his own day as one of the leading figures in English literature, having written the notable ...more
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