Jennifer 's Reviews > Sacred Hearts

Sacred Hearts by Sarah Dunant
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's review
Mar 04, 2010

bookshelves: adult-fiction, historical-fiction
Read in February, 2010

All of the fiction I've read by Dunant has featured female protagonists in Renaissance Italy. In every case, Dunant portrays the circumstances (plight?) of being a woman through character development and attention to detail, letting the story speak for itself. "Sacred Hearts" refines her technique to a new intensity. Sixteen-year-old Isabetta's wealthy father has givern her over to a convent against her will. As these things go, Isabetta's convent is a "nice" one, especially for doaughters of priviledge; nevertheless, Isabetta's rage and despair, the machievellian manoeuverings of the various factions of nuns within the convent, and the threat of Counter Reformation "reform" make for a suffocating brew. But please hang in will be rewarded with a remarkable, unexpected ending.

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