What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

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Query abandoned by poster > ABANDONED. historical romance set in the Spanish Inquisition. Heroine is Jewish, has to hide it to avoid persecution.

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message 1: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments I read part of this book in the mid 1980s so it had to have been published earlier.

It was a mass market paperback with the heroine's face on the cover-- I think the cover page may have had other images on it besides just the heroine-- in those days a lot of romances and sagas had covers with multiple faces or places in one picture -- but I'm not sure of that.

The story took place during the Spanish Inquisition and the heroine was Jewish. I cannot recall for sure if the hero was but I think he wasn't Jewish.

The heroine had to hide her faith in order to survive the Spanish Inquisition and escape persecution. I remember that in one scene she wanted to bathe according to Jewish traditions and had to do it in secret because if she was seen, she might be found out.

I also remember that my impression of the book was that it didn't have rape in it, unlike some other romances from the 1970s and early 1980s. But since I didn't finish reading the book, I can't be sure of that.

That's all the information I can think of.


message 3: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Laurie wrote: "The Books of Rachel by Joel Gross maybe?"

I don't think so. It looks like that was published in 2000, and the book I'm thinking of is much older. Also, I don't think the book I'm looking for was a saga that spanned generations like The Books of Rachel.


message 4: by Kris (new)

Kris | 35138 comments Mod
The Books of Rachel was first published in 1979. This date is shown in brackets, in a lighter font so it's easy to miss.


message 5: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Kris wrote: "The Books of Rachel was first published in 1979. This date is shown in brackets, in a lighter font so it's easy to miss."

Thank you both! It's possible that I'm remembering the 1982 cover-- that kind of fits with my vague, thirty year old memories! I hadn't remembered that it spanned 500 years, though, and I'm not sure I'm up for reading a book that does. I'll check out the reviews.


message 6: by Janine (last edited Jan 26, 2015 11:15PM) (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments I think it could very well be the book I'm thinking of so I moved it to the solved folder. I kept the thread title the same except for changing "Unsolved" to "Solved, " but the title of the thread is misleading -- The Books of Rachel is a saga not a romance.


message 7: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
If you're not entirely sure, Possibly Solved is a better location until you read the book and confirm it. Let us know.


message 8: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Thank you!


message 9: by Kathryn (new)

Kathryn (sscarllet) | 256 comments The thing is in the The Books of Rachel she doesn't hid her religion and pays dearly for it. I reread it a few months ago and don't remember anything about a bath.

I'm sorry that's so very unhelpful.


message 10: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Thanks Kathryn. Based on your feedback I moved it back to unsolved. The book I'm looking for had that bathing stuff and the heroine concealed her Jewish identity. I also think that unlike The Books of Rachel it was a romance, NOT a saga.


message 11: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Janine, are you still looking for this or did you find it?


message 12: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Lobstergirl wrote: "Janine, are you still looking for this or did you find it?"

No, I never found it.


message 13: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Don't give up. We've had books found after years of searching. Bump your thread every few months so new members can read it.


message 14: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Okay, thanks!


message 15: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Among the Innocent? Woman thinks she is Christian but finds out she is Jewish.


message 16: by ``Laurie (new)

``Laurie (laurielynette) | 1039 comments Hello again Janine. I just remembered this book that sounds similar to what you're looking for:

The Marranos by Liliane Webb

The Marranos


message 17: by Julie (last edited Oct 03, 2017 08:38PM) (new)

Julie Sounds like it could be The Queen's Fool by Phillippa Gregory.

The Queen's Fool (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #12) by Philippa Gregory

And there was a cover with just a woman's face:
https://images.gr-assets.com/books/13...


message 18: by Juels (last edited Oct 04, 2017 08:29AM) (new)

Juels | 2476 comments I remember the heroine needed to escape the Spanish Inquisition in Betray Not My Passion by Sylvie F. Sommerfield. I read it in the 80s, so I don't know if it contains a ritual bathing scene.

If it helps, one of the reviews gives a pretty detailed account of the plot.


message 19: by Janine (last edited Oct 04, 2017 11:38AM) (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Definitely not The Queen's Fool, that came out much later. Could be one of the others. I will mark the thread as possibly solved while I check them out.


message 20: by Heather (new)

Heather Alice Hoffman wrote one with a Jewish girl living in Spain during the Inquisition.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...


message 21: by Heather (new)

Heather Jeanne Kalogridis wrote "The Inquisitor's Wife". https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1...


message 22: by Rosa (last edited Dec 12, 2017 05:01AM) (new)

Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 5204 comments Incantation
The Inquisitor's Wife for Heather's suggestions.


message 23: by Janine (last edited Dec 12, 2017 11:41AM) (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Thank you! Those are both too new, but I might read the Hoffman.


message 24: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Still looking now?


message 25: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments No, not looking anymore! Thanks for asking, though.


message 26: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Did you find the book, or just give up? If you found it, we would like to shelve it.


message 27: by Janine (last edited Jun 28, 2020 02:40AM) (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Lobstergirl wrote: "Did you find the book, or just give up? If you found it, we would like to shelve it."

I lost interest, but I think it may have been The Marranos mentioned by Laurie above.


message 28: by Kris (new)

Kris | 35138 comments Mod
Moving to the "Possibly Solved" folder - The Marranos by Liliane Webb

Let us know if you prefer to move this request to the "Query abandoned by poster" folder.


message 29: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Here's the Kirkus review of "The Marranos" - maybe reading this will help.

"An earnest romance/adventure set in 17th-century Spain at the time of Inquisition, focusing on the plight of the Spanish Jews forced to hide their identities and practice their faith in secret. Isobel and her brother Pedro are the remaining children of the ""Old Christian"" family of Valderocas, wealthy master traders; but in truth, as Isobel learns at the death of her mother, they are ""Marranos,"" a derogatory epithet for secret Spanish Jews. And all these revelations certainly make Isobel's love for Rafael Cortez (who will become a Dominican friar attached to leaders of the Inquisition) all the more bizarre. But as Rafael ascends rapidly in clerical ranks and Isobel handily deals with King Philip IV (he's a likable womanizer), the two continue their passionate trysts. Isobel, however, is also pursued by onerous Carlos, who wants the marriage for his own personal ambition: he's out to overthrow the King's Chief Minister, Gaspar de Guzman Olivares, whom Pedro serves as adviser and whom Pedro successfully persuades to encourage exiled merchant Jews to return to Spain. So it's in a bargain with Olivares that Isobel consents to marry Carlos and manage a hit of domestic spying in exchange for freedom for imprisoned Jewish friends. But when Isobel becomes pregnant by Rafael, Carlos is about to kill her (until Isobel mashes him with a bronze statue); and when Pedro and family are arrested, they have to be rescued by Rafael. . . though Isobel herself will return to face the flames with her friar-lover. Doughty Isobel is much on the move--escaping from enemies, rescuing hidden Jews or Moors, suffering through the ghastly spectacles of public executions; and there are straightforward blasts at religious bigotry throughout. Generally serviceable, then, but overloaded with explicit (however worthy) message."


message 30: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Here are the two covers:

paperback
The Marranos by Liliane Webb

hardcover
The Marranos by Liliane Webb


message 31: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39287 comments Mod
Janine wrote: "in one scene she wanted to bathe according to Jewish traditions and had to do it in secret because if she was seen, she might be found out."

I did find one passage in the book, which has snippets online:

"water into a flat basin, undressed, and proceed to sponge herself quickly, rubbing her skin until it was warm and red.

People said it was sinful to uncover yourself; you should wash only one part of your body at a time, covering it immediately when it was dry - a very complicated procedure"


message 32: by Janine (last edited Jun 28, 2020 02:46AM) (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments I don’t remember the book well enough to be positive it’s this one but i think it’s possible. The book doesn’t sound like something I would enjoy today, so I’ll pass on it. Feel free to move it to the “Query abandoned by poster” folder. Thanks for looking all that up!


message 33: by Kris (new)

Kris | 35138 comments Mod
Moving to the "Query abandoned by poster" folder, as requested.


message 34: by Janine (new)

Janine Ballard | 41 comments Thank you! :)


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