Monday, March 5, 2012

Book Review: Weight of a Flame

Weight of a Flame: The Passion of Olympia Morata [Chosen Daughters]
From the Publisher:

"Olympia Morata (1526–1555) is her father’s finest student and a girl far ahead of her time. A quick tongue and a ready pen are her mind’s tools to record her vivid thoughts, poetry, songs, and opinions. Appointed tutor to Duchess RenĂ©e’s children, Olympia looks forward to a bright future—when suddenly, evil rumors threaten to turn her world upside down. In the midst of it all a young doctor comes courting. Will their love survive the danger waiting on the other side of the Alps?"
"The Chosen Daughters Series highlights the lives of ordinary women who by God’s grace accomplish extraordinary things."

"Though little-known today, in the first part of the 16th century, sparks of the Reformed faith burned brightly in Italy. Italian Protestants were faced with three choices: compromise and silence, defiance unto death, or voluntary exile. Olympia Morata, an intelligent young women from a family faithful to biblical truth, was one of the women whose passion helped to spread the flame of the Reformation. Well-educated and gifted in languages, Olympia followed her destiny through academic studies, leading to a position in the royal court, a platform for public lectures and opportunities for influence through writing. In her personal life she endured loss and sadness, but she later found true love in marriage despite great danger and hardship. Olympia died at the age of 29, eager for the presence of her Savior."

Weight of a Flame is informative, interesting, and well-written. In it, Simonetta Carr tells the story of an intelligent young girl with a unique position during the time of the Reformation. Not having heard of Olympia Morata prior to reading Weight of a Flame, I quickly devoured the book in two evenings.

One of the things that I appreciate about Simonetta Carr's writing is her dedication to historical accuracy and her transparency throughout the writing process. She doesn't simply fabricate her story, but does much research to ensure that she is faithful to the historical account. If you're interested in learning more about her writing process, you can read her post on writing historical fiction or follow her blog. It is obvious that Ms. Carr put much time and effort into making Olympia Morata's story come alive.

I must confess, when I first read the book summary, I was a little bit nervous about reading this title. Don't get me wrong, I love historical fiction, but I don't read romance novels, and I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this book. However, having read all of Simonetta Carr's books and having followed her blog for some time now, I decided to read Weight of a Flame: The Passion of Olympia Morata. I am so glad that I did!

As usual, Simonetta Carr did not disappoint. Thankfully, Weight of a Flame did not read anything like a romance novel at any point and, though specifically targeted at young girls, is a good read for folks of all ages. Young girls, in particular, will likely identify with Olympia as she seeks to please her father and as she matures and makes her faith her own.

I enjoyed Weight of a Flame very much! You may have the opportunity to enjoy it as well! Simonetta Carr and P and R Publishing graciously sent me a copy to share with one of my readers. If you are interested in entering for a chance to win a free copy of this book, enter your name and email address in the form below prior to March 9, 2012.

Giveaway closed. Congratulations to the winner!

*Many thanks to Simonetta Carr and P and R Publishing for sending me a complimentary copy in exchange for my honest opinion! 


Trisha said...

It's great to read your review, especially since some of your concerns were mine. I have this book and am looking forward to reading it and sharing it with my daughters. I hope you're doing well and feeling well!

KeepItSimple said...

Thanks for the contest!!! Can't wait to read the book!

Many blessings -