Thursday, March 7, 2013

My First Review on Robert Peckham

I heard about and the sites' need for reviewers from two sources: the Son Rise Morning Show and the Catholic Writers Guide. I've identified four "classic" works to review and here is the first one: Maurice Baring's historical novel, Robert Peckham:

I was rash when I should have been timid, and timid when I should have been bold. . . .I should never have left England. I should have remained and resisted, or died in the attempt.—Robert Peckham, summing up his life in Maurice Baring’s novel, Robert Peckham

Maurice Baring was a contemporary and friend of G.K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc, but his literary contributions as novelist, poet, and essayist are less remembered today. This historical novel, Robert Peckham, is a fascinating first person narration of a life during the Tudor dynasty in England. Robert Peckham, the narrator and protagonist, lives in the shadow of his father in service and loyalty to Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary I, and Elizabeth I, witnessing all the religious changes of the sixteenth century and the English Reformation. Peckham sees the execution of martyrs, the dissolution of monasteries, and the destruction of Catholicism—all the while enduring an unhappy marriage and family life.

Other novelists have depicted this era, often including historical characters: Robert Hugh Benson’s trio of Tudor novels (The King’s Achievement, By What Authority?, and Come Rack! Come Rope!) are tales of adventure, as English men and women confront the crucial issues of loyalty and conscience; choosing between their Catholic faith and the established Church of England; suffering torture and execution and proving their courage and endurance. Even those who choose to conform to the state church and renounce their Catholicism suffer loss and endure trouble.

Read the rest at and I'll let you know when my next review is online!

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