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THE POPE'S BUTCHER: Based on the True Story of a Serial Killer in the Medieval Vatican Kindle Edition
★ "Exhaustively researched and brilliantly executed...A riveting read." -- The Prairies Book Review
★ "The Pope's Butcher is top-notch writing, the best book I've read this year, and I'm looking forward to Joseph C. Gioconda's second novel, Salem's Ropes." -- Lex Allen, Reader's Favorite Book Review
★ "Immersing the reader in the bloody but fascinating world of medieval witch trials, Joseph Gioconda's debut is a thrilling take on a little-known historical episode." -- Indie Reader Book Review
★ "A dark, well-researched story centered on the Inquisition's most notorious killer. With evocative prose and careful research, Gioconda captures the nuances of medieval Church politics and the frank realities of the prejudices of the time." -- BookLife by Publisher's Weekly
★ "From the first chapter, I was hooked as the book is a real page turner! I love that the book is inspired by actual history and that the author provides great details about the true horror in the medieval Vatican!" -- NetGalley Reviewer
★ "I loved the world building as well as the absolutely authentic feel. Institoris is as twisted a character as one can have, but the scariest part is that he was real. I'm looking forward to reading more from this author." -- GoodReads Reviewer
★ "The Pope's Butcher is one of those novels that leaves you thinking about what was, what is, and what will be in the next hundred years. Now that's good writing!" -- Viga Boland, Reader's Favorite Book Review
★ "Interesting and intriguing, the story flowed well and would recommend this even if you have no interest in the church." -- NetGalley Reviewer
★ "The author did a great job in merging facts and fiction...it hits the nail on the head without being too gory." -- Online Book Club
★ "All I can say right now is Wow, Just Wow. This book was intense and the author did an awesome job putting it all together." -- GoodReads Reviewer
★ "The plot is twisty with great pacing and plenty of hair-raising action with well-developed characters that grow throughout the book. Fantastic story. I really want to read more from this author and hope he has a sequel in the offing." -- Anne Marie Reynolds, Reader's Favorite Book Review
About the Author
- ASIN : B095SZJSPY
- Publisher : Newtown IP Holdings LLC; 1st edition (June 2, 2021)
- Publication date : June 2, 2021
- Language : English
- File size : 2201 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 250 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #58,762 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Enter a frenzy not unlike the stories you’ve doubtless heard of the Salem witch trials, but a change of settings, a tale of darkness and corruption.
Mysteries and life questions are on the line for Sebastian Alberti. Orphaned as a child Sebastian has long sought answers in The Church. He has studied and committed himself. A short time before he attains ordination as a priest he is approached by The Grand Inquisitor with the opportunity of a lifetime: journey and research the presence of witches who have infiltrated the community with evil.
As the fast-paced story unfolds Sebastian is faced with a dilemma: Does Hey pursue the path to which The Inquisitor has called him — which comes with reward, position, prestige- or does he press through what he increasingly believes to be the false veil which has hidden and even twisted the truth about “witches”?
Sebastian begins to suspect the nefarious intent of The Inquisitor and his fierce obsession with the wiles of womanhood. The Church’s objective is the salvation of souls from evil. Where and in whom the evil lies unfolds in this quick-paced story.
I could not put it down! Read it straight through, with a few side treks to research interesting historical points.
This should be read in conjunction with Arthur Miller’s The Crucible to broaden understanding of the hysteria and malevolence present during the time.
For his first novel, the author did an incredible job! I look forward to more books about these same characters.
Really interesting story. I found myself wanting to learn more about Institoris as a real historical figure. It is amazing that we don’t know more about him. A real gem!
Intriguing characters. I want to get to know them better in a sequel.
Based on historical facts, this book of fiction is about a priest initiate named Sabastian who is tasked with searching out witchcraft and its practices throughout the 15th century Roman Catholic world. Sabastian travels through Europe, Britain, and Ireland studying and taking notes on local witch practices. Toward the end of his travels, he judges witchcraft to be the innocent application of herbal medicinal practices that have been practiced from long before the founding of the Christian Church. In his notes, he opines that the actions taken by witches are entirely beneficial to the health and welfare of the communities being served. Spending a considerable amount of time with one young witch, he falls in love but leaves her to return to Rome to file his report with the chief inquisitor. According to the fictional account, Sabastian’s notes are misused and end up serving as the basis for the chief inquisitor’s widely distributed book on the evils of witchcraft. That book, The Witch’s Hammer, is still being published and is in circulation today. The initial publication of The Witch’s Hammer led to the deaths of thousands of women in Europe and America over the ensuing years.
In my experience, books that include a bibliography the size of the one at the end of The Pope’s Butcher are assigned social sciences texts that must be read in college. While historically factual and somewhat interesting as enhancements to the subject matter being studied, they are not enjoyable literary reading. Gioconda, on the other hand, wrote his book as reading literature, not an academic enhancement. I think that he succeeded in doing so and has, what will shortly become, a bestselling book as a result.
Gioconda, no doubt, has a busy schedule as a trial lawyer, but I do hope that he continues to set time aside for more historically based fictional writing. The Pope’s Butcher emotionally engaged me and always had me looking forward to my next reading session.