Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Legacy-TJ Bennett

The Legacy
TJ Bennett
Medallion, Apr 2008, $7.95
ISBN: 9781933836362

In Electoral Saxony her attempt at freedom from her abusive adopted father the Schenk of Wittenberg Baron Marcus von Ziegler through marriage failed. For years after that futile effort, her dad kept her prisoner. Several years later in 1525 her father gives his daughter Baroness Sabina a choice to marry his chosen one or to remain chained in his rat infested dungeon.

Her hope lies with the reformer Martin Luther, who makes her believe that God will be there for her even as church officials are always bending their knees towards her father. Still she accepts her sire’s terms and agrees to marry widower commoner Wolfgang Behaim, a middle class printer. Her father blackmails Wolfgang into agreeing also if he wants his secret kept concealed. Neither wanted to wed one another and she prays she can get it annulled, but as she meets his kind family including a little girl praying for a momma, Sabina feels contented for the first time perhaps in her life. Meanwhile the peasants are irate with the baron who threatens to kill Sabina and her new family, whom she loves very much and each one of them reciprocate especially her reluctant husband.

This is an interesting sixteenth century Germanic romance due to the machinations of the Schenk as the audience as much as the lead couple needs to know why this pairing; the abusive Schenk is like a poker player hiding his hand until it is time to call. Sabina is a fascinating heroine who survives her father’s torture by following the inspirational rebellious preaching of Martin Luther. Fans will appreciate this engaging historical, which brings a fine romantic subplot enhanced by a spotlight on Martin Luther and the beginning of the Reformation.

Harriet Klausner

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