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Contents Short Stories Contest Winner—Bearer of a Thousand Wounds by Jessica Andress .......................... 2 Fiction—A Cretaceous Carol by Claudio R. Salvucci ................................................... 7 Historical Fiction—God Our Protector by Emma Cassman ..........................................10 Historical Fiction—The Knight and the Flaming Arrow by Rachael Whitman ............ 15 Historical Fiction—The Consul of Byzantium by Paolo A. Belzoni ............................. 20

Great Books for Insatiable Readers From Arx Publishing........................................................................................... 25 Historical Fiction—Based on the Bible ................................................................ 29 Historical Fiction—Greco-Roman History ........................................................... 30 Historical Fiction—Middle Ages.......................................................................... 33 Historical Fiction—Colonial Era.......................................................................... 35 Historical Fiction—Early Modern ....................................................................... 37 Historical Fiction—20th Century ........................................................................ 39 Lives of the Saints and Catholic Heroes ...............................................................41 History ............................................................................................................... 47 Order Form ........................................................................................................ 48 Cover Illustration: Description. Photo taken and enhanced by Anthony P. Schiavo, Jr.

The Tarpeian Rock is published by Arx Publishing, LLC, P.O. Box 1333, Merchantville, NJ 08109 Tel. (856) 486-1310 • Fax: (856) 665-0170 For a complete listing of books offered by Arx Publishing or to place an order, please visit our web site: www.arxpub.com All questions about editorial and submissions should be directed to Rachael Whitman at the above address. All production, quality and distribution questions should be directed to Tony Schiavo at the above address. Unless otherwise noted below, all material is copyright © 2015 Arx Publishing. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored, transmitted or otherwise disseminated in any form without prior written permission from Arx Publishing, LLC. All opinions expressed in The Tarpeian Rock represent those of the authors of the articles in question and not necessarily those of the management and members of Arx Publishing, LLC. Bearer of a Thousand Wounds is copyright © 2015 Jessica Andress. All rights reserved. A Cretaceous Carol is copyright © 2015 Claudio R. Salvucci. All rights reserved. God Our Protector is copyright © 2015 Emma Cassman. All rights reserved. The Knight and the Flaming Arrow is copyright © 2015 Rachael Whitman. All rights reserved.

Visit our website: http://www.arxpub.com/TarpeianRock.html


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CONTEST WINNER: BEARER OF A THOUSAND WOUNDS

Young Writers Short Story Contest With the revival of the Tarpeian Rock in 2015, we decided to revive our short story contest for youth ages 12-18 as well. This year’s contest offered two options for potential entrants: their story could be set in Biblical times or it could be a work which in some way incorporated one of the Psalms. Each story had to be historical fiction of 2,500 words or less. We received a happy abundance of entries, and as it happened, there were two stories that stood out among the rest—one which was set during the life of Christ, and another that made use of a quote and themes from one of the Psalms. The story below, Bearer of a Thousand Wounds, was selected as the winner and received the $50 prize. The runner-up, God Our Protector, was also deemed worthy of publication and we are pleased to present it on page 10 of this issue. To the other entrants—thank you for entering and we hope that you will continue to refine your God-given talents.

WIN

NER

Bearer of a Thousand Wounds by Jessica Andress

C

ornelius woke with a start. A gruff and altogether loud snore erupted from Yokin the ox in the stall beside him. Disturbed from his peaceful slumber, the young donkey stretched out his legs and inhaled the morning air. Surveying the barn, he was pleased to find his food and water supply replenished, the ground adequately swept, and Adaios resting quietly in his own stall, which was just in front of him. Exceptionally beautiful rays of sunshine filtered in through the cracks of the barn doors that fine morning. Lovely smells hovered in the air, and the song of a mother lark brought cheer to the donkey. In the midst of this tranquility, a melodious voice rang from outside: Hey Hie Hoe, To the pastures you go! Out to the golden land

Where the grass is green and grand! The familiar chant of his master at the break of every dawn captured the attention of Cornelius and awakened the repose of Adaios, his respected but aloof and haughty companion. “Come now my younglings, to the outside world you go! We have much to do today.” As the two donkeys were led to the pasture, Adaios bid Cornelius a gruff good morning. “I do detest hard work at daybreak,” he grumbled with an unsatisfied bray and a swish of his tail. “The damp grass soaks my fetlocks, and the mud clouds my shiny hoofs. True, there are no flies at this time, but oh, how soggy this muck is!” A striking donkey in appearance, Adaios was the type of creature that cared greatly about his looks. He far exceeded Cornelius in beauty and poise. Lustrous was his glossy body and flowing was his mane.


BY

JESSICA ANDRESS

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“No, for He gave me this form and thereErect was his posture and smooth was his gait. With these gifts, it was not a wonder fore I am content with it. Do I not have eyes and ears and a nose with which to see, that he was the favorite of the master. “I think your hoofs look stunning with hear, and smell? Do I not have good health or without mud on them,” answered Cor- and a strong body? With these things I have nelius politely, knowing how fond Adaios enough to be satisfied.” “Oh please, your lecturing bores me.” was of a compliment. “Hmph,” he scoffed in return, turning up Adaios yawned and stretched his legs. his nose. “That shows what you know of “What is the use of a body like ours if it is beauty. One is not appealing with mud and not stupendous? Such pleasure it is to draw grass on his fetlocks in the morning. In fact, so much attention to one’s self.” Off he went into a brisk trot, braying at it is considered undignified. A creature with such beauty as mine ought to address the the top of his lungs in ecstasy till all the morning with tidy hoofs. But how would farm animals and birds stopped their work you know that when you never bother with to stare and admire him. With their morning meal soon finished, your looks?” These were the usual remarks Corne- Adaios was summoned by his master, bridled, and led off lius received from the for his day’s work. prideful Adaios. He was a steed and With that said the “Oh please, your lecturing nothing more. Every two animals were morning he was tied turned into the pasbores me,” Adaios to a post in front of ture. As was custom, yawned and stretched the farmhouse where Adaios pranced around was saddled and in a most fashionable his legs. “What is the use he ridden into town. way and exclaimed There he spent most whenever he came of a body like ours if of the morning enjoywithin earshot of Corit is not stupendous?” ing the pleasant sights nelius, “Observe my of the city while his commanding presence master went about will you, Cornelius. My! How my mane flows today. What good his business. For Cornelius, his occupation was long this fresh air does for my lungs!” Majestically, he paraded towards the hours in the fields doing nothing but conmuch humbler donkey and began gloat- suming the spindly weeds that threatened ing as he was inclined to do when he felt to strangle the vegetables of his master. This, although relaxing and not altogether particularly handsome. “Don’t you wish you had a body as difficult, was relatively dull and a bit lonegrand as mine, or a tail as stunning as some, since he was the only one out in the this?” Here he swished it deliberately into wide, grassy land. Having watched his master and Adaios Cornelius’ downcast face. Respectfully holding his tongue until he retreat down the road in high spirits, Corfelt certain the arrogant donkey had run nelius stood mournfully alone, small tears out of breath, Cornelius replied, “I am of loneliness and despair trickling down quite content with my own body which his cheeks. “How I wish someone would the Creator has given me. Is it not enough ride me!” he moaned quietly. Never in all to be thankful for the gift of life? I need his years had Cornelius carried a human upon his back. That was his one desire: to nothing else.” “Ah, but don’t you wish He had given have someone ride him. “I wish,” he continued, ignoring the you more beauty with which to flaunt before lesser animals like the goats in the pleasant chirping of three young blue jays, “that I could carry someone; it would not other pasture?”


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CONTEST WINNER: BEARER OF A THOUSAND WOUNDS

matter how great or small. What an honor I would consider it!” With no hope of his wish being granted, he sighed and began nibbling the ugly weeds again, careful to never squash the precious fruits or vegetables, which were valued dearly by his master. Later that day Adaios returned with a particularly smirking expression playing across his face. “Tut, tut,” he clucked when he caught a quick glimpse of Cornelius, whose eyes were quite sad and ears terribly droopy. “What a face! Goodness only knows why you look so dreadful. Did you eat the wrong weed again? I remember that time when you ate poison ivy and your tongue swelled to three times its size. Ha! It looked absolutely revolting!” Irritated by these words, Cornelius rose on powerful legs and began to trot away, wishing he were hundreds of miles from Adaios. “I haven’t eaten the wrong weed, nor have I consumed more than what is good for me. I simply feel desolate,” mumbled he in a most dejected state. Chasing after him, Adaios rebuked Cornelius saying, “However could you feel sad in my presence? Just look at my gorgeous ears and eyes! Surely they are striking enough to make you forget about your troubles. If not, observe the powerful muscles in my legs! Watch how the sun

reflects off my dazzling coat!” As he cried out these things with profound passion, he began once more to frolic around. As it so happened, the ground in that general area was not particularly smooth or level. Adaios, with eyes lifted upwards, forgot to watch where he was going. Suddenly his hoof tripped upon a snag. Adaios gave an appalling shriek! Uncontrollably he tumbled forwards. Down he went. “I am dead!” he screeched in agony as he lay all in a heap upon the ground. Twisted was his front left hoof, and his coat had been tarnished with mud. “Doom! Doom and despair! Oh, what treachery! How could such a thing happen to me?” Here he launched into the most lamenting chant any creature in that pasture had ever heard, though Cornelius could only make out the first stanza. It went something like this: Upon the ground I lie in shame For my gorgeous hoof is twisted in pain; And though the grass is green and gold, The hurt I feel is too great to hold! “Come now,” said Cornelius as he tried to compose the other donkey. “Stop writhing around like that; you will only make it worse. Let me help you up and I shall call for Master.” “Leave me alone!” grieved the fallen donkey, the tears now flowing like torrents down his cheeks. “I am hideous. Just look at my coat! Woe is me! What humiliation!” “It is not as bad as you think,” sympathized Cornelius in an effort to cheer up the wretched donkey. “I am a mule, a mule!” wept Adaios bitterly, feeling the pain increase, now that he had come to the end of his lament and could think of nothing more to say. “You should not have bragged like you did or gone trotting around as if the king himself had come to inspect you. Besides, you know the turf here is uneven and rather spongy—especially after it rains.”


BY

“Shame is upon my face now. Oh, I can never show it in public again for fear of others discovering the disgrace that is written upon it. But who now shall Master ride into town this evening? I undoubtedly cannot take him.” Profound silence suddenly seized them both. Rigid became Adaios as the thought occurred to him that Cornelius would have to suffice for the job! Bliss filled the other donkey’s heart as he too contemplated this predicament. A low, shrill whistle pierced their sensitive ears. Alarmed, Adaios glanced at the sky and realized it was evening. His master was calling for him. Ears dropping, tail inactive, Adaios cast his good hoof over his eyes and moaned. “The end of the world,” he whined. The events that transpired within the next few minutes were incomprehensible for Cornelius. Adaios was evaluated as having a sprained ankle and was assisted to the barn, where it was bandaged with tender care. As for Cornelius, he was tied to the post in front of the house. Assuming he

JESSICA ANDRESS

was to take Adaios’ place, the bewildered yet eager donkey rejoiced. “So I am to be ridden at last!” he exclaimed, as he patiently abided by the post. He began to envision the small house they would travel to where an old, sick woman lived; a poor soul who had no family to care for her but an old, fat cat by the name of Bartholomew. This animal was a dear friend of Adaios, though Cornelius could never understand why. He was overly pampered by his mistress and never let outside. The dinners brought to him by Cornelius’ master were huge in quantity, and as he felt obliged to finish the whole thing every time, he was, as a consequence, six pounds heavier than what he ought to have been. How Bartholomew wished there was a mouse to chase! The sound of voices broke Cornelius’ thoughts. Glancing around for the origin of the sounds, he observed two men ambling up the path to the house. Pointing unexpectedly in his direction, they hastened towards him. “This must be the one he spoke of, for

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5

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CONTEST WINNER: BEARER OF A THOUSAND WOUNDS

I see no other about,” said the taller of the two as he scanned the premises while the other began to untie the bewildered donkey. At that moment Cornelius’ master came out of the barn leading the pathetic-looking Adaios, who seemed to limp with great fervor as he wanted everyone to be fully aware of his injury. “Why are you untying him?” demanded his master with a friendly yet skeptical expression. “The Lord has need of it,” articulated the first. “We are His followers and shall return him as soon as we may,” added the second, fidgeting with the lead rope in his hand. Three days ago, word had spread in the village that a man by the name of Jesus was approaching the city of Jerusalem. Since many in the town thought he could the messiah, the Son of God, the master, not wanting to cause an uproar by refusing this command, consented to their request. “I would give you this other one for he is more beautiful,” he said in apology, “but his leg is lame and cannot take weight.” “This one shall do well enough,” answered the first apostle and began leading Cornelius away. For a moment Cornelius’ shocked eyes met those of Adaios. In them he could discern great jealousy and disbelief over what he had just heard. Both of them knew who Jesus was, for the birds in that region often reported what news they gathered from other lands, and a cardinal had claimed this man to be the Son of God just a fortnight ago. As he started down the road, Cornelius could just make out the fuming words of Adaios as he rambled on about injustice and thievery. “It would have been me,” he sobbed. “Why, oh why, did I ever attempt that foolish dance out in the field? Such absurdity! What was that saying of King Solomon’s in Proverbs 16:18? Pride comes before the fall? Oh, if only I had heeded

those words!” “Poor Adaios,” empathized Cornelius, although within he was bursting with joy at the honor which was about to be bestowed on him. Further down the road he glimpsed the gates of Jerusalem. He saw a large crowd. There were eleven men. One appeared especially radiant. Eagerly Cornelius trotted forwards to meet the man. Jesus, whose eyes were as blue as an ocean and face as luminous as the morning sun, stretched out his hand to stroke the soft velvety muzzle of the donkey. As his fingers went on to trace the outline of a cross upon his back, a tingle of pure ecstasy coursed through him. “My friend,” whispered Jesus in his ear, “today thy troubles and sorrows shalt be washed away, for thou shalt bear me into the holy city of Jerusalem. Upon thy back I place this sign so that thou shalt always remember this day; the day thou bore the Son of God. May thou find peace in thy heart after this and be content.” Cloaks from the men around Cornelius were draped upon his back before Jesus mounted him. Oh, what joy he felt when he did so! Such pleasure; such pride! The gates of the grand city were flung open, and before him cheered a crowd of hundreds who placed palm branches reverently upon the dirt road and hailed Jesus singing, “Hosanna to the son of David! Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest!” Thus Cornelius, the humble donkey from a town near Bethphage, who had borne thousands of ill remarks and scornful laughs that had etched such painful wounds in his heart, set foot into that sacred city with the most important person he could have ever imagined carrying: Jesus, the son of God. Jessica Andress is 15 years old and resides in South Carolina.


BY

CLAUDIO R. SALVUCCI

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A Cretaceous Carol in prose By Claudio R. Salvucci

upon its arrival, classed as a holotype and bestowed the new genus Antarctopelta. “Evidently,” said I, “this apparition n the evening after a heady confer- signals that I am still in a dream. Doubtence of the Climatological Society, I less this Mesozoic monster is some bit of quietly retired to my chamber, accompa- dyspepsia acting upon my memories of nied only by a lamp and Lyell's Principles of the evening.” “No, no professor!” the creature replied, Geology. I had merely drifted into the pleasant antechamber of somnolence when at to my astonishment, “neither dream nor once a noise within my room rousted me delusion.” I crossed myself quite involuntarily as quite out of it. It was a snuffling, breathy sound as such could only be made by some he continued. “You spoke eloquently this day of the large beast—but I exhaled impatiently at the impossibility and forcibly shut my signal dangers that the variations in climate has to man—you cataloged his eyes again. When, however, a frigid breeze signaled great sins against nature and inveighed some not insignificant displacement of the against his overweening pride. And with great alarum you esbedcurtains, I opened sayed to convince my eyes once more, your fellows what a and was terrified to “This is my domain,” global catastrophe see a massive reptilsaid the creature, as if would accompany a ian maw hovering decade’s worth of ticks over me. I started, my perceiving my very on Doctor Fahrenheit's breath caught in my scale.” lungs, and leapt out thoughts. “The continent Here, I was sure, the opposite side of you call Antarctica." he was poetically the bed. referencing the title But the creature had He paused for a time. of my afternoon adno interest in attack “Does it surprise you?” dress, which I had and merely sniffed impertinently entitled disinterestedly. My “Ten Degrees toward alarm subsided as I beheld it more fully. It was a member of the Apocalypse.” “Indeed, all those things…but…” I stamthe ankylosauria—a quite harmless herbivore of the Mesozoic. Of which genera mered, “what do you want with me?” “Come!” he thundered, shaking his I could not be certain, as I was singularly unaccustomed to see them clothed in liv- massive head. In an instant my eyes shut before a piercing flesh. The distinctive arrangement of its bony horns, however, suggested to me ing light. I felt warm sun on my skin and a specimen recently brought back from the heard strange sounds that, though wholly frozen islands surrounding the southern different ones from the American countrycontinent. That specimen had been care- side, indicated that we had materialized out fully chiseled from the frigid strata and, of doors. Between blinks I determined that

I


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HISTORICAL FICTION: A CRETACEOUS CAROL

we were in a great forest at the bank of a wide stream. But—what a forest it was! The trees were mainly conifers, but rather than the pines and cedars and hemlocks of our native land, these woods were thick with Araucarias and Podocarps. I judged we were in some meridional land; New Zealand perhaps. “This is my domain,” said the creature, as if perceiving my very thoughts. “The continent you call Antarctica.” He paused for a time. “Does it surprise you?” “Well,” I bristled haughtily, “I had known, naturally, from the fossils brought back to the Academy that it was once warm and verdant.” “You knew. But you did not consider,” he said in a tone at once sharper and heavier, “what that meant.” “I'm afraid I don't know what you mean,” I stammered in puzzlement. The great beast growled. “Before the Society this afternoon, you decried the global ascent in temperature and the concomitant melting of the polar ices that would attend mankind’s use of the Carboniferous deposits.” “I did,” I replied cautiously. “You trotted out before them every prophecy of doom. Every desert that would advance upon a neighboring prairie, every island or peninsula inundated, every polar cap melted into its surrounding sea.” “Yes….” “You wept at the polar bear losing his ice. The island

dweller sinking into the sea. You lamented the poor Papuans, the Hawaiians, even the proud Manhattanites clustered upon their great concrete pier.” “Yes….” “But you thought nothing of us!” “I'm sorry?” I replied, still bewildered. “Look about you! Is the continent as you know it in your world?” The monster craned his neck as far around as his vertebral structure would allow. “Behold your apocalypse, professor! Behold the earth you have taught them to fear!” I gazed up at the massive conifers and tree ferns swaying under the caress of a gentle breeze, the summer sun barely filtering through to the forest floor below as the stream burbled past. Insects danced in the scattered rays. “This luxurious land, this fruitful land, this blesséd and beautiful land that we call our home…in your day is it not a barren wasteland of ice?” “It….it is….” I answered haltingly. “Then it seems, professor, that your world was our Apocalypse.” My thoughts, upended by this new perspective, raced through the geology of the Cretaceous. Did the fossil record not tell of great forests in the Arctic? Did plesiosaurs and mososaurs not glide majestically though the North American Inland Sea over great bivalves, ammonites and

illustration by Anthony P. Schiavo III


BY

CLAUDIO R. SALVUCCI

9

Two short works by Claudio R. Salvucci...

The Menagerie of Marsepink A bright young zoology professor arrives at a prestigious Long Island college only to discover a mysterious collection of handmade animals in the possession of the college’s heiress. A tribute to the works of Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Menagerie of Marsepink is a moral allegory on the limits of natural science and the supernatural reality of the soul. 40 pages • paperback • $8.95

The Laviniad: An Epic Poem “The Laviniad is a truly unique work....Lovers of classic tales will really appreciate the poetry and the plot. The poem reads easily and naturally with the flow and flavor of the ancient epics. A complete glossary in the back will help anyone who has not read the Aeneid or the Iliad to understand the relationship of the characters.” —Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers 133 pages • paperback • $11.95 For more information visit our website: www.arxpub.com

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belemnites—a sea that in our day was completely drained and had turned into a barren inland desert? Was it possible that the catastrophism I saw in a ten degree increase was only a figment of my own careful selection of particular locales that, in our narrow human terms, would fare the worst under such conditions? And that, were I to choose others, I might well welcome a warmer Earth as a veritable Eden? As I continued these speculations, the trees shimmered, which at first I thought a trick of the eyes and then some humid exhalation of the air. But then the ancient flora melted entirely from my vision and about me was a cold darkness and the small glow of a dying fire. I heard a voice behind me whisper, “Remember, professor!” before I found myself once again alone in my room.

I never saw the monster again. Dismissing him wholly out of mind as a product of some hallucinatory episode, I redoubled my urgent crusade against the warming of the earth, quitting my scientific studies at the Academy and entering into the body politic. Indeed, I nearly exhausted my energies demanding that the public treasuries of the nations be emptied, if necessary, if only to avert the deadly catastrophe that, I was sure, was soon to engulf our fragile earth. Yet all my days I could never quite forget the warmth and incomparable beauty of that lush polar forest at the bottom of the world. Claudio R. Salvucci is a harmless armored herbivore thought to inhabit the lush deciduous forests of Quaternary northeastern Pennsylvania.


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HISTORICAL FICTION: GOD OUR PROTECTOR

By Emma Cassman

Holding us only for a few short seconds, Papa straightened himself and stood tall. The blue eyes and sandy blonde hair that looked so much like my own shone in the moonlight as he looked down on his family one last time. Finally, with a calm and steady pace, he carried himself to the front door and didn’t look back. The moments following were a blur as the door swung open and the butt of a Soviet gun was swung into my father’s temple. Soldiers and NKVD flooded into our small home in torrents, destroying

The thunderous pounding on the front door split through the still atmosphere of our apartment as my family sat, huddled and shaking, willing ourselves to disappear. My eyes glanced up to my whispering parents, and then down to my younger sister Alina, whose eyes were wide and filled with terror. I wrapped my arms tighter around her small body and put my head over hers. I concentrated on the one single ray of moonlight shining through the kitchen window. It illuminated the room and part of the hall as if trying to prove that even in moments such as these, things could still be beautiful. Papa was no longer sitting on the floor, but was elevated in a crouch, holding Mama’s hand and trying to calm her as she sobbed into her arms. He moved over to me, not letting go of Mama, and knelt down, putting one hand to my face 370 pages “My beautiful daughters,” paperback he leaned forward and $19.95 kissed my sister’s head, then looked at me. “He will cover you with To order or for His wings;” he whispered, more information “you will be safe in His visit our website: care…you need not fear…” www.arxpub.com His voice broke, and he pulled us all to his chest as Mama began to cry even harder.

The First Crusade The Accounts of EyeWitnesses and Participants compiled and edited by Prof. August C. Krey The launch of the First Crusade at Clermont was one of the epoch-making moments of history. To cut through the contemporary manipulations of the Crusade and its participants, this collection provides extensive extracts from a variety of first-hand sources and is useful reading for anyone wishing to have a better understanding of the First Crusade and the motivations of its participants.


BY

EMMA CASSMAN

11

everything in sight, seemingly searching faster toward our goal. It was a time later that the painful for something. Someone. The commanding officer screamed cramping in my legs ultimately brought at Papa, who responded solemnly and me out of my delirious dream state. I had respectfully, as if he hadn’t even taken been remembering the hours I’d spent notice of the slow stream of blood with Papa discussing our favorite books. trickling down his face. I couldn’t tear my We read every kind of literature, and then eyes away, but as Mama grabbed Alina and we would sit together and discuss it. Mama I by our arms and silently pulled us along and Alina would go to the kitchen to bake when our conversation became too dull for the hall, she didn’t take a second glance. The frozen metal steps of the fire escape them, and then return with whatever they creaked as if threatening to betray our had cooked up, trying to coax us into disescape while the three of us descended, cussing something more day-to-day than and it was when we had just reached the our philosophical minds would typically bottom that the shouts from above be- allow. All that was gone now. There were came noticeably closer. Within seconds no books, there was no food, and Papa was not with us. He we found ourselves was peaceful, though, crouching as still as I think, probably still statues underneath The gunfire that lying by the bookshelf, the stairway. resounded afterward right where we’d left It really will be a him. Papa with the shame, I thought to nearly deafened me, and books, the books with myself, if they catch us and we’ve got to as we sat for what felt like Papa. Right then, I didn’t know of whom climb all the way back an eternity, my mother’s I was more jealous. up again. It took all my will The officer leaning delicate features didn’t to open my eyes and out our third-story reveal any emotion at all. slowly recall where I window stomped actually was. We had around on the landwalked for about two ing and scanned the area before returning inside to alert the hours to our destination at the outskirts commander (and Papa) that we hadn’t of town. My family’s saving grace was an old, rickety truck leaving to transport been seen. The gunfire that resounded afterward ‘medical supplies’ to the Soviet camp a few nearly deafened me, and as we sat for hours away. It was worn down, with shaky what felt like an eternity, my mother’s wooden doors covering both the back endelicate features didn’t reveal any emo- trance of the truck and the fact that the tion at all. As we listened to my sis- cargo was, in truth, a band of helpless ter cry, we both knew that Papa was refugees. Our God-sent deliverer was an elderly gone. The odds of our escaping the city were man and retired veteran named Nicholas slim, even slimmer considering everyone who had been no less than a father to my would recognize the wife and daughters of own Papa. His wife had long-since died, one of the most intelligent and well-known and his only son was grown and leading Russian writers of our century. Russia his own life with his own family in America. was filled with Stalinist sympathizers, Nicholas hated the man who was Joseph desperate to please and earn war-time Stalin, and his only wish was for a free credit no matter who they had to turn Russia. He’d offered Papa any assistance he over. But we persevered nonetheless, mov- needed when we first learned that we were ing through the silent streets in the early in danger, and Papa had provided him with Spring morning, willing ourselves to walk the list of people who were in the cab with


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HISTORICAL FICTION: GOD OUR PROTECTOR

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us now. We were all ‘Intelligentsia’ (Intellectuals), or children of, in my case. I met eyes with my mother, sitting across from me and holding my sister in her arms. She offered me a weak smile as I tried to stretch my already aching back. “Thank God someone’s finally decided to wake up,” a voice barked at me from the other end of the cab. “Tell your mama here that I’m right in saying you should have left the little girl behind.” I glanced over and saw the agitator, an older, angry looking woman, pointing a finger at my sister with an annoyed expression. “She’ll only slow you down,” she finished. How could any woman, whom God created with a natural instinct to care for and protect children, say something so horrible? “You know, you should be thanking God,” I responded, “because He and my Papa are the only reason you’re alive.” “Nina,” my mother drew my attention away from the woman.

Nina was the pet name Papa used to call me, saying that Katarina was too long for him. I returned my glare to the brown eyes boring into me from a few feet away. If looks could kill, hers would have made the NKVD’s job infinitely easier. But she didn’t say anything further. Hours passed in relative silence before Alina woke up and began to squirm, complaining that she was cold. Mama and I both removed our top layers to cover her, but nothing seemed to be enough. “Just make her stop already! I can’t listen to this anymore!”the irritable old man seated next to Alina whined. Why did Papa choose these people to save? “Then move,” I responded vacantly. I knew my mother would scold me, but I wasn’t willing to tolerate any more attacks on my now-broken my family; no matter how small. At that moment, it seemed that everyone in our small space began to argue. To my surprise, my mother said nothing to me,


BY

but pulled out a paper from her pocket and began to read. “I will save those who love me and will protect those who acknowledge me as the Lord.” A hush fell upon the cab. “When they call to me, I will answer them; when they are in trouble, I will be with them.” The reading was interrupted when the cab came to a screeching halt and we were nearly thrown over each other. The sudden and all too familiar sound of shouting Soviet officers stopped every heart in the space, and the footsteps coming toward the back of the truck were merciless hands tightening around my throat. The faces around me began to blur as I thought of my father’s death meaning nothing. My mother’s closed eyes reminded me of how happy we all used to be. Alina’s peaceful, sleeping face made me think of the day she was born. She’s too young to die.

EMMA CASSMAN

13

In that moment, I prayed harder than I ever had before. “You will be safe in His care,” I recited, “you need not fear…” And as if by an angel, the cab began to move. We discovered later that the commander in charge of the crossing was ‘old friends’ with Nicholas from his service in the army years before and had waved him through without trouble. The people around us burst into tears of joy and prayers of thanksgiving, grabbing and embracing whoever was nearest them. We were as good as safe now; and like nothing had happened, my mother’s voice penetrated the chaos as she finished her prayer. “I will rescue them and honor them. I will reward them with long life; I will save them.” There was no further argument after that. We spent the next hours praying and reminiscing. We rejoiced that we had made it, and cried for those who hadn’t. We knew that God could still choose to take

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HISTORICAL FICTION: GOD OUR PROTECTOR

us, but He could let us live. We lost count of minutes and hours, days and nights, but somehow we had all found peace. It appeared to be morning when we awoke to the lock being torn off of the door responsible for holding us inside our voluntary prison. No one had noticed that we’d stopped, and although we were calmer now, our fear was still apparent. The doors swung open and sunlight flooded in. Everyone froze, paralyzed, and there wasn’t a sound to be heard. Suddenly, a figure appeared. Nicholas, our angel in disguise, stood before us with a smile that said everything and more. Everyone filed out, haste considered before safety. The bright blue sky nearly blinded us, but I had never seen so many people so overjoyed at finding themselves alone in a vast and unfamiliar place. Rolling green hills, tall swaying trees, and little flowing streams surrounded us. There were no sounds but the birds flying overhead. No gunfire, no shouting, no soldiers tearing families apart. I looked up at Mama. Her long brown

hair was pulled back in the same fashion it had been when we had first fled, and wisps of it were blowing in the wind around her face. She looked down at me with sparkling green eyes and smiled a beautiful, bittersweet smile. I moved my gaze to my sister with her crazy wild brown curls that matched Mama’s and her bewildered expression and I knew that this is what Papa had given up. I closed my eyes and imagined everything that I would do, everything my baby sister would do because of our Papa’s sacrifice. I closed my eyes then, and I finally knew. I knew that through everything, God never abandons us; and if God is with us, we are never alone. A thousand may fall dead beside you, ten thousand all around you, but you will not be harmed. Psalms 91:7 Emma Cassman is a sixteen year-old high school student from Gallatin, Tennessee.

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BY

RACHAEL WHITMAN

15

The

Knight and the

Flaming Arrow Carving of a pilgrim from Lincoln Cathedral

By Rachael Whitman

F

laming arrows flew through the air down onto the attacking army below the great castle at Montauban. The fire from the arrows matched the deep red of the sky as smoke surrounded the English troops. Knights in chain armor slammed a heavy wooden battering ram against the castle gate. A myriad of arrows struck the ram in an attempt to set it ablaze. The castle had once been full of beauty, its towers reaching toward the heavens, but during the fifteen days since the siege had started the walls had crumbled in despair much like the spirit of those defending it. “For King John!” rang through the air as the English knights scaled the wall of the castle. They reached the top and their swords clashed with those of their enemies. The French fought with the remnants of a fervor that had once been fierce, and one of their arrows still managed to seek out a particular knight. This man was short of

stature, but strong in his faith in God. His name was John Burdet and he came from the town of Lindsey, near Lincoln. His fingers had just gripped the stone of the wall and his foot felt for the wooden rung of the ladder when the arrow struck his right arm just below the shoulder. He ripped it out, but the spot became numb with pain which spread until, with one final jerk, his whole arm became motionless like stone. Falling to the ground he hit his head and blacked out. Not long after, John was brought to safety as the English army’s swords sang with victory. The battle was at an end.

“C

an you move your arm?” asked the physician who was tending to John. He asked the question, but he already knew the answer. It had been a long year with no progress in the healing of his patient’s arm. John, a devout Christian, attempted to move his right arm in the sign of the Cross, but it would not budge. “No, I must con-


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HISTORICAL FICTION: THE KNIGHT AND THE FLAMING ARROW

tinue to pray for the intercessions of the good mop of gray hair. He was a little on the rough side, but mostly just curious in saints…” he muttered. “I do not think that is wise. You have nature. He made his own wax from bees been going on these pilgrimages when you whose hives he kept behind his workshop. The air was filled with the buzz of the bees should be resting.” “I have been under your care for a year, but he heard John’s heavy footsteps. John spent a great sum of money on the medi- had always been a kind man and the cine of man, but for naught!” John replied peasants and tradesmen of the village respected him. angrily. Bernard immediately saw the purse of The physician remained silent as he continued to remove the blood-sucking coins attached to John’s belt. He also knew leeches from John’s arm. Throughout this it must be important if the knight came procedure John remained silent. He could himself. “Ah, Sir Knight, to what do I owe not feel any of the doctor’s treatment, the pleasure of your presence?” “I need your help even when cautery with something...made had been used. This from fine wax such process entailed the Bernard went straight to as from your bees. I use of red-hot irons to seal up the skin work taking measurements know your work is the best...and I will over the wound. Later and planning in his mind of course pay,” John when the doctor retold him. opened the wound how he would carefully “Anything for you, and again used the irons, John still did melt and pour his precious Sir Knight,” Bernard replied promptly. not feel anything. But beeswax. After giving Bernard now he was silent for instructions, John a different reason. made his way home. It was not a sign of submission to the doctor’s will, but instead Bernard went straight to work taking he was deep in thought over his plans to measurements and planning in his mind how he would carefully melt and pour his journey home. precious beeswax. That night John knelt beside his bed, nder the hot sun many serfs were “Holy Father in heaven, please hear my harvesting the crops on the knight’s prayers. Help me to strive to be holy like land, and on the path they saw John slowly thy servant Saint Hugh, bishop of Lincoln, and if it is thy will, bring the life back to making his way home. Tears from his wife, hugs from his chil- my arm.” A few days later the chandler sent nodren, and the care of his servants greeted him. The village doctor could also do tice that Sir John’s item was finished, and nothing to help, and John continued to so John sent his servant to the chandler’s grow sicker, and could not eat without workshop to pick it up. “Hello? Is anybody here?” the skinny assistance. Several days after his return, John trav- servant boy called out. “I’m coming, I’m coming,” grumbled elled through his village with the help of a servant, his afflicted arm wrapped in a Bernard as he slowly walked around to sling, toward the stone abode of Bernard the front of the shop. “What are you here the chandler. Attached to the chandler’s for?” “My master, John, he said you made him home was a workshop where he made his candles. The workshop was set slightly something.” “Ah, yes the wax image of his arm, he back from the rest of the village. Bernard was a slightly plump older man, with a was very particular about it…”

U


BY

The Life of Saint Hugh of Avalon

To order or for more information visit our website: www.arxpub.com

17

he saw the glass windows gracing the walls of the building. There were two circular windows that particularly caught the eye, one facing north, and one facing south. Glancing at these windows Carac followed the rest of the servants into the cathedral. Many candles were lit, and the sunshine streamed through the windows, but the vast inside of the church was still dim. John walked toward the tomb where Hugh’s body was laid to rest as if his feet knew exactly where to bring him. Surrounding the tomb were little offerings from previous pilgrims hoping to benefit from the Bishop’s prayers. Closing his eyes he remembered the conversation he had had with his wife a week before: “We should pray to Hugh, the bishop of Lincoln! I heard of a boy from Wigford who could not speak because his tongue was attached to the roof of his mouth. He could barely eat. They prayed to Bishop Hugh and he was healed!” his wife had exclaimed. “I must go at once to the tomb of the great bishop and place my arm upon it. I know God will heal me!” “Will you be able to place your arm on the tomb?” He responded: “I will ask the chandler, who lives a few miles away in the village to carve an image from wax of Bishop of Lincoln 1186-1200 my arm, and I shall place that by Gerald of Wales upon the tomb. God will know Translated and edited by my faith even then.” Richard M. Loomis “God will surely know my faith even now,” he whisSaint Hugh gained a repupered. He placed the wax image on top of the tomb, tation for sanctity during his and with his good arm life thanks to his concern for reaching toward the top, the poor, his love for children, he learned in and bowed and his hospitality, but he was his head. also renowned for his ability As night fell one of the to stand up to the powerful. page boys approached John, Read about his eventful life who was still in this posiand the numerous miracles tion, “Sir, it is getting late. following his death in this Do you want to go to the biography written by his conlocal inn where we can find temporary, Gerald of Wales. you dinner and a bed?” “No, you go. I will stay

“An image of his arm? What would he do with that?” “If he did not tell you then it is probably none of your business, and that is all I will say. Now make haste and return to your master.” The boy took the package and put it in his satchel attached to the horse, the words of the chandler still in his ears. Why would my master order an image of his arm? He spent a good deal of money while he was away, so it must have been for something really important, but why an arm? Maybe it has to do with the sudden trip to Lincoln the kitchen maids were whispering about. As he returned to the home of his master one of the head servants approached him. “Carac! There you are! Do you have the special item? Good, I was just told you will be traveling with the master, so hand that over and then hurry along and get your things!” he said in a rush of words. With just a few minutes to spare, Carac joined the rest of the servants and off they went to Lincoln. When the knight approached the cathedral with his entourage

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RACHAEL WHITMAN


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HISTORICAL FICTION: THE KNIGHT AND THE FLAMING ARROW

here through the night.” Left alone at last, he relaxed his body a little. He stayed through the whole night. Tears quietly escaped as he continued to pray: “Servant of God, holy bishop, pray for me as I am weak, and I beg to be healed. Ask our Heavenly Father to have mercy and to bring me back to health.” As he uttered these words he felt a calming peace. In the morning his servants found him with a look of such serenity and reverence that they wondered what could have happened. “I am going to stay tonight,” whispered the page boy to Carac. That night still kneeling by the tomb, John could be heard mumbling more prayers, when he suddenly gasped out loud. Rushing toward him the page boy asked, “What is the matter, Sir Knight? Shall I fetch the doctor?”

“No, no. I just felt a slight pain in my arm,” he responded. By the third night the pain had increased considerably, but John could feel the fabric of his sling and the cold stone of the tomb brushing against his arm. The next morning the sky was cloudy and the grass damp. Still John’s servants came and brought him his bread and water. John took his right arm and feebly raised the food to his mouth. All the servants watched in awe as he finally was able to move his arm. Head raised to the ceiling, he thanked Saint Hugh for his intercession, and then John raised both arms and exclaimed, “Thank you, Holy Father in heaven! You truly are the way and the light!” As John knelt in front of the tomb, bright rays of the sun shone in through the circular windows and surrounded the tomb. After several more hours of prayer John

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BY

left the cathedral. When he stepped out, the clouds in the sky had finally started to disperse and the rays of God’s glory shone through.

J

ohn returned home to his wife. She gasped with joy when she saw him riding his horse, his left hand tightly grasping the reins and, although limp, his right arm raised so he could wave to his family. Still in pain he winced when his wife hugged him tightly, and she immediately frowned. “Why do you wince? Is your arm not better?” “It is. The pain is a sign of the healing to come. My arm feels pain, but before it could not feel anything!” “You will be better?” “All in good time. I am so much better now—God healed my arm—but to be healed fully there will be pain first. God has taught me how important my faith in Him is!”

RACHAEL WHITMAN

the local church of Saint Lawrence. After he completed it, he snuck a glance inside the church. There he saw Sir John kneeling at the altar. Hiding between two pillars he watched Sir John as he prayed. John was not only praying, but reliving a memory of when he became a knight. That day he had made a promise to God. Over the past year he had been brave in his sickness and loyal to his faith in God, keeping the promise he had made many years ago. As John knelt peacefully in front, and Carac watched hidden in the back, John whispered to himself the words he had heard many years ago: In the name of God and Saint Michael and Saint George I dub thee knight. Be brave and loyal. Rachael Whitman is 18 years old and recently graduated with an associates degree in communications. She resides in New Jersey with her parents and nine siblings.

B

ack in the kitchen, Carac was telling the kitchen maids and the stable boys all that he had seen. “And he just stayed there, the whole time! Then he started to feel pain in his arm, and he seemed happy about this! Finally, on the last night he could move his arm, and he was praising God!” Before he could say anymore, the cook walked into the kitchen. “Carac! Stop wagging your tongue and keeping the maids from their duties. And on that matter I am sure you have your own duties to attend to. All you boys scat!” With that Carac and the stable boys left the kitchen talking. “That really sounds like a miracle.” “It was,” Carac responded before heading inside. Upon being seen by the head servant he was sent to do an errand near

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Carving of The Last Judgment from Lincoln Cathedral


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HISTORICAL FICTION: THE CONSUL OF BYZANTIUM

The

Consul of Byzantium By Paolo A. Belzoni AD 535, June Eighth year of the reign of Justinian, Emperor of the Romans At Constantinople

D

ust swirling around him, the armored form of a man raised his spear in expectation of the coming assault. A sinewy leopard darted toward him, its claws extended for the kill. The man recoiled from the beast’s attack, falling backwards, but not clumsily. He rolled heels-over head and landed squarely back on his feet. Undeterred, the starved and tormented cat lunged for him again, longing to sink its sharp yellow incisors into the man’s flesh. But this particular meal proved elusive. Every time the big cat leapt, its prey danced lightly away, taunting and teasing. Finally, the crazed beast sensed an opening and surged toward the man’s unprotected legs, its mouth trailing frothy slaver. Its claws mere inches from gaining purchase, the man twirled away, stabbing down with his spear in the same motion. Transfixed through the throat, the leopard gave a strangled yowl, twitched violently, and lay still. The crowd erupted. Eighty thousand

voices went wild in unison, lauding the skill of the hunter with raucous cheers. The man removed his helmet and approached the consul’s box with a triumphant swagger. “That’s the third leopard you’ve slain today, Marcellianus,” the consul greeted him, looking not completely pleased. “Two leopards and a lioness, if you please, Excellency,” the man replied without the slightest trace of humility. “I suppose you’ll be wanting more laurels?” the consul asked, knowing well the answer. He snapped his fingers and a servant handed him a wreath. “If you wouldn’t mind, Excellency, I’d prefer to receive my laurels from the Lady Antonina this time.” A flame of anger flared in the consul’s eyes, assuaged quickly by the ready hand of his wife. “I shall oblige you this once, impertinent scoundrel,” she warned, fixing the wreath roughly on his unkempt mop of hair. “But you would do better to curb your wit and court my husband’s favor.” “Does your husband yet lack for admirers, dear lady?” the man taunted. “Methinks he has an entire hippodrome full of them.” The crowd roared again full throat as Marcellianus raised his hands victoriously and gestured toward the consul.


BY

“Hold your tongue, vermin,” Antonina stamped, her voiced drowned out by the noise. “I am a Green,” Marcellianus winked. “I was born with a loose tongue and a healthy dislike for butchers like your husband.” Marcellianus strode back onto the hippodrome track to continuing cheers, removed his spear from the slain leopard, and made his exit like a conquering hero. In the consul’s box, Belisarius merely shook his head with disgust. “Praise God, this gehenna will soon be over,” he muttered. “You are a remarkably poor politician, my husband,” Antonina chided. “A proper statesman would have smiled benignly at that insulting vagabond while simultaneously plotting his death.” Belisarius growled. “I’ve had enough of this.” His eyes searched the tiers of seating behind the box. Alighting on a familiar face, Belisarius cupped his hands around his mouth: “Photius!” A sturdy lad of fifteen jumped to attention and made his way forward. “Yes, Father?” “For the rest of today, you are consul-byproxy. Hail, Excellency!” “I am?” the boy responded, astounded.

PAOLO A. BELZONI

21

“Sit there, beside your mother. I am going to the Strategion.” Belisarius stood and made his way out, followed by a retinue of his guardsmen. His face alight with joy, Photius leapt into his father’s place already anticipating the next event.

B

elisarius stepped out of the Hippodrome, and his guardsmen immediately formed a cordon around him. As soon as people on the street recognized him, a flock of petitioners approached. Once famous only for his exploits in conquest, he had now become even more beloved for his legendary generosity. Dashing between two of his biscuit-eaters, a boy dropped to his knees in front of Belisarius, his hands raised in supplication. “O General, please! My father is crippled and the tax collectors have put him in prison until he pays his debt. Can you help us, my lord? Please help us!” Belisarius sighed. He was in no mood for this at the moment. “Not today, lad,” he muttered, giving his guardsmen the signal to move on. “Please, my lord!” the boy cried as he

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Belisarius

The First Shall Be Last

Glory of the Romans

by Paolo A. Belzoni

by Paolo A. Belzoni

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HISTORICAL FICTION: THE CONSUL OF BYZANTIUM

grabbed Belisarius around the knees. “My father served with you at Daras. He was injured in the battle there. I beg you!” Belisarius stopped, a grimace on his face. “His name?” he barked. “Learchos of Sardis,” the boy burst out, straining in the guardsman’s grip. “He served in the infantry, under the general Dorotheus.” Belisarius had no memory of the man, but at the name of his deceased friend, Dorotheus, he softened. “How much does your father owe?” Belisarius commanded. The boy stepped up to face him and again dropped to his knees. “Ten nomismata, my lord. Please help us!” Belisarius snapped his fingers and Principius stepped forward. “Give him twenty.” “Yes, O Magister,” Principius replied without question. He drew twenty heavy gold coins from a pouch and dropped them into the hands of the amazed boy. “Be off with you now,” Belisarius said kindly. “Redeem your father’s debt and tell him that Belisarius has not forgotten him.” “Thank you, my lord!” the boy cried, kissing his hand. “You are most generous! Truly the greatest living Roman!” With that, he was on his feet and away in a flash. “Continue on,” Principius called out to the guardsmen. “And this time, tighten up formation so that the Magister may have some peace.” Soon the column was on its way again, cleaving a way through the growing crowd of well-wishers and petitioners. “You know, that boy was probably just a lying grifter with a pretty tale.” “I know it,” Belisarius replied. “But he knew just the right thing to say to me today.”

O

nce in the Strategion section of the city, the crowds diminished as the number of idle soldiers on the street increased. This was the district nearby the barracks of the Excubitors and Scholarians— the guardians of the Sacred Palace—as well as any Praesental troops who happened to be in the capital. High-ranking provincials who had the Emperor’s trust also quartered small numbers of their household troops in this district to serve as bodyguards while their masters were in the city. Belisarius dismissed all of his men except for Principius, then entered the tavern known as the Golden Diadem, a wateringhole exclusively for military officers. When Belisarius entered, two score heads turned and let out an impromptu cheer. “Hail Consul! May you triumph!” Belisarius acknowledged the acclamation with a smile and an upraised hand, then proceeded directly through the hall, seeking his favorite table in the open courtyard. Once through the ornately carved wooden doors, however, he stepped into a scene hardly dissimilar to that which he had left behind in the Hippodrome. Two sturdy fighters sparred with wooden swords, one of whom he immediately recognized as his guardsman Cutilas. “Care to place a wager, Consul?” the old general Bessas asked, a wide grin on his craggy face. “Your man Cutilas is putting on quite a display against Ragibert the Lombard.” “I’ve had enough of wagers, today,” Belisarius replied, absorbed by the swordplay. “Ragibert has bested two of your men already today, Consul,” Bessas said with a


BY

PAOLO A. BELZONI

23

insult to his rank!” Principius shouted. “No hoarse laugh. “Good ones, too.” Half of the men in the courtyard let out man is permitted to lay a violent hand on a raucous cheer as Ragipert suddenly par- the Consul during his term.” “If that’s his excuse, I will accept it,” ried, ducked, spun and swept Cutilas’s feet out from under him. The man crashed onto Narses chuckled and the men behind him his back with the Lombard’s swordpoint at did likewise. Belisarius, for his part, put off his Conhis throat. Money changed hands as the barbarian paraded victorious back to his sular cloak and strode to the center of the courtyard. “I am in the mood to stretch my comrades. “Magister,” Principius said in a whisper, limbs, Prinicipius,” he said aloud. “See, I “most of the men here are of Narses the have put off my rank so that I may spar eunuch’s household.” With a motion of without encumbrance.” The men on both his head, Principius indicated the place sides of the courtyard cheered, and a few where Justinian’s Grand Chamberlain sat, raced into the hall to announce the news. “Magister, no!” Principius said quietly surrounded by the huge men of his retinue. Seated beside him was the general John, the but insistently. “They demean you with nephew of Vitalian, a one-time comrade this challenge and are attempting to sully your reputation among of Belisarius known the men.” commonly by peers Belisarius smiled. and enemies alike as “Ragibert has bested “Let them try.” Bloody John. “No, let me fight as Narses had already two of your men already your proxy. I will win, spied Belisarius and today, Consul,” Bessas I swear it!” stood up, his head “Step back, Princibarely reaching the said with a hoarse laugh. pius,” Belisarius said. chest of the gigantic “Good ones, too.” “Do not enter the fight Herul warrior next no matter what hapto him. “Welcome, O pens. Is that clear?” Consul,” Narses said “Yes, Magister,” the guardsman replied, courteously. “It is said that your guardsmen are the most fearsome warriors of all crestfallen. Narses selected a tall, muscular Lombard and brilliantly trained, so naturally I wanted warrior to face Belisarius. With a full head to test my own men against them.” “Naturally,” Belisarius replied. “And how of curly blond hair and a beard to match, the man had a fearsome aspect and stood have they fared?” Narses offered an ingratiating smile. a full head taller than Belisarius, who was “To my amazement, they have done quite himself over six Roman feet. “What weapon?” Belisarius asked. well. I don’t believe they’ve lost a bout yet, “Sword,” the man replied, brandishing a have they?” He looked to Bloody John for long, heavy practice sword before him with confirmation. “Twelve up, twelve down, O Consul,” two hands. Belisarius selected a wooden longsword John smirked. The men around him chuckwith a Thracian hilt from the rack and faced led menacingly. “These are not ordinary fighters, his opponent. All around them, the swelling Magister,” Principius said under his breath. crowd in the courtyard busily placed wa“These are barbarians recruited from Dal- gers. The two combatants circled each other cautiously, then with a shout, the Lombard matia, all nobles raised on the battlefield.” “I am told,” Narses continued, “that you launched himself at Belisarius, swinging his were a fair challenger in the sparring ring weapon with the fluid, practiced strokes of yourself as a youth. Care to test your mettle an expert. Belisarius dodged right, then ducked under a sweeping lateral swipe against one of my fellows?” “Come, Grand Chamberlain, that’s an meant for his head. Rolling on the ground, he


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HISTORICAL FICTION: THE CONSUL OF BYZANTIUM

sprung back to his feet, sword at the ready. He blocked the Lombard’s next thrust with authority, knocking the man off balance. As he stumbled, the Lombard left his midsection open for an instant and Belisarius did not hesitate. He drove his fist hard into the man’s stomach, doubling him over. Then, with two hands, he smashed the hilt of his sword on the Lombard’s back and knocked him heavily onto the ground. The man quickly rolled over and tried to rise, but Belisarius swatted the wooden sword out of his hands and stuck his own into the man’s face. A tremendous roar went up from the assembled men and a hundred different conversations began in excited voices. Narses and his men stood by in complete shock at how quickly their champion had been defeated. In the confusion, Narses nodded to three of his other men, one of whom picked up a wooden stool and smashed it over Belisarius’s back. The consul fell to one knee and all conversation was silenced. Belisarius’s guardsmen immediately stood and brandished steel swords, threatening Narses’s men. One man jumped from the crowd and got in between Belisarius and his assailants without hesitation, his fists at the ready. He was tall and solidly built, with wavy brown hair which hung loosely about his unremarkable clean-shaven face. Though his cheeks were bare, his skin was dark and lined as that of a man who had recently returned from the wastes of east. His fighter’s stance and well-muscled arms indicated immediately that this was not a man to be trifled with. “Let’s take all three, Magister,” he huffed as Belisarius got to his feet. “Three is hardly a challenge for men such as we, Constantinus,” Belisarius winked, shaking off the impact. Constantinus smiled knowingly in response. Friends from childhood, the two had become estranged as their military careers and personal lives took different paths. But since Belisarius’s triumphant return from Africa, they had put their differences aside and renewed their friendship. “Put your swords away!” Belisarius demanded of his men. Tossing a wooden sword

to Constantinus, he motioned to Narses’s men: “Come.” His three assailants grabbed practice swords of their own. “No, all of you,” Belisarius motioned. “All of you, come on.” The remaining barbarian henchmen looked at Narses, who glared back at them with consternation. Finally, he gave a slight nod and all ten of the remaining men advanced. Belisarius and Constantinus gave them no quarter. Whirling through their futile strokes, parries and thrusts, they struck one after another. Belisarius downed a muscular Herul with a blow across the forehead. Constantinus felled two more in quick succession, sweeping the legs out from under the first and striking the second with a hard blow to the midsection. Soon, the ground was littered with groaning men, battered and bruised by the masterful display of Roman swordsmanship. The spectators swarmed the two as soon as the last barbarian went down. Raising them up and singing a paean of victory, they carried them three times around the courtyard, setting them down only when Belisarius complained that he was getting thirsty. Fifty men simultaneously offered to buy him a drink. “And what of you, Bloody John?” Belisarius called out. “It has been a long time since you and I sparred, has it not?” A vain man, John was wise enough not to rise to the bait. “Magister, I would be honored. But perhaps another day for I am fresh and you are no doubt winded from your exertions.” “Indeed,” Narses huffed, thoroughly annoyed by the proceedings. He stared at Belisarius, scrutinizing the general’s handsome bearded face and fighting down the wave of jealousy that erupted involuntarily from his innards. “I have underestimated you, Consul, for the last time.” Paolo A. Belzoni is a writer residing in New Jersey. He is the author of Belisarius: The Last Shall be First and Glory of the Romans. The Consul of Rome is an excerpt from the forthcoming third book in the Belisarius series, entitled The Ultimate Victory.


HISTORICAL FICTION

FROM

ARX PUBLISHING

25

Great Books for Insatiable Readers The books on these pages are ones that will generally not be found in your local chain bookstores. All are creative, thought-provoking and exciting. Most contain some element of Christian history, morality, and spirituality, and none are hostile to it. As such, they are excellent books for parents looking for high-quality supplemental reading material. If you’re like us, you’ll probably enjoy reading them as much as your kids! Feel free to use the form on the last page to order any of these books. You may also order via our website: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html —The Editors, Arx Publishing

Angels in Iron

Age level: 14 and up

by Nicholas C. Prata “The novel’s principal strength is its attention to historical detail and the unrelenting realism with which the battle scenes—and there are many—are described....The violence, moreover, is not gratuitous; its effect is to highlight the reality of war, not glorify it. Rather it is the courage, fortitude and faith of the Knights that Prata successfully glorifies. In addition to being an exciting action/ adventure yarn and quite a page-turner, Angels in Iron is valuable as a miniature history lesson as well....This is a book that belongs on the bookshelf of every Catholic man, should be read by every Catholic boy (11 or older, I would say), and stocked by every Catholic school library.” —Latin Mass Magazine

BES

T ER

SELL

Paperback 313 pp. +map Price: $16.95

“Prata brings this fascinating tale to life by giving the characters real personalities....The overwhelming theme is courage, honor, and the Catholic faith. The knights know what the loss of this island will mean. They are willing to die for their faith. There are also many touching moments regarding their Faith....The book is a real page-turner.” —love2learn.net, Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers

Crown of the World

Age level: 12 and up

Book 1: Knight of the Temple

by Nathan Sadasivan “I’m a constant reader of both military history and historical fiction, and Knight of the Temple was one of the best historical novels I’ve read in years. The characters were well-developed, appealing, and unpredictable. This last quality is very unusual, particularly in an action novel....The plot zipped right along, and the fight scenes were done really well....The author does everything well—plotting, character, dialogue, and even landscape description.” —Cynthia Wright, homeschooling mother of nine Here is the tale of Godfrey de Montferrat, a boy who became a Templar and swore an oath to defend the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Surrounded by greed and corruption, Godfrey must determine where his true loyalties lay: to friends? to prince? to love? to God?

Paperback 296 pp. + map Price: $16.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


26

HISTORICAL FICTION

FROM

ARX PUBLISHING

Belisarius

Age level: 12 and up

Book I: The First Shall Be Last

by Paolo A. Belzoni “A great new resource for those of you ‘reading your way through history.’ ...The author weaves in a great view of the historical time period in Byzantium: the state of the cities, ‘the factions,’ the movement and assimilation of the barbarians, and the politics of the Empire.” —Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers Paperback 248 pp. + maps Price: $14.95

The Belisarius series tells the story of the great hero of the Christian Roman Empire and the right-hand man of the emperor Justinian. Filled with action and intrigue, the series serves as a fascinating introduction to the Justinianic period—the last gasp of the Roman Empire and the infancy of Christendom in both the East and West.

Belisarius

Age level: 12 and up

Book II: Glory of the Romans

by Paolo A. Belzoni “Like in the first novel, the writing is smooth, simple, concise and yet beautiful in its flow. It is obvious that the author has clearly researched the subject material....Well written, accurate and entertaining this is a must read.” —Alfonso Marin, a reader on Amazon.com Paperback 300 pp. + maps Price: $16.95

Glory of the Romans continues the epic tale of Belisarius, the last great general of the Roman Empire. Aided by his resourceful new wife, Antonina, and his stalwart band of ‘biscuit-eaters’, Belisarius strives to build the most formidable army ever fielded by the Romans to fulfill the emperor’s dream of reconquering the West.

Belisarius III is coming! To follow the author’s progress, visit: www.facebook.com/paoloabelzoni

Centurion’s Daughter

Age level: 12 and up

written and illustrated by Justin Swanton “First of all, let me say, I loved it....I strongly recommend this book and would say it is appropriate for young ladies and gentleman 15 years and older and their parents of course. This would be a great Christmas gift, Confirmation gift for your Confirmandi or addition to a High School Curriculum..” —Latin Mass Network Paperback 336 pp. + 12 illus. Price: $17.95

Her Frankish mother dead, 17-year-old Aemilia arrives at Soissons in Roman Gaul in search of her Roman father whom she has never met. She finds an old man fixed on the past, attempting in vain to kindle a spark of patriotism in his countrymen. Soon, Aemilia is caught up in her father’s schemes to save the empire. In the war to decide the fate of the last imperial province, Providence will lead her down a path she could never have imagined.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION

Leave If You Can

FROM

ARX PUBLISHING

27

Age level: 12 and up

by Luise Rinser “Leave If You Can is not your ordinary love-and-war story with villains, heroines, family feuds, and romance. It is the remarkable story of Angelina, who was first blinded by fanaticism and shaken by the injustices and atrocities of the War. After suffering and losing so much during her political and spiritual struggles, Angelina discovers that the fight for justice and human rights is found at a higher level with God as the Supreme Commander.” —Tannia Ortiz-Lopes, Time with Tannia Book Reviews Originally written in German in 1959, Leave If You Can is a beautiful novella of wartime Italy that explores the challenge of God’s mystical call versus the overpowering allure of the world. Set against the backdrop of wartime Italy and the controversial bombing of the abbey at Monte Cassino, the book is a history lesson as well as a compelling read for young and old alike

The Laviniad

Paperback ~ 156 pp Price: $13.95

Age level: 12 and up

An Epic Poem

by Claudio R. Salvucci “The Laviniad is a truly unique work....The author successfully writes in the style of the ancient epic in modern English. Lovers of classic tales will really appreciate the poetry and the plot. The poem reads easily and naturally with the flow and flavor of the ancient epics. A complete glossary in the back will help anyone who has not read the Aeneid or the Iliad to understand the relationship of the characters and the various names of the Greeks, Trojans, and Latins.” —love2learn.net, Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers

Paperback ~ 133 pp. Price: $11.95

Set in ancient Italy, The Laviniad picks up the tale following the death of Aeneas, when his young son Ascanius is thrust to the fore as leader of the Trojan remnant in Italy. Following the trials of this youth in the face of his hostile Italian neighbors, the author spins his enthralling yarn with tight, compelling poetry.

The Menagerie of Marsepink

Age level: 10 and up

by Claudio R. Salvucci A young zoology professor arrives at a prestigious Long Island college filled with jaded, materialistic scientists. But in a tower high above their heads, the college’s angelic heiress devotedly watches over a collection of handmade animals made of a more mysterious stuff than cloth and string. A tribute to the works of Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Menagerie of Marsepink is a short moral allegory on the limits of natural science and the supernatural reality of the soul.

Paperback ~ 40 pp. Price: $8.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


28

FANTASY—FROM ARX PUBLISHING

Martha and Chip

Age level: 8 and up

written and illustrated by Katharine Sohler “A delightful book from a talented young writer is what you’ll find in Martha & Chip by Katharine Sohler....What a fabulous and fun fantasy adventure for young readers ages 9 through 12.” —The Children and Teens Book Connection Paperback ~ 120 pp. 20 b&w illustrations Price: $12.95

Something strange is happening in the peaceful kingdom of Crabapple. All the White Magi have been captured by the evil witch Aylis and it’s up to Martha to save them. But she won’t be able to do it herself. To rescue her friends, Martha will need help. But sometimes help comes from the most unexpected places. Suitable for young readers, age 9 through 12, Martha and Chip is a fun-filled adventure that shows that even the most humble creatures among us have important gifts to give.

Niamh and the Hermit

Age level: 12 and up

A Fairy Tale

by Emily C. A. Snyder “Niamh and the Hermit a beautifully written, morally sound, thoughtful, compelling and entertaining book. Emily Snyder ... has created the world of the ‘Twelve Kingdoms’, shadowed in Celtic mythology, but guided by Christian morals and traditions, in which to novelize one of the world’s great fairy tales.” —love2learn.net, Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers Paperback ~ 288 pp. Price: $14.95

The daughter of a king and a fairy, the Princess Niamh is glorious fair—perhaps overly so. Her incredible beauty proves a curse for no man can withstand even a moment in her presence without running mad. Written in the evocative lyric style of Lord Dunsany, Niamh and the Hermit is an exploration and exultation of the classic fairy tale, blended seamlessly with all the imaginative complexity of a Tolkienesque subcreated world.

Charming the Moon

Age level: 12 and up

by Emily C. A. Snyder

Paperback ~ 72 pp. Price: $9.95

Emily Snyder’s mythical world of the Twelve Kingdoms is brought to life again in Charming the Moon. This little tome contains a pair of short stories which elaborate upon the ancient history of the Twelve Kingdoms. In the first tale, Brigglekin the Dwarf is called upon to free a beautiful girl trapped within a silver sphere. Once she is in his possession, however, he is unable to liberate this precious treasure. Östrung the Giant tells the tale of the pining young Sun who longed to be reunited with his love the Moon, enlisting the help of a kindly giant to carry him to the very western edge of the world.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—BASED

Victory on the Walls

ON THE

BIBLE

29

Age level: 10 and up

A Story of Nehemiah

by Frieda Clark Hyman Young Thirteen-year-old Bani, though born in Jerusalem, has lived from infancy with his uncle Nehemiah in beautiful Susa, the city of the Persian King Artaxerxes. Now, Nehemiah wants to leave his position of high honor as Cupbearer to the King to return to Jerusalem, a city in ruins and beset by every kind of trouble. Seen through the eyes of Bani, this novel dramatizes a turningpoint of history, in 445 BC, when—through confrontation and daring risks—Judaism was re-established in the Promised Land.

Hittite Warrior

Paperback ~ 200 pp. Price: $13.95

Age level: 12 and up

by Joanne Williamson Uriah Tarhund’s Hittite home is destroyed by the invading Greeks. His dying father tells him to go south and seek a Caananite named Sisera. Uriah sets out and is plunged into the tumult of an uneasy Judea. When he finds Sisera, he is joins him in a war. The Caananites are defeated, but Uriah is able to make peace with himself, the Hebrews, and their God. This meticulously researched novel is set in the time of Judges, and incorporates Biblical facts with a gripping story, set against the wide background of ancient civilizations.

God King

Paperback ~ 164 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 10 and up

A Story in the Days of King Hezekiah

by Joanne Williamson This excellent tale carries the reader back to Ancient Egypt and to the biblical Jerusalem. Around 701 B.C. Egypt is ruled by the Nubian Kushite dynasty. Young Prince Taharka, a very minor royal son, succeeds unexpectedly to the throne of Kush and Egypt. But a treacherous plot lands him in exile and into the hands of Amos, an emissary of King Hezekiah of Judea seeking help against the Assyrians. Far from home, Taharka encounters two kings in conflict, Sennacherib the Assyrian and Hezekiah the Jew, and must choose with whom to live or die.

King David and His Songs

Paperback ~ 211 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 10 and up

A Story of the Psalms

by Mary Fabyan Windeatt “They’ve sent a mere boy to fight against me!” roared the giant Goliath, as he caught sight of David across the valley. David looked at the nine-foot giant. “You come to me with a sword and with a spear,” he called out fearlessly. “But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel!” This book describes what happened next, plus the many other great events in the life of this shepherd boy who became a warrior, a hero, a fugitive, a king, and the ancestor of Our Lord.

Paperback ~ 142 pp. Price: $11.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


30

HISTORICAL FICTION—GRECO-ROMAN HISTORY

Lion in the Gateway

Age level: 9 and up

by Mary Renault

Paperback ~ 132 pp. Price: $14.95

Subtitled, The Heroic Battles of the Greeks and Persians at Marathon, Salamis, and Thermopylae, this is a great retelling of those epic ancient battles which shaped the course of Western Civilization. All the great characters are there: Darius and Xerxes, the Persian Kings; the Greeks Themistocles, Alcibiades, and the Spartan for whom the book is named, Leonides, and many others. The book begins with the historical roots of the people of Ancient Greece and how they came to love their freedom more than anything else. Recommended for ages 9 - 12.

The Ides of April by Mary Ray

Paperback ~ 184 pp. Price: $13.95

Age level: 12 and up

Hylas is a young Greek slave in the household of Caius Pomponius, a Roman senator involved in dangerous political schemes. When the senator is found mysteriously murdered, the household slaves fall under suspicion. Hylas escapes capture long enough to enlist the aid of a young tribune, Camillus Rufus. Attempting to unravel the threads of intrigue before the summary execution of the slaves, Camillus is brought before Nero himself and Hylas discovers the new secret sect known as the Christians.

Beyond the Desert Gate

Age level: 12 and up

by Mary Ray

Paperback ~ 190 pp. Price: $13.95

The sequel to The Ides of April, Beyond the Desert Gate is set in first century Palestine. The Jews have revolted against Roman occupation and the ten Greek cities of Palestine are caught in the middle. Conan, Nicanor, and Philo are left almost penniless after the murder of their father. Philo is befriended by Xenos, a man the brothers had saved from the desert who had lost his memory. Together they try to reclaim their identities, one from the past, the other for the future.

City of the Golden House

Age level: 12 and up

by Mary Ray

Paperback ~ 296 pp. Price: $12.95

Twelve year old Gretorix is a slave from far off Britain. His master has bestowed him upon Diomed, a Roman boy who is paralyzed from the neck down. The only thing keeping young Diomed alive is the hope that someday he’ll be cured of his paralysis. But trouble is brewing in the Eternal City. The profligate emperor Nero is at the height of his decadence, and the people are grumbling over the exorbitant taxes he requires to live his lifestyle. When a huge fire breaks out in the city, Nero falsely accuses the followers of a magician known as Simon Peter who, it is said, can heal the sick.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—GRECO-ROMAN HISTORY

Fabiola

31

Age level: 12 and up

by Nicholas Cardinal Wiseman Cardinal Wiseman’s classic story of the Christian persecution under Emperor Diocletian in the 300s AD. Fabiola is perplexed by the new-found faith of her cousin Agnes as well as her servant, but is especially intrigued when she finds the noblest Roman soldier she knows, Sebastian, is also a Christian. In this moving description of the Roman catacombs and the captured Christians who faced cruel death with unearthly fortitude, a story of faith and renewal unfolds in the decaying Roman empire during the last great persecution of the Church before the advent of Constantine.

Word to Caesar

Paperback ~ 444 pp. Price: $21.95

Age level: 12 and up

by Geoffrey Trease Set in Imperial Rome, a teenaged boy travels across the Empire from his home in Britain to seek an audience with the new emperor, Hadrian. Along the way he meets up with the villains who are trying to stop him, a famous charioteer who helps him, apathetic solicitors who won’t help him, and finally the emperor Hadrian himself. At every step of his adventure, he remains loyal, demonstrates courage and prudence, and does not give up even when the odds against him seem impossible. At the end of each chapter there are comprehension, discussion, and language questions.

The Restless Flame

Paperback ~ 286 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 14 and up

A Novel about Saint Augustine

by Louis de Wohl In his vigorous and inimitable style, Louis de Wohl tells the story of St. Augustine’s transformation from a vain, sensual youth to the brilliant, devout writer and theologian—the man who conquered himself as completely as he did the adversaries of the Church. De Wohl has carefully re-created the exciting historical background of the time, skillfully weaving together the personalities whose lives closely affected Augustine: Monica, his saintly and heroic mother; majestic Ambrose, Bishop of Milan; and many others whom lend richness and depth to the life story of this great Doctor of the Church.

Spring Tide

Paperback ~ 304 pp. Price: $17.95

Age level: 12 and up

by Mary Ray It is AD 311 in West Britain and even in this far-flung province of the Roman Empire, Christians are not safe from renewed imperial persecution. Two friends, Julius and Con, meet and befriend Brychan, a young Christian priest. Torn between obedience to parental orders and the demands of friendship, the boys resolve to help him escape. Aided by Aaron the Hebrew, a Roman soldier who has secretly converted to Christianity, they set out to rescue Brychan. This thoughtful story explores the last persecution of Christians during Roman times, immediately before Constantine’s Edict of Milan.

Paperback ~ 200 pp. Price: $12.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


32

HISTORICAL FICTION—GRECO-ROMAN HISTORY

Between the Forest and the Hills

Age level: 12 and up

A Historical Fantasy

by Ann Lawrence

Paperback ~ 247 pp. Price: $13.95

The times are changing fast in Roman Britain. With the Western Empire collapsing, the legions have been withdrawn and the British have been told that they’re on their own. But some towns, like Iscium, are remote enough to remain at peace—for a while, anyway. Abounding with memoral characters, this book tells of how one fictional Roman town survives the end of the Roman Empire.

Citadel of God A Novel about Saint Benedict

Age level: 12 and up

by Louis de Wohl

Paperback ~ 436 pp. Price: $17.95

When a young Roman boy, Peter, makes a clumsy assassination attempt against Theoderich, King of the Goths, he is injured in body and spirit. He is subsequently entrusted to the gifted young teacher, Benedictus, to see to his moral education. Originally written in 1959, Citadel of God is a gripping journey through the history of the 6th century AD with St. Benedict at the center of the entire panoply of the Justinianic era in all its triumph and tragedy.

Augustine Came to Kent

Age level: 10 and up

by Barbara Willard

Paperback ~ 178 pp. Price: $12.95

It is the year AD 597 and Pope Gregory has sent a select number of his monks, led by Fr. Augustine, to re-evangelize England. Young Wolf, born in that land but raised in Rome, accompanies his father, Wolfstan, who goes as a guide and interpreter. In a story full of adventure, Wolf meets Fritha, a Saxon girl whose life and destiny are soon closely bound up with his own. Events significant in the history of Christianity are vividly brought to life in this tale of the beginnings of Dark Ages Europe.

Beowulf the Warrior

Age level: 9 and up

by Ian Serraillier

Paperback ~ 64 pp. Price: $10.95

Beowulf the Warrior is an outstanding modern abridgement of the oldest epic in the English language. Ian Serraillier has retold in verse the story of the hero Beowulf and his three memorable exploits. First, his rescue of Hrothgar the Dane from the ravages of the monster Grendel; next, his victory over Grendel’s horrible mother; and finally, Beowulf’s old age and saving the Geats from a terrible dragon at the cost of his own life. Beowulf’s heroism and noble heart communicate to any English-speaking listener.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—MIDDLE AGES

Son of Charlemagne

33

Age level: 10 and up

by Barbara Willard In the year 781 AD, King Charles of the Franks is crossing the Alps to meet Pope Adrian. On the way, he tells his son Carl that he has decided to name him his heir. But the King already had an heir—Pepin the Hunchback, mockingly called Gobbo. Was he to be dispossessed? Yet Carl sees that Charlemagne is determined to do what he feels is best to serve God and Europe. This multi-faceted story will stir the imaginations of young people as, through Carl’s eyes, they discover the grand dimensions of western Europe’s foundations.

Beorn the Proud

Paperback ~ 208 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 10 and up

by Madeleine Polland The coast of Ireland in the 9th century is the prey of Viking marauders. Young Ness has been taken captive by Beorn, on his first raiding trip with his father’s band of warriors. She must accompany them as they make their way back to Denmark, and so experiences the dangerous tensions and misfortunes that threaten the entire fleet. Her faith in the Christian God—ridiculed by Beorn—helps sustain her during her captivity. But Beorn grows ever prouder and disaster threatens to sweep him, and Ness, away.

The Hidden Treasure of Glaston

Paperback ~ 208 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 10 and up

by Eleanore M. Jewett Amidst great mystery, a crippled boy named Hugh is left in the care of Glastonbury Abbey by his father. Ashamed of his physical weakness, yet possessed of a stout heart, Hugh finds that life at the abbey is quite full in the 12th century days of King Henry II. Hugh, his friend Dickon and their strange friend, the mad Bleheris, uncover a treasure trove, and with it a deeper mystery of the sort that could only occur in Glastonbury where Joseph of Arimithea was said to have lived out his last years.

Saint Magnus

Paperback ~ 352 pp. Price: $15.95

Age level: 12 and up

The Last Viking

by Susan Peek Come back in time 900 years, to the fierce and desolate Northern lands, where Norsemen ruled with ax and sword. A dying king, a shocking death-wish, his heirs divided with an oath of blood. The conflict unfolds between Magnus Erlendson, a heroic young prince aflame with the love of God, and his outlawed cousin Hakon, who blames Magnus for his banishment from their kingdom. What follows is a tale of betrayal and revenge, bravery and forgiveness, as Magnus seeks to restore his father’s vanquished kingdom to its rightful hands.

Paperback ~ 248 pp. Price: $17.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


34

HISTORICAL FICTION—MIDDLE AGES

Crusader King

Age level: 12 and up

A Novel of Baldwin IV

by Susan Peek

Paperback ~ 194 pp. Price: $12.95

Ascending the Throne of Jerusalem at the age of 13 in the year AD 1174, Baldwin IV faced one of the most difficult tasks in all of history: to defend his embattled Kingdom against a military genius known as Saladin. Yet there were also enemies within his own ranks—the ambitious Count of Tripoli, the outlaw Hawk of Kerak, and his own scheming sister. On top of all this, Baldwin’s body was slowly being consumed by leprosy. Readers of all ages will delight in this inspiring story which brings to life the tremendous drama of the Crusades.

If All the Swords in England

Age level: 10 and up

A Story of Thomas Becket

by Barbara Willard

Paperback ~ 200 pp. Price: $14.95

Young Simon, recently and tragically orphaned, becomes a scribe in the following of the exiled Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. The uncertainty of the tumultuous years leading to the infamous cathedral slaying is heightened by Simon’s separation from his twin Edmund, who is in the service of King Henry II. With an expert pen, Barbara Willard deftly recounts the events leading to the bishop’s martyrdom in 1170 AD.

Big John’s Secret

Age level: 10 and up

by Eleanore M. Jewett

Paperback ~ 230 pp. Price: $12.95

Raised during the strife-filled days of King John of England, in a rude peasant village by “Old Marm,” Big John understands that an injustice has been done to his family. But Old Marm dies, and John is left without a clue to his name. In the next years John’s unusual size and strength earn him a place as page to an earl organizing the 5th Crusade. In the Holy Land, John searches for a father he hopes is living still. Amidst battle, capture and setbacks, John encounters Francis of Assisi who had come to the Holy Land to preach the Gospel to the Saracens.

The Red Falcons of Tremoine

Age level: 10 and up

by Hendry Peart

Paperback ~ 239 pp. Price: $13.95

Leo is an orphan being raised in an abbey in the days of King Richard the Lionhearted. Abbot Michael alone knows Leo’s story and family line. When the heir to the house of Wardlock is killed in the Crusades, 15 year-old Leo will need every scrap of wisdom and endurance gained in the years at the abbey. For he is not only heir to Wardlock, but also to its rival—the house of Trémoine! Vividly set in deeply pious and violent twelfth-century England, this stirring tale of suffering and courage shows a boy who—to claim his heritage—must first see it transformed by the power of love and forgiveness.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—COLONIAL ERA

Nacar the White Deer

35

Age level: 14 and up

A Story of Old Mexico

by Elizabeth Borton de Treviño A deep friendship springs up between a boy, who had lost his voice and his mother at the same tragic moment, and an ailing albino deer sent from China as a gift to the King of Spain. It is Lalo’s task to nurture the sick deer back to health so that he will be well enough for the sea voyage to Spain. This gentle story of Mexico in 1630 follows young Lalo on his journey back to the Mountain of the Sleeping Lady—a journey full of dangers found in a wild landscape and of charming incidents found in a people brimming with life and faith.

Ship’s Boy with Magellan

Paperback ~ 130 pp. Price: $10.95

Age level: 14 and up

by Milton Lomask Young Pedro, the son of a Spanish nobleman, must flee Seville to escape his uncle who seeks to rob him of his inheritance. On board the Trinidad, Magellan’s flagship, Pedro finds sanctuary...and adventure. Any childhood dreams Pedro had of life on the high seas pale in comparison to the real perils and victories he experiences on the first voyage to circumnavigate the globe. To return to Spain and claim his inheritance, Pedro must survive hostile natives and mutinous crews in this tale of wooden ships and iron men.

Red Hugh, Prince of Donegal

Paperback ~ 176 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 10 and up

by Robert T. Reilly It is 1587 and Queen Elizabeth plans to bring Ireland under her iron rule. Only one thing is stopping her: Warrior queen Ineen Duive and her young son, Hugh Roe O’Donnell. Carefree and proud, young Hugh grows up quickly after he is betrayed to the English. Taken to Birmingham Tower in Dublin, Hugh is held as a hostage. Can he escape in time to be of aid in the Irish struggle against the forces of Queen Elizabeth? Facts as exciting as fiction abound in this authentic portrayal of a glorious moment in Irish history.

Madeleine Takes Command

Paperback ~ 208 pp. Price: $14.95

Age level: 12 and up

by Ethel C. Brill Madeleine Takes Command is a true story of the 17th century Canadian frontier. With her parents away, it is up to 14 year old Madeleine de Vercheres and her two younger brothers to lead the defense of a small outpost against a surprise Mohawk attack. Though Madeleine is truly a courageous figure, her heroics are not accomplished through impossible feats of physical strength. Instead, she is able to preserve the family homestead with quick thinking, tireless energy, steady resolve, self-denial, an optimistic spirit, and devotion to family.

Paperback ~ 202 pp. Price: $13.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


36

HISTORICAL FICTION—COLONIAL ERA

John Treegate’s Musket

Age level: 12 and up

by Leonard Wibberly

Paperback ~ 167 pp. Price: $12.95

While many colonists are angry about England’s unjust taxation, wealthy merchant John Treegate remains fiercely loyal. Deciding to travel to England to appeal to the government, Treegate leaves his motherless, eleven-year-old son Peter on his own, apprenticed to one of Treegate’s friends. Peter’s new master is not severe, but the senior apprentice is a vicious bully. A chain of events leads to trouble for Peter—involving murder, shipwreck, and adoption by a strange Scotsman, until finally he is reunited with his father on the eve of America’s battle for independence.

Sea Captain from Salem

Age level: 12 and up

by Leonard Wibberly

Paperback ~ 167 pp. Price: $12.95

It is 1777 and the American War for Independence is at an impasse. The struggling new nation’s need for help sends Benjamin Franklin to Paris to seek an alliance with France. How can he convince the French that the American battle is worth joining? The surprising answer to his dilemma appears in the unlikely and unforgettable form of a fisherman named Peace of God Manly. Franklin puts Peace of God in command of the sloop of war Hornet with orders to harass British ships. Soon tales of the daring exploits of this fiery sea captain from Salem are buzzing in the government halls of both France and Britain.

Treegate’s Raiders

Age level: 12 and up

by Leonard Wibberly

Paperback ~ 256 pp. Price: $12.95

For the sake of bringing the long-drawn-out American War for Independence to a close, Peter Treegate endeavors to bring together an alliance between feuding Scottish clans now settled in the Carolina hills. The result is Treegate’s Raiders, a fierce fighting force who take part in two crucial battles that help to defeat the British—King’s Mountain and Cowpens. Peter has also managed a flying visit to Salem, Massachusetts to see his friend Peace of God Manly, only to find more than he had bargained for. Authentic action and suspenseful story-telling carry the series to a satisfying resolve.

Reb and the Redcoats

Age level: 12 and up

by Constance Savery

Paperback ~ 203 pp. Price: $14.95

In an interesting turnabout, the Revolutionary War is seen through the eyes of a British family to whom an American prisoner of war has been entrusted. Technically the young prisoner is in Uncle Lawrence’s custody, but the children soon forge a forbidden friendship with him after he nearly dies in an attempted escape. He becomes the Reb and they, his Redcoats. But when they learn of some events leading to his coming to Europe, even Uncle Lawrence, embittered by the unjust death of a friend in America, thaws toward him—but this doesn’t stop the Reb from scheming to escape.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—EARLY MODERN

Presenting Miss Jane Austen

37

Age level: 12 and up

by May Lamberton Becker This outstanding biography of a well-beloved novelist catches the spirit of Jane Austen herself. May Lamberton Becker enjoyably introduces us to the 18th and early 19th century world Miss Austen lived in—her family, her friends, her varied settings and her many keen interests—as we are given insight to the personal background of all the Austen novels. Enlivening her narrative with many quotations from Jane Austen’s own correspondence, Miss Becker puts her own enthusiastic appreciation of one of the world’s most delightful writers at our disposal.

Downright Dency

Paperback ~ 180 pp. Price: $13.95

Age level: 10 and up

by Caroline Dale Snedeker This treasure of a novel is set on the island of Nantucket just before the War of 1812. Much more than a tale of whaling ships and gentle Quaker eccentricities, it is a tale of friendship—the kind most truly espoused by these ‘plain’ folk. Dionis (Dencey) Coffyn is a mystery to her stern mother, Lydia. Within a context of outward simplicity of living and inward intricacy of relationship, Dencey matures from the little girl to a young woman ready to bear her part in life with grace and courage. A probing portrayal of the power of love to overcome social barriers and religious strictures.

Flight into Spring

Paperback ~ 268 pp. Price: $12.95

Age level: 12 and up

by Bianca Bradbury Opposites: Sally Day Hammond is vivacious, tiny, coddled and Southern; Charles Horne is silent, tall, unbending and Northern. The American Civil War has just ended. And a marriage is to be made between these two? When Charles brings Sally Day back to live with his New England family, little wonder that tensions rise. But Sally Day has mettle; in the desperate honesty of this young couple’s conflict, both young hearts may yet stretch and truly meld. In a setting of historical depth, skilled novelist Bianca Bradbury brings all the resources of a heartsearching realism to the predicaments of young married love.

Old Sam, Dakota Trotter

Paperback ~ 184 pp. Price: $11.95

Age level: 10 and up

by Don Alonzo Taylor Homesteading in the Dakota Territory of the 1880’s would not have been the same for 10-year-old Johnny Scott and his younger brother, Lee, if they’d had to do it without Old Sam. The Scott family inherited the lamed horse that no one else wanted. But Mr. Scott soon discovers old Sam’s uncanny and invaluable ability to do any task a larger, stronger farm horse can do. His awkward appearance and hidden talents proceed to cause both hilarity and ongoing excitement for these two boys caught up in the fast-changing world of the American Midwest.

Paperback ~ 153 pp. Price: $11.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


38

HISTORICAL FICTION—EARLY MODERN

First Farm in the Valley

Age level: 8 and up

Anna’s Story

by Anne Pellowski

Paperback ~ 194 pp. Price: $12.95

Six-year-old Anna Pellowski’s older siblings are exposed to English at school, but only Polish is spoken at home. When the family goes to town to celebrate the 100th birthday of the United States, the speaker gives his speech in a mix of German, Polish, Bohemian and Norwegian! Years before, in the mid-1800’s, Anna’s family had come from Poland to live in a tiny house in Wisconsin and establish the first farm in the Latsch Valley. Anna’s life is filled with fascinating possibilities and lots of hard work. Book 1 Latsch Valley Farm series.

Winding Valley Farm

Age level: 8 and up

Annie’s Story

by Anne Pellowski

Paperback ~ 204 pp. Price: $12.95

Life for six-year-old Annie Dorawa on Winding Valley Farm—just down the road from the Pellowskis’ farm—is busy and happy. Then one day, Annie hears her father speak about moving into town. Is it really possible that they might leave their beautiful farm? Despite the discovery that life is not always easy or as she’d like it to be, Annie begins to realize what warm security is to be found in a hardworking family rooted in faith and love. Book 2 Latsch Valley Farm series.

Stairstep Farm

Age level: 8 and up

Anna Rose’s Story

by Anne Pellowski

Paperback ~ 185 pp. Price: $12.95

Wisconsin farm life in the Latsch Valley of the 1930’s comes alive through the eyes of imaginative Anna Rose—a five-year-old girl who can’t wait to catch up with her four older siblings. While Anna Rose impatiently waits for the start of school, her days are filled with family work—minding geese, picking nettles, chopping thistles, helping with the haying, minding her three little sisters—and with family celebrations—good food, singing, sledding, and games of Star Light, Moonlight and Uncle Wiggily. Book 3 Latsch Valley Farm series.

Willow Wind Farm

Age level: 8 and up

Betsy’s Story

by Anne Pellowski

Paperback ~ 182 pp. Price: $12.95

This story is based on the lively experiences of Betsy Korb, 7th daughter in a family of 10 children and niece of author Anne Pellowski. Along with Linda, Kathy, Danny, Carol, Mona, Dorothy, Julie, Sara and Kristine, Betsy enjoys the fun—and disasters—that occur at “medium-sized” Willow Wind Farm, with its cows, cattle, pigs, chickens, cats and dogs. Set in the year 1967, the book describes a close and flourishing community still connected to its European and Catholic roots. Book 4 Latsch Valley Farm series.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORICAL FICTION—20TH CENTURY

Betsy’s Up-and-Down Year

39

Age level: 8 and up

by Anne Pellowski This is the fifth and final book in the Latsch Valley Farm series follows Betsy Korb, now aged eight going on nine, as she learns the lessons of sharing, making up after quarrels, running errands and broadening her experiences within her large and loving family, under the firm and wise direction of Mom and Dad and underpinned by their Catholic faith. Told in a highly readable style, independent-minded Betsy grapples with the ups and downs of growing up, setting them in the warm context of family life—the Korbs’ own life and the bigger one that seems to fill Latsch Valley and spill out into the world beyond.

The Mitchells: Five for Victory

Paperback ~ 236 pp. Price: $15.95

Age level: 8 and up

by Hilda van Stockum The five Mitchell children are based on the author’s own family. In the first of three books about their adventures, Daddy has just gone off to fight in World War II. One of his final orders to his daughter Joan is, “No dogs!” She would dearly love such a pet, but life is full and so many new friends—pets as well as people—join the Mitchells, she hardly has time to think about dogs. The children form a club to do their part for the war-effort—first and foremost helping Mother, of course. Humorous and tender incidents combine with delightful illustrations to make the Mitchells’ story truly unforgettable.

Canadian Summer

Paperback ~ 236 pp. Price: $15.95

Age level: 8 and up

by Hilda van Stockum The large and growing Mitchell family, transferring their location to Montreal, can’t find a house to buy or rent. They settle, over Mother’s protests, for a remote, rickety summer house deep in the woods near a lake. The dangers, antics, quarrels, and fun which now unroll bring each member of the family into vivid characterization. Meanwhile we meet some delightful French Canadians and taste the special qualities of rural Quebec in the late 1940’s. Spiced up with van Stockum’s charming illustrations and a raft of memorable characters, Canadian Summer rollicking good fun for the whole family.

Friendly Gables

Paperback ~ 181 pp. Price: $15.95

Age level: 8 and up

by Hilda van Stockum It is two years after the events in Canadian Summer. The Mitchells are settled in their new home, Friendly Gables—and twins have just been added to the family. With Mother recovering from the births, the children find themselves in a myriad of new advantures: Joan’s first dance; Patsy loses her glasses; Peter’s disastrous fight; Angela’s misadventure in the woods; Timmy’s “good news”; and Catherine’s brush with fire. These are only a few of the incidents in the life of this busy family. With her usual humor, compassion, and lovely illustrations, the author brings the Mitchell “trilogy” to a satisfying close.

Paperback ~ 165 pp. Price: $13.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


40

HISTORICAL FICTION—20TH CENTURY

The Cottage at Bantry Bay

Age level: 8 and up

by Hilda van Stockum

Paperback ~ 239 pp. Price: $15.95

This book, written in 1938, offers a vivid picture of an Ireland that has all but disappeared. The O’Sullivan family invite the reader to share their many homely adventures. Michael and Brigid brave the wilds and gypsies on an errand for their injured father and come home with a new friend; twins Liam and Francie keep everyone hopping; Mother and Father draw the family together with story-telling, warmth and humor. Then Michael and Brigid find a treasure which changes the course of things for all.

Francie on the Run

Age level: 12 and up

by Hilda van Stockum

Paperback ~ 293 pp. Price: $15.95

In this sequel to The Cottage at Bantry Bay, six year-old Francie O’Sullivan, has had a successful operation in a Dublin hospital to repair his club foot, but longs to return to his beloved family in County Cork. He heads out the hospital door, no permission asked, and boards a train—won’t any train do? Francie finds himself making a speedy tour (in the opposite direction from home) around the Emerald Isle, a journey full of adventure, laughter, endearing friendships and unforgettable characters, for Francie and the reader. Enhanced with charming illustrations by the author, Francie on the Run is perfect for family read-aloud and will be enjoyed by all ages.

Pegeen

Age level: 12 and up

by Hilda van Stockum

Paperback ~ 266 pp. Price: $15.95

Young Pegeen has just lost her Grannie and is now alone in the world. When she is told that she can’t stay on alone in the small mountain cottage, Pegeen remembers Francie’s promise to come for her someday. With Fr. Kelly’s help she writes to the O’Sullivans, to be welcomed temporarily into their household while she waits for word from her uncle in America. No one, except perhaps Francie, is quite prepared for carefree Pegeen’s knack of turning the world up on end. As with the previous books in the series, Pegeen is enhanced with numerous illustrations and is perfect for family read-aloud.

The Winged Watchman

Age level: 8 and up

by Hilda van Stockum

Paperback ~ 191 pp. Price: $14.95

This acclaimed story of World War II is rich in suspense, characterization, plot and spiritual truth. A hidden Jewish child, an underdiver, a downed RAF pilot, an imaginative, daring underground hero, and the small things of family life which surprisingly carry on in the midst of oppression. The Verhagen family, who live in the old windmill called the Winged Watchman, are a memorable set of individuals whose lives powerfully demonstrate the resilience of those who suffer but do not lose faith. Includes Illustrations by the author.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


LIVES

OF THE

SAINTS

The Life of the Blessed Emperor Constantine

AND

CATHOLIC HEROES

41

Ages 14+

From 306 to 337 AD

by Eusebius Pamphilus Constantine the Great is nearly as controversial today as he was in his own time. The Life of the Blessed Emperor Constantine was penned shortly after the emperor’s death by the great Church historian Eusebius Pamphilus, bishop of Cæsarea, this work is the most substantial and detailed biography of the first Christian emperor to come down to us from antiquity.

The Life of Saint Augustine

Paperback ~ 264 pp. Price: $19.95

Ages 14+

A Translation of the Sancti Augustini Vita by Possidius, Bishop of Calama

Translated with an introduction by Herbert T. Weiskotten This little biography written by Augustine’s intimate friend Possidius, bishop of Calama, provides a sequel to Confessions. In unadorned prose, Possidius shows Augustine as a powerful intellect, voluminous writer, and compelling orator, willing and able to defend the Church against all comers. But he also presents an Augustine who humbly endured the everyday trials and difficulties of life as a bishop in Roman Africa—a prosperous society on the verge of destruction.

The Life of Saint Simeon Stylites

Paperback ~ 116 pp. Price: $16.95

Ages 14+

A Translation of the Syriac in Bedjan’s Acta Martyrum et Sanctorum

Translated with an introduction by Rev. Frederick Lent This vita is an intriguing primary account of the prototypical pillar saint—the first of those indefatigable holy athletes who took their stand atop a high column. Of unknown authorship, the work was originally written shortly after Simeon’s death in AD 459. It contains a wealth of information about monastic practices and provides dozens of vignettes chronicling daily Christian life and the many hardships faced by citizens of the late Roman Empire.

The Life of Saint Hugh of Avalon

Paperback ~ 172 pp. Price: $17.95

Ages 14+

Bishop of Lincoln 1186-1200

by Gerald of Wales Edited and translated by Richard M. Loomis Born about the year 1140, Hugh helped to make Lincoln a center of learning, rebuilding the cathedral in the new Gothic style. He gained a reputation for sanctity and mercy during his life thanks to his concern for the poor, his love for children, his hospitality, and his defense of the Jews. His kindness, wit and cheerful disposition won him a wide circle of friends, including a wild swan which guarded him while he slept and subsequently became his chief iconographic emblem.

Paperback ~ 240 pp. Price: $19.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


42

LIVES

OF THE

SAINTS

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CATHOLIC HEROES

Kateri Tekakwitha

Age level: 12 and up

The Iroquois Saint

by Fr. Pierre Cholonec

Paperback ~ 130 pp. Price: $12.95

Read about the extraordinary life of Saint Kateri through the eyes of someone who actually knew her: Fr. Pierre Cholonec, one of the two main biographers of St. Kateri. Father Cholonec’s account of Kateri’s life, as presented in this book, helped solidify her name and reputation within the Catholic world and this new edition places the courageous and endearing story of the Lily of the Mohawks into the hands of everyday readers, featuring antique illustrations exemplifying the saint’s life and the environment in which she lived.

El Cid, God’s Own Champion

Age level: 10 and up

The True Story of the Knight of Vivar

by James Fitzhenry

Paperback ~ 186 pp. Price: $16.95

El Cid, God’s Own Champion is an inspiring biography of the extraordinary Catholic knight chosen by God to save his nation from Islamic aggression. Known by the honorary title of El Cid, Rodrigo Diaz is a hero directly relevant to modern times. Exiled by his king, maligned by those who should have supported him, he selflessly fought against insurmountable odds to save Christian Spain. Commanding the respect even of his enemies, the Cid is an example of what can be achieved through devotion to duty, prayer, and trust in God.

Saint Fernando III

Age level: 12 and up

A Kingdom for Christ

by James Fitzhenry

Paperback ~ 336 pp. Price: $18.95

The greatest Spanish monarch, King of Castile and Leon, St. Fernando III was born in the year 1199. In him would be combined the soul of a knight dedicated entirely to God, the irresistible power of the Cid, and the authority to marshal the might of an entire kingdom against the enemies of Christ. Personally leading his armies into battle, he took back more territory from Islam than any other king in history. First cousin of St. Louis IX of France, he died a saintly death and his incorrupt body can still be seen in the Cathedral of Seville.

Defenders of Christendom

Age level: 10 and up

by James Fitzhenry

Paperback ~ 240 pp. Price: $18.95

Here is an engrossing journey to the days when brave men were wiling to sacrifice everything to defend their neighbor, their country and their faith from the drawn sword of Islam. Filled with amazing tales of bravery and valor rarely equalled in the annals of history, the book chonicles the legendary lives of Catholic knights and heroes such as Bohemond, Janos Hunyadi, Skanderbeg, Jean de la Valette and Don Juan of Austria. Detailing the exploits of these men in an exciting yet historically accurate narrative, James Fitzhenry has created a paean to the heroes of old whose sacrifices allowed Christendom to flourish.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


LIVES

OF THE

Saint Benedict

SAINTS

AND

CATHOLIC HEROES

43

Age level: 9 and up

Hero of the Hills

by Mary Fabyan Windeatt This book presents the famous life and miracles of St. Benedict. Known as the Father of Western Monasticism, St. Benedict played a major role in the Christinization of post-Roman Europe in the sixth century. Having lived in an era of great immorality, Benedict founded an order for monks whose life of prayer and work helped convert the godless society around them. The heroic life of his sister St. Scholastica, his saving a boy from drowning, raising one from the dead, and the story of poisoned wine are all told in this dramatic tale.

Saint Helena and the True Cross

Paperback ~ 160 pp. Price: $9.95

Age level: 9 and up

by Louis de Wohl When Britain is treacherously taken over by a usurper, Helena is separated from her husband, Constantius Chlorus, and forced to live in secret with her son, Constantine. When Constantius returns, it is with a new wife and a new title—Caesar of the western empire. Dejected, Helena finds comfort from an outlaw Christian priest, but she soon finds her new friend in grave danger. Summoning all her courage, Helena confronts her former husband and in doing so, changes the course of history forever.

Saint Louis and the Last Crusade

Paperback ~ 160 pp. Price: $9.95

Age level: 9 and up

by Margaret Ann Hubbard Louis IX of France, who took the throne in 1226, had one aim in life—to be a good king. Guided by the advice of his mother, he ruled well and was beloved by his people. At the age of twenty-eight he took the cross of the crusade and set out for Egypt to defeat the Saracens. Instead, the Saracens charged to victory and imprisoned Louis, whose saintly conduct while in prison shamed his captors. Released, he returned to France still fired with the desire to liberate the Holy Land. Broken in health, Louis led his men out on the last crusade.

Saint Elizabeth’s Three Crowns

Paperback ~ 165 pp. Price: $9.95

Age level: 9 and up

by Blanche Jennings Thompson Saint Elizabeth of Hungary spent her life differently than most saints. Instead of living in poverty, she lived most of her life in a castle surrounded by wealth. Although Elizabeth was a princess, she longed to live the kind of poverty she heard about through the Franciscans. She became a member of the Third Order of St. Francis and she gave her jewels and best clothes to the poor. Sometimes she gave everything away and had nothing nice to wear, but Jesus always provided for her at the last minute. When she emptied the castle store-houses of grain for the poor, Jesus would miraculously fill them up again.

Paperback ~ 168 pp. Price: $9.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


44

LIVES

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SAINTS

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CATHOLIC HEROES

The Joyful Beggar

Age level: 12 and up

A Novel about Saint Francis of Assisi

by Louis de Wohl

Paperback ~ 380 pp. Price: $17.95

Set against the tempestuous background of 13th century Italy and Egypt, here is the magnificent and inspiring story of Francis Bernardone, the brash, pleasure-loving young officer who was to become immortalized as St. Francis of Assisi. The story teems with action, pageantry and intrigue with finely conceived characters—the beautiful, saintly Clare, Frederick, the hawk-faced King of Sicily and Holy Roman Emperor, the Sultan Al Kamil, Pope Innocent III. The scene shifts from Assisi, Rome and Sicily to the deadly sands of Egypt.

Francis and Clare, Saints of Assisi

Age level: 9 and up

by Helen Walker Homan

Paperback ~ 187 pp. Price: $9.95

Helen Homan has captured all the excitement and beauty of the lives of these saints from their childhood growing up together in Assisi to their profound conversion and lifelong influence—indeed centuries-long influence—on the whole world through their radical living of the Gospel and founding of two great religious orders, the Franciscans and the Poor Clares. Combining the stories of Francis and Clare in one volume makes for a book that will be of great interest to both boys and girls of a wide age span.

Saint Dominic and the Rosary

Age level: 9 and up

by Catherine Beebe

Paperback ~ 161 pp. Price: $9.95

As a young priest, Dominic sat all night at a wooden table in a village tavern. He preached the truths of the Church to an embittered inn-keeper and, in the morning, joyfully received the man again into the faith of his fathers. This was the beginning of the great preaching career of Saint Dominic, the “Athlete of Christ” and founder of the order which bears his name. But his greatest adventures came when he walked from town to town and preached the word of God and the power of the Holy Rosary.

Saint Joan: The Girl Soldier

Age level: 9 and up

by Louis de Wohl

Paperback ~ 166 pp. Price: $9.95

Written by the brilliant Catholic novelist Louis de Wohl, this book tells the epic tale of Joan of Arc. In the early 15th century, the English dominated much of France. The cause of the weak French dauphin, Charles VII, seemed on the verge of collapse. But at the moment when final defeat seemed inevitable, a girl named Joan arrived on the scene, claiming to be a messenger from God. Her message was simple but impossible: the besieged city of Orleans must be relieved and the Dauphin must go to Rheims to be crowned king.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


LIVES

OF THE

SAINTS

Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc

AND

CATHOLIC HEROES

45

Age level: 12 and up

by Mark Twain Mark Twain was a persistent critic of organized Christianity and an occasional abuser of Catholicism. However, in 1896, he published Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc which tells Joan’s story from beginning to end with a delicacy bordering on reverence. The work is little more than an eloquent retelling of Joan’s history, from her humble upbringing in Domrémy, to her glorious exploits on the field of battle, to the grotesque mockery of a trial which condemned her as a heretic. Twain called it his best and favorite work.

Lay Siege to Heaven

Paperback ~ 452 pp. Price: $16.95

Age level: 12 and up

A Novel about Saint Catherine of Siena

by Louis de Wohl In Lay Siege to Heaven, Louis de Wohl devotes his considerable talents to an interpretation of one of the most unusual women of all time, Saint Catherine of Siena. In that confused and dangerous era of history, the Pope was living at Avignon: Catherine persuaded him to return to Rome. The City-States of Italy were at war with each other: Catherine subdued them. There was pestilence: Catherine served and saved. She performed miracles, she received the stigmata, she drew about her a crowd of devoted men and women.

Saint Ignatius and the Company of Jesus

Paperback ~ 362 pp. Price: $17.95

Age level: 9 and up

by August Derleth As a young man, Ignatius had dreams of an adventurous life as a soldier. His dreams, however, did not come true the way he had hoped. Seriously wounded in battle, the soldier Ignatius had a profound conversion to Christ during his period of recovery. He abandoned a promising career in the military and dedicated the rest of his life to the service of Christ and the Church. This book tells of his starting the Jesuits, and gives a graphic account of his adventures, his many encounters with popes, kings and emperors.

The Golden Thread

Paperback ~ 168 pp. Price: $9.95

Age level: 12 and up

A Novel about Saint Ignatius of Loyola

by Louis de Wohl Seriously wounded at the siege of Pamplona in 1521, Don Inigo de Loyola learned that to be a Knight of God was an infinitely greater honor (and infinitely more dangerous) than to be a knight in the forces of the Emperor. Uli von der Flue, a humorous, intelligent and courageous Swiss mercenary, was responsible for the canon shot which incapacitated Inigo, and Uli became deeply involved in the young man’s life, even following him on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land to protect him. But it is the future saint who will protect Uli.

Paperback ~ 316 pp. Price: $16.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


46

LIVES

OF THE

SAINTS

AND

CATHOLIC HEROES

Set All Afire

Age level: 12 and up

by Louis de Wohl

Paperback ~ 280 pp. Price: $17.95

Saint Francis Xavier’s life is, in itself, a dramatic story. Louis de Wohl captivates the reader as he follows Xavier’s life from student days in Paris, through his meeting with Ignatius, his rather reluctant conversion, and his travels as one of the first Jesuits. The story takes the reader from Europe to Goa, India, Malaysia, Japan, and finally, to an island off the coast of China, where the exiled Xavier dies virtually alone. The book captures the dramatic struggles and inspiring zeal of this remarkable saint, giving at the same time an enthralling picture of the age in which he lived.

Saint Isaac and the Indians

Age level: 9 and up

by Milton Lomask

Paperback ~ 170 pp. Price: $9.95

Over three hundred years ago, Frenchmen came to the forests along the St. Lawrence River. Most came in search of furs and wealth. But there were some who came not to get, but to give. One of these was Isaac Jogues, martyr and Saint. This is the story of his difficult life among the Indian tribes—of his work of conversion, of his efforts to set them free from their belief in the power of their medicine men. Including a wealth of anecdotes drawn from historical sources, this is the inspiring story of the enslavement of Saint Isaac by the Mohawks, his daring escape, and finally, his death as a martyr for the Faith.

Saint John Bosco and Saint Dominic Savio

Age level: 9 and up

by Catherine Beebe

Paperback ~ 161 pp. Price: $9.95

“This book changes lives,” one of our customers told us. She knew of a young man who read it and was so inspired, he entered the seminary. Well suited for young readers and old alike, this book is a fine introduction to the life of Saint John Bosco. Full of poignant and humorous anecdotes about his various struggles and antics, the book presents Saint John as a real person, not an impossible model of sanctity. He is one of those rare people who is able to combine that zeal with a magnetic personality.

Mother Seton and the Sisters of Charity

Age level: 9 and up

by Alma Power-Waters

Paperback ~ 170 pp. Price: $9.95

This book tells the inspiring story of the life of Elizabeth Bayley Seton. Born in 1774, Elizabeth grew up in a well-to-do Protestant family. At age 19 she married William Seton and together they had five children. Tragedy struck when William died in 1803. Elizabeth converted to Catholicism at a time when Catholics were the object of persecutions in the United States. Bishop Carroll of Maryland gave her the inspiration to found the American Sisters of Charity and the first American parochial Catholic school.

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


HISTORY

47

Ages 14+ The Accounts of Eye-Witnesses and Participants

The First Crusade by August C. Krey

The First Crusade was one of the epoch-making events of history. It is also one of the most misunderstood in modern times. Written by churchmen and common knights, counts and princesses, the historical accounts and letters in this book present the fervor, intrigue, despair, jubilation and ferocity of the First Crusade with the clarity, intensity and shocking honesty of its most passionate observers and participants. Originally compiled in the early 20th century, these accounts present a highly readable and vivid history of the First Crusade from the Council of Clermont through the capture of Jerusalem.

The Complete Works of Saint Cyprian of Carthage

Paperback ~ 400 pp. Price: $19.95

Ages 14+

Edited by Phillip Campbell Born about the year AD 200, Thascus Caecillius Cyprianus was the scion of a noble Roman family living in North Africa. A convert to Christianity in mid-life, Cyprian was acclaimed bishop of Carthage during a time of intense Empire-wide persecution by the emperor Decius. In the twelve year span between his conversion and his martyrdom in AD 258, Cyprian wrote some of the most important foundational documents of the ante-Nicene Church.

The Dialogues of Saint Gregory the Great

Paperback ~ 600 pp. Price: $39.95

Ages 14+

edited by Edmund G. Gardner Having witnessed the endless string of disasters that shattered his beloved Italy in the late 6th century AD, Pope Saint Gregory the Great set down in the Dialogues a sequence of tales to help his contemporaries escape from their worldly troubles and contemplate eternal life. Peter, Gregory’s interlocutor, laments that he has never heard of anyone famous in Italy for virtue. To set him straight, Gregory offers an entire litany of stories of Italian saints, including the oldest and most detailed biography of Saint Benedict of Nursia.

The Ecclesiastical History of Evagrius

Paperback ~ 360 pp. Price: $22.95

Ages 14+

A History of the Church from AD 431 to AD 594

Translated by Edward Walford Evagrius’s history is an intriguing though neglected work of the late 6th century AD. Born in the mid-530s AD near Antioch, Evagrius witnessed the devastation of Roman Syria by the Persians and experienced first-hand the first recorded outbreak of Bubonic Plague. He conversed with many of the saints and scoundrels who lived in his time and is the first to record the existence of the Mandylion of Edessa—an image of Christ that some have linked to the Shroud of Turin.

Paperback ~ 248 pp. Price: $21.95

To order, visit: www.arxpub.com/HSBookstore/Index.html


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The Tarpeian Rock, Volume 8, 2015  

Rising from the past like an avenging angel, The Tarpeian Rock is back after a hiatus of five years. You may remember the The Tarpeian Rock...

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