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Publisher's Summary

For a thousand years her existence has been denied. She is the legend that will not die - Pope Joan, the ninth-century woman who disguised herself as a man and rose to become the only female ever to sit on the throne of St. Peter.

Now in this riveting novel, Donna Woolfolk Cross paints a sweeping portrait of an unforgettable heroine who struggles against restrictions her soul cannot accept.

Brilliant and talented, young Joan rebels against medieval social strictures forbidding women to learn. When her brother is brutally killed during a Viking attack, Joan takes up his cloak - and his identity - and enters the monastery of Fulda. As Brother John Anglicus, Joan distinguishes herself as a great scholar and healer. Eventually, she is drawn to Rome, where she becomes enmeshed in a dangerous web of love, passion, and politics.

Triumphing over appalling odds, she finally attains the highest office in Christendom - wielding a power greater than any woman before or since. But such power always comes at a price....

©1996 , 2009 Donna Woolfolk Cross; (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

Critic Reviews

"Whether or not one believes in Joan as Pope, this is a compelling story, filled with all kinds of lore: the brutishness of the Dark Ages, Vatican intrigue, politics and favoritism and most of all, the place of women in the Church and in the world." (Amazon.com review)
"In this colorful, richly imagined novel, Cross ably inspires a suspension of disbelief, pulling off the improbable feat of writing a romance starring a pregnant pope." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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WOW!!!

This book is wonderfully written. The performance was just so great. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Lady Pope

Pope Joan is a very good book. I couldn't stop listening to it, and after I finished- I thought more about the carichtors. After a very shocking trauma, Joan chose to live in 2 worlds: One in which she is almost a man, a priest who does many almost unbelievable things. In the other, she is a woman who does the most womanly things. The only link between her 2 worlds is her love to Jerald. If you are in the search for a provoking and enjoyable listening, I recommend you to buy this book.

10 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Silly Woman!

Donna Cross leaves no cliche uncoined in this overlong and faintly ridiculous attempt at the legend of a medieval female pope. There are numerous anachronisms, and the turgid prose, predictable plot make it very difficult for Barbara Rosenblat to give it a convincing reading. After her exceptional reading of the Amelia Peabody novels, I had hoped for much more from her. The yawn factor was very high for me with this book. I'm being generous with 3 stars.

14 of 22 people found this review helpful

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  • Sandy
  • San Francisco, CA United States
  • 11-11-17

Fabulous and interesting story

Could she have been pope. Most certainly! This is very thought provoking. The Catholic Church offers much good....except in the treatment of women at the top: it is time to let reason rule tradition. I️ can see this book as great mini series....Netflix take note. This would be a winner! By the way, I️ loved the reader’s voice. I️ could sit for hours letter her tell me stories.

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KittyDancer

I enjoyed the Pope Joan character. But i did like the Mention of how badly women were treated. She didnt change anything for women but was clever in saving herself from that horrible treatment.

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Loved it!!

Great story and narrator.. It kept my interest and caused some curiosity. Highly recommended read.

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one of the best books I've ever read. gripping.

fascinating, couldn't put it down. Educates & entertains. hated 4 it 2 end. I highly recomend!

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excellent

A compelling and concievable read. Hard to put this book down and I highly recommend it.

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Read this book!!!

An unbelievably enjoyable listen, with plenty of suspense! The narration is fantastic, too! Plenty to capture imagination, and very, very hard to take a break from listening..

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Loved the book! Love this even more!

I read this book a few years ago and it was amazing and the premise fascinated me! Listening to it gave me a whole new love and idea of this story. This is a 10/10 and I fully recommend! I am a book lover and very critical and this meets all my high standards!