Monday, September 28, 2015

Luther and Katharina

Luther and Katharina
A Novel of Love and Rebellion

Jody Hedlund
(WaterBrook Press)
ISBN: 978-1601427625
October 2015/400 pages/$14.99
Available for pre-order at
Amazon, Barnes & Noble, CBD,
and other booksellers

She was a nun of noble birth. He, a heretic, a reformer…an outlaw of the Holy Roman Empire.

In the 16th century, nun Katharina von Bora’s fate fell no further than the Abbey. Until she read the writings of Martin Luther.

His sweeping Catholic church reformation—condemning a cloistered life and promoting the goodness of marriage—awakened her desire for everything she’d been forbidden. Including Martin Luther himself.

Despite the fact that the attraction and tension between them is undeniable, Luther holds fast to his convictions and remains isolated, refusing to risk anyone’s life but his own. And Katharina longs for love, but is strong-willed. She clings proudly to her class distinction, pining for nobility over the heart of a reformer. They couldn’t be more different.

But as the world comes tumbling down around them, and with Luther’s threatened life a constant strain, these unlikely allies forge an unexpected bond of understanding, support and love.

Together, they will alter the religious landscape forever.


Jody Hedlund is a CBA best-selling author of ten books. Her first novel, The Preacher's Bride, won the Reader's Choice Award as part of the RWA Faith, Hope, and Love contest. Hedlund revels in bringing forgotten historic women to life and can usually be found with a book, a cup of coffee and a piece of chocolate. She lives in Midland, Michigan with her husband and five children.

"Katharina von Bora is one of those women who has been largely ignored by today's culture, but she's a strong woman whose story deserves to be told every much as her husband's. I'm excited about sharing her story, about her daring and dangerous escape from a convent, how she met Luther, and how the two of them overcame many obstacles to eventually fall in love and form a strong marriage." Jody Hedlund


Wow. I don't even know where to begin to talk about this book. I am generally not a big fan of novels set in the 16th century because it was such a bleak and primitive time, but I was drawn to this one for several reasons. For starters, beyond knowing the basics of Martin Luther and the Reformation, I knew very little about his life and had never even considered whether or not he ever married and the implications of that, so the premise intrigued me. Secondly, I've enjoyed many of Jody Hedlund's novels and knew she would handle the story well. And then there's the cover! We say don't judge a book by it but this one is just as impressive as the story within! Hedlund immediately plunged me into the tale by opening with Katharina's daring escape from the convent where she had been since she was five years old. (My heart ached at the idea of parents dropping off their little girls and sentencing them to the cloistered life, either because they were unwanted or because they couldn't afford to feed them.) The danger, corruption, and coarseness of the era was realistically portrayed without being brutal or graphic. This is no idyllic romance, by any means. In fact, Katharina and Luther both repeatedly demonstrate their strong wills and tempers when interacting with each other! The class distinctions between nobility, from which Katharina hails, and the commoners such as Luther, establish boundaries that Katharina especially determines not to cross as she yearns for someone to give her a home, if not love. While this is a work of fiction, it is steeped in research, and Hedlund seamlessly blends the two into a compelling tale. Completely satisfying from a reader's perspective, the novel enhanced my appreciation for the boldness of Martin Luther, and now for Katharina, and all they did for the cause of Christ. Do not miss this inspiring novel! Available for pre-order now, it releases in just one week on October 6!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Jody Hedlund and Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Join me tomorrow for a Q&A with Jody Hedlund!


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