The Lady & the Lionheart: A Book Review
Every now and then a book comes along that captures the imagination, expands our view of God, and stays in our hearts long after the final pages have been read. Joanne Bischof's The Lady & the Lionheart is one of those books.
I'll be honest, I was first drawn to this book because of its gorgeous cover (get the scoop behind the cover here!) When reviews started popping up on all my social media accounts raving about how wonderful The Lady & the Lionheart was I knew I had to read it. Y'all....this book....SO SO good! Here's what you can expect...
"Raised amid the fame and mystique of the Big Top, Charlie Lionheart holds the audience in the palm of his hand. But while his act captivates thousands, it's away from the spotlight where his true heart lies. Here he humbly cares for his pride of lions as if they were his brothers, a skill of bravery and strength that has prepared him for his most challenging feat yet--freeing an orphaned infant from the dark bondage of a sideshow. A trade so costly, it requires his life in exchange for hers, leaving him tarnished by the price of that choice.
As the circus tents are raised on the outskirts of Roanoke, nurse Ella Beckley arrives to tend to this Gypsy girl. All under the watchful eye of a guardian who not only bears a striking resemblance to the child, but who protects the baby with a love that wraps around Ella's own tragic past, awakening a hope that goodness may yet reign. When their forbidden friendship deepens, Charlie dares to ask for her heart, bringing her behind the curtain of his secret world to reveal the sacrifice that gave hope to one little girl--boldly showing Ella that while her tattered faith is deeply scarred, the only marks that need be permanent are his own."
I think this is one of the best Christian Fiction books I've read all year. Bischof is a new-to-me author and I am now itching to read her previous works! The Lady & the Lionheart is a beautiful re-imagining of Beauty and the Beast, mixed with the power of the gospel. Bischof's characters are deeply layered, her writing poignant yet hopeful.
The same words of truth and deliverance that Charlie speaks over Ella will speak straight to the heart of every woman who has at some time or another thought herself unworthy.
Every word, every sentence of Bischof's writing is rich and purposeful, working together to create a finale that will leave the reader breathless with the beauty and wonder of God's redemptive love.
I cannot recommend this book enough! Being from Southwest Virginia I also loved that this book was set in Roanoke, just 45 minutes from where I grew up! Bischof did a wonderful job of accurately portraying the area and bringing the setting to life. 5 stars.