Goddess – a Review

goddessTitle: Goddess

Author: Kelly Gardiner

Fourth Estate, 2014

Katherine’s pick

For any reader who has enjoyed Kelly Gardiner‘s Young Adult fiction & poetry,  this new addition to her work is a real treat.

Goddess is very much an adult novel though,  based on the life of Julie d’Aubigny  a  larger than life character who lived in the seventeenth century.   Known as La Maupin, the Goddess of the title embarks on a life of fearless adventure.  Obviously a talented and beguilingly beautiful young  woman, she goes from humble beginnings to become  a star of the famed Paris Opera.  Tempestuous and volatile she blazes a trail across Europe falling love with both men and woman,   Original and witty this is a rollicking read, that doesn’t disappoint.

Book Review – The Sultan’s Eyes


aaaThe Sultan’s Eyes by Kelly Gardiner

Young Adult Fiction


The year is 1648 and life in Venice is serene for Isabella Hawkins and her friends Willem, Al-Qasim and Signora Contarini. Together they publish fine books like the controversial encyclopaedia, The Sum of All Knowledge.

When a new Inquisitor declares war on free speech however, they are forced to flee across the seas to the wondrous capital of the Ottoman Empire, Constantinople, which is ruled by the infamous Sultanate of the Women.

Old friends and new, including the boy Sultan and his sister, welcome them to the world’s greatest city. But Isabella is soon entangled in poisonous palace intrigues, while her friends secretly play perilous games of their own.

The fascinating and page-turning sequel to Act of Faith, which was shortlisted for the 2012 NSW Premier’s Literary awards, the 2012 Gold Inky awards and highly commended in the 2012 Barbara Jefferies Awards.

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Book Review – Act of Faith


aaaAct of Faith by Kelly Gardiner

Young Adult Fiction




England, 1640. Sixteen-year-old Isabella is forced to flee her home when her father’s radical ideas lead him into a suicidal stand against Oliver Cromwell’s army. Taking refuge in Amsterdam and desperate to find a means to survive, Isabella finds work with an elderly printer, Master de Aquila, and his enigmatic young assistant, Willem. When Master de Aquila travels to Venice to find a publisher brave enough to print his daring new book, Isabella accompanies him and discovers a world of possibility – where women work alongside men as equal partners, and where books and beliefs are treasured. But in a continent torn apart by religious intolerance, constant danger lurks for those who don’t watch their words. And when the agents of the Spanish Inquisition kidnap de Aquila to stop him printing his book, Isabella and Willem become reluctant allies in a daring chase across Europe to rescue him from certain death.

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