I love historical novels at the best of times, but this one was definitely something special. Petken's attention to detail and clear understanding and knowledge of the period and the practices drew me in to a feudal world of Dukes, Viceroys and of course the ubiquitous Inquisitor, and rewarded me with a touching, at times harrowing, but always enjoyable read. This book focuses on the dilemma faced by the ordinary soldier (applicable throughout all of history, no doubt), when confronted with an order from his superiors that he feels is morally wrong, in fact illegal. What does he do? You'll have to read the book to find that out, but truly it is an enjoyable and fascinating read.
I loved the characters in this book and I especially loved the way Petken posed the moral dilemmas and then satisfactorily answered them through the actions of the characters. A highlight for me was to read and grasp the utter stupidity and futility of the whole idea of The Inquisition, as the Catholic Church sought to rid the land of heretics and especially the Jewish minorities in Spain at the time. It was a fascinating read. The author managed to convey the sheer horror and manipulation of the Inquisition, without resorting to language that was too graphic or horrible.
This is the first Jana Petken book I've read and I'm sure it won't be the last. If you like historical novels, with tight stories and beautiful writing, at 325 pages on Kindle, this is an exceptionally satisfying and enjoyable read. I highly recommend this book, it truly earns every one of the five stars I give it.