Thursday, March 28, 2013

Book Review Illuminations: A Novel of Hildegard von Bingen by Mary Sharratt

Hildegard von Bingen is an admirable character. At the tender age of eight, she is walled up in a church and her own mother turns her back on her. Many (most) would give up, roll over and die. Yet, Hildegard grabs hold of life. She has plants brought into her cell and when she's not performing her duties--singing hymns and making scared garments--she educates herself. And, later, when two other girls join her Hildegard sees it as her responsibility to share this love of life with them.
There is more to Hildegard's story. But I don't wish to spoil the adventure. You need to read this book.
However horrific the conditions... However hopeless the life... This is a moving story; told tenderly and with great respect for the woman behind the legend.
Illuminations speak of the power of woman--together; separate--external; internal--endless.
Thank you, Mary Sharratt, for another fine read. 

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