This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.
This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.
Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite
The Pope's Butcher by Joseph C. Gioconda is a thrilling work of fiction inspired by true historical figures and events in the 15th century. The story is not only a hair-raising work of suspense and espionage but an astonishing account of religion and the occult at the beginning of the Inquisition in Germany. Abandoned as a child and raised by the Church, young Sebastian works tirelessly in his pursuit of priesthood. Father Heinrich Institoris, the infamous Grand Inquisitor (a historical figure), recruits the naïve Sebastian, just a few months prior to his ordination, for a mission to travel across Europe compiling information concerning witchcraft; in particular, to find a book/documents that contain all the knowledge and spells of witchcraft and demonology. Sebastian sees this mission as an opportunity of a lifetime and eagerly drops everything to carry out the mission of The Grand Inquisitor himself. What he discovers and how his revelations affect the future of the Inquisition are brought forward with some of the best interweaving of fiction and fact I've ever read.
Joseph C. Gioconda is adept at keeping readers on their toes as he weaves a fictional story through historically documented events. His characters, historical and fictional, come to life under his skillful wordsmithing to provide a sense of reality that often falls by the wayside in fictional works of this nature. In The Pope's Butcher, alternative history, action/adventure, mystery, horror, and romance fill the perfect circle of this enthralling story. His research, as evidenced by the glossary and bibliography at the end of the book, is phenomenal and seamlessly worked into the background of the escalating adventures of Sebastian. The Pope's Butcher is top-notch writing, the best book I've read this year, and I'm looking forward to Joseph C. Gioconda's second novel, Salem's Ropes.