‘Baring Her Soul’ by Yvonne Crowe

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The baleful soul of Heinrich Kramer, a German Inquisitor from the 14th century, is lurking in the netherworld, waiting for a physical vehicle to return to earth to complete his Holy Mission of burning witches at the stake. He is the author of the Malleus Maleficarum, or Witches Hammer, which was the treatise on how to recognize, interrogate, judge and then execute these innocent women, who, in a superstitious era, were the scapegoats for natural disasters.

He alights on Tamsin, an English Rose, trying to find herself and overcome her past during a spiritual retreat, and decides she would be the perfect victim; which is precisely the role Tamsin is trying to shed. She is there to take control of her life. His persistence makes her question whether she was, in fact, this Inquisitor in a past life.

A series of haunting dreams has brought Tamsin to this point in time and knowing she cannot defeat this malevolent priest on her own, enlists the aid of a Chinese sage, her teacher on the metaphysical plane.

Now a door has opened to a parallel world where she experiences other past lives. Torn between her horror at her past deeds, if indeed she is an incarnation of this horrible priest, and her determination to know the truth, she undertakes a journey, to find out whether she can uncover any evidence that links her to these revelations.

Each courageous step she takes in confronting her past empowers her to overcome the baggage she has dragged behind her throughout the ages, which has become a millstone around her neck.

Finally believing she has earned the right to happiness, she meets Jean Pierre, a French doctor in Carcassone, who stands by her side as the final battle with Heinrich culminates in a surprising twist. Will it consume her as she stands on the brink of success? Or will she finally free herself?

 

It was a unique take on the Inquisition. The premise was interesting and thankfully the plot was too, so it was a really pleasurable read. Tamsin was a great character and I cannot wait to see what will happen to her next!

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