A Mortal Glamour by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
The convent La Tres Saunte Annunciacion in France is experiencing some
tough times. It is the 14th century and the country has just gone
through the devastation of the Black Plague which killed thousands. The
Catholic Church has two popes; one is in Rome, while the other is in
the French city of Avignon. They are both seeking power and are at odds
with each other.
Seur Aungelique has been sent to the convent
by her father for refusing to marry a groom of his choice. She is young
and headstrong and escapes one night to go to the Comtesse Orienne who
is very sexually accomplished and just interested in her own pleasures.
Aungelique hopes to meet Pierre Fornault whom she loves.
is brought back to the convent and under the new Mother Superior Leonie
is given strict penances. Soon however moans of pleasure and pain can be
heard from her cell every night. Degradation seems to slowly follow for
the rest of the convent and the sisters and even the animals and crops
This is a very slow moving story and the reader must
have 'stick-to-it-ness' to keep at it. This is a basic story about good
and evil. It was interesting on how the Church felt it should deal with
this situation but this story was just too dark and slow for me
First Line: "In Saunt-Vitre-lo-Sur most of the houses were deserted; rye and oats stood unharvested in the frost-shriveled fields."