- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 19 hours and 24 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Recorded Books
- Audible.com Release Date: September 24, 2009
My Review (3 Stars: Liked it)
I listened to Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross. It is about a women, in the 9th century who becomes the Pope. It is historical fiction that has gotten high marks, but I struggled getting started with it. However, even though it has difficult vocabulary and even many words in Latin, I enjoyed the story and wondered how much of it is based on believed truths. Almost toward the end, I was compelled to look up information about this pope and got a clue to how the story ended.
At the center of this novel is the stark contrast between men and women’s places in society.
The narrator had a gruff voice and I wasn’t sure I liked it. However, she did represent the various character’s voices distinctly which helped in following the narration.
There is a movie based on this novel, that got less than stellar marks.
The legendary tale of how an in travesto woman briefly became pope during the ninth century gets a disappointingly dull workout in “Pope Joan.” Despite a game lead perf by Teuton thesp Johanna Wokalek, and handsome widescreen production values, this German-led big-budgeter — shot in English and adapted from the bestseller by Donna Woolfolk Cross — drifts along in neutral like a cut-down miniseries. Lack of any dramatic momentum in the spotty script and arch dialogue make “Joan” pretty much D.O.A. in Anglo markets, though a dubbed version has converted more than 1 million since its Oct. 22 release in Deutschland.” – Derek Elley – Variety 2009
Pope Joan, which depicts a female pontiff rumoured to have existed in the ninth century, has been criticised by the Roman Catholic Church for its ‘extremely limited vision’ – The Gaurdian