The King's Achievement (Benson)
Note: Our ‘Youth’ category includes some books which would be suitable for secondary school/high school readers but probably not younger. This is a title that parents will want enjoy reading themselves before deciding to give it to their children.
One of the most coldly calculated acts of Henry VIII during the Reformations was the dissolution of the monasteries. Monks and nuns were driven from their cloisters; the abbeys were plundered and turned over to greedy courtiers. From these ignoble proceedings came Robert Hugh Benson's inspiration for this great historical novel, the story of a house divided against itself. The Torridon brothers are sworn to serve different masters; one is a monk, in love with the Mass and the Faith of Ages, the other an agent of Thomas Cromwell, in love with a protege of Sir. Thomas More. Among the giant figures who move through the tale are those of St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More, the ruthless King Henry VIII, and the grasping Cromwell and Cranmer. Their actual deeds are carefully woven onto this harrowingly romantic tale of the attempted destruction and resiliance of the Catholic Faith in England.
Benson portrays the monastic life in England on the eve of the reformation in a way that cannot fail to inspire. As such, this book is not only a fantastic adventure novel but also an excellent introduction to the love of God for which a man will leave all things…
Note: this book is a reprint and a few of the pages, while legible, are somewhat grainy.