Now Available: Maiden General
The year is 1429 and the English have been attempting to annex France since long before Joan can remember, and since 1419 trying to illegitimize its crown prince (the Dauphin).
Joan, 17 years old and a pious young woman, runs away from home in order to attempt an impossible mission from God—have herself appointed as a French field general and lead her country to victory over the English.
She knows she’s small in stature, of low birth, illiterate, and has no knowledge of war or politics. Nonetheless, like her hero, the Blessed Virgin Mary, she says “Yes” to God and, determined to succeed, sets off to prevent a major English victory at Orléans.
Like Michael and Jeff Shaara’s historical fiction models, this book chronicles Joan’s every perilous step from the harsh road away from her parent’s farm to the Dauphin’s heavy-handed investigation to determine if she’s a witch or virgin. It also portrays the indignity she suffers at the royal court as well as the anger and hysteria among veteran French generals with the announcement of her elevation to knighthood.
Then, at its heart, Maiden General takes readers through the week long Battle of Orléans—Joan’s failures, her wounds, her indomitable courage, and finally her impossible and miraculous victory.
How Maiden General is different:
Maiden General differs from other books because: (1) No other novel details and
Joan’s life from when she left home at age 17 (January 1429) and ends with her historic victory
over the English at Orléans (May 1429). (2) Events and characters are documented in the
Appendices–the exception being the dialogue; we know which characters met and where, but
seldom did anyone record their exact words. Some of the dialogue in Maiden General comes
from voluminous court records the French government maintains of the two major trials
surrounding Joan of Arc’s life going back to her childhood.
The life Joan of Arc offers a timeless model—especially for the youth of the world. She has an
unshakable belief that despite her inability to read, write, or ride a horse, she can overcome all
obstacles 15th century royalty will use to discredit her mission for God. Unlike most so-called
heroes of the 20th and 21st centuries, Joan stands as someone we can all admire and never worry
about her being later exposed as a fraud or hypocrite. Joan is the only person in recorded history
to lead the entire military forces of a nation at age 17. And, although she carried a sword for
personal defense, she never used it to kill or injure anyone.
Winston Churchill said it best in his History of the English-Speaking People. “Joan was a being
so uplifted from the ordinary run of mankind that she finds no equal in a thousand years.” He
concluded that her story would be beyond belief if it were not in fact true. Yet today, so few
people throughout the world know the real Joan and her incredible accomplishments. Recent
books, TV specials, and movies have so distorted or misrepresented the truth of her life that
those who want to know about Joan find themselves confused, misled, and disappointed.
Maiden General corrects that turmoil with this factual narrative of the first five months of her
extraordinary public life.
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