This is another great book written by Douglas Bond.
Here is a synopsis.
"So ends the confession of Jean-Louis Mourin." This simple statement begins the final chapter of The Betrayal, A Novel on John Calvin,
by Douglas Bond. Born in the village of Noyon in northern France, poor
and envious Jean-Louis watches the finely dressed and privileged John
Calvin excel in his studies at the grammar school. Twelve-year-old
Calvin is set apart for the priesthood by the bishop of Noyon and begins
to receive a substantial stipend as a boy chaplain.
Calvin travels to Paris to study at the Sorbonne and hires an
ingratiating Jean-Louis as his personal servant. The new doctrines of
the Reformers, which are spreading throughout France, are debated behind
closed doors by Calvin and his friends. The prospect of being burned at
the stake at the hands of King Francis I looms for all who subscribe to
the "heretical" doctrine of salvation by grace alone through faith in
Christ alone. Calvin becomes convinced of the truth of this new teaching
while his trusted servant watches and listens, biding his time,
surreptitiously gathering evidence and plotting how he might betray
Calvin and his friends into the hands of the King's agents. Intrigue
follows upon intrigue as Calvin goes first to Orleans to study law and
then returns to the turmoil of Paris. When he becomes a hunted man, he
flees to Switzerland.
Writing a first-person historical novel presents a set of unique
challenges. Not only must the historical events be carefully researched
and presented accurately, but also the character of the storyteller must
be skillfully and seamlessly integrated into that historical record. In
addition, a unique and personal voice for the storyteller, fitting for
the era in which the story takes place, must be developed and
consistently maintained throughout the novel. Bond carries all this off
in a most engaging manner. Told by the servant Jean-Louis, who is a
reliable and credible witness while at the same time demonstrating "an
uncanny ability to be invisible," the story is a faithful retelling of
the life of the great Reformer. Jean-Louis's manner of writing, through
Bond, is at once familiar to modern-day readers, but at the same time
employs certain words and turns of phrase that echo of antiquity, thus
making the entire novel an engaging read and readily believable.
The Betrayal is a captivating story from which one may learn
much about the life and times of John Calvin. Well researched and well
written, it honors John Calvin and other early Reformers, but, more
importantly, it honors Calvin's Savior, the Lord Jesus.
I hope you will take a look into this book if you have not read this already.