The Secret Diaries of Juan Luis Vives + Giveaway


Join us for this tour from Feb 1 to Feb 12, 2021!

Book Details:

Book Title:  The Secret Diaries of Juan Luis Vives by Tim Darcy Ellis
CategoryAdult Fiction (18 yrs +),  246 pages
Genre: Literary fiction, historical fiction, religious historical fiction
Release date:   2020
Format available for review:  print, and ebook (mobi file (for Kindle)
Will send print books out:  USA and Canada
Tour dates: Feb 1 to Feb 12, 2021
Content RatingPG-13 + M. Includes some f-words, religious profanities, and mature themes (addiction, adultery)

"A fast-paced and richly engaging story about an intriguing historical figure... Ellis writes all of this with marvellous gusto that's more reminiscent of Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall (2009) than of a more traditional Tudor novel." - Kirkus (starred review)

"In this beautifully detailed, thrilling historical novel, author Tim Ellis brings back to life the largely forgotten Juan Luis Lives, a Spanish Jew and leading Renaissance humanist...This enthralling story is sure to please lovers of high drama, international intrigue, momentous history and psychological thrillers." - Blueink (starred review)

"With its clear portrayal of inner conflict, The Secret Diaries of Juan Luis Vives is a provocative, multicolored historical novel that examines hidden faith... Ellis's intricate biographical novel approaches the Spanish scholar and Renaissance humanist through absorbing journal entries." - Foreword Clarion

"A fast-moving, highly enjoyable historical drama, which features one of Western civilization's most interesting men during the dazzling age of the Renaissance. Ellis draws his characters so wonderfully, and none is better than the lead. The smart, charming, and earnest humanist is depicted as the embodiment of a better world to come." - Indiereader Review

Book Description:

The Secret Diaries Of Juan Luis Vives chronicles the epoch-making adventures of Spanish humanist Juan Luis Vives. The novel begins as Vives writes in self-imposed exile in Bruges, Spanish Netherlands in 1522. He is on the run from the Spanish Inquisition which has devastated his Jewish family in Valencia. Later, Thomas More invites Vives to the English court to tutor princess Mary Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. The plot reaches its climax as Vives navigates the murky world of English politics during the reign of King Henry VIII, ever trying to negotiate an escape from Spain for his family, and for the Jewish people. 

The early modern period in Europe was a time of incredible instability. Economic depressions were the norm in Northern Italy, the Holy Roman Empire, and large swaths of England and France. Wars were endemic, with power politics and religion playing leading roles in massive bloodletting. Despite the darkness, great men and women of courage and intellectual curiosity also defined the age as one of scientific discovery, humanism, and scholarship. One of the great titans of the early modern period was Spanish scholar Juan Luis Vives. In the novel, Vives is the embodiment of the cosmopolitanism of the intellectual elite during the Renaissance. As a secret follower of Judaism, and thus a major outlaw according to the thinking of his own Catholic monarch, Vives walks a swaying tightrope.

He was a genius and a philosopher who had a lot to say (he has since been dubbed 'The Godfather of Psychoanalysis,' Zilboorg 1941, and the 'Father of Psychology,' Watson, 1915), however, if he speaks too loudly not only his survival but that of his entire people hangs in the balance. Along the way, the reader is given close up and intimate and unique views of well-known figures such as Henry VIII, Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Sir Thomas More and his devoted daughter, Margaret Roper.

My Review

I must admit that I have never heard of Juan Luis Vives. I searched him a bit more after this book and I have to say that he does seem like an interesting man. Which, he was portrayed some in this book. His voice was nice. It was like I was there with Juan and seeing everything through his eyes and ears as he put his words to paper.

I am a fan of the Tudor time period, thus the reason I was intrigued to read this book. I must admit though that I did find the pacing to be a bit too slow for my liking. It seemed there was a lot of dialect but not a lot happening. In addition, to the fact that I was struggling to connect to the other voices in this book. While, I did not really care for this book, I got a taste of the author's writing and did like it enough to try another book in the future from this author.  

Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ B&N
Add to Goodreads

Meet the Author:

Tim Darcy Ellis (BA BSc, MHSc) is a writer, physiotherapy business owner and formerly a professional archaeologist. Tim studied Archaeology at the University of York (BA Hons 1988) and as a professional archaeologist, worked on sites throughout England and Wales. He held posts at the Museum of London and the British Museum's medieval galleries. Tim is currently Managing Director and Principal Physiotherapist of Excel Physiotherapy and Wellness. He qualified as a physiotherapist at the University of East London in 1998. He moved to Sydney in 2000 where he completed his master's degree in 2002. Tim is chief writer of Excel Life magazine: writing and teaching extensively on health and wellness and specializing in the treatment of complex hip and pelvic pain.

connect with the author: website ~ facebook ~ twitter


Tour Schedule:
Feb 1 – Working Mommy Journal – book review / giveaway
Feb 1 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Feb 2 - She Just Loves Books – book review / giveaway
Feb 2 – fundinmental – book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 3 – Lisa's Reading – book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 3 - Books and Zebras @jypsylynn – book review / giveaway
Feb 4– Pine Enshrined Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Feb 5 – Corinne Rodrigues – book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 8 – Books Lattes & Tiaras – book review / giveaway
Feb 8 – Stephanie Jane – book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 9 - Cheryl's Book Nook – book review / giveaway
Feb 9 – StoreyBook Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Feb 10 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
Feb 11 - I'm Into Books – book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 12 - Library of Clean Reads – book review / author interview / giveaway
Feb 12 – Bigreadersite – book review / giveaway

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