Book Reviews of The Ghost of Hannah Mendes

The Ghost of Hannah Mendes
The Ghost of Hannah Mendes
Author: Naomi Ragen
ISBN-13: 9780312281250
ISBN-10: 0312281250
Publication Date: 11/16/2001
Pages: 384
Rating:
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 40

3.8 stars, based on 40 ratings
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

7 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on + 162 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A must-read although the narrative got a bit tiresome. I mean, women do NOT think of themselves in terms of having shapely legs...

The story is fascinating: two sisters must take a trip for their grandmother, and in doing so, they discover a part of their lives that they hadn't previously known about. And not just a part of their lives, but an entire culture that has been lost, a way of life.

While parts of the book are pat and predictable, the story comes alive like few others during the scenes set in Toledo.
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on + 179 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
If you love history and romance this is a book for you. This book engages the reader with its combination of history, passion, and spirituality...not to be missed.
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on
The ghost of the title has an influence on current day characters as they search for their own history and the meaning of their lives in the grand scheme of things. Entertaining reading by not great literature.
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on + 42 more book reviews
If you love history and romance this is the book for you!
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on + 206 more book reviews
I love Naomi Ragen and this book was fast moving and kept my interest .It told an interesting historical tale as well as a predictable romance. The main theme is that you cant run away from your heritage, it is deep in your soul, and that spirituality and rituals are necessary to live life to its fullest.
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on
I found this book to be a wonderful combination of history and narrative, well written and therefore very enjoyable to read. The characters are well drawn and interesting. Although I usually do not enjoy books that require one to believe in the 'paranormal' there was just enough of it in this book to season the story and add a bit of mystery. I highly recommend it.
reviewed The Ghost of Hannah Mendes on + 23 more book reviews
From Publishers Weekly
Opulent prose, brave female characters and an emphasis on the importance of family and tradition distinguish the latest from bestselling Ragen (Jephte's Daughter). Catherine da Costa is a wealthy New York matron, secure in everything but the future. Having just learned she is to die soon, she fears the family tree will perish as well, since her two 20-something granddaughters, Suzanne and Francesca, are as yet unmarried. Then one night she is visited by a ghost from the distant past her eponymous Renaissance ancestor who urges Catherine to search for the missing pages of a manuscript she wrote. The text is a precious document detailing how, as a Sephardic Jew, she braved the terrors of the Inquisition and went on to become one of the wealthiest and most powerful women in the world. Using her own impending demise as emotional blackmail, Catherine sends the oil-and-water duo of Suzanne and Francesca one devoted to liberal causes, the other to business to Europe to hunt for the pages. Their journey leads to globe-trotting adventure, passionate romance, sibling reconciliation and a disclosure of Hannah's secrets for survival: endurance and faith. The fact that the Nasi-Mendes family is real, with descendants all over the world, adds depth to the fiction, and Ragen uses harrowing descriptions of torture to explain how family members could be forced to turn against one another to avoid the worst of the Inquisition. Moreover, she succeeds in driving home her message about the value of hanging onto cultural identity through maintaining a connection with history, thereby giving a sense of meaning to the present. Fans of her previous work will not be disappointed. Agent, Lisa Bankoff at ICM.