Setting the World on Fire

Author(s): Shelley Emling

Biographies & Memoirs

One of only two patron saints of Italy, the other being St. Francis of Assisi, St. Catherine was ahead of her time. As a political powerhouse in late 14th century Europe - a time of war, social unrest and one of the worst natural disasters of all time, the plague - she worked for peace between Christians while campaigning for a holy crusade against Muslims. She was a peacemaker during Siena's revolution of 1368, sometimes addressing huge crowds; she convinced Pope Gregory XI to return the papacy to Rome at a time when the Catholic Church was unravelling. She was illiterate but grew into a great writer by dictating to assistants. She was frail and punished herself mercilessly, often starving herself. It's easy to see why feminists through the years have sought to claim the patronage of St. Catherine. From her refusal to marry to her assertion that her physical appearance was of no importance, the famous Saint is ripe for modern interpretation. How did this girl, the second-youngest of 25 children of a middle-class dyer, grow to become one of the most beloved spiritual figures of all time, a theological giant to rank alongside the likes of Thomas Aquinas? In Setting the World on Fire, Emling gives an intimate portrayal of this fascinating and revolutionary woman.

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I really enjoyed this book. Besides learning about the saint herself, Catherine, I found the book very informative about the place and time where it is set. This book contains info about the Crusades, plague, etc. and the author presents this history in an engaging and well-researched manner. The author writes in an engaging way--each chapter ends with a mini-cliffhanger that made me want to read on to the next chapter.

Shane, The Book Grocer

Shelley Emling is a senior editor at "The Huffington Post" and her work has previously appeared in such outlets as "The New York Times, Fortune, Slate, The Wall Street Journal, The Times, The Boston Globe, The Christian Science Monitor," and FoxNews.com. She covered Europe for six years for Cox Newspapers, a chain that includes "The Atlanta Journal Constitution." She lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

General Fields

  • : 9781137279804
  • : Palgrave Macmillan
  • : Palgrave Macmillan
  • : 0.341
  • : March 2016
  • : 210mm X 139mm X 16mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : May 2016
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Shelley Emling
  • : 256
  • : 256
  • : Hardback
  • : Hardback
  • : 516
  • : 8 page colour insert
  • : 516
  • : 8 page colour insert
  • : English
  • : English
  • : 282.092 B
  • : 282.092 B