Review: The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof

Lady and LionheartI don’t know if a novel has ever touched me so deeply or reached into my heart as completely as The Lady and the Lionheart did. It is simply one of the most beautiful love stories I have read, but beyond that, there is this amazing thread running through it that illustrates God’s redemptive love for us.

This unique love story was beautifully written, whisking me back in time and bringing the mysterious world of the circus and all of its performers to life right before my eyes. But what captivated me was the tale of Charlie and Ella, two souls who were hurting for very different reasons, and their journey toward peace. They were both characters whom I fell in love with immediately and continually wanted to know more about. I loved the little peeks into their past that helped me understand what had shaped them into the two special individuals that they were. I loved how patient and caring Charlie was toward Ella and others. And I was impressed that even though Ella had experienced much pain and betrayal in life, she was still drawn to help Charlie with the care of a sweet baby when others wouldn’t.

The Lady and the Lionheart was a story that didn’t stop at the last page for me. These characters stayed with me and I repeatedly found myself thinking of them long after I finished reading the novel.

(5 stars)


Lady and LionheartTwo worlds collide when the circus comes to Victorian-era Virginia.

Raised amid the fame and mystique of the Big Top, Charlie Lionheart holds the audience in the palm of his hand. But while his act captivates thousands, it’s away from the spotlight where his true heart lies. Here he humbly cares for his pride of lions as if they were his brothers, a skill of bravery and strength that has prepared him for his most challenging feat yet—freeing an orphaned infant from the dark bondage of a sideshow. A trade so costly, it requires his life in exchange for hers, leaving him tarnished by the price of that choice.

As the circus tents are raised on the outskirts of Roanoke, nurse Ella Beckley arrives to tend to this Gypsy girl. All under the watchful eye of a guardian who not only bears a striking resemblance to the child, but who protects the baby with a love that wraps around Ella’s own tragic past, awakening a hope that goodness may yet reign. When their forbidden friendship deepens, Charlie dares to ask for her heart, bringing her behind the curtain of his secret world to reveal the sacrifice that gave hope to one little girl—boldly showing Ella that while her tattered faith is deeply scarred, the only marks that need be permanent are his own.

Purchase your own copy of The Lady and the Lionheart here.



A Carol Award and two-time Christy Award-finalist, Joanne Bischof writes deeply layered fiction that tugs at the reader’s heartstrings. She was honored to receive the SDCWG Novel of the Year Award in 2014 and in 2015 was named Author of the Year by the Mount Hermon Writer’s conference. Her 2014 novella This Quiet Sky broke precedent as the first self-released title to final for the Christy Awards. She lives in the mountains of Southern California with her husband and their three children.

You can connect with Joanne on her website, Facebook, and Twitter.


About Brittany

I am a homeschooling mother of four children. I am an avid reader and have been for as long as I can remember. I truly enjoy reading and reviewing books I focus my reading and my reviews on Christian fiction, primarily Christian romantic fiction. I hope you will find my reviews helpful in your decisions on what books to read.
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4 Responses to Review: The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof

  1. carylkane says:

    Britt, I love your review. This one is at the top of my MUST read list. 🙂

  2. joannebischof says:

    Brittany, I feel treated to have been able to read your beautiful review. Just so bolstered by your words and thoughts on it. Thank you so much for reading it and for sharing! Sending you a big hug!

  3. Pam K. says:

    I loved this book too, so much that I ordered a paperback even though I already have an ecopy. I never do that. I wish everyone could read The Lady and the Lionheart!

  4. Pingback: Ebook Sale!!! – The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof | Britt Reads Fiction

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