The Prophecies

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In The Prophecies, Philip Carr-Gomm masterfully combines elements of the transcendent with historical fact and throws in a romance for good measure. He was inspired to take on this challenge when, on a trip to Paris, he found and purchased an old book called The Dictionary of Happiness written by Geneviève Zaepffel. Mme Zaepffel was a medium whose prophecies in the first half of the Twentieth century accurately predicted certain world events. She and her husband, Renè, who was her manager and editor, lived in Brittany in the Manoir du Tertre near the small town of Paimpont. In addition to her written prophecies, she gave lectures to large groups at the Salle Pleyel in Paris.

The Prophecies depicts an affair between Mme Zaepffel and Hermann Kaestner, a young pilot with the Luftwaffe. It may or may not have happened. Regardless, it serves as a vehicle to introduce the reader to the mindset of the Nazis and teaches history that was omitted from most classrooms.

Nazis did occupy an area of Brittany near Mme Zaepffel’s home. Bretons, who welcomed the Germans, most likely did so because of their frustration with France’s poor treatment of Brittany. Certainly, Hermann Kaestner provides insight into how a young German man may have unwittingly found himself part of a political force whose destructiveness he did not understand until it was too late to free himself of it.

The book also introduces the reader to Abbè Henri Gillard, who was a priest assigned to a small church in the area near Mme Zaepffel’s home. Gillard’s vision for the local parish was avant garde. He enhanced the Catholic faith with elements of Arthurian legend and, while it brilliantly succeeded in restoring life to a fading parish, he eventually paid dearly for stepping outside the traditional path.

Overall, The Prophecies has much to offer the reader. It is a hauntingly beautiful story that is not easily forgotten.

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Star Count 5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 312 pages
Publisher The Oak Tree Press
Publish Date 2016-04-07
ISBN 9781903232033 Buy this Book
Issue August 2016
Category Historical Fiction


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