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Magnificat by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro.

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What if the Pope weren't Catholic?

What if she never had been?

"...astonishingly excellent.... an excellent read, full of intrigue, and thoroughly thoughtful and thought-provoking. Don't miss it." — ANALOG

"The novel features a compelling cast of characters and a genuinely unique story." — PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

"Yarbro blends elements of political intrigue and philosophical drama in a thought-provoking tale that should appeal to fans of supernatural thrillers as well as speculative fiction." — LIBRARY JOURNAL

"Watch out Websters — a spider with fearsome fangs and potent poisons, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, has crawled into your lair with her latest book, Magnificat: Be aware that clicking on that download may permanently alter your mind!" — Gahan Wilson

"Chelsea Quinn Yarbro's grasp of history, superb characters, immense narrative drive, makes for compulsive reading." — George Zebrowski, John W. Campbell Award-winning author of "Brute Orbits"

"[* * * *] (4 * of 4: "Outstanding book, engrossing, a classic") .... this author has a wonderful gift for storytelling." — inscriptionsmagazine.com


It's 1997, in a universe much like ours. Identical, almost. Except that the Pope is dead. And the conclave to elect the new head of the Roman Catholic Church seems to be electing someone who is not a Cardinal. Not an Archbishop. Not, as it turns out, a man.

Act of God? Fraud against the Church? Will the new Pope take up the task? And if she does, can she balance the need to bring the Church into the 21st Century, against the desire of some for tradition and safety in not rocking the boat?

What kinds of changes would she introduce?

This is Yarbro's breakthrough book: SF and speculative fiction; a modern-day political adventure; a religious thriller set in the oldest established organization in the world. Backstage at the Vatican: You're in charge of safety — how do you protect the most visible religious leader in the world today?

If you were the Pope — How would you run the Church? Would you let priests marry? Change the status of women? Balance the cries for family planning, divorce, gender equality, freedom of sexual orientation... with the historic teachings of the church? Not an easy job!

What would you do?

Chelsea Quinn Yarbro speculates on the answers and takes you on a trip through the struggles of the modern Church as only she can. Face up to the responsibilities that have been handed to you; never mind that you did not ask for them. Make the world a better place.

The author has written an essay on the background to Magnificat. A Hidden Knowledge exclusive! Read "Dogma Meets Fiction". And check out the other background links and info we've provided for you—including a fascinating 1903 article on the process of electing the Pope.

Read about Magnificat in an interview with the author in LIBRARY JOURNAL online.

Chelsea Quinn Yarbro has been the featured Guest of Honor at numerous conventions and conferences, and her works have been honored many times over. Her novels of the fictional Comte de St. Germain are available in multiple formats and editions and have attracted a wide following. [In the Face of Death, a book in the St. Germain canon, is published by Hidden Knowledge.]

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The CD-ROM comes with additional background material on the setting and the context, and some other gifts from us to you. Length: approximately 225,000 words.

You can read the first three chapters of the book for free! Download it from our web storefront at no charge, then live in miserable uncertainty until you buy the book to find out just what it all means.

Magnificat is available for Windows, Macintosh, Palm, and Unix/Linux computers, in Adobe Reader/PDF, Palm Reader, Palm DOC, Mobipocket, HTML, and Microsoft Reader formats. The MSR version can be read in any version of the MS Reader, and the HTML is convertible for use with other hand-held readers and PDA's. For more information read our info page about formats.

As is the case for all Hidden Knowledge e-books, buying a copy from our web storefront in one format entitles you to a copy in any or all of the other formats. Further, you may copy the e-book onto a second computer or hand-held device, and/or print out a copy of the Adobe or HTML versions. You agree not to send out pirate versions or put it onto P2P networks or sell photocopies on eBay &etc. Read our notes on Buyers' Rights.

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If you don't want to use a credit card, you can pay us directly by personal check, cashier's check, or money order for $9.95 (for the download) or $16.95 plus postage (for the CD-ROM). Please, denominated in US dollars, checks and money orders made out to Hidden Knowledge. We'll e-mail the download version of the book directly to you (Include your e-mail address! We'll never spam you!) or snail-mail the CD-ROM to you (write to us so we can figure out postage, and tax if you live in California). Our address:

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Magnificat main page updated 12 July 2005