“Heresy is a crime of perception – an act of seeing something that, according to some custodians of reality, is not truly there. Heresy, therefore, is always relative to an orthodoxy.” Leonard George This book explores, via biographical monologues, the lives of five heretics, as well as telling the tale of a flesh-and-blood Roman archer in First Century Palestine.

In each case, the heretics concerned – Mary Gadbury, Shabbetai Tzevi, Sophie Scholl, al-Hallaj and Hypatia of Alexandria – found themselves at odds with the prevailing belief systems of the day, and each sought to pursue her or his individual definition of Truth, irrespective of the all-but inevitable consequences.

In a certain sense, of course, we all become heretics, each time we seek to challenge Authority, in whatever form it takes. Best beware, lest a new Inquisition begins to take shape, and stamps on all dissent.

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