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Diana Norman/Ariana Franklin

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Margaret
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Diana Norman/Ariana Franklin

Post by Margaret » Sun January 4th, 2009, 2:38 am

Do other people get more intrigued by an author whose books aren't readily available in their own country? Diana Norman is a British author whose novels under her own name haven't had much circulation in the U.S. However, she also writes mysteries under the pen name Ariana Franklin that are published in the U.S. as well as Britain. (There's a discussion thread here somewhere about Mistress of the Art of Death.)

I've been dying to get my hands on a copy of Fitzempress' Law ever since I read Ariadne's review of it. And now that Annis has provided a delightful review of The Morning Gift for www.HistoricalNovels.info, I'm longing to read that one, too. Someday, someday!
Browse over 5000 historical novel listings (probably well over 5000 by now, but I haven't re-counted lately) and over 700 reviews at www.HistoricalNovels.info

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Amanda
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Post by Amanda » Sun January 4th, 2009, 2:56 am

[quote=""Margaret""]Do other people get more intrigued by an author whose books aren't readily available in their own country? [/quote]

YES!!! It becomes a challenge to find the books for a decent price....or at the library of course (which I should do more of).

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diamondlil
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Post by diamondlil » Sun January 4th, 2009, 3:12 am

I've read a few of her books and really enjoy them.
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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Sun January 4th, 2009, 11:14 am

I read The Morning Gift from the library some years ago and enjoyed it. It is indeed one of those books where the landscape becomes the character.
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

annis
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Post by annis » Mon January 5th, 2009, 3:30 am

I first discovered Diana Norman in the 1980s and was very taken with her style. Certain themes do recur in her work: the stubborn, opinionated but rather endearing central female character, the place of women in a restrictive, male-dominated society, the humour and wonderfully quirky secondary characters, the secret remnants of the ancient cult of the Goddess, and her enduring love affair with Henry Fitzempress, King Henry II of England.

Diana Norman herself seems rather elusive- it's hard to find out much about her, so others may be interested in this interview she did with Rosina Lippi (aka Sara Donati).
http://rosinalippi.com/weblog/?p=1564

For anyone wanting to know more about the Saxon "morning gift", this account explains in detail how it fitted into the predetermined exchange of reciprocal "gifts" between husband and wife which was part of the marriage process.
http://books.google.com/books?id=WpwOAA ... &ct=result
Last edited by annis on Mon January 5th, 2009, 7:35 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Lindsey
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Post by Lindsey » Thu January 8th, 2009, 4:42 pm

I have read 'Mistress of the Art of Death' recently and really enjoyed it. It was quite disturbing in places and some parts were a bit graphic, but then the subject matter couldn't really be otherwise and I thought it was very sensitively handled. I am currently about half way through 'The Death Maze' and am really enjoying that as well. I love how she brings to life Henry II and Eleanor and absolutely love the fictional characters - they are very believable and quite flawed. I love Adelia but really could give her a slap sometimes for being so stubborn, Rowley too. Gyltha, Mansur, the Abbor and Ulf are all great supporting characters.

I haven't read any of her books as Diana Norma but intend to seek them out at some point, though I think some are out of print aren't they?

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Post by annis » Thu January 8th, 2009, 6:04 pm

Yes, unfortunately most of her earlier work pre the "Catch of Consequence" trilogy is OP, though maybe now that she has gathered a following of readers in the States the day may come when they are reprinted. Luckily most of the OP books can be found in libraries.

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Thu February 5th, 2009, 6:02 pm

Image

New cover for Taking Liberties.

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Madeleine
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Post by Madeleine » Sat March 28th, 2009, 12:45 pm

I just finished "Mistress of the Art..." last night and eventually quite enjoyed it. I did find it a bit of a struggle in parts but it got better from about halfway through, especially when she realised how she felt about Rowley (yes Lindsey I felt like slapping her too, although her position was very tenuous and her reasons for turning him down were well-explained), I also liked the supporting characters especially Gyltha and Ulf.

It was nice to see William the Marshall getting a mention in the author's note, and I'm looking forward to reading The Death Maze (out here soon in pb) despite some of the comments on here, it does sound good entertainment value if nothing else, and I shan't take it too seriously!

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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Sat March 28th, 2009, 12:50 pm

[quote=""Madeleine""] I'm looking forward to reading The Death Maze (out here soon in pb) despite some of the comments on here, it does sound good entertainment value if nothing else, and I shan't take it too seriously![/quote]

If you can read it in entertainment mode then it's hysterical! A couple of scenes are indelibly imprinted on my mind! :eek:
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

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