Welcome to the Historical Fiction Online forums: a friendly place to discuss, review and discover historical fiction.
If this is your first visit, please be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above.
You will have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.
To start viewing posts, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

Which book should be October 2008 Book of the Month?

Retired Threads

Which book should be Book of the Month for October 2007

A Time for Singing by Elizabeth Chadwick
3
10%
The Devil's Brood by Sharon Kay Penman
11
37%
The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
2
7%
Passion by Jude Morgan
1
3%
A Rose for the Crown by Anne Easter Smith
1
3%
The Last Queen by C W Gortner
9
30%
The Other Queen by Philippa Gregory
3
10%
 
Total votes: 30

User avatar
diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Which book should be October 2008 Book of the Month?

Postby diamondlil » Sun August 31st, 2008, 3:06 am

Polling will close on 4 September.

Image

A Time for Singing by Elizabeth Chadwick


In 1173, Roger Bigod is heir to the vast and powerful earldom of Norfolk When his treacherous father, Hugh, loses the family lands and castles in a rebellion against King Henry II, Roger finds himself in reduced circumstances and dogged by a bitter family dispute with his half brother over the remaining crumbs. Whilst trying to resolve the matter, he encounters Ida de Tosney, the King's young mistress. Seduced by Henry, Ida's gaze is now drawn to Roger in whom she sees a chance of lasting security beyond the fickle dazzle of the court. But she has to navigate a careful path between her dearest wishes and the King's reluctance to part with her. Every fulfilled wish has its price, and that price is losing the son she has borne to Henry. When King Richard comes to the throne, Roger is restored to his family's lands and becomes a great earl, and one of the richest men in England. He builds a great castle at Framlingham for himself and for Ida, but life is still riddled with uncertainty as Richard goes on crusade and the men left to govern the country quarrel their way into civil war. Ida struggles to come to terms with their new future... (480 pages)

Image


The Devil’s Brood by Sharon Kay Penman


The long-awaited and highly anticipated final volume in Penman's trilogy of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine—a tumultuous conclusion to this timeless story of love, power, ambition, and betrayal.

Where the second novel in the trilogy, Time And Chance, dealt with the extraordinary politics of the twelfth century, climaxing with the murder of Thomas Becket and Henry's confrontation with the Church and self-imposed exile to Ireland, Devil's Brood centers on the implosion of a family. And because it is a royal family whose domains span the English Channel and whose alliances encompass the Christian world, that collapse will have dire consequences. This is a story of betrayal as Henry's three eldest sons and his wife enter into a rebellion against him, aligning themselves with his bitterest enemy, King Louis of France. But it is also the story of a great king whose brilliance forged an empire but whose personal blind spots led him into the most serious mistake of his life.

Sharon Kay Penman has created a novel of tremendous power, as two strong-willed, passionate people clash, a family divides, and a marriage ends in all but name. Curiously, it is a novel without villains—only flawed human beings caught up in misperceptions and bad judgment calls. Most devastating to Henry was not his sons' rebellion but his wife's betrayal in joining them. How could it happen that two people whose love for each other was all consuming end up as bitter adversaries? That is the heart of Penman's tale in Devil's Brood. (752 pages)


Image

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows


“ I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.” January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb….

As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends—and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society—born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island—boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all.

Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society’s members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever.

Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises, and of finding connection in the most surprising ways. (288 pages)


Image


Passion by Jude Morgan


Theirs was a world of obsession, genius, and above all…

In the turbulent years of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, three poets—Byron, Shelley, and Keats—come to prominence, famous and infamous, for their vivid personalities, and their glamorous, shocking, and sometimes tragic lives. In this electrifying novel, those lives are explored through the eyes of the women who knew and loved them—intensely, scandalously.

Four women from widely different backgrounds are linked by a sensational fate. Mary Shelley: the gifted daughter of gifted parents, for whom passion leads to exile, loss, and a unique fame. Lady Caroline Lamb: born to fabulous wealth and aristocratic position, who risks everything for the ultimate love affair. Fanny Brawne: her quiet, middle-class girlhood is transformed—and immortalized—by a disturbing encounter with genius. Augusta Leigh: the unassuming poor relation who finds herself flouting the greatest of all taboos.

With the originality, richness, and daring of the poets themselves, Passion presents the Romantic generation in a new and unforgettable light. (544 pages)
Last edited by diamondlil on Sun August 31st, 2008, 3:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Postby diamondlil » Sun August 31st, 2008, 3:08 am

Image



A Rose for the Crown by Anne Easter Smith



AN UNFORGETTABLE HEROINE,
A KING MISUNDERSTOOD BY HISTORY,
A LOVE STORY THAT HAS NEVER BEEN TOLD
In A Rose for the Crown, we meet one of history's alleged villains through the eyes of a captivating new heroine -- the woman who was the mother of his illegitimate children, a woman who loved him for who he really was, no matter what the cost to herself.
As Kate Haute moves from her peasant roots to the luxurious palaces of England, her path is inextricably intertwined with that of Richard, Duke of Gloucester, later King Richard III. Although they could never marry, their young passion grows into a love that sustains them through war, personal tragedy, and the dangerous heights of political triumph.
Anne Easter Smith's impeccable research provides the backbone of an engrossing and vibrant debut from a major new historical novelist. (672 pages)

Image


The Last Queen by C W Gortner



Juana of Castile, the last queen of Spanish blood to inherit her country’s throne, has been for centuries an enigmatic figure shrouded in lurid myth. Was she the bereft widow of legend who was driven mad by her loss, or has history misjudged a woman who was ahead of her time? In his stunning new novel, C. W. Gortner challenges the myths about Queen Juana, unraveling the mystery surrounding her to reveal a brave, determined woman we can only now begin to fully understand.

The third child of Queen Isabel and King Ferdinand of Spain, Juana is born amid her parents’ ruthless struggle to unify their kingdom, bearing witness to the fall of Granada and Columbus’s discoveries. At the age of sixteen, she is sent to wed Philip, the archduke of Flanders, as part of her parents’ strategy to strengthen Spain, just as her youngest sister, Catherine of Aragon, is sent to England to become the first wife of Henry VIII.

Juana finds unexpected love and passion with her handsome young husband, the sole heir to the Habsburg Empire. At first she is content with her children and her life in Flanders. But when tragedy strikes and she inherits the Spanish throne, Juana finds herself plunged into a battle for power against her husband that grows to involve the major monarchs of Europe. Besieged by foes on all sides, her intelligence and pride used as weapons against her, Juana vows to secure her crown and save Spain from ruin, even if it could cost her everything.

With brilliant, lyrical prose, novelist and historian C. W. Gortner conjures Juana through her own words, taking the reader from the somber majesty of Spain to the glittering and lethal courts ofFlanders, France, and Tudor England. The Last Queen brings to life all the grandeur and drama of an incomparable era, and the singular humanity of this courageous, passionate princess whose fight to claim her birthright captivated the world. (352 pages)

Image



The Other Queen by Philippa Gregory



Two women competing for a man's heart
Two queens fighting to the death for dominance
The untold story of Mary, Queen of Scots
This dazzling novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author Philippa Gregory presents a new and unique view of one of history's most intriguing, romantic, and maddening heroines. Biographers often neglect the captive years of Mary, Queen of Scots, who trusted Queen Elizabeth's promise of sanctuary when she fled from rebels in Scotland and then found herself imprisoned as the "guest" of George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, and his indomitable wife, Bess of Hardwick.
The newly married couple welcome the doomed queen into their home, certain that serving as her hosts and jailers will bring them an advantage in the cutthroat world of the Elizabethan court. To their horror, they find that the task will bankrupt them, and as their home becomes the epicenter of intrigue and rebellion against Elizabeth, their loyalty to each other and to their sovereign comes into question. If Mary succeeds in seducing the earl into her own web of treachery and treason, or if the great spymaster William Cecil links them to the growing conspiracy to free Mary from her illegal imprisonment, they will all face the headsman.
Philippa Gregory uses new research and her passion for historical accuracy to place a well-known heroine in a completely new tale full of suspense, passion, and political intrigue. For years, readers have clamored for Gregory to tell Mary's story, and The Other Queen is the result of her determination to present a novel worthy of this extraordinary heroine. (448 pages)
Last edited by diamondlil on Sun August 31st, 2008, 3:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Amanda
Compulsive Reader
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby Amanda » Sun August 31st, 2008, 3:52 am

I voted for The Last Queen as I have read it recently, and it has been released again in the US, so shouldn't be hard to get a hold of, while a few of the other options are only being released in October aren't they?

User avatar
pat
Avid Reader
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Postby pat » Sun August 31st, 2008, 6:29 am

Having checked the library status for my preferences I have narrowed it down to PG's! However, there may be a delay as it is a popular book!


I just hope it gets in in time!
A good book and a good coffee, what more can anyone want? xx

TerriPray
Reader
Location: Iowa, USA
Contact:

Postby TerriPray » Sun August 31st, 2008, 6:37 am

Anything that is only just being released won't be at our local library. Small town Iowa - so I'd have to do an inter library loan, which could add months to the wait.

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby Misfit » Sun August 31st, 2008, 12:57 pm

I tough choice for me, between Time of Singing and Devil's Brood (I've actually been saving the last of my vacation time for October when these two come in :o ). However, I went with Devil's Brood as it's not available in the US at this time so library loans are probably out for US readers.

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Postby Divia » Sun August 31st, 2008, 9:11 pm

Do you have to read the other books in the series before you read Devils Brood?
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.
http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Judith
Scribbler

Postby Judith » Sun August 31st, 2008, 9:44 pm

I chose The Last Queen. It sound very interesting. :)

User avatar
diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Postby diamondlil » Tue September 2nd, 2008, 9:51 am

Still a couple of days to go but we have a tie at this point.
My Blog - Reading Adventures

All things Historical Fiction - Historical Tapestry


There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.

Edith Wharton

User avatar
pat
Avid Reader
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Postby pat » Tue September 2nd, 2008, 10:46 am

Although I have voted I would like to read The Last Queen, providing I can get it from the library!
A good book and a good coffee, what more can anyone want? xx


Return to “Archives”