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William Wallace

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Kveto from Prague
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Location: Prague, Bohemia

Post by Kveto from Prague » Sat July 24th, 2010, 12:25 pm

[quote=""N. Gemini Sasson""]In addition to The Wallace, he did a trilogy on Bruce consisting of: The Steps to the Empty Throne, The Path of the Hero King, and The Price of the King's Peace.

And yes, Tranter was outrageously prolific.[/quote]

yes ive read those. a few others on the board have commented that they think the bruce triology was his best stuff. I enjoyed them but dont remember much of anything about them.

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N. Gemini Sasson
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Location: Ohio

Post by N. Gemini Sasson » Sat July 24th, 2010, 1:13 pm

[quote=""chokipokilo""]I've been looking at reading a novel/series in this setting, and it seems like Tranter pops up the most. Anyone read and can recommend Tranter or any other authors?[/quote]

Oddly, this is an era that seems to have been neglected in historical fiction on the whole . . . until now. Five years ago, when my agent was shopping around my own trilogy on Robert the Bruce, it garnered the interest of a few editors and went as far as an acquisitions meeting at one major publisher. But at the time books about Henry VIII's wives were in demand and the fact that it was a series of books primarily about male historical figures was a sticking point. Following some major rewrites this past year, I put the first book, The Crown in the Heather, up on Amazon.com recently, in Kindle and paperback. The second book, Worth Dying For, should be available by Christmas. At any rate, I'm elated to see this renewed interest in the period. It's long overdue.

I generally avoid reading other HF that's closely related to my own areas of research and writing, so I haven't read much fiction on this. I did read The Great Scot by Duncan Bruce, but sadly I don't think it even comes close to doing the Bruce justice. There may be other books set in the time period, but surprisingly few that actually focus on the main players in events.

I do maintain a Listmania of 'Best non-fiction about Robert the Bruce' at Amazon.com. I've selected books that are readable, not academic and dry. By far, the one I most highly recommend is Robert McNair Scott's Robert the Bruce, King of Scots.

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Post by annis » Sat July 24th, 2010, 8:43 pm

Tranter has written a lot of rather pedestrian novels, but luckily his Robert The Bruce trilogy mentioned by Gemini is amongst his best work, and well worth a read.

The 3 books in order:

1. The Steps To The Empty Throne
2. The Path of the Hero King
3. The Price of the King's Peace

There is also an edition around which contains all three books- The Bruce Trilogy (omnibus)
Last edited by annis on Sat July 24th, 2010, 8:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by annis » Sun August 29th, 2010, 2:18 am

I recently read Eleanor Fairburn's novel The Green Popinjays (review here) which is about a headstrong North Yorkshire noblewoman and set during the reigns of Edward I and Edward II. Significant events of their reigns provide the background to the story of Lady Lucia de Thweng. The 1297 Battle of Stirling Bridge, where the Scots led by William Wallace defeated the English is one. Lucia's uncle and guardian, Marmaduke, Ist Lord Thweng, distinguished himself during the battle, but his eldest son (yet another Marmaduke) who was Lucia's cousin and lover, was killed in action.

One article I read about Lord Marmaduke claims that Hugh de Cressingham, treasurer of the English administration in Scotland, was skinned alive by Wallace. Does anyone know if this gruesome claim is true? I knew he had been skinned (WW reputedly made a belt from his skin - eeeuw!) but thought it happened after he was killed, and a check of the relevant piece from the Chronicle of Walter of Guisborough seems to confirm this:

And he (the lord Hugh de Cressingham) who had previously terrified many by the sword of his tongue in many court trials, was eventually slain by the sword of evil men. The Scots stripped him of his skin and divided it amongst themselves in small parts, not indeed for relics but for insults
Last edited by annis on Sun August 29th, 2010, 2:25 am, edited 5 times in total.

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