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What are you reading? May 2011

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SonjaMarie
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Post by SonjaMarie » Fri May 13th, 2011, 2:35 am

I've finished "Chronicle of the Royal Family" ed. Derrick Mercer (611pgs, 1991)*. I bought this book back in the early 90s, and read about half of it then, but I got bored when it got to the Hanoverians. So this time I was determined to read the whole thing, and I finally finished today, whoo hoo! Loads of good information, and hundreds of images.

SM
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Telynor
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Post by Telynor » Fri May 13th, 2011, 5:56 am

[quote=""Vanessa""]I'm just about to start Travels with My Aunt by Graham Greene.[/quote]

Graham Greene is one of my favourites!

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Vanessa
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Post by Vanessa » Fri May 13th, 2011, 8:39 am

[quote=""Berengaria""]I'm throughly enjoying Smith's Queen by Rightabout Cecily Neville. I like to read it in bed, when everything is nice and quiet. However, I've been losing sleep time, because I'm saying to myself "Just onemore chapter! :D [/quote]

I have a habit of doing that and then feel bug-eyed in the morning!! :rolleyes: :)
currently reading: My Books on Goodreads

Books are mirrors, you only see in them what you already have inside you ~ The Shadow of the Wind

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LoobyG
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Post by LoobyG » Fri May 13th, 2011, 8:50 am

[quote=""Vanessa""]I thought Never Let Me Go was an excellent book and the subject matter not beyond the realms of possibility.[/quote]

I'm very absorbed so far...no tears yet! Thanks for posting the review writerinthenorth, made for interesting reading.

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Fri May 13th, 2011, 1:01 pm

Having bailed on another book that wasn't interesting me, I'm giving Erskine's Whispers in the Sand a go.
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Post by DebB » Fri May 13th, 2011, 5:22 pm

[quote=""Berengaria""]I'm throughly enjoying Smith's Queen by Rightabout Cecily Neville. I like to read it in bed, when everything is nice and quiet. However, I've been losing sleep time, because I'm saying to myself "Just one more chapter! :D [/quote]

Yep -- that's me right now with Pargeter's Heaven Tree Trilogy -- it's so good!

annis
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Post by annis » Fri May 13th, 2011, 8:16 pm

The Harlot's Press, by Helen Pike. The title is clearly a pun on William Hogarth's Harlot's Progress. It's an interesting novel, but not totally successful as its style is rather disjointed.

The subject is an intriguing one. It's 1820 and Prinny, the Prince Regent, has finally become king after an exceptionally long wait (Prince Charles comes to mind here as his mother Queen Elizabeth overtakes Prinny's father, George III, in the longest-serving British monarch stakes). His despised and discarded wife Caroline of Brunswick is threatening a return to Britain so she can be crowned Queen at the coronation ceremony, and becomes an unlikely champion for the country's many poor and disaffected, Radicals and religious reformers amongst them.

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SonjaMarie
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Post by SonjaMarie » Fri May 13th, 2011, 8:26 pm

[quote=""annis""]The Harlot's Press, by Helen Pike. The title is clearly a pun on William Hogarth's Harlot's Progress. It's an interesting novel, but not totally successful as its style is rather disjointed.

[/quote]

I recently saw all 6 parts of "The Harlot's Progress" in a book I'm reading about the dark side of Georgian London.

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Margaret
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Post by Margaret » Fri May 13th, 2011, 9:47 pm

A novel by Peter Mottley titled The Harlot's Progress has been in my TBR stack for some time. It's based on the Hogarth series. Not self-published exactly, but published by the author's daughter after her father's death. Perhaps I will get to it sometime. There seem to be a wearying number of historical novels about prostitutes, and it is not the subject matter that most attracts me to a book. But Daniel Defoe's Moll Flanders is fantastic and so, in quite a different way, is Emma Donoghue's Slammerkin.
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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Post by annis » Sat May 14th, 2011, 12:37 am

Harlots Press has an an unusual angle in that the main character, Nell, works in her stepfather's printshop, helping to produce sundry scurrilous caricatures and and political tracts. Caroline of Bruswick is a frequent subject for her work.

Was Caroline of Bruswick Britain's only remittance queen consort? The Prince-Regent paid her handsomely to stay away from Britain. Partly it was because they were totally unsuited but a divorce was in the too-hard basket, and partly because she was more popular with the people than he was. Some similarities have been drawn between the modern People's Princess, Diana, Princess of Wales, and Caroline - in fact I think there was a TV doco along those lines at one stage.

For those unfamiliar with the term, a "remittance man" was someone paid off by his family in Britain on condition that he never return home. Generally they were sons considered a family embarrassment or black sheep. The colonies made good dumping grounds for these men. I even know an elderly man myself who was paid off to come to New Zealand because his flagrant homosexuality was abhorrent to his family in England. It's a custom which is pretty much dead now though, I imagine.
Last edited by annis on Sat May 14th, 2011, 9:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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