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Tanzanite
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:28 pm

The Children of Henry VIII by John Guy. Non-fiction. US release July 1, 2013.

Nothing consumed Henry VIII, England's wealthiest and most powerful king, more than his desire to produce a legitimate male heir and perpetuate the Tudor dynasty. To that end he married six wives, became the subject of the most notorious divorce case of the sixteenth century, and broke with the pope, all in an age of international competition and warfare, social unrest, and growing religious intolerance and discord.

Henry fathered four children who survived childhood, each by a different mother. In The Children of Henry VIII, renowned Tudor historian John Guy tells their stories, returning to the archives and drawing on a vast array of contemporary records, personal letters, ambassadors' reports, and other eyewitness accounts, including the four children's own handwritten letters. Guy's compelling narrative illuminates their personalities, depicting siblings often scarred by jealously, mutual distrust, bitter rivalry, even hatred. Possessed of quick wits and strong wills, their characters were defined partly by the educations they received, and partly by events over which they had no control. Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond, although recognized as the king's son, could never forget his illegitimacy. Edward would succeed his father, but died while still in his teens, desperately plotting to exclude his half-sisters from the throne, and utterly failing to do so. Mary's world was shattered by her mother Catherine of Aragon's divorce and her own unhappy marriage. Elizabeth was the most successful, but also the luckiest. Even so, she lived with the knowledge that her father had ordered her mother Anne Boleyn's execution, was often in fear of her own life, and could never marry the one man she truly loved.

John Guy takes us behind the façade of politics and pageantry at the Tudor court, vividly capturing the greatest and most momentous family drama in all of English history.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:31 pm

The Sweet Girl by Annabel Lyon. US release June 4, 2013 (was released in the UK last week).

From the award-winning author of The Golden Mean, a captivating, wholly transporting new novel that follows Aristotle's strong-willed daughter as she shapes her own destiny: an unexpected love story, a tender portrait of a girl and her father, and an astonishing journey through the underbelly of a supposedly enlightened society.

Aristotle has never been able to resist a keen mind, and Pythias is certainly her father's daughter: besting his brightest students, refusing to content herself with a life circumscribed by the kitchen, the loom, and, eventually, a husband. Into her teenage years, she is protected by the reputation of her adored father, but with the death of Alexander the Great, her fortunes suddenly change. Aristotle's family is forced to flee Athens for a small town where the great philosopher soon dies, and orphaned Pythias quickly discovers that the world is not a place of logic after all, but one of superstition. As threats close in on her-a rebellious household, capricious gods and goddesses-she will need every ounce of wit she possesses, and the courage to seek refuge where she least expects it.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:34 pm

Worlds of Arthur by Guy Halsall. Non-fiction. US release April 1, 2013.

King Arthur is probably the most famous and certainly the most legendary medieval king. From the early ninth century through the middle ages, to the Arthurian romances of Victorian times, the tales of this legendary figure have blossomed and multiplied. And in more recent times, there has been a continuous stream of books claiming to unlock the secret or the truth behind the "once and future king."

The truth, as Guy Halsall reveals in this fascinating investigation, is both radically different--and also a good deal more intriguing. Broadly speaking, there are two Arthurs. On the one hand is the traditional "historical" Arthur, waging a doomed struggle to save Roman civilization against the relentless Anglo-Saxon tide during the darkest years of the Dark Ages. On the other is the Arthur of myth and legend, accompanied by a host of equally legendary people, places, and stories: Lancelot, Guinevere, Galahad and Gawain, Merlin, Excalibur, the Lady in the Lake, the Sword in the Stone, Camelot, and the Round Table.

The big problem with all this, notes Halsall, is that "King Arthur" might well never have existed. And if he did exist, it is next to impossible to say anything at all about him. As this challenging new look at the Arthur legend makes clear, all books claiming to reveal "the truth" behind King Arthur can safely be ignored. Not only the fanciful pseudo-historical accounts--Merlin the Magician, the Lady in the Lake--but even the "historical" Arthur is largely a figment of the imagination. The evidence that we have, whether written or archeological, is simply incapable of telling us anything detailed about the Britain in which he is supposed to have lived, fought, and died.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:35 pm

An Alternative History of Britain: The Hundred Years War by Timothy Venning. Non-fiction. UK release March 30, 2013.

Continuing his exploration of the alternative paths that British history might so easily have taken, Timothy Venning turns his attention to the Hundred Years War between England and France. Could the English have won in the long term, or, conversely, have been decisively defeated sooner? Among the many scenarios discussed are what would have happened if the Black Prince had not died prematurely of the Black Death, leaving the 10-year-old Richard to inherit Edward IIIs crown. What would have been the consequences if France's Scottish allies had been victorious at Neville's Cross in 1346, while most English forces were occupied in France? What if Henry V had recovered from the dysentery that killed him at 35, giving time for his son Henry VI to inherit the combined crowns of France and England as a mature (and half-French) man rather than an infant controlled by others? And what if Joan of Arc had not emerged to galvanize French resistance at Orleans?

While necessarily speculative, all the scenarios are discussed within the framework of a deep understanding of the major driving forces, tensions and trends that shaped British history and help to shed light upon them. In so doing they help the reader to understand why things panned out as they did, as well as what might have been in this fascinating period that still arouses such strong passions on both sides of the Channel.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:36 pm

An Alternative History of Britain: The Wars of the Roses by Timothy Venning. Non-fiction. UK release March 28, 2013.

Timothy Venning's exploration of the alternative paths that British history might easily have taken moves on to the Wars of the Roses. What if Richard of York had not given battle in vain? How would a victory for Warwick the Kingmaker at the Battle of Barnet changed the course of the struggle for power? What if the Princes had escaped from the tower or the Stanleys had not betrayed their king at Bosworth? These are just a few of the fascinating questions posed by this book. As always, while necessarily speculative, Dr Venning discusses all the scenarios within the benefit of a deep understanding of the major driving forces, tensions and trends that shaped British history. In so doing, he helps the reader to understand why things panned out as they did, as well as what might have been in this tumultuous period.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:37 pm

The Kings and Queens of Anglo Saxon England by Timothy Venning. Non-fiction. UK reissue January 28, 2013.

The Anglo-Saxon era is one of the most important in English history, covering the period from the end of Roman authority in the British Isles to the Norman Conquest of 1066 in which the very idea of England was born. In The Kings& Queens of Anglo-Saxon England, Venning examines the rulers of Anglo-Saxon England, beginning with the legendary leaders of the Anglo-Saxon invasion as Hengest and Horsa or Cerdic and Cynric and moving on through such figures as Aethelbert of Kent, the first king to be converted to Christianity and his daughter Aethelburh, whose marriage began the conversion of Northumbria, to Alfred of Wessex and his dynasty, the Viking invasions, and the last of the Anglo-Saxon kings, Harold Godwineson.
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Post by Tanzanite » Tue January 8th, 2013, 11:38 pm

An Alternative History of Britain: The Anglo Saxon Age by Timothy Venning. Non-fiction. UK release January 17, 2013.

Taking a similar approach to his successful If Rome Hadn't Fallen, Timothy Venning explores the various decision points in a fascinating period of British history and the alternative paths that it might have taken. Dr Timothy Venning starts within an outline of the process by which much of Britain came to be settled by Germanic tribes after the end of Roman rule, so far as it can be determined from the sparse and fragmentary sources. He then moves on to discuss a series of scenarios which might have altered the course of subsequent history dramatically. For example, was a reconquest by the native British ever a possibility (under 'Arthur' or someone else)? Which of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms might have united England sooner and would this have kept the Danes out? And, of course, what if Harold Godwinson had won at Hastings? While necessarily speculative, all the scenarios are discussed within the framework of a deep understanding of the major driving forces, tensions and trends that shaped British history and help to shed light upon them. In so doing they help the reader to understand why things panned out as they did, as well as what might have been.
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Post by Nefret » Wed January 9th, 2013, 12:13 am

Worlds of Arthur comes out about a month before Tolkien's posthumous Arthur book, right?
Into battle we ride with Gods by our side
We are strong and not afraid to die
We have an urge to kill and our lust for blood has to be fulfilled
WE´LL FIGHT TILL THE END! And send our enemies straight to Hell!
- "Into Battle"
{Ensiferum}

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Post by SonjaMarie » Wed January 9th, 2013, 3:14 am

[quote=""Lady of Bennachie""]It shouldn't have, but that just made me almost spray tea all over my monitor.

Poor lady though, but at least through her status she is immortalised in people's thoughts and imaginations.[/quote]

Missed this the first time around, sorry about your monitor, LOL!

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Post by SonjaMarie » Wed January 9th, 2013, 3:17 am

[quote=""Tanzanite""]The Fairest of Them All by Carolyn Turgeon. US release August 6, 2013.

From the author of Godmother and Mermaid, The Fairest of Them All explores what happens when fairy tale heroines grow up and don’t live happily ever after.

Living in an enchanted forest, Rapunzel spends her days tending a mystical garden with her adoptive mother, Mathena. A witch, Mathena was banished from court because of her magic powers, though the women from the kingdom still seek her advice and herbal remedies. She waits, biding her time to exact revenge against those who betrayed her.

One day Rapunzel’s beautiful voice and long golden locks captivate a young prince hunting in the forest nearby. Overcome, he climbs her hair up to her chamber and they fall into each other’s arms. But their afternoon of passion is fleeting, and the prince must return to his kingdom, as he is betrothed to another.

Now king, he marries his intended to bring peace to his kingdom. They have a stunning daughter named Snow White. Yet the king is haunted by his memories of Rapunzel, and after the mysterious death of his wife, realizes he is free to marry the woman he never stopped longing for. In hopes of also replacing the mother of his beloved daughter, the king makes Rapunzel his queen.

But when Mathena’s wedding gift of an ancient mirror begins speaking to her, Rapunzel falls under its evil spell, and the king begins to realize that Rapunzel is not the beautiful, kind woman he dreamed of.[/quote]

How is this historical fiction or nonfiction history? Just wondering :)

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