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.

What Are You Reading? July 2013

For discussions of historical fiction. Threads that do not relate to historical fiction should be started in the Chat forum or elsewhere on the forum, depending on the topic.
User avatar
EC2
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3661
Joined: August 2008
Location: Nottingham UK
Contact:

Post by EC2 » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 12:02 pm

But then how did Rowling become a name in the first place? She was an unknown who was given a small publishing contract for a children's book about a boy wizard. No marketing budget, no big advance, no taran ta ra. At the outset it was purely word of mouth by the readers that gave her first novel its platform and things moved on from there. I think she's a darned good writer too. I shall read the Gailbraith. My only quibble is that inventing Gailbraith's background in such a pointed way was a step too far - IMO
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

User avatar
Misfit
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 9581
Joined: August 2008
Location: Seattle, WA

Post by Misfit » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 2:40 pm

I got sick-tracked from the Costain and worked through a couple of romances, Mountain Angel by Patricia McAllister was such a dog I had to go back to my read books to recall the title from what I read yesterday. I'm almost done with Tiger's Eye by Karen Robards. Regency with an interesting twist to get the Lady of the Manor with the raised from the gutter hero together. Really enjoying it.
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

User avatar
fljustice
Bibliophile
Posts: 1995
Joined: March 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Post by fljustice » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 5:22 pm

[quote=""EC2""]But then how did Rowling become a name in the first place? She was an unknown who was given a small publishing contract for a children's book about a boy wizard. No marketing budget, no big advance, no taran ta ra. At the outset it was purely word of mouth by the readers that gave her first novel its platform and things moved on from there. I think she's a darned good writer too. I shall read the Gailbraith. My only quibble is that inventing Gailbraith's background in such a pointed way was a step too far - IMO[/quote]

The point made in an interesting blog post that pointed out the book was doing exactly as well as expected for this kind of book by a debut author and regretting that she didn't get to finish the experiment: http://kriswrites.com/2013/07/17/the-bu ... he-writer/
Faith L. Justice, Author Website
Image

annis
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4585
Joined: August 2008

Post by annis » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 5:48 pm

Posted by EC
[Rowling] was an unknown who was given a small publishing contract for a children's book about a boy wizard. No marketing budget, no big advance, no taran ta ra.
True - but how often does this happen? The odds must be greater than winning the national lottery, surely - though the occasional one like Fifty Shades of Grey bucks the trend. So many books are published and never sell more than a few thousand copies, if that. And as we get swamped with more and more books coming onto the market, surely it won't become any easier.

I can definitely understand Rowkling's desire to write without the heavy weight of expectation hanging over her - just for once.

User avatar
MLE (Emily Cotton)
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3562
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 8:11 pm

I sympathize with JK Rowling. After all, she doesn't need to have her books be a smash success. She doesn't need the money, and she's had her fill of adulation. At this point in her career, anonymity must be rarer than a snowball in July, and twice as welcome.

I think that, once a writer has reached a certain level of competence in mechanics and can tell a story that engages their chosen reader, then whether a book takes off or not is entirely a crapshoot. It was that way in the old publishing days, and it's ten times more so now, with the publishers' clout reduced and a level -- but very crowded -- playing field.

Rowling was blessed by controversy with Harry Potter #1. That's what put it on most people's radar. And many writers have tried to imitate that by trying to be 'controversial' -- unfortunately, you can hardly shock enough of today's audience. Unless you are writing sexy stuff about Muhammad, and few want fame enough to risk a fatwa.

JenniferLovesRoxi
Scribbler
Posts: 30
Joined: May 2013

Post by JenniferLovesRoxi » Mon July 22nd, 2013, 11:37 pm

I am reading The Second Duchess by Elizabeth Loupas. I just started it this morning, so I am only about 10% of the way in right now, but I am enjoying it so far.

User avatar
princess garnet
Bibliophile
Posts: 1569
Joined: August 2008
Location: Maryland

Post by princess garnet » Wed July 24th, 2013, 12:37 am

Blood & Beauty by Sarah Dunant
Snagged this when it arrived at the library so I've checked it out. (No holds showed when I processed it) Ah, the perks of being a librarian. :D
Last edited by princess garnet on Wed July 24th, 2013, 12:42 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
Nefret
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 2976
Joined: February 2009
Favourite HF book: Welsh Princes trilogy
Preferred HF: The Middle Ages (England), New Kingdom Egypt, Medieval France
Location: Temple of Isis

Post by Nefret » Wed July 24th, 2013, 2:18 am

Queen of the Conqueror by Tracy Borman
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}

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4435
Joined: August 2008
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Post by Divia » Thu July 25th, 2013, 12:55 am

YA book In the shadow of Blackbirds and I really really like it! HF too!
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.
http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Berengaria
Avid Reader
Posts: 307
Joined: July 2010
Location: northern Vancouver Island, BC Canada

Post by Berengaria » Thu July 25th, 2013, 4:07 pm

I'm speeding through The White Princessby Philippa Gregory. It is interesting to read about the gradual respect and love that grows between Elizabeth and Henry and the paranoia of the Tudors. It isn't the engrossing read that I found with The Summer Queen, but enjoyable all of the same. Now that Gregory has written about all of the main female players of the Wars of the Roses, I wonder what era she'll tackle next?
Image My 4 girls!


“No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. She will not want new fashions nor regret the loss of expensive diversions or variety of company if she can be amused with an author in her closet.” ~Lady Montagu

Post Reply

Return to “General Discussion”