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Barbara Kingsolver

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Posts: 2440
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: I can't answer this in 100 characters. Sorry.
Favourite HF book: Checkmate, the final novel in the Lymond series
Preferred HF: Literary novels. Late medieval and Renaissance.
Location: Catskill, New York, USA

Barbara Kingsolver

Post by Margaret » Fri November 16th, 2018, 2:37 am

I've just read Barbara Kingsolver's new novel, Unsheltered (see review: http://www.historicalnovels.info/Unsheltered.html), and really enjoyed it. It's half-and-half contemporary and historical, with the historical part revolving around 19th-century New Jersey naturalist Mary Treat, a fascinating character who reminds me a bit (not 100%) of the protagonist in Elizabeth Gilbert's The Signature of All Things, another 19th-century naturalist (but a fictional one).

I find that with most dual time-frame present/past novels, one thread, either the contemporary or the historical is a lot more interesting than the other, but I think Kingsolver has gotten the balance just right here, with both threads of the story equally interesting.

I never read Lacuna, which seems to have been a critical success, but didn't catch fire with readers on this forum. The premise didn't grab me for some reason.

Does anyone here recall if Kingsolver has written other historical novels besides these two? I haven't read a lot of her work, but this novel makes me want to explore it a bit further.
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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