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Madams and Monsieurs, I present to you our menu for the 2017 Historical Fiction Challenge. The challenge begins on January 1, 2017 and ends 11:59pm on December 31, 2017. There are four levels of dining to choose from. You can pick and choose to your hearts content, but you must read at least 1 book from each course.
There will be a separate thread for lists.
Level 1: Drive Thru - Read 6 books
Level 2: Early Bird Special - Read 10 books
Level 3: Fine Dining - Read 14 books
Level 4: Connoisseur - Read 20 books
1) Read a book by your favorite author
2) Read a "new to you" author
3) Read a book with either a number, color, or proper name in the title
4) Read a book that contains a significant animal in it (example: the horse Ghost in Outlaw, Hedwig the owl in Harry Potter...etc. If the animal has a name, it counts!)
5) Read a book not in a series and leave a review in this thread
6) Read a book whose author or a character shares a name with you (first name, last name, initals)
1) Read a book 500+ pages
2) Read a book about forbidden love, in any capacity
3) Read a book that contains an American president
4) In honor of the 20th anniversary release of Harry Potter, read a book that features magic, sorcery, withcraft or any other nefarious dark arts
5) In honor of the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen's death, read a book that contains either a convoluted courtship, a strong heroine, a rakish rogue, an overbearing mother, or a book set in England
6) Read a book that features a wedding, a birth, or a funeral (kuddos to you if the book contains all three!)
1) Read a book on your TBR list
2) Read a book set in 2 time periods, or 2 countries
3) Read a book with less than 300 pages
4) Read a book set in the Old West
5) Read the first book in a series
6) Read a historical romance
1) Read a book about or set during the Prohibition Era
2) Read a book whose main character is older than 60
3) Read a classic novel published before 1900
4) Re-read your favorite book
5) Read the oldest book on your TBR pile
6) Read a book that, at the time of publication, was written by an author who was older than 50
Last Edited on: 11/29/16 3:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Wow - this looks like so much fun!!!
ETA - Never having done a challenge - do you have to plan everything out ahead of time, or can you move things around if you find they fit better somewhere else?
Last Edited on: 11/30/16 11:20 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Love the categories! As a giant nerd who likes to plan what I'm reading way in advance I was completely stumped for the "Read a book whose author/character shares the same first, last, initials with you". Good gravy! Could not find any characters or authors with the name Holly or initials which are HP. Finally after much searching I stumbled on the answer quite by accident-Hester Prynne! We share initials! Eureka! Here's hoping Hester by Paula Reed is not a dud.
This sounds like such fun! I'm in. I need to EMPTY my TBR pile. I say this every stinkin' year, but I mean it this time! I'm really curious to see what I have sitting around here that will fit. And I do like to plan ahead, but I've been known to switch a book from one category to another if I have to...no one here is that strict, Ann.
Holly--good job on Hester! I'm hoping to use Queen Victoria, myself. Glad to see you're at Wayne State.
Queen Victoria! How fun for you, Vicky!
Holly, I read Hester in 2010. According to my reading journal notes, much of the story takes place in England where Hester becomes involved in the intrigues of Oliver Cromwell. My final sentence: "Enjoyed this book, probably more than I expected."
Carolyn! The categories for "Fine Wines" is so on-point! Props to you for your cleverness.
I also noticed that you are starting the Poldark series in 2017 ... you will absolutely not be disappointed. Such wonderful, wonderful books. Be prepared to find another hero in Ross Poldark, ala Sebatian St. Cyr or Timothy Wilde.
Last Edited on: 12/29/16 12:04 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Appetizer course - Favorite Author: I read The Summer Queen by Elizabeth Chadwick. This is the 1st book in her trilogy about Eleanor of Aquitaine and it was wonderful, as one would expect from EC. However, it didn't set my hair on fire. Writing, research, character development, etc. were all excellent, but the pacing seemed a bit slow - maybe because the author knew she needed to stretch Eleanor's story into three full-length books.
im happy you like the categories! I aim to please 😀
I have the entire Poldark series, and I'm going to start them soon. I LOVE the tv show, so I can only assume I'll LOVE the books. And of course imagining Aidan Turner while I read is never a bad thing 😘
Kelly: I am reading the second Eleanor book on my kindle, I think it is called The Winter Crown. I am finding that I like it better than the first one for the same reasons you mentioned.
Last Edited on: 1/9/17 10:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Appetizer - Book Review: Don't you just love it when you know a book you read in January will make the year's top 10 list in December? For me, that book is The Boys in the Boat, by Daniel James Brown. It is a non-fiction book that tells the magical story of the 1936 Washington University eight-oar crew who won Olympic gold in 1936 in pre-war Germany.
One last comment: If you can get through the descriptions of the races without crying, you are a stronger woman than I! :)
Can't say enough abuot books by Elizabeth Chadwick. The writing is just beautiful. Love Eleanor of Aquitaine, I woman before her time
I just finished Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye for the Appetizer #3 category. This one is sort of a take off on the classic novels Jane Eyre and Nicholas Nickleby with a troubled, murderous governess as the title character. While I admired the cleverness of the writing I can't rate it quite as highly as I do the author's New York City police novels. It's still worth a read though. I give this one 3 and a half stars.
Last Edited on: 1/23/17 11:36 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
I am reading The Homesman by Glendon Swarthout. It is excellent. I expected it to trudge at a distance a bit, but you are right there with them and its realism has educated me to how 'the West' was settled, and at what price.