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Topic: Happy November! What are you reading?

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Subject: Happy November! What are you reading?
Date Posted: 11/1/2009 5:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2007
Posts: 482
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Thought I'd start a thread for November since, eek, it's November already!  I'm in the midst of Devil in the White City for my non-fiction challenge.  I'm from the Chicago area originally so that's also of interest to me!  What is everyone else reading?

Date Posted: 11/1/2009 6:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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I'm about 250 pages into The Black Swan by Day Taylor. A Civil War romance, but there's a lot more history than romance.  Most definitely not for anyone who wants their history sugar coated and prettified.

Date Posted: 11/1/2009 7:52 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 9,174
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Cathy, I just reread The Black Swan last summer, it was very  different than I remembered  I read it originally in 1979. 

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 11/1/2009 8:01 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
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I am reading The Death of Colonal Mann by Cynthia Peale. It is a historical mystery set in Boston in 1891. Seems good so far. I live in Masachusetts and have lived in Boston for 5 years so it is great to picture it more than 100 years ago.

Alice

Date Posted: 11/1/2009 8:14 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
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I'm about 350 pages into The Memoir of Cleopatra by Margaret George. It's for my 1000+ page book, but it falls short by about 40 pages, so I'm going to have to supplement somehow.

Date Posted: 11/1/2009 8:30 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
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Still working on London by Rutherfurd and really enjoying it. I seem to have less time to read though since we have moved and are constantly working on this place ( and it's not a fixer-upper!) I also have Devil in the White City to read. I have already read about the serial killer in another book (Holmes, I believe it was) but I wanted to read this because I too, lived in the Chicago area and wanted to see what this books had to say about the World's Fair.

Date Posted: 11/1/2009 8:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2007
Posts: 482
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Jeanne, I am enjoying it so far.  My whole family's read it and loved it, so I'm a little bit late on this one!  I tend to enjoy non-fiction that reads like fiction, which this does, so I'm perfectly comfortable with it.  When I was in high school we did a lot of Chicago architecture study complete with Chicago field trips, so it's also interesting to read about names I know like Sullivan and Adler, etc.



Last Edited on: 11/1/09 9:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/1/2009 10:46 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
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I'm just starting Mary Queen of Scotland by Margaret George.  It's my first of her.

I read Devil in the White City in January, and I counted it for my non-fiction item of the challenge, too.  I really liked it, although it was a bit slow at first.  I've been in Chicago for the last 13 years, so it was interesting to see the city 100 years ago.  A shame, though, that there's so little left of the fair, both literally in Jackson Park, and in the City's sense of its identity and history. 

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 6:18 AM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
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Jerelyn, I wish I'd right it once in the 70's and then again. I'd love to compare. You just won't find books these days dealing so frankly with the slave issue. At least not in the romance genre.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 7:29 AM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2005
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Reading Born of the Sun still. I don't have as much time for reading as I'd like. But I hope to catch up a bit during the holidays.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 7:57 AM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2009
Posts: 388
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I'm still working on The First Man in Rome by Colleen McCullough. It's a good read, but it's not one you can breeze through quickly. If I'm tired, I find it easier to give up and go to sleep rather than push through, or else I'll miss half of what's going on!

I'm jealous of those of you who are experiencing Margaret George for the first time. I've loved her books so far. I've read the ones about Henry VIII, Mary Queen of Scots, and Cleopatra. I have the Helen of Troy book as well; I need to move that to the top of my TBR sometime soon. Fascinating books.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 8:37 AM ET
Member Since: 2/20/2007
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The Mistress of the Art of Death, and gearing up to start my first Amelia Peabody book.:)

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 9:18 AM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2005
Posts: 205
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I finished up The Wet Nurse's Tale yesterday and I really enjoyed it. I don't know what I'll read next, nothing I have seems to be grabbing me.........

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 12:03 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 9,174
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Cathy,  I just ordered "Moss Rose"  The sequel to Black Swan,  I can't remember if I read it or not. The cover seems familiar, so we'll see.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 1:44 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2008
Posts: 772
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I read The Black Swan this summer and wished that Ullah hadn't died so early on. I was really liking that character! But her death shapes the hero and he's been one of the more interesting vintage heroes I've read, so I guess I shouldn't complain....


I finished up the last book of the David Gemmell Troy trilogy and nearly threw it against the wall for the last half. I have a feeling the Margaret George Troy treatment will suite my tastes better as well as being TRUE Historical Fiction instead of falsely-marketed fantasy. But for now I'm going back to the mid-1980s and re-reading some of those old teen Sunfire books. Some are better on the historical side of things than others, and I like super-fast reads now and then. :-)

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 2:15 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 9,174
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Cathy,  Have you read Day Taylors California books? 

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 2:16 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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I am enjoying The Black Swan although it could use a good 200 page pruning. Karla's right about Adam, he is a pretty good vintage hero. He's very Alpha but he's not like that idio Wulfgar in The Wolf and the Dove. I've got Moss Rose as well and looking forward to it. I think that takes the story beyond the Civil War.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 2:20 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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Jerelyn, I did read the California books and really enjoyed them. I've reviewed them on Amazon and my blog. She's got one more book I've found (forget the name) but no one has it listed for sale anywhere that I've found. I put in an ILL request just for fun. If my library gets that they will impress the h*** out of me. I don't know what it's about but I got the feeling there was more story left in the California characters.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 2:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2008
Posts: 772
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Moss Rose starts in 1865, I think. Haven't read more than the first page when wasting time trying to figure out what I want to read next. (A delicate and involved process that has me usually standing in my bathrobe in the basement looking through all my boxes of books and fighting off schizophrenic indecision.)

TBS could definitely have used a pruning. Just wait until you get to the part with the shipwreck, the island, and the whole voodoo thing with the stumpy freak/midget! Oh, huge 1970s historicals! Don't ever change!

I'm curious to read "Bitter Eden", which was written by one of the people who was "Day Taylor". The cover for it looks almost exactly like The Black Swan and so does the plot. Hmmmm....



Last Edited on: 11/2/09 2:28 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/2/2009 3:13 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 9,174
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I'll have to check out the Cali.  books. 

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 3:22 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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Just wait until you get to the part with the shipwreck, the island, and the whole voodoo thing with the stumpy freak/midget! Oh, huge 1970s historicals! Don't ever change!

Uhoh, that sounds scary. I did find a copy of Bitter Eden on Bookmooch and it's on my way to me now.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 3:28 PM ET
Member Since: 5/6/2009
Posts: 1,938
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I am reading The Lady Elizabeth by Alison Weir and to be honest I enjoy her non-fiction much better than this or Innocent Traitor.  I know it is fiction but some of the liberties taken are really out there.  I am about halfway through and will continue but am almost expecting Elizabeth to run away and become a nursemaid or something silly like that.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 3:44 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2008
Posts: 772
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Thanks to comments like yours and Misfit's review of that Erickson Queen Mary book, I think I'll avoid both those authors' fictional efforts! Every author has their forte, and it seems that turning these figures from non-fiction to HF isn't one of them. :P So thanks for keeping my TBR a little bit lower.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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Interesting about Weir is that I've heard chit chat that she's not so highly respected with the *real* historians. I guess she takes a lot of liberties and draws whatever conclusions best suits her. Mind you, that's only chit chat from other historical novelists that are big on research and accuracy.

I did read the book on the princes in the tower by Bertram Fields called Royal Blood. Weir and Shakespeare sure get knocked around a bit.

Date Posted: 11/2/2009 4:05 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2008
Posts: 772
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I read Weir's book on the Princes and I was never good in school about analyzing non-fiction (pretty much just accepted whatever the author said), but so many times during that book I sat up and said, "Ok, you pulled that one from your butt!" She lined up Info A & Info B and then leaped right over to Conclusion Z, using blasé assertion as a substitute for showing her work.

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