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Topic: need new author-interested in borgias/cousins' war/tudors/medici..

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Subject: need new author-interested in borgias/cousins' war/tudors/medici..
Date Posted: 2/10/2014 2:01 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2010
Posts: 458
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hi all, I really need some new historical fiction author books. I adore Philippa Greggory so anything similar to her would be great. I'm also interested in movies/shows if you have any recs. Here are the people/time frame I'd like to read/watch-

tudors,borgias,medici,Cleopatra,marie antoinetta, cousins' war.

I've read Juliet greys' marie Antoinette book,   Margaret geores' books, confessions of a medici queen, devil's queen. I've watched borgias, tudors and Spartacus and am watching white queen now. While I'd like to read about the major character like anne Boleyn, I don't mind if it's about a lesser known historical figure that is in the same time frame.thanks all.

Date Posted: 2/10/2014 5:25 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,508
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Hi Evelyn!

Welcome to  historical fiction addiction I mean chatter :)
I'd check out the thread about British/French saint and historical fiction in the forum - I think several of the suggestions given there would be of interest to you.

The only Borgia books I've read are the ones by Jean Plaidy, it's been years but I remember finding them interesting.

Date Posted: 2/10/2014 7:41 PM ET
Member Since: 7/22/2009
Posts: 2,617
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Well...if you're interested in the Wars of the Roses, it would be hard to top Sharon Kay Penman's The Sunne in Splendour, which focuses on Richard III. Also excellent are Treason by Meredith Whitford and, for a non-Ricardian perspective, Stolen Crown by Susan Higginbotham. Higginbotham also has written a couple other books related to this period (The Woodvilles and Queen of Last Hopes) that I have not read, but undoubtedly others on this forum have and can chime in about these as well as other books about this period. If you want something a bit different but fascinating nonetheless, you might try Josephine Tey's The Daughter of Time in which a modern-day detective, intrigued by a portrait of Richard III, tries to unravel the mystery of what happened to the Princes in the Tower.

You indicated that you'd read Margaret George -- so I'm assuming you read The Autobiography of Henry VIII (which I loved) and Elizabeth I (which I liked a lot). I know there are mixed feelings about Alison Weir, but I thought her Six Wives of Henry VIII was very good. I also really enjoyed Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies -- but I know that a number of folks were less enthusiastic. I think one of the best fictional portraits of Elizabeth I is Susan Kay's Legacy. As for movies, I loved "A Man for All Seasons" about Thomas More.

I will let others weigh in on books/movies about the Borgias, Medicis, Marie Antoinette, and Cleopatra.

(ETA: I know you said you were looking for authors similar to Phillipa Gregory. The authors I've recommended above are different in that their writings are less speculative and more history-based.)


Last Edited on: 2/13/14 8:19 AM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 2/10/2014 10:37 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,508
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I have read three of Diane Haeger's Tudor books, one I really liked was from the perspective of Bessie Blount and one from the perspective of Catherine Howard - both sides of the story we don't often hear.

I haven't read it, but Sena Jeter Naslund wrote a book about Marie Antionette - Abundance (on a side note, not about any of the people you are asking about - but her Ahab's Wife is one of the most beautifully written books I've ever read.

Michelle Moran has written about Cleopatra - the one I've read is Cleopatra's Daughter.

Date Posted: 2/14/2014 12:02 AM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2009
Posts: 94
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I've read Sena Jeter Naslund's Abundance and loved it. 

I also just got a book about the Borgias, called The Borgia Bride by Jeanne Kalogridis.  Haven't read it yet though so no idea if it's good....

Date Posted: 2/14/2014 12:57 AM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2007
Posts: 8,542
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I also loved Abundance by Naslund.

Worth checking out if you're interested in Cleopatra is When We Were Gods by Colin Falconer. That was a good one!

I haven't read it yet, but I just picked up Blood & Beauty by Sarah Dunant, which is about the Borgias. I have liked her other books very much and think this one will also be an excellent read. The same with The Malice of Fortune, by Michael Ennis, another Borgia book. I've liked his writing previously as well.

I also enjoy Anne Easter Smith's books, set during the Wars of the Roses.

Bruce -
Date Posted: 2/14/2014 8:41 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2008
Posts: 3,412
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Blood and Beauty was a pretty good book. I second "The Sunne in Slendour". I've also read the Borgia Bride and it was a good novel also though I enjoyed Blood and Beauty more but maybe because The Borgia Bride is a bit more chick lit.

Date Posted: 2/14/2014 6:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2005
Posts: 318
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Last Edited on: 2/6/15 7:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/16/2014 8:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/13/2008
Posts: 247
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Alison Weir and David Starky write about the Tudors. Both good authors.

Date Posted: 2/17/2014 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2010
Posts: 458
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thanks tess, I love Katherine Hepburn, haven't been able to find that movie. mk, I tried one book by Alison weir the captive queen couldn't get past the first page! thanks for al lthe recs everyone, hope they keep coming =)

Date Posted: 2/25/2014 12:31 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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I know this is before your preferred time period but I still have to give a shout out for Elizabeth Chadwick's books.  She makes early medieval Britain come alive.  But pay attention, there are two authors by that name writing two different genres.  You want the English Elizabeth Chadwick.  The America author with that name writes romances set I believe in the American West.

Date Posted: 2/25/2014 7:54 AM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2010
Posts: 458
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I think I've heard the name Elizabeth chadwick, didn't know there was two of them. thanks for the rec!