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Topic: New Author Topic

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Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Subject: New Author Topic
Date Posted: 1/21/2010 12:11 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,333
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I thought I would start a topic for us to discuss and ask question about authors that are new to us or maybe have been sitting our shelf for years and we have not read yet. This topic will be good for new members to check out some recomendations. So I will start. New Historical Fiction authors for me over the last year that I really like and I  will definately read more of:

Elizabeth Chadwick, Conn Iggulden and Sara Donati. All the books were excellent.

I have some of these authors I am considering reading their books any comments

Stephen Pressfield, Alan Gold, C.W. Gortner, Brenda Rickman Vantrease, Susan Holloway Scott

Alice

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 1:10 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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New to me in the last few months are Pamela Belle, Elizabeth Goudge and Stella Riley (Riley is very very hard to find without paying an arm and a leg). I plan on trying Rosemary Sutcliff as soon as the pile eases up.

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 1:24 PM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2005
Posts: 2,390
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Alice,  I read and certainly enjoyed C. W. Gortner's The Last Queen;  and The Illuminator and The Mercy Seller by Vantrease.    

A couple of books I've read recently by new-to-me authors that I enjoyed and plan to read more -- Penelope Williamson and Rosalind Laker. 

And, based on Misfit's recommendation, I'm reading and enjoying  HF by Pamela Belle.  

 

Linda

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 1:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2005
Posts: 809
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Georgette Heyer! I haven't tried any of her straight historical fiction novels (The Conquerer, Royal Escape, etc.) and have heard they can be rather dry. Her Georgian and Regency romances, however, are excellent. Her characters are wonderfully drawn with distinctive voices - I can hear the dialogue in my head as I read. There's absolutely no hanky-panky in the novels (barely any kisses!) but boy can she create romantic tension! Besides the romance, several of her books have adventure elements.

She expertly captures the feel of the time period - with its rather strict manners and social codes. Many of the comic situations in her novels arise from the collision of "proper" manners with passionate emotions.

I contribute to the Georgette Heyer Challenge blog. http://georgetteheyer.blogspot.com/  It features reviews of many of her books by several different bloggers. I have read and enjoyed The Grand Sophy, Charity Girl, Arabella, April Lady, The Masqueraders and These Old Shades. It's hard to pick a favorite. For a comic romance, I would go with The Grand Sophy, and for a romantic adventure story, The Masqueraders.

Most of Heyer's books have recently been reprinted by Sourcebooks and Harlequin. They have even duplicated some of the titles. I hope Sourcebooks eventually republishes all the books now available as Harlequin reprints, as their books are of much better quality (sturdier covers, heavier paper).



Last Edited on: 1/21/10 1:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/21/2010 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2007
Posts: 482
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I became a Jeanne Kalogridis fan after reading I, Mona Lisa last year.  I picked up The Borgia Bride and am excited to read it.

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 2:12 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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I forgot to mention Annette Motley. I really really enjoyed her Quickenberry Tree.

Felicia, the only Heyer I've tried so far was The Conqueror and I couldn't finish it. Dry as a Plaidy (sorry, I couldn't resist).

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 3:38 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2008
Posts: 1,755
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Add me to the list of those finally getting around to discovering HF authors that are pretty much legends around here.  In the past year I've dug into Sharon Kay Penman and Elizabeth Chadwick and have thoroughly enjoyed both ladies' work!  I cannot wait to read more from both of them.

I'm currently reading Lisa See's Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, and I love it. I like her style, I like her beautiful storytelling. However, I've heard Peony in Love isn't as good, so I'm not sure if I should risk ruining my Lisa See love by reading it.  LOL!  I will at some point, since it's on my bookshelf, but I won't dig into it right away.

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 3:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2007
Posts: 482
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Personally, Shelley, I loved Peony in Love.  It's a little bit different from Snow Flower, as it's kind of more dreamy, but I liked it just as well.  I'm a big fan of Lisa See so really I recommend all her books!

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 1/21/2010 4:34 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,333
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Well my wish list is maxed out again and my historical fiction shelves are already full. I will have to look up all these authors. I have let someone borrow Snow Flower and the Secret Fan but I can't remember who. Of course I didn't read it first.  Keep the suggestions coming. Especially if there is a book by the author you like

Alice

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 5:03 PM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2005
Posts: 809
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I haven't read Snow Flower yet, but I loved Peony in Love - one of the best books I've read in the last couple of years.

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 5:05 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2009
Posts: 388
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Well, as anyone on the "What are you reading in Jan." thread knows, I've been raving about my newest find, Morgan Llywelyn. Looks like the bulk of her books are set in Ireland and I'm pretty impressed so far. I know absolutely nothing about Irish history, so it's all new territory for me. I'm really enjoying Llywelyn's writing. Def. hard to put down!

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 5:14 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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*smacks head*

Forgot two more favorites from last year and rediscoveries as well. Daphne Du Maurier and Mary Stewart. Du Maurier has written several historical novels, they aren't all romantic suspense. Mary Anne is excellent and is about her own great-great grandmama who was quite a notorious mistress. Just google Mary Anne Clark and read all about it. What a life she led.

Date Posted: 1/21/2010 6:37 PM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2005
Posts: 2,851
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Conn Iggulden is my new fav. Loved the first book in the Ghengis Khan series. Seriously "Uhtred" material.

Date Posted: 1/28/2010 8:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,507
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Peony in Love is a fairy tale, and not historical fiction. I think a lot of people went into it expecting HF since Snow Flower was, and were disappointed. It is also breathtakingly lovely.I definitely preferred it over Snow Flower. 

Date Posted: 1/28/2010 9:02 PM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
Posts: 3,823
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I liked "Peony in Love" best, too. It's haunting, breathtaking, just a beautiful story. Loved every word of it.

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 3/16/2010 7:32 AM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,333
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I just wanted to add to this list. I am reading Michelle Moran's Nefertiti. Very nicely written. I will definately read more by her. She tells a story very well. I read Eliot Pattison's Bone Rattler and did care for the book or his style very much it seems to me it takes him a long time to spit out what he wants to say and convery for images.

Lots more new authors to try and old ones to catch up on.

Alice

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2008
Posts: 99
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I'm having a VERY rough time getting through Green Darkness by Anya Seton - I've been trying for a couple weeks now and can't get more than a few pages read before I fall asleep. I think it's time to move on. I'm going to give Seton another try, but Green Darkness is doing absolutly nothing for me. Moving on for the time being. Oh well.

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:19 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
Posts: 1,588
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I just started my first Conn Iggy (my version of his name--I can never remember it) with Genghis. I really, really like it. I wouldn't necessarily expect to, but he does such a great job at making you see and hear and feel such an utterly foreign land and culture. I don't fall in love with any of his characters, but I'mintrigued by them and engrossed in thestory.

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2008
Posts: 1,755
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I'm adding Gary Jennings to my list of "to be read more of" for sure. I adored Aztec, and although I'll probably skip the rest of that series based on less-than-stellar reviews around here), I'm looking forward to reading his books The Journeyer and Raptor. They sound compelling, and the man can certainly spin a tale! To write over 1000 pages and not have one part or page that drags or gets dull (Aztec) is quite a feat, IMO!

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:33 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
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Jennifer, I really didn't care for Green Darkness either.

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:39 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2008
Posts: 99
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Glad to hear that - I thought for sure I'd be kicked out of the HF forum for it. :)

Did you enjoy Seton's other books?

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 12:42 PM ET
Member Since: 7/21/2008
Posts: 437
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I didn't' see this thread the first time it came out, but my favorite HF author hands-down is Margaret George. Her books are long, but the research and detail that she puts into them makes it so easy to picture everything as if you are right there. I think I'm going to start on Helen of Troy next. Memoirs of Cleopatra was the first George book I read, and has been my favorite so far, but Mary Called Magdalene and The Autobiography of Henry VIII were also fantastic. The only one I've been kind of putting off is Mary Queen of Scots simply because the subject doesn't thrill me. But at some point I will read it just because it's George!

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 3/16/2010 1:08 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,333
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Jennifer I though Green Darkness was pretty bad too. I have liked al her other books that one just didn't do it for me.

Alice

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 1:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 4,035
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Green Darkness is not my favorite Seton either, especially the parts in the present.

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 1:28 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2008
Posts: 99
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It's taken me 2 weeks to read 220 pages - I don't know why I kept trying. The parts in the "present" were really bad - I just kept thinking that maybe when I got to the past portions it would start getting interesting, but it just seems like more characters are still being added. I just feel flooded with information on all these people but I'm not getting to "know" any of them. Guess Green Darkness was not the best choice for my firstSeton book. Oh well - on to something better.

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