Tag archives for Historical fiction

dark ages

The Half-Drowned King by Linnea Hartsuyker [Book Review]

The Half-Drowned King by Linnea Hartsuyker My rating: 5 of 5 stars It took me a very long time to read The Half-Drowned King, mostly because it's a long story, although it never felt that long when I was reading it. Based on a couple of sagas the Half-Drowned King starts the story of Ragnvald and his sister Svanhild that continue in two more volumes. The Half-Drowned King is historical fiction done well, rather than fantasy. The characters are credulous enough that there's an element of the latter there, with visions and a fight with a draugr. The Half-Drowned King Ragnvald is a descendant of a King, in a time where there were many Kings. His stepfather tries to have him murdered, and the story is a combination of how Ragnvald gets his inheritance and gets involved in the rise…
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Of Blood Exhausted by Jemahl Evans [Book Review]

Of Blood Exhausted by Jemahl Evans My rating: 6 of 5 stars Of Blood Exhausted is the third in the Blandford Candy series that started with The Last Roundhead. (The second was This Deceitful Light.) If anything Jemahl Evans is improving with practice, there's a real feel for the period in the language used, the descriptions and the characters, several of whom are based on real people. There are footnotes throughout to add context to the historical events, either to corroborate the source or correct errors from Candy's recollection of events. Of Blood Exhausted As with the previous two in the series Of Blood Exhausted cuts between the aged Sir Blandford Candy narrating from 1720 and the imminent South Seas Bubble which his nephew is involved with, and the winter of 1644-5 culminating in the battle of Naseby. Candy is…
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3 Novels That Exemplify The Best Of Historical Fiction [Guest Post]

After my recent comments on historical fiction and its problems, I was offered a guest post by Elizabeth Caskey. Here's her take on three novels that show the best features of historical fiction. Feel free to add your own comments on your own favourite historical fiction below. 3 Novels That Exemplify The Best Of Historical Fiction Historical fiction is a deceptively tricky genre of writing. An author has to do a breathtaking amount of research, often over the course of several years, just to make a story possible. Then the story actually has to be written. On top of the ordinary challenges of constructing a plot that moves, developing characters in a satisfying manner, and all the rest, the subjects of the research have to be threaded in deftly but comprehensively. A good work of historical fiction needs to live…
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Code Name Beatriz by Lou Cadle [Book Review]

Code Name: Beatriz by Lou Cadle My rating: 5 of 5 stars Code Name Beatriz by Lou Cadle is historical fiction done right. I always shy from historical fiction, not because I don't like it, but because it's really hard to get right. That's doubly so when it's one of my favourite and most read periods of history. I've read about SOE agents since finding a copy of Carve Her Name With Pride at my granny's house when I was ten. ┬áLou Cadle has done a great job with Code Name Beatriz. Code Name Beatriz French resistance fighters being arrested, France, Jul 1944 (photo: Bundesarchiv, Koll, Bild 183-J27289) Starting in the early spring of 1944 it follows an SOE agent with the code name Beatriz (hence the title). Beatriz is a fully rounded and complex character, which makes her interesting.…
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Steel & Lace edited by Francine Howarth [Book Review]

Steel & Lace - Anthology of 17th-18th century stories. by Francine Howarth My rating: 5 of 5 stars I occasionally stray into genres that aren't my preferred ones, usually to widen my reading experience and learn a little more about writing different sort of stories. Historical romance is one of the areas that I have entirely avoided, until now. I've had a prejudice against it, worrying that there will be a pinkwash over the history from the rose-tinted spectacles of damsel heroine lusting after her bare chested highlander. There was none of that in Steel & Lace, all the history was spot on, although there was just a little bit of lust. Steel & Lace I picked up Steel & Lace on kindle because it was free and I had previously read one of the authors historical fiction and really…
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