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Showing posts from February, 2023

Masterworks: Legacy - Samantha Wilcoxson - Interview

  Today is the last of a series on nine interviews I'm sharing on the Crowvus Book Blog. These are from the authors of the short stories included in the  Masterworks  anthology by the  Historical Writers Forum . We're running through chronologically, some are video interviews, others are written. I am delighted to welcome the fantastic Samantha Wilcoxson, who is sharing the artist inspiration for her short story Legacy , as well as the appeal of James A. Hamilton, and the delights of researching. First of all, tell us a little bit about yourself, what you write (besides Masterworks!), and what inspired you to begin writing. I was inspired to write by my love of reading. After watching me read, write reviews, and keep journals for twenty years, my husband asked me why I didn’t try writing, so I did! Without really planning on it, I ended up writing historical biographical fiction. I’m drawn to a tragic tale but also to lesser known historical figures with emotive stories to tell

#TheRabbitHoleReadingChallenge Book Review: The Revenge of Bridget Cleary

  Review After the disaster which was my last read for this Challenge, I immediately realised that this book was perfect for laying that ghost to rest, which is topical because that is the theme of this entire story: Brigid Cleary is driven to avenge the brutal torture and murder of her mother, Bridget Cleary, who was a real-life victim of extreme domestic violence in 1895. A historical note at the beginning of the book shares the facts. Mathilda Zeller creates the world clearly and the characters are mostly very well developed. You find yourself longing for Brigid to find the peace that she's so desperate for; being thankful - or perhaps wishing - for friends like Florence and Adelaide, and falling in love with Edmund and willing him not to let you down. Perhaps the only character who convinced me less than entirely was Mr Baxby. I felt like the whole story could have been rewritten from his point of view and he would have been a sorry character. How lovely to be back with charact

#HistFicThursdays - Hammer - Micheál Cladáin - Guest Post

It's #HistFicThursdays, and I'm super-excited to be sharing a guest post from Micheál Cladáin ,   as part of his  Coffee Pot Book Club  tour. Find out about the care and attention to detail which Micheál incorporates into his writing, and how this inspired Hammer to come to life. But first, let's meet the book... Blurb Genonn's tired and dreams of a remote roundhouse in the Cuala Mountains. However, sudden rebellion in Roman Britain destroys that dream because the Elder Council task him with delivering Lorg Mór , the hammer of the Gods, to the tribes across the straits of Pwll Ceris. Despite being torn between a waning sense of duty and his desire to become a hermit, Genonn finally agrees to help. When his daughter follows him into danger, it tests his resolve. He wants to do everything he can to see her back to Druid Island and her mother. This new test of will means he is once again conflicted between duty and desire. Ultimately, his sense of duty wins; is it the righ

#HistFicThursdays - A Little Horror!

I know we’re nowhere near Halloween but, let’s be honest, every season is spooky season if you want it to be! So, I’m going to share some thoughts about one of my favourite genres to read and write: Gothic Horror. I first discovered it as a genre when I was a teenager being taught at home. Every week, Dad would take me and my sister to the local library and we would pick a book or two to read. One week, I picked an abridged version of Dracula . I loved it so much that I immediately graduated onto the full version, before moving on to The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe . There was something about these stories which completely immersed my imagination, and I think it was how setting is always an extra character in them. I read a piece a couple of weeks ago which was labelled as Gothic, but the setting wasn’t right. It didn’t jump out as one of the characters in the book which was twisting and turning as much as any of the humans (or not-quite-humans!) Whitby is rightly proud of it

#HistFicThursdays - Sir Henry Thompson (Spies and Rebels) - When you think your characters are too accomplished, remember these people existed!

For Christmas a couple of years ago, my sister set me this challenge . The story which rose from it is Part Five of my Family Saga, which is only a first draft at the moment with the working title: Spies and Rebels . Unlike most of my books in this series which reference real people, Spies and Rebels  actually include real people from history. One of these was Sir Henry Thompson, whose lovely letter to his daughter was included in the challenge box. Henry Thompson is best known as a surgeon (no surprises then that I chose to have him as a significant character!), but his was also responsible for a number of advances in other social fields. As a surgeon, he was second-to-none in his field of care and - when Leopold, the first king of Belgium - was suffering from kidney stones, he was immediately sent for. This is where Spies and Rebels picks him up, as the victim of a pickpocket, but whose assailant is caught by none other than one of the titled spies. With the endearing letter as a tes

#HistFicThursdays - Rosalind: DNA's Invisible Woman - Jessie Mills - Book Excerpt

 This week for #HistFicThursdays, I'm delighted to once again be teaming up with  The Coffee Pot Book Club  for author  Jessie Mills ' blog tour! Today, I'm sharing an excerpt from her debut release,  Rosalind: DNA's Invisible Woman ! First of all, let's meet the book... 'A luminous, pin-sharp portrait of a true trailblazer. Mills's writing simply glows.' Zoë Howe, Author, Artist and RLF Writing Fellow at Newnham College, University of Cambridge Rosalind: DNA’s Invisible Woman tells the true story of the woman who discovered the structure of DNA, whose work was co-opted by three men who won a Nobel prize for the discovery. Her story is one of hope, perseverance, love and betrayal.  Driven by her faith in science, Rosalind Franklin persisted with her education in the face of formidable obstacles, including the de-reservation of women from war science.  In Norway at the start of World War II, her place at Cambridge's first women's college was throw