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Congratulations are due to Adrienne Dillard for the continued success of her wonderful book “The Raven’s Widow: A novel of Jane Boleyn” (still on 99p offer in the UK at the moment!). This book has been described:

“I cannot tell you how refreshing I find this honesty and commitment to the history underlying the narrative process.” – Kyra the Red

“Recommended for fans of those affected by Henry VIII and other novels in this turbulent era.” – Kathleen

“The one thing that stood out for me was that she liked Anne, her sister-in-law, and truly loved her husband, George. I have always enjoyed Adrienne Dillard’s books and this one was no exception.” – Por HA.

The praise goes on and on, and is well deserved.

You can get your copy of The Raven’s Widow HERE

Samantha Morris‘ latest non-fiction history book, Girolamo Savonarola: The Renaissance Preacher, tells the story of a man who believed so wholeheartedly in God that he gave his life for it.

Savonarola was born on 21 September 1452, the very same year that Leonardo Da Vinci was born, and this book is an introduction to the life and times of this infamous preacher, a man who was witness to the dramatic downfall of the Medici dynasty in fifteenth-century Florence, who instigated some of the most dramatic events in Florentine history and whose death is still commemorated today.

AVAILABLE TODAY FOR PRE-ORDER: http://getbook.at/savonarola

Adrienne Dillard

We’ve been told by Amazon UK that Adrienne Dillard’s second novel, “The Raven’s Widow” will be a UK Kindle Daily Deal, priced at 99p, from 19th July until 20th July. The book has been described as “An excellent alternative view of the infamous Lady Rochford.” and that “the author has done is to make her a vivid and believable heroine who was resilient for as long as she could”.

Don’t miss out on this UK Kindle-only deal by clicking on THIS LINK.

The Raven’s Widow is a UK Kindle Daily Deal for a very short time only … don’t miss out!

Jul
18

As many Jane Austen fans will know, 2017 marks the two hundreth year anniversary of her death – July 18 to be precise. The amazing author Kyra Kramer re-wrote the classic novel, Mansfield Park, from the perspective of another character in the book – Mary Crawford. Kyra has made this novel an excellent tribute to the original work of Austen, bringing the characters back to life through her authentic writing style.

The result is the acclaimed Mansfield Parsonage

In celebration of this anniversary, MadeGlobal Publishing has put Mansfield Parsonage on special offer in Kindle format (UK and US only) from 18 July to 20 July.

Don’t miss this limited-time opportunity to get your hands on this amazing novel – you’ll love it!

Author and historian, Derek Wilson, has a busy end to the year with some amazing speaking events. Why not see if he’s coming somewhere near to you and go along to see him!

The Reformation 500 Years On: 16-20 October, Lee Abbey, Devon

This Monday-to-Friday event is all about the Reformation. Derek will be speaking about this fascinating topic, one which he’s bee studying for 50 years. The event is residential and the cost starts at £260, including accommodation. It looks like a lovely venue.

“In October 1517 Martin Luther issued a challenge to certain practices of the contemporary Church and the response split western Christianity into warring camps. This week we come together to look at some of the issues for which our spiritual forbears fought and died, not just out of historical curiosity, but ready to consider afresh our beliefs. What would we be ready to fight or die for?”

BOOK: https://leeabbeydevon.org.uk/programme/the-reformation-500-years-on/

Reformation Women: 1 November, Leicester Cathedral

Author Derek Wilson speaks about his books, and will be available to answer questions and to sign your books.
Doors open at 6.30pm and the event starts at 7.00pm.

BOOK: http://leicestercathedral.org/our-life-and-work/education-leicester-cathedral/adult-education-events/

Reformation Study Day: 8 November, Guildford Cathedral

Derek Wilson leads this study day on the historical context and the spiritual impact of the Reformation, with the opportunity for discussion. The event starts at 10.00am, ending at 3.00pm.

BOOK: https://www.guildford-cathedral.org/events/8-nov-2017-reformation-500-study-day

We do hope that you make it along to see Derek this year … he’s a wonderfully captivating speaker.

Wendy Dunn, author of Falling Pomegranate Seeds, talks about writing and the HNS

I cannot remember when I first joined Historical Novel Society – or how I even first became aware of this society for readers and writers of historical fiction. I do remember I became a member of HNS before my first novel, Dear Heart, How Like You This? (A Distant Mirror, 2002) found its first publisher. Thinking back, I suspect my initial membership came out of belonging to the Historical Novel Society Yahoo Group. This was a long, long time ago – a time when I wrote a Tudor column for Suite101, once a popular web community of writers but now long gone into the realm of memory. I suspect the same thing can be said of the Yahoo group. The arrival of Facebook soon made those groups defunct.

Let’s return to my memories. By 2000, I was not only a passionate reader of historical fiction but also determined to claim my mantle as a writer of history. Twice a month, I wrote a Tudor inspired column and continued to submit my first Anne Boleyn novel twice yearly to publishers for its twice yearly rejection. But most of these rejections were so encouraging, and they only increased my efforts to become a published author.

To achieve this ambition, it made sense to join Historical Novel Society. Writing can be, at times, a lonely business. Only another writer really understands the struggles, the frustrations, the agony and ecstasy of writing. HNS was clearly my writing tribe. By 2000, I had already learnt the importance of networking, and, more importantly, that writing groups help you grow as a writer, simply because writers learn best from other writers. This is one of the reasons why writing conferences are important and valuable – and why, in 2015, I put up my hand to help establish and grow the HNSA conference.

Australia is a long way from England and USA – the two places alternating as destinations for the annual HNS conference. I was fortunate to attend my first, and only, HNS conference in London in 2012. My primary reason to finance an expensive overseas trip was that I wanted to ensure my research for my second Tudor novel, The Light in Labyrinth, was done as thoroughly as possible. I try to do this with all my novels. In 1993, my first ever visit to England, I drove my family crazy by including places known to Anne Boleyn in our travel plans because I was writing Dear Heart. In 2007, I spent three wonderful weeks in Spain, when I had already started work on the first version of Falling Pomegranate Seeds, a novel series about Katherine of Aragon. This time, with careful planning, I was able to include attending the HNS conference just prior to my return home.

At the HNS conference, I met Diana Gabaldon (author of the Outlander series) – and thanked her for her novels, novels that had allowed me to mentally escape for a time during a long hospital stay when my fourth and final pregnancy became a battle of survival. I met other wonderful authors, and also pitched The Light in the Labyrinth, my second Tudor novel, to two publishers.

I returned home inspired by the conference, excited that a big publisher was now considering The Light in the Labyrinth (Silly them. I received their rejection twenty weeks later. The publisher of Dear Heart then offered to published it. It sold so well that it funded my next trip to England in 2016) and extremely reflective about the difficulties faced by the average Australian writer of Historical fiction to attend the HNS conference. Not only is overseas travel expensive, but few Australians enjoy the twenty-three hours or more of travel time it takes to get to England. For myself, I would only be interested in going to the HNS conference in England because I could tie it into research for my Tudor novels.

So, when Elisabeth Storrs started the ball rolling to establish the Historical Novel Society Australasia, I put up my hand to help out. The inaugural conference was held in Sydney 20-22 March 2015. We showcased 40 speakers over those two days, in what was a truly wonderful event. So wonderful, there was no question in the mind of the executive committee – which then included Elisabeth Storrs, Chris Foley, GS Johnston, Diane Murray, and myself – to do it again in 2017.


You can meet Wendy Dunn

While I recently resigned from the committee due to my own writing commitments, I am looking forward to taking part in one of the panels:

Saturday 9 September
11.15-12.15
– How to transmute research into compelling historical fiction
 
A passion for research doesn’t always translate into creating compelling fiction. Gillian Polack discusses the challenges of converting historical facts into page-turning novels with Wendy J Dunn, Barbara Gaskell Denvil, Stephanie Smee and Rachel Nightingale.
 
As well as chairing an academic panel on Sunday at 10 am:

‘THE LIE OF HISTORY’: HOW THE MIRROR OF THE PRESENT SHAPES THE PAST FOR ITS OWN PURPOSES – PART 1

There is no question that we are constructions of our own times, and the writing of history is always shaped by those who recount the past for their own purposes. How does the mirror of the present day reflect and dictate the telling of history? Do we filter a version of history that tells more about us than the times of long ago through what we choose to reveal and erase? Dr Wendy J Dunn will discuss these questions with panel members Drs Glenice Whitting, Diane Murray, Gillian Polack, and Cheryl Hayden.

Do hope to see you there!

http://hnsa.org.au/conference/buy-tickets/

Here’s a lovely review of The Colour of Cold Blood: The Third Sebastian Foxley Medieval Murder Mystery by Michael Connery from The Written Word:

The titular character is back in this tale, and his sensitive, artistic character draws the reader in. The novel begins with a chilling prologue that sets the tone of the mystery.

Mount’s strength lies in her exposition. The language she uses is lyrical, poetic, and vivid:

“The late autumn grass, frost-rimed, crunched beneath his feet as he trudged towards his favoured spot beneath an oak tree, beside the Horse Pool.”
“The mist was a wet sheep’s fleece, compact and grey, draped from eaves and gables, enfolding London in its cold embrace.”
“According to the bell at St Michael’s, it was time for Low Mass but the watchful darkness had only reluctantly given way to a dreary daylight that painted the stone wall of the yard a sullen shade of grey.”

Mount transports the reader to medieval England, and her extensive knowledge of the geography, medicine, and lore of fifteenth century London is apparent. Seb’s profession as a scrivener is fantastically detailed, from the description of the pigments he orders from Venice to the shaping of a quill to whitening parchment with chalk. The complexities of marriage, friendship, and brotherhood are explored throughout the story, and some intriguing religious history is woven into the plot.

Michael Connery goes on to conclude “Multi-layered and beautifully written, The Colour of Cold Blood is an eloquent tale that brings the Middle Ages to stunning life on the page.”

You can get a copy of The Colour of Cold Blood, plus the other books in this murder mystery series, at THIS LINK

You can read the original review HERE.


Here’s some incredible praise for The Whisper Garden by David Harris Griffith:

“Fantastic novel! It was compelling and moved quickly from beginning to end.”Brian Boling

“I couldn’t stop reading and finished the second half in one evening.”Kindle Customer

“I got caught up in the story and couldn’t put it down.”D. Bates

“I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The characters are very engaging, and the story draws you in immediately.
Tough to put down, and a very smooth, easy read.”
Deena M Grimm

“…very well-written and unlike pretty much anything I have ever read. Definitely worth a read.” RF

“I loved this! It was engaging and full of quirks… My only complaint is, I want more!”Amazon Customer

“Wow, I found me a gem of a book, a veritable treasure trove of intriguing characters, well defined and presented”Pat McDonald

“I got the book on recommendation of a friend and the pages just kept turning! An original villain!!! Amazingly original action sequences! Great stuff! where’s the next book??????”Benjamin K. Brown

“The changing characters held my attention. Even the murders are almost ‘fun’, though messy.”splash

“I am not as a general rule a fan of mystery novels and have never been to New Orleans or seen Mardi Gras. But I really enjoyed reading this book about all three things.”H Arthur James

5 out of 5 stars for this wonderful book – have you read it yet?

The Whisper Garden is available HERE