Latest from the H for History blog

The Wicked Lady Gets A Facelift

Posted on: 19/05/2015 with tags: highwaywomen, historicalfiction, thecrimsonribbon valencehouse

by Katherine Clements, author of THE SILVERED HEARTBack in 2013, I visited Valence House Museum in Dagenham. This local museum is a gem and well worth a trip but I was on a mission to view the only surviving portrait of Lady Katherine Ferrers, the subject of my novel in progress and, allegedly, the notorious seventeenth-century highwaywoman known as ‘The Wicked Lady’. The portrait is part of the Fanshawe collection and came to Valence House in 2004 as part of a bequest. When I first encountered…

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SD Sykes: Crime and Plague

Posted on: 12/05/2015 with tags: historical crime, historical fiction, plague, plague land, plagueland, sd sykes, Medieval

SD Sykes on Crime and PlagueMurder in a time of death.You might wonder why I chose to set my debut novel Plague Land, a story of murder, against the backdrop of a plague. And not just an ordinary plague… the Black Death, the worst demographic disaster the world has ever seen. A plague that’s estimated to have killed roughly half the people in Europe. Would a murder have mattered at this time? With so many dead already, would anybody have cared about yet another death?To be honest, at the height…

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Fact vs. Fiction – by Anthony Riches

Posted on: 09/04/2015 with tags: historicalfiction, romanhistory

I’ve always believed pretty firmly that the best historical fiction is a careful blend of fact and the author’simagination, but the word careful isn’t thrown into that statement lightly. Before any would be writer can hope to do themselves justice in the eyes of their intended readership they must first become master of the period they hope to use the backdrop for their story telling abilities. Many readers are drawn to the genre because of their pre-existing interest in the period d…

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An introduction to DEADLY ELECTION from Lindsey Davis

Posted on: 08/04/2015

Well, thank goodness I missed the Six Nations!I do like a challenge. Remember me writing a book about the Olympic Games, when it was neither the Olympics in our world, nor in the Roman year when I was setting the book?? See Delphi and Die (getting out of Trouble, Lindsey).Politics and their strategy, are in my blood. I had long wanted to write about Roman elections, deterred only by our limited knowledge of what really went on – plus the fact even Heron of Alexandria never devised an ancient sub…

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The Spook Speaks Again by Lindsey Davis

Posted on: 08/04/2015

It’s a funny business, writing. I never expected Postumus would make me cry.I didn’t think I would enjoy him so much. Conceived as only a little less twisted than the Addams Family, using him as a new narrator had tricky moments. For a start, once again I would be ‘writing as a man’ – only this time he’s a twelve-year-old boy. Friends of mine have now expressed concern about my fluency as a small boy… As I always say about writing fiction, the tool is observation. Just as I had known some men be…

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History in the Smallest Detail

Posted on: 03/03/2015

Pyramid cover History in the Smallest Detail David Gibbins My novel PYRAMID hinges on one of the greatest stories of all time, the Biblical Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and the role that may have been played in it by the heretical Sun-Pharaoh, Akhenaten, in the 14th century BC. Like many archaeologists I’ve been fascinated by the quest to find material evidence – artefacts, sites, inscriptions – for the Old Testament narrative, and not surprised that so much of it has remained elusive. Se…

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Nick Brown interviews audiobook narrator Nigel Peever

Posted on: 23/02/2015 with tags: audiobooks, historical fiction, hodder and stoughton, Nick Brown

Nick Brown, author of THE BLACK STONE (in paperback, 26 February 2015), interviews audiobook narrator Nigel Peever.‘Thanks to the wonders of Twitter, I got talking to Nigel Peever, the actor who has so far narrated audio-books for two of my novels. Being a curious type, I decided it would be interesting to delve a little deeper into this world and Nigel kindly answered my questions; here is the resulting interview.How did you get into audiobook narration?I’ve been an actor for over t…

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Alison Weir introduces her Six Tudor Queens novels

Posted on: 05/02/2015

Alison Weir’s fascinating talk on the Six Wives of Henry VIII to introduce her novels for Headline starting in 2016 It was a chilly Wednesday night as over 200 guests were lucky enough to gather in the Royal Chapel of the Tower of London to hear Alison Weir’s illuminating talk on the Six Wives of Henry VIII. From 2016 Headline are incredibly excited to publish a novel a year about each of the six wives. The audience was completely spellbound as Alison explained how she would write the novels and…

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Fact or Fiction in Historical novels by Paul Fraser Collard

Posted on: 29/01/2015

Fact or Fiction by Paul Fraser Collard On publication of THE DEVIL’S ASSASSIN Paul Fraser Collard looks at Fact or Fiction in Historical Novels One day I will write a novel that is completely realistic. I doubt more than a few hardy souls will buy it but it would at least satisfy the needs of some readers who demand utter realism. I have much of this novel already in my head. I have begun to picture my cast of characters, their lovingly created back-stories already beginning to take shape and fo…

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Calling all fans of Rome!

Posted on: 22/12/2014 with tags: deathofrome

‘Vivid characters, devious plotting and buckets of gore’ Daily Telegraph Richard Blake brings to life a fascinating, little-known period of 7th Century Europe in the DEATH OF ROME SAGA – a six book series set in the dying days of the Roman Empire and featuring Aelric, a young Saxon nobleman transplanted to Rome from England. We’re giving you the chance to read this brilliantly atmospheric series from the very beginning with an amazing ebook offer: book one, CONSPIRACIES OF ROME, is now available…

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