Kate Quinn




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Kate Quinn

Goodreads Author


born
in Long Beach, CA, The United States
gender
female

website

genre

influences
Bernard Cornwell, Judith Merkle Riley, C.S. Forester, Eva Ibbotson

member since
April 2009


About this author

Kate Quinn is a native of southern California. She attended Boston University, where she earned a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Classical Voice. A lifelong history buff, she has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance detailing the early years of the infamous Borgia clan. All have been translated into multiple languages.

Kate has succumbed to the blogging bug, and keeps a blog filled with trivia, pet peeves, and interesting facts about historical fiction. She and her husband now live in Maryland with a small black dog named Caesar, and her interests include opera, action movies, cooking, and the Boston Red Sox.


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Popular Answered Questions

Kate Quinn What a lovely compliment! Delighted you enjoy my writing. As far as books to recommend, well, I love that question.

A good comprehensive (if you…more
What a lovely compliment! Delighted you enjoy my writing. As far as books to recommend, well, I love that question.

A good comprehensive (if you haven't read it) is my Pompeii release of a month ago, "A Day of Fire" - it was co-written with five other authors as a series of interlinked novellas around the last days of Pompeii, so it serves as a good introduction to their styles to see if you want to look up the other things they've written. Ben Kane writes ancient Roman blood-and-battle books; Stephanie Dray has a trilogy on Cleopatra's daughter; Vicky Alvear Shecter has several wonderful YA HF novels; E. Knight has two Tudor novels; Sophie Perinot has a novel of medieval France and England. These authors are all friends, but I can recommend their work without hesitation, or I wouldn't have partnered up with them. Try "A Day of Fire," and it should tell you if their style appeals to you.

As for the authors I do NOT know who I find inspiring, I'd start with Judith Merkle Riley - she was my idol as far as being able to make historical fiction funny, dramatic, action-packed, and romantic. She has six or seven books, all wonderful. My favorite is probably "The Oracle Glass."

Elizabeth Loupas is one of the best currently-writing HF novelists out there right now; three books and counting (two on Renaissance Italy, one with Mary Queen of Scots). All superb.

If you like historical mysteries, the Fiona Buckley series around Elizabethan female sleuth Ursula Blanchard is lovely - funny, historically true to its time, exciting action, and good continuing characters.

If you like the blood-and-battle stuff, Bernard Cornwell is as good as it gets. It's more battle-centric and action-heavy, but he has wonderful poetic prose and great character development; I'd probably start with "The Last Kingdom" as the first of his Viking series.

Stephanie Thornton: kickass women of the ancient world. Start with "The Tiger Queens," about the women of Gengis Khan.

I could go on all day! Hopefully that's enough to start with. (less)
Kate Quinn That's one of the more interesting questions I've been asked! In a sense, yes - if I did have, say, my Borgia characters referencing my ancient world…moreThat's one of the more interesting questions I've been asked! In a sense, yes - if I did have, say, my Borgia characters referencing my ancient world characters, I would probably slip some inside joke in there (mostly because I'm a sucker for inside jokes). But I'd make sure it was a historical detail that was at least plausible for speculation, not one of the facts I changed for my story. So Leonello wouldn't comment that Empress Sabina had epilepsy as a child, because that's a detail that was purely made up (we know nothing about her childhood). But he might wonder if she really *did* have an affair with her Praetorian, and what made her risk it - because that's a rumor that does come down through time.

Hope that answers your question!(less)
Average rating: 4.09 · 16,044 ratings · 2,128 reviews · 9 distinct works · Similar authors
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Empress of the Seven Hills ...
4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 2,472 ratings — published 2012 — 12 editions
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Lady of the Eternal City (T...
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The Three Fates (The Empres...
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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 40 ratings — published 2009
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More books by Kate Quinn…
HBO just called, and they're giving Lady of the Eternal City the "Game of Thrones treatment!

Sigh - I wish. But until the day Weiss & Benioff are leaving me urgent voice-mails, a girl can dream - and I don't know a writer out there who doesn't know exactly how they'd cast their beloved characters if given a movie set and total production control. (Which we'd never get, because no writer does... Read more of this blog post »
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Published on May 02, 2015 12:46 • 108 views • Tags: lady-of-the-eternal-city, movie-cast
Mistress of Rome Daughters of Rome Empress of the Seven Hills Lady of the Eternal City
The Empress of Rome (4 books)
by
4.088966700014292 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 13,994 ratings

The Serpent and the Pearl The Lion and the Rose
The Borgia Chronicles (2 books)
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4.083573487031701 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 1,735 ratings

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Empress of the Seven Hills (Literature & Fiction)
1 chapters   —   updated Mar 03, 2012 08:34AM
Description: Chapter 1 of my forthcoming book, "Empress of the Seven Hills" ("Empress of Rome" in the UK), published April 2012 by Berkley Books
Daughters of Rome (Literature & Fiction)
1 chapters   —   updated Jan 12, 2011 01:37PM
Description: Prologue to "Daughters of Rome," prequel to "Mistress of Rome," published April 2011 by Berkley Books
Mistress of Rome (Literature & Fiction)
1 chapters   —   updated May 30, 2010 10:06AM
Description: Prologue to "Mistress of Rome," my novel of ancient Rome, published April 2010 by Berkley Books

Kate's Recent Updates

" Can you tell I've been watching Game of Thrones recently? :D "
" This trilogy is my favorite of all Cornwell's books, and BC is one of my favorites. Something interesting about this book is an interview I read where ...more "
Kate Quinn wrote a new blog post
HBO just called, and they're giving Lady of the Eternal City the "Game of Thrones treatment!

Sigh - I wish. But until the day Weiss & Benioff ar... Read more of this blog post »
Lady of the Eternal City by Kate Quinn
"I HATE THIS BOOK! Like absolutely despise it. I'm not a big fan of blubbering hysterically over mere fictional characters. But Quinn is still a master story-teller and a bewilderingly amazing historian. So as much as I now officially hate her, I'l..." Read more of this review »
Lady of the Eternal City by Kate Quinn
"I loved this book so much! I rarely reread novels but I'm planning on doing so with this one! The complex characters were fascinating and the plot riveting. It made me curious about the true historical figures and the realities and mysteries surro..." Read more of this review »
Lady of the Eternal City by Kate Quinn
"Loved it! Addicting, suspenseful, exciting, heart wrenching...it was worth the wait."
Kate Quinn rated a book 4 of 5 stars
Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
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Kate Quinn wants to read
The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin
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World Gone By by Dennis Lehane
World Gone By
by Dennis Lehane (Goodreads Author)
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The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau
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More of Kate's books…
“I love you. I love the way you rub the scar on the back of your hand when you're nervous. I love the way you make a sword into a living part of your body. I love the way you burn your eyes into me, as if you're seeing me fresh every time. I love the black streak in you that wants to kill the world, and the soft streak that is sorry afterward. I love the way you laugh, as if you're surprised that you can laugh at all. I love the way you kiss my breath away. I love the way you breathe and speak and smile. I love the way you take the air out of my lungs when you hold me. I love the way you make a dance out of death. I love the confusion I see in your eyes when you realize you are happy. I love every muscle and bone in your body, every twist and bend in your soul.”
Kate Quinn, Mistress of Rome
tags: love

“Have you ever been - well, i mean, have you ever - really wanted someone ? Wanted them like water in the desert - even when you knew all their faults, every single one - and it didnt matter ?”
Kate Quinn, Mistress of Rome

“Paulinus, everyone knows. Say the word, and I'll run the bitch over with my chariot”
Kate Quinn, Mistress of Rome

Polls

Please help us vote for the November Anything Goes Book of the Month

The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling

Synopsis:
When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.

Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.

Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…Pagford is not what it first seems.

And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?

The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults.
 
  20 votes 24.1%

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

Synopsis:
In this literary tour de force, novelist Arthur Golden enters a remote and shimmeringly exotic world. For the protagonist of this peerlessly observant first novel is Sayuri, one of Japan's most celebrated geisha, a woman who is both performer and courtesan, slave and goddess.

We follow Sayuri from her childhood in an impoverished fishing village, where in 1929, she is sold to a representative of a geisha house, who is drawn by the child's unusual blue-grey eyes. From there she is taken to Gion, the pleasure district of Kyoto. She is nine years old. In the years that follow, as she works to pay back the price of her purchase, Sayuri will be schooled in music and dance, learn to apply the geisha's elaborate makeup, wear elaborate kimono, and care for a coiffure so fragile that it requires a special pillow. She will also acquire a magnanimous tutor and a venomous rival. Surviving the intrigues of her trade and the upheavals of war, the resourceful Sayuri is a romantic heroine on the order of Jane Eyre and Scarlett O'Hara. And Memoirs of a Geisha is a triumphant work - suspenseful, and utterly persuasive.
 
  19 votes 22.9%

Mistress of Rome (Rome, #1) by Kate Quinn
Mistress of Rome by Kate Quinn

Synopsis:
Thea is a slave girl from Judaea, passionate, musical, and guarded. Purchased as a toy for the spiteful heiress Lepida Pollia, Thea will become her mistress's rival for the love of Arius the Barbarian, Rome's newest and most savage gladiator. His love brings Thea the first happiness of her life-that is quickly ended when a jealous Lepida tears them apart.

As Lepida goes on to wreak havoc in the life of a new husband and his family, Thea remakes herself as a polished singer for Rome's aristocrats. Unwittingly, she attracts another admirer in the charismatic Emperor of Rome. But Domitian's games have a darker side, and Thea finds herself fighting for both soul and sanity. Many have tried to destroy the Emperor: a vengeful gladiator, an upright senator, a tormented soldier, a Vestal Virgin. But in the end, the life of the brilliant and paranoid Domitian lies in the hands of one woman: the Emperor's mistress.
 
  11 votes 13.3%

Tell No One by Harlan Coben
Tell No One by Harlan Coben

Synopsis:
For Dr. David Beck, the loss was shattering. And every day for the past eight years, he has relived the horror of what happened. The gleaming lake. The pale moonlight. The piercing screams. The night his wife was taken. The last night he saw her alive.

Everyone tells him it's time to move on, to forget the past once and for all. But for David Beck, there can be no closure. A message has appeared on his computer, a phrase only he and his dead wife know. Suddenly Beck is taunted with the impossible -- that somewhere, somehow, Elizabeth is alive.

Beck has been warned to tell no one. And he doesn't. Instead, he runs from the people he trusts the most, plunging headlong into a search for the shadowy figure whose messages hold out a desperate hope.

But already Beck is being hunted down. He's headed straight into the heart of a dark and deadly secret -- and someone intends to stop him before he gets there.
 
  9 votes 10.8%

A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard
A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard

Synopsis:
In the summer of 1991 I was a normal kid. I did normal things. I had friends and a mother who loved me. I was just like you. Until the day my life was stolen.
For eighteen years I was a prisoner. I was an object for someone to use and abuse.

For eighteen years I was not allowed to speak my own name. I became a mother and was forced to be a sister. For eighteen years I survived an impossible situation.

On August 26, 2009, I took my name back. My name is Jaycee Lee Dugard. I don’t think of myself as a victim. I survived.

A Stolen Life is my story—in my own words, in my own way, exactly as I remember it.
 
  9 votes 10.8%

Think of a Number (Dave Gurney, #1) by John Verdon
Think of a Number by John Verdon

Synopsis:

Arriving in the mail over a period of weeks are taunting letters that end with a simple declaration, “Think of any number…picture it…now see how well I know your secrets.” Amazingly, those who comply find that the letter writer has predicted their random choice exactly. For Dave Gurney, just retired as the NYPD’s top homicide investigator and forging a new life with his wife, Madeleine, in upstate New York, the letters are oddities that begin as a diverting puzzle but quickly ignite a massive serial murder investigation.

What police are confronted with is a completely baffling killer, one who is fond of rhymes filled with threats and warnings, whose attention to detail is unprecedented, and who has an uncanny knack for disappearing into thin air. Even more disturbing, the scale of his ambition seems to widen as events unfold.

Brought in as an investigative consultant, Dave Gurney soon accomplishes deductive breakthroughs that leave local police in awe. Yet, even as he matches wits with his seemingly clairvoyant opponent, Gurney’s tragedy-marred past rises up to haunt him, his marriage approaches a dangerous precipice, and finally, a dark, cold fear builds that he’s met an adversary who can’t be stopped.

In the end, fighting to keep his bearings amid a whirlwind of menace and destruction, Gurney sees the truth of what he’s become – what we all become when guilty memories fester – and how his wife Madeleine’s clear-eyed advice may be the only answer that makes sense.

A work that defies easy labels -- at once a propulsive masterpiece of suspense and an absorbing immersion in the lives of characters so real we seem to hear their heartbeats – Think of a Number is a novel you’ll not soon forget.
 
  6 votes 7.2%

Comeback Love  A Novel by Peter Golden
Comeback Love: A Novel by Peter Golden

Synopsis:
What would you do if you had a second chance with the one that got away?

More than thirty-five years ago, Gordon Meyers, an aspiring writer with a low number in the draft lottery, packed his belongings and reluctantly drove away, leaving behind Glenna Rising, the sexy, sharp-witted med student he couldn’t imagine living without.

Now, decades later, Gordon is a former globe-trotting consultant with a grown son, an ex-wife, and an overwhelming desire to see Glenna again. Though she’s stunned when Gordon walks into her Manhattan office, Glenna agrees to accompany him for a drink. As the two head out into the snow-swept city, they rediscover the passion that once drew them together—before it tore them apart. And as the evening unfolds, Gordon will finally reveal the true reason for his return. . . .

Comeback Love is an evocative journey into the hearts of two lovers who came of age in the 1960s, and who never truly let each other go. Plumbing the depths of youth, regret, and desire, Peter Golden deftly illuminates the bonds that mysteriously endure in the face of momentous change
 
  5 votes 6.0%

Like Dandelion Dust by Karen Kingsbury
Like Dandelion Dust by Karen Kingsbury

Synopsis:
Jack and Molly Campbell are right where they want to be, enjoying an idyllic life with their four-year-old son Joey, and the close family and friends who live in their small hometown just outside Atlanta. Then the phone call comes from the social worker the Campbells never expected to hear from again. Three states away in Ohio, Joey's biological father has just been released from prison. He is ready to start life over, but not without his son.

A judge's quick decision deals a devastating blow to the Campbell family: Joey must be returned to his biological parents. The day after the ruling, in the silent haze of grief and utter disbelief, they watch their son pick a dandelion and blow the feathery seeds into the wind.

In the days that follow the ruling, Jack Campbell has a desperate and dangerous thought. What if they can devise a way out? Then they could take Joey and simply disappear . . . LIKE DANDELION DUST.
 
  3 votes 3.6%

In One Person by John Irving
In One Person by John Irving

Synopsis:
A compelling novel of desire, secrecy, and sexual identity, In One Person is a story of unfulfilled love-tormented, funny, and affecting-and an impassioned embrace of our sexual differences. Billy, the bisexual narrator and main character of In One Person, tells the tragicomic story (lasting more than half a century) of his life as a "sexual suspect," a phrase first used by John Irving in 1978 in his landmark novel of "terminal cases," The World According to Garp. His most political novel since The Cider House Rules and A Prayer for Owen Meany, John Irving's In One Person is a poignant tribute to Billy's friends and lovers-a theatrical cast of characters who defy category and convention. Not least, In One Person is an intimate and unforgettable portrait of the solitariness of a bisexual man who is dedicated to making himself "worthwhile."
 
  1 vote 1.2%

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message 14: by Vahid

Vahid kate thanks


message 13: by Kate

Kate Quinn HermioneJMalfoy wrote: "When I read Mistress of Rome, I thought: "Damn, these kids have something between them!"
Some time later, I saw the Empress of the Seven Hills on your blog (fell in love with the cover, by the way)..."


You're welcome, and I'm so glad you've enjoyed my books! And don't worry; I am writing a sequel to "Empress of the Seven Hills" - no publication date yet, but it's titled "Lady of the Eternal City." In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the Borgia stories. :D


Valentina When I read Mistress of Rome, I thought: "Damn, these kids have something between them!"
Some time later, I saw the Empress of the Seven Hills on your blog (fell in love with the cover, by the way) and I literally squealed; I was just that thrilled.
*about 1 year later*
Well, this year the book was finally published in Croatia. I read it in about two days.

There I was, lying in the sun, reading your book, and when I reached the "ending" of FaustinaxTitus story, tears just started running down. I don't know if they were happy or sad tears, but I couldn't stop them.

And when I reached the last page I wanted to scream! A cliffhanger! A cliffhanger! Aaah!

I'll read your Borgias when (if) they reach Croatia, and I don't even like Borgias! You just have that something in your writing style that I adore.

Also, thank you for accepting my friend request. :)


message 11: by Kate

Kate Quinn Kirstin wrote: "I just finished Empress of the Seven Hills and I have to say that I loved it completely. I was so excited when I heard you were writing about Vix and Sabina again. I was very impressed with how you..."

Wow, I am sorry I didn't see these comments way down at the bottom of my author page earlier! To answer your question, Kirstin, yes there will be another book after "Empress of the Seven Hills" - in fact, I'm writing it now! It will probably be released sometime 2014, after my Borgia novel which comes out this August. And as far as the interconnected stories go, I write them all simultaneously and switch back and forth between characters - it can get confusing sometimes, but usually I can keep it all straight!


message 10: by Kate

Kate Quinn Jarod wrote: "hey Kate! thanks for accepting my friend request :)"

You're welcome!


message 9: by Jarod

Jarod Kintz hey Kate! thanks for accepting my friend request :)


Taylor I can't WAIT for the Serpent and the Pearl. The Borgias are crazy and I can't wait to read your take on them. I'm already rooting for the Pearl :)


message 7: by Edik

Edik Baghoumian It is my very DISTINCT pleasure becoming your True friend !!! Wishing you much success, Happiness but above all GOOD HEALTH !!!!!!!!

Your True friend
Edik


Ananda Hi Kate, thanks for adding me:) I absolutely LOVED,LOVED,LOVED "Mistress of Rome". Can't wait to read the other two from the Rome series. You are so so talented! Keep up the great work:)


Kirstin I just finished Empress of the Seven Hills and I have to say that I loved it completely. I was so excited when I heard you were writing about Vix and Sabina again. I was very impressed with how you flowed from character to character without confusing the reader at all between their very interconnected yet individual lives. How exactly do you do that? Do you write one person’s story at a time or are you able to switch back and forth while you write? Also, at the end you hint that we will hear the end of Vix and Sabina’s stories, is it true?? Will you eventually be continuing the story??? (I am crossing my fingers for it) Thanks for sharing your wonderful book!!


message 4: by M/Ðɑηηɑ (last edited Apr 03, 2012 06:44AM)

M/Ðɑηηɑ Kate Quinn, thank you very much for accepting my friend request. I have not read any of you books yet, sadly, but I must say all sounds very good. I would love to read them some day!
I wanted to thank you personally for writing those book - amazing or not - ancient Rome is a subject well forgotten in today's fast paced world. I am so glad there is an author who still pays attention to the past and willing to enlighten it for today's readers. Thank you for reviving an amazing culture, no longer unnoticed! I really appreciate writers such as yourself.

*uh-oh*
Well, that was quite an opening speech! Oops...
So, I hope you feel alright and keep writing. Kate (I love your name!) I promise I'll read a book of yours (hopefully, it'd be as good as I expect it to be - and then I might read more than one). It is such a shame I cannot find it anywhere...
Perhaps... Had it been translated to any language?


message 3: by Kate

Kate Quinn Judith wrote: "Kate, I noticed you went on a "blog tour" recently. From the blogger point of view, how does one go about putting together a blog tour for an author or group of authors? I'd love any quick pointers..."

Sorry, Judith, I didn't see your comment earlier. :) As for getting authors onto your blog - all I can say is, ask! I've had plenty of bloggers contact me through my website, and I've blogged for all of them. And if you get into the blogger community - posting comments on other blogs, entering giveaways, getting to know the other bloggers - you'll find it's a small world, and a remarkably supportive one. Many book bloggers are good friends, and they'll spread the love when you get to know them. Good luck!


Judith Starkston Kate, I noticed you went on a "blog tour" recently. From the blogger point of view, how does one go about putting together a blog tour for an author or group of authors? I'd love any quick pointers you have. Thanks, Judith Starkston


message 1: by Kate

Kate Quinn Janell wrote: "Are we going to get a preview of Daughters of Rome? Go ahead, make my day:)"

Not yet! I'm afraid I'm still working on it. I'll post the first chapter on my website and here under "Writings" when I've got a more-or-less final version.


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