Kristen McDermott

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Kristen McDermott is a Professor of English Literature at Central Michigan University, specializing in Early Modern Drama. Her most recent book, WIlliam Shakespeare: His Life & Times, published by Templar/Candlewick and co-authored, with her husband, Ari Berk, won the School Library Association's 2011 Children's Choice Information Book Award. Her edition of Jacobean court entertainments, Masques of Difference: Power, Race and Gender in the Masques of Ben Jonson, (Manchester University Press, 2007) makes use of an interdisciplinary background in music, drama and literature. Her scholarly articles on Shakespeare and Jonson have appeared in Renaissance Papers, Shakespeare Magazine, Early Theatre, and Language Arts Journal of Michigan, and ...more

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Kristen McDermott Hi Diane - Congratulations on your book! I'm an academic with aspirations to write historical fiction as well (we're a large club). I started out…moreHi Diane - Congratulations on your book! I'm an academic with aspirations to write historical fiction as well (we're a large club). I started out preferring 16th-17th history England because my academic field is Shakespeare and Early Modern Literature, but I range all over now (mostly European, though) and am interested in historical fiction as a genre -- so I guess I'll say, any place and time as long as it's well-crafted and well-informed. I prefer books (like yours) with (mostly) fictional characters over novelizations of famous peoples' lives -- in general, I'd rather get a real, lived-in sense of the time and place (like yours) than a peek into the inner workings of figures in history books. My all-time favorites are Dorothy Dunnett, Diane Norman, and Hilary Mantel.(less)
Average rating: 3.96 · 45 ratings · 11 reviews · 2 distinct works
William Shakespeare: His Li...

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4.14 avg rating — 28 ratings — published 2010
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Masques of Difference: Four...

3.65 avg rating — 17 ratings — published 2007
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The Four and Twentieth of August! Bartholmew-day! Bartholmew upon Bartholmew! there’s the Device! who would have mark’d such a Leap-Frog Chance now?


When John Little-wit, Ben Jonson’s would-be playwright whose day-job is law-clerking, discovers that a client named Bartholomew Cokes plans to get betrothed in Bartholomew Fair, on the feast day of St. Bartholomew (August 24), he delights in the l...

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Published on August 24, 2013 13:22 • 252 views

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Kristen McDermott rated a book really liked it
The Consuming Fire by John Scalzi
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Fun! Exciting twists, ingenious cursing, charming hookups, and a clever cliffhanger.
Kristen McDermott rated a book liked it
The Shakespeare Requirement by Julie Schumacher
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Non-academics will probably find this funnier than academics will. For me, it was just too realistic to work as satire -- my own university (though thankfully not my English Department) resembles Payne in distressingly many ways. That said, as academ ...more
Kristen McDermott rated a book it was ok
Becoming Belle by Nuala O'Connor
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
O’Connor is a celebrated Irish author who lives near the Clancarty estate that was occupied by the “Peasant Countess,” Belle Bilton, in 1891. The best part of this nove
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The Sea Queen by Linnea Hartsuyker
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
Hartsuyker’s re-imagining of the founding of Norway in the 9th century captures all the glory of its source material, the 13th-century saga, Heimskringla, but also adds
...more
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Speakeasy by Alisa Smith
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
In this fascinating dual-timeline novel we meet the enigmatic Lena Stillman, a codebreaker working at the Esquimalt Naval Base near Vancouver on the eve of the attack o
...more
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A Mask of Shadows by Oscar de Muriel
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
Two of my favorite things – Edinburgh and Shakespeare – form the backdrop for this historical mystery, the fourth in a justly celebrated series. The snobbish but princi
...more
Kristen McDermott rated a book really liked it
Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris
Sold on a Monday
by Kristina McMorris (Goodreads Author)
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
The scope of this intimate story is quite modest. Two young writers who want to make their careers as journalists in Philadelphia, 1931, struggle to balance success and
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Kristen McDermott rated a book it was amazing
Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
The title of this dreamlike novel refers to the tiny, discreet points of London street illumination used during the WWII blackouts, which were designed to guide, not il
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Kristen McDermott rated a book really liked it
The Sea Queen by Linnea Hartsuyker
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My review of this book appears in Historical Novels Review Issue 85, August 2018.:
Hartsuyker’s re-imagining of the founding of Norway in the 9th century captures all the glory of its source material, the 13th-century saga, Heimskringla, but also adds
...more
Kristen McDermott is now following
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More of Kristen's books…
Ben Jonson
“True happiness
Consists not in the multitude of friends,
But in the worth and choice.”
Ben Jonson

Ben Jonson
“Language most shows a man; speak that I may see thee”
Ben Jonson

“I may not be much, but I'm all I think about.”
Annie Lamott

Carrie Fisher
“Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. ”
Carrie Fisher

Carrie Fisher
“What doesn't kill men makes them stronger. What doesn't kill women makes men breakfast.”
Carrie Fisher

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Anyone who likes Shakespeare and wants to discuss anything about his plays can join!
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Searching for scholarship on food and literature, it might seem that few texts exist and many related discussions are issue driven rather than discurs ...more
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The focus of this group is historical fiction set in Ancient and Medieval eras(with some post Medieval), in any geographical location. Preference is g ...more
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Those readers who waded into the difficulties of Dorothy Dunnett's writing and then became enthralled and find other books to pale in comparison. Anyo ...more
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A group for all fans of Young Adult Historical Fiction who would love to meet other fans, read and discuss historical books. We will also have optiona ...more
9749 Tudor History Lovers — 2845 members — last activity 8 hours, 45 min ago
Anyone who enjoys historical fiction or history books about Tudor England will like this group. Whether you have been all the way to England just to t ...more
22454 Historical Fictionistas — 10013 members — last activity 2 hours, 42 min ago
Welcome to Historical Fictionistas! We want to experience all different kinds of HF with all different kinds of people. The more diverse, the better. ...more
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