Victoria Holt, Jean Plaidy, Philippa Carr; Eleanor Burford, Elbur Ford, Kathleen Kellow, Anne Percival, and Ellalice Tate. discussion

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Group Read: St. Bruno > TMSB Chapter 5: The Shadow of the Ax

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message 1: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Comment with your thoughts on this chapter.


message 2: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments Her father was such a good and kind man! A man with integrity, not quite like Sir Thomas More who was instrumental in burning a few new faith Christians at the stake. At least her father didn't suffer being drawn and quartered because of he station in life. It was interesting that PC wrote in the part about stealing his head and bringing it back to the abbey. Interesting of course since that is what More's daughter did. When we were England we stayed in a B&B a few doors down from the church in which More's head is supposedly buried.


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

I've always had mixed feelings about More, as well. Like many people, he allowed himself to believe that his beliefs were infallible. The emergence of Luther must have been quite a shock....no 'heresy' had ever caught on so vast and quick before. But aside from that, I've never quite made up my mind about his decision to go to his death. He did, after all, also have a responsibility to his family in addition to his God. And if he wasn't willing to do what was necessary for his family, was it not irresponsible for him to marry? Of course, his marriage did occur long before H went into his crazy "head of the Church" phase and who could have forseen that one coming, but still....I wonder if his wife felt abandoned and unimportant given all that happened.


message 4: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments Michele I think it was more of a political than religious decision for More. He would not accept Anne as queen and set aside Catherine. But true why die on that hill and leave your wife a widow with no property to raise your children.


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

It's odd, some days I will feel admiration for his fortitude and other days I feel irritated with him for putting his family second...I've never been able to solidify my views there.


message 6: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Pg 132 "We were all very relieved when Kate's pains started and her labor was not long. Trust Kate to be lucky."


message 7: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
On the discussion of Thomas More I concur that my feelings are mixed. I also feel the same way about Cromwell. I think I would like to dislike them both.


message 8: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
I finished this chapter, and wow.
(view spoiler)


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

Yes, Rupert is clearly the stable/wise choice. A smart girl, especially during this time period, might choose to marry him for purely practical reasons. Where on earth is it written that twu luv must be present? And as most long-time married folk know, that pure passion is what is called endorphins and after a decade of marriage, they do tend to fade a little, LOL. Long term successful marriages, IMO, are built on far more that what Dumbass/Damask is looking for.

Okay, I'll stop my rant, LOL.


ps....re: Cromwell....wish I could develop more of a liking for him. Even Hilary Mantel's book didn't really take away my distaste.


message 10: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
(I ran out of patience for Cromwell/Mantel in Wolf Hall and it still sits unfinished).

Am I the only one still reading this far behind?
I'll try and read some of the next chapter tonight. My husband is also working this weekend, so I can devote myself to reading some more on Saturday!


message 11: by MaryKate (new)

MaryKate (marykate711) | 202 comments I'm on my phone now and I will save longer posts for when I'm in front of my laptop, but I am still here everyone! I didn't read for what seems like forever and then lady night I read all the way up to the Wife and Mother chapter (and will most likely read more today).


message 12: by MaryKate (new)

MaryKate (marykate711) | 202 comments *last


message 13: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
=) I'd better step up my pace, then!!


message 14: by MaryKate (new)

MaryKate (marykate711) | 202 comments Once I sit down and devote an hour of reading to this book, it seems like it flies by! No pressure, Marie :-)


message 15: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
MaryKate wrote: "Once I sit down and devote an hour of reading to this book, it seems like it flies by! No pressure, Marie :-)"
Exactly - I need a good time chunk to relax to read, so far it's been snippets here and there, and reading other stuff too. Can't wait till I get caught up with everything.


message 16: by [deleted user] (new)

Take your time, both of you! It leaves more time for discussion and this is the most discussion I've seen for a group read in a couple of years, lol...I'm enjoying it.

It was a complete anomaly that I finished....a weird fluke. But I'm keeping my copy here on my desk so I can keep going with the discussion for each chapter. Again, I am in no hurry since this is fun, so take your time!


message 17: by MaryKate (new)

MaryKate (marykate711) | 202 comments I think I agree with you, Susie and Michele, about More and how he chose death over protecting his family. I can understand having one's own beliefs and holding to them, but if a traitor's family would be in some sort of danger after their death, isn't that irresponsible of More on some level? I'm not too sure how I feel about him and my opinion always changes whenever I read something about him or in which he is a background character.


message 18: by [deleted user] (new)

As Marie brought up, then we have Cromwell....didn't he beg for his life at the end? Of course if memory serves, he didn't die for his beliefs, but it does seem rather sniveling (not to say I wouldn't have been sniveling too, ha).


message 19: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments But I'm keeping my copy here on my desk so I can keep going with the discussion for each chapter. Again, I am in no hurry since this is fun, so take your time!

Michelle too funny. I'm doing the same thing with keeping my book by my desk so I can discuss chapters. I finished it a while ago.

Cromwell was an ambitious zealot to me.


message 20: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments Marie what are reading next? Is it posted somewhere and I missed it?


message 21: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Susie wrote: "Marie what are reading next? Is it posted somewhere and I missed it?"

Some point soon I am going to do The Bastard King by Plaidy, maybe a May read if anyone wants to read along.


message 22: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments The Bastard King is a great one. I really enjoyed that Plaidy.


message 23: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
I created a starter folder for it here, to see if anyone is interested in doing a Group Read, otherwise I'll read it by myself, lol..
http://www.goodreads.com/topic/group_...


message 24: by [deleted user] (new)

Oh yeah, I'm in!


message 25: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Michele wrote: "Oh yeah, I'm in!"

Awesome!! I don't think I've read anything on this era focusing on William the Bastard/Conqueror, so I'm looking forward to it.


message 26: by [deleted user] (new)

Love the whole Norman Conquest period....although admittedly, I'm a Harold fan over William, but maybe this book will even me out a bit.


message 27: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
I definitely need Plaidy to give me a bit of education on the era, and in the end you'll have to ask me who I favor!


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

After Plaidy, there is a Helen Hollick book called Harold. Now, while I am admittedly in a little bit of an anti-Hollick phase right now (the whole a bad review is the same thing as rape thing she's been yammering about), it doesn't change the fact that the book is awesome.


message 29: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
without getting myself into too much trouble, I am anti-Hollick and am trying to get rid of the two books I have of hers. That I won't read. Nuff said, and nope I won't elaborate any further.


message 30: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 76 comments Excuse me for butting in, I caught this on my feeds. IIRC, some of Valerie Anand's Norman quartet does deal with William's take on things. I seem to recall Matilda had a real talent for the draughts when it was convenient for someone to get bumped off. There's also a book by Mary Lide about William, but I seem to recall being fairly unwhelmed. Fortune's Knave: The Making of William the Conqueror: A Novel. I never did make it through Heyer's book.

Carry on...

I feel the same about the author you ladies just mentioned above.


message 31: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
I enjoyed ALL of Heyer's work till I hit the brick wall of My Lord John. OH MY that was like pulling my arm hair out one by one for a week. So I will stay far away from her other historicals (at least till I have no more arm hair).


message 32: by [deleted user] (new)

Marie wrote: "without getting myself into too much trouble, I am anti-Hollick and am trying to get rid of the two books I have of hers. That I won't read. Nuff said, and nope I won't elaborate any further."

LOL, you're allowed, you know! I've got one particular author (okay, two) that I dislike so intensely that it wouldn't matter if they wrote the next War and Peace, I wouldn't read it. On the one hand I feel guilty for not being able to separate the person from their work, something I usually can do, but on the other hand, it's just non-negotiable.

In my Hollick defense, I read her Emma books, Harold books way before she even posted on the internet, so I had no idea. I know she has her pirate series that she says is better, but I refuse to buy them or even library borrow them. I do have some principles left, LOL.

Carry on.....

ps....I need to read that Anand quartet one of these days.


message 33: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments I have no idea what you guys are talking about the author who must not be named. I am certainly curious now. Checked out the author and books look interesting, would love to know why the boycot. Can someone direct me on this.


message 34: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Pleads the fifth. Sorry Susie.


message 35: by [deleted user] (new)

I'm sure Marie has her own separate, private reasons, but I will tell mine (mostly because no one cares, ha ha ha). The author (laughed at "she who must not be named") not too long ago had a little Facebook rant going whereupon she compared a bad review to being raped. I happen to think that is an insulting comparison. She just doesn't like bad or even mediocre reviews of her books or her friend's books.

I happen to view book reviews differently. Good and bad reviews are part of the process of publishing a novel. Not everyone is going to love it. As they say, though, there's a butt for every saddle and I just don't think a bad review warrants insults and nastiness. (Of course, I also think "this book sucked" is a bad negative review, LOL....one should be able to state why they didn't like the book, but that's another story, I guess.)

Putting all that silliness aside, she wrote several books that I really did like. As I said, I've not read her series that involve pirates (and now likely never will), but the other historical fiction I really enjoyed. Too bad she's not a very nice person.

Which, in truth, brings up a whole other kettle of fish: do we/should we separate the artist from the work? I'd like to think so....and I try to do that, but there seem to be limits for me. Example: I've never seen a Mel Gibson film following his anti-Semetic rant all those years ago. I just can't bring myself to pay money that will go into the pocket of someone who I feel is undeserving. Was he a good actor? I thought so. Too bad he wasn't a good person. I guess I'm kind of getting that way with authors, too. Not sure how I feel about that.

Okay, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Marie is off the hook, lol!


message 36: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments That gives me a very clear insight into the matter. I appreciate you taking the time to clarify. What a ridiculous analogy comparing rape to a review.

I have a hard time with authors getting their panties in a wrinkle over someone's opinion. This happened with another author a few years ago(will not share name)who was popular on the blog review circuit. I read the book and posted a 4 star review. In hindsight I know I was being generous. There were others however that truthfully told it how it was and the author had a melt down which in turn pitted blogger against blogger and some ugliness was spread around.

I personally just stayed out of it. I thought the whole thing was ridiculous especially the author. Everyone is entitled their opinion. If your aspiration is to be an author you better have thick skin and roll with the punches. Maybe, instead of whining about less than glowing reviews use them as tools for improvement.

With all this said this information will not keep me from reading Forever Queen. Having read the synopsis and reviews I am pique. Sorry to learn that this author is not a very nice person,maybe she's menopausal:-).

Thanks Michelle


message 37: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments By the way Michelle, I stopped watching Mel Gibson films after his historical debacle of Brave Heart. I liked the film, but it was purely fiction even down to the "jus primae noctis"(law of the first night)which was a law but rarely if ever practiced. Edward I did not push Peers out the window he banished him to France. Isabella was barely born when William Wallace was around. Edward II and Isabella were married in France following death of Edward I.
Wallace was caught by the English when he left his camp and went into town to visit a woman and not betrayed by Robert de Braouse.
So go figure the guy is just a sensationalist. Another ambitious zealot!


message 38: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
This author has a very high opinion of herself. She shoots down anyone who has an opinion that is not similar to hers, and her posts on Facebook signify that. Like you said Susie, a review should be able to go both ways. Thanks Michelle for explaining it so well!


message 39: by Susie (last edited Apr 04, 2013 04:07PM) (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments With all this said doesn't it make you appreciate author's like Elizabeth Chadwick!! She is the real deal, an excellent author, knows her stuff and appreciates her fans! She is a nice person with a wonderful homey blog.


message 40: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Definitely Susie! Elizabeth Chadwick and Sharon Kay Penman are my favorite authors for historical fiction.


message 41: by Susie (new)

Susie Fiorito (tudordaughter) | 30 comments Oh yes Sharon Kay, she transports me :-).


message 42: by [deleted user] (new)

Marie wrote: "Definitely Susie! Elizabeth Chadwick and Sharon Kay Penman are my favorite authors for historical fiction."

Ditto.

There is a new debut author on the scene who just released the first in a trilogy on Emma....her name is Patricia Bracewell and her book is called Shadow on the Crown....have any of you read it yet? I thought it was just as good as the one She Who Must Not Be Named wrote. Can't wait for the second one. Best of all? I haven't seen her promoting her book or responding to reviews or anything.....I think she has potential to be the real-deal....very EC and SKP professional-like.


message 43: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
Yes I really did enjoy it - but was totally disappointed that I did not know it was to be a series. I hate reading series books if they are spaced out timewise. http://www.burtonbookreview.com/2013/...


message 44: by [deleted user] (new)

@Susie....I know exactly what you mean. I stopped blogging about books for nearly two years because of situations exactly like that. It's such a shame. Lately, though, I've decided I just don't care. I'd rather be honest than liked, I guess. But I have indeed lost a couple of "blogging buddies" that I thought, erroneously, were friends. Oh well.


message 45: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
For my part I want to tone down the current review reads and start reading from the OOP type authors. I totally get what you mean with blogging cliques, I'm over them & happy to do what I want.


message 46: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 76 comments I liked the Bracewell book as well, but I did know it was a series going in. Fortunately I know the history from *****'s book on Emma so I'm not on pins and needles wanting to know what happens next.


message 47: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 76 comments Michele wrote: "@Susie....I know exactly what you mean. I stopped blogging about books for nearly two years because of situations exactly like that. It's such a shame. Lately, though, I've decided I just don't ..."

That was my attitude, but I still caught crap. Outside of a group of authors I can count on one hand, I'm sticking with OOPs and/or library books that I can close after a few chapters and move on. Even the Vine books that have no obligation to write a gushy review aren't worth the grief.

@ Marie, there are just so many wonderful older historicals just waiting to be rediscovered. As long as one can keep an open mind and not stick one's nose in the air over a cheesy bodice ripping cover, one never knows what one will find.

I still need to get Michele over to Finally Found Books in tiny Black Diamond, along with lunch/breakfast at the famous Black Diamond Bakery and Cafe. Finally Found Books actually shelves HF separately from HR.


message 48: by Marie (new)

Marie Burton (marieburton2004) | 534 comments Mod
I hear you Misfit. I am working on the review copy slow down, but I have a hard time saying no. At some point I'm going to implode so I'd better find a way to ignore the new books so I can focus on the many under my own roof.


message 49: by [deleted user] (new)

Misfit wrote: "I still need to get Michele over to Finally Found Books in tiny Black Diamond, along with lunch/breakfast at the famous Black Diamond Bakery and Cafe. Finally Found Books actually shelves HF separately from HR. "


Who can we pay off to babysit for 8 hours or so? *Want to go so bad!*


message 50: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 76 comments Ack, babysitting duties. I'll go in your place and stick photos on your FB page :)

@ Marie. Thankfully I have a rep as a tough reviewer and I never did get many requests, and the library always gets most of them in the end. Vine offers lots of other things besides books so I'm good.


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