Monthly Archives: July 2008

Romance Isn’t Dead on This Blog…

I’ve already inflicted my Georgette Heyer laden burbles on you (now there’s a sentence for you, heh), but lately, aside from my re-reading her novels I’ve been tempted back to reading historical novels and those of the romantic variety.

For those of you that may be interested, here’s some of my favourites (including series), and a few that I’m reading now:

Sylvia Thorpe After I’d more or less finished reading the Heyer novels I was desperate for more fodder.  Thorpe is excellent, her detail is on par with Heyer’s I think.  I think her books started being published in around the fifties, though it could be slightly earlier.  She is thoroughly out of print to my knowledge though, so you will have to search second hand book shops.  I also love Alice Chetwynd Ley, who is similarly excellent, though slightly more romantic, dare I say it…  Honourable mention goes to Mira Stables, and the only novel I can find written in the Georgian/Regency period ‘The Marriage Mart’, which was written by Patricia Burns.

All out of print, though not too hard to find.  If you want lists, do let me know.  I have also just begun to collect another out of print author – Patricia Veryan.

For the medieval amongst you, that includes me, I absolutely adore Elizabeth Chadwick.  I’d recommend any of her books, but my favourite, which is just being re-printed is ‘The Wild Hunt’.  If you like these you will probably also like Sharon Penman (Sharon Kay Penman in the US).  My favourite: ‘The Sunne in Splendour’.  Slightly further on in time, or maybe not is Diana Gabaldon.  Have you read her Outlander series?  It begins in the 1940s and time travels to a Scotland at the time of Culloden.  Since I have a soft spot for Frasers, I’ve had a copy of Cross Stitch aka Outlander to read for ages.

An old, but new, favourite of mine springing back once again to Regency is Stephanie Laurens.  I came upon a collection of her stories by lucky accident some years ago.  She has since gone on to write the Cynster family novels, which at the beginning are excellent, especially ‘Devil’s Bride’, but peter off a bit for me with the current stories.  I particularly like her early novels that have just been re-published about the Lester family.

Which leads me to Eloisa James.  She is, in the nicest possible way, my problem child.  I started to read her novels, which I loved, but have been unable to connect to any since.  She is on my must try again list, though the original books I read the ‘Pleasures’ trilogy I highly recommend.  It was the second book onwards of the ‘Essex Sisters’ books that I got bored with.

It was a stroke of second hand bookshop fortune that lead me to Mary Balogh.  I have read all of the ‘Slightly’ books, and am now making my way through the ‘Simply’ ones, which are loosely connected in places.  I find her stories a little hit and miss though, some I love, some I don’t.  I particularly liked ‘Slightly Dangerous’ and ‘A Summer to Remember’.  But then, I do love my Alastairs.  (Bonus points go to those of you who get my reference!)

A little spicier, but no worse for it, is Nicole Jordan.  I don’t have them all yet, but I’m really enjoying her ‘Paradise’ series, and plan to get all of her books in time.  Quick mention also goes to Gaelen Foley, I’m very new to her books, but have just started the ‘Knights Miscellaney’ series and hope to read more.

Last, but not least, my current reading pleasure (not guilty) is Julia Quinn.  I’ve just realised I read her earlier series some years ago, but came upon one of her ‘Bridgerton’ series of books by accident.  I am now reading my way up and down the series as my local bookshops haven’t had all of them for me to read in order, the swines.  I also like ‘The Secret Diary of Miranda Cheever’.  Quinn writes with a great sense of humour.

More?  I’m still reading my way through the world.  I will recommend more authors as I remember and discover them.  What are your thoughts?  Do comment or email me, especially if you want to hear more.

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Hot Air Balloon Flight at Castle Fraser

I have, yet again, Elinor to thank for the link to this most excellent video.  When do I get my go?!

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Argh! and Hello

Well, some of you might have guessed that I have been away on holiday for the last few weeks, though I did attempt to leave some timed posts.  I say attempt, because:

I updated some files on my computer the day before I went on holiday and then it refused to allow me to use the internet.  As I didn’t have any more time I had to leave it and hope that re-starting it when I came back would sort it out.  But no, it didn’t so I finally fixed the damn thing today.

I have some posts to write and over 300 pictures to sort through from my trip, so hope to have some more interesting stuff up soon.  Will also be replying to emails and comments.  I must also apologise to anyone who dropped an Entrecard or asked for an advert recently, as it was part of my plan to leave a message to say I was offline for a couple of weeks.  I have approved them all now, so sorry for the delay.

So, how are you all?  Did I miss anything (apart from Doodle Week)?

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Victorian Month at the Castle Reminder

A quick reminder that August is Victorian month at Castle Fraser. There will be a children’s quiz (written by yours truly) and other themed events for the Victorian Weekend 2/3 August.

There will also be costumed guides on certain days and other themed events I’ll update on when I have more information.

Check out (and join!) our Facebook page for more details.

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Edwardian Love

These are so pretty I couldn’t resist them!  Not my usual line of collectible pictures/photos, but they really caught my eye.  Remind me to tell you about the Victorian album I rescued some time ago…

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Upcoming Events at the Castle

Come join us…you know you want to!

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Mysterious Figures at Castle Fraser

Firstly, thanks to the lovely Elinor, who recently purchased this antique engraving for letting me use her image.

This engraving, probably from the 1830s/1840s shows the rear of the castle, and it’s courtyard.  It also shows many additions made by Charles Mackenzie Fraser from 1814 (when he inherited the castle) to the late 1830s when the work was still going on.  This was mainly to make the castle a more comfortable home for his family.

Worthy of note is the cupola, which housed the grand staircase, and the enlarged lower parts of the wings, which gave at the very least, wider corridors and access, and rooms for some of the servants, i.e. hall boys.  All these additions were demolished in the 1940s (Victorian is so unfashionable, darling!)

So, to the mysterious figures.  Family, friends, servants or visitors?  You decide!

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The Georgette Journey

The lovely Melissa and I are currently reading our way through Georgette Heyer’s novels, starting with The Black Moth.

Feel free to join in if you want to, here are the next few novels we will be reading over the next few months:

  • Powder and Patch
  • These Old Shades
  • The Masqueraders
  • Devil’s Cub
  • The Convenient Marriage
  • The Talisman Ring

You can also drop me an email if you want to chat about them.  There’s no formality here, just read, enjoy and share if you want.  :smile:

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Doodle Week Strikes Back

If you didn’t doodle last time, well why not?! Doodle Week is back this month for more fun and games hosted by the lovely Laura and Claire.

Shortly I will be taking an enforced blogging break, so won’t be able to take part this time, but you can see my marvellous doodlage by clicking the Doodle Week category on the right hand side.

Go on, you know you want to….
Doodle Week July

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Remembering 7/7

Image copyright 2008 Alison Lodge

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