Book Review – Murder at Westminster Abbey by Amanda Carmack

Londoners are crowding into the streets, celebrating, watching the river procession as Elizabeth Tudor makes her way by barge to the Tower of London in preparation for her coronation. Meanwhile, in the backstreets of Southwark, a kindhearted prostitute with pale skin and red hair is brutally murdered. Nineteen-year-old Kate Haywood is the daughter of a … Continue reading Book Review – Murder at Westminster Abbey by Amanda Carmack

Elizabethan Magpie Pickings

I have something of a magpie brain—I like to collect shiny bits of information, not necessarily immediately useful but interesting, to me at least. Over the past few weeks I have been heavily revising my current work in progress, The Bridled Tongue, and checking that I have no glaring anachronisms. These are some of the … Continue reading Elizabethan Magpie Pickings

A Glimpse of Elizabethan Norwich

I am currently revising my next novel, The Bridled Tongue, which is set partly in Norwich. Although Norwich suffered extensive bombing during World War II, there are numerous areas where Norwich's history is still plain. In 2016 I visited Norwich and so was able to glimpse the streets and sights that would have been familiar … Continue reading A Glimpse of Elizabethan Norwich

One Minute Book Review – Fools and Mortals by Bernard Cornwell

London 1595 and Richard, younger brother of William Shakespeare is a player in the Lord Chamberlain’s Men where William is both playwright and a sharer (a senior member of the company who shared both its expenses and its profits). Richard’s arrival in London a few years earlier was not welcomed by William. He packed Richard … Continue reading One Minute Book Review – Fools and Mortals by Bernard Cornwell

One Minute Book Review – Shakespeare’s Restless World by Neil MacGregor

In 2012 Neil MacGregor, then Director of the British Museum, gave a series of fifteen-minute talks on Radio 4 called Shakespeare's Restless World which took twenty objects from the late Elizabethan/early Jacobean period and examined them in detail, setting them not only in their historical setting, but also in that of Shakespeare’s plays. This book, … Continue reading One Minute Book Review – Shakespeare’s Restless World by Neil MacGregor

Forsaking All Other Love is no game for women; the price is far too high. England 1585. Bess Stoughton, waiting woman to the well-connected Lady Allingbourne, has discovered that her father is arranging for her to marry an elderly neighbour. Normally obedient Bess rebels and wrests from her father a year’s grace to find a … Continue reading

One Minute Book Review – Towers in the Mist by Elizabeth Goudge

This delightful novel covers a year in the life of the Leigh family, from the arrival on May Day 1565 of Faithful Crocker, a 14 year old orphaned vagabond, carrying his meagre possessions, a copy of Virgil and of Foxe's Book of Martyrs, and a burning desire to become a scholar, to the visit of … Continue reading One Minute Book Review – Towers in the Mist by Elizabeth Goudge

Elizabethan Resources – Politics and Religion

Continuing my list of sources used in researching the background from my novel, Forsaking All Others. Politics Budiansky, Stephen Her majesty's spymaster : Elizabeth I, Sir Francis Walsingham, and the birth of modern espionage Viking, 2005. Cressy, David Dangerous talk. Scandalous, seditious, and treasoable speech in pre-modern England Oxford: OUP, 2010. Dop, Jan Albert Eliza's … Continue reading Elizabethan Resources – Politics and Religion

Elizabethan sources – Sex, Marriage and Family Life

Continuing my list of sources used in researching the background from my novel, Forsaking All Others, to be released as an ebook at then end of 2017. Primary Davis, Norman (Ed.) The Paston letters. A selection in modern spelling Oxford : OUP, 1963. Houlbrooke, Ralph A. (ed.) English family life 1576-1716: an anthology from dairies … Continue reading Elizabethan sources – Sex, Marriage and Family Life