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Old 10-30-2010, 11:10 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
27,036 posts, read 28,939,347 times
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Two of my favorite books are "Pope Joan" and "Year of Wonders." I would classify both of these as historical fiction. "Pope Joan" was set in medieval Europe, while "Year of Wonders" was set in the 1600s. I am looking for a recommendation of another book of historical fiction, hopefully set in Europe or Russia sometime between 700 A.D. and 1700 A.D. Does anyone have any suggestions for me?
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Old 10-31-2010, 02:14 AM
 
Location: Canada
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Well, the obvious choices are Ken Follett's, The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End. If you haven't read them, you are missing a real treat. There is also Umberto Eco, The Name of the Rose.
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Old 10-31-2010, 04:58 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
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Are you interested in more Vatican based novels? If so, I recommend:

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Old 11-02-2010, 03:59 AM
 
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I really enjoyed that Year of Wonders as well. I have read a lot of Philippa Gregory books (The Other Boleyn Girl, the Constant Princess as well as Meridor) which are very good story lines and easy to read in my opinion. She has written a LOT of books that you would probably enjoy, all historical fiction.
I am not positive of the time period but another one that was really good was The Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier.
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Old 11-02-2010, 04:48 AM
 
Location: in the southwest
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Yet another reader who enjoyed Year of Wonders.
I also enjoyed Tracey Chevalier's Girl With A Pearl Earring (the other novels, too.)

Another rec: The World Is Not Enough by Zoe Oldenbourg
Plenty of gritty reality, and vivid characters. It is first of a series.
Zoé Oldenbourg was a Russian-born French historian.

Even though it is not fiction, Barbara Tuchman's A Distant Mirror might appeal to you, it is mostly very readable; sometimes tedious here and there with details.
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Old 11-02-2010, 11:21 AM
 
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Almost anything by Roberta Gellis. I'd always wondered what one did with a graduate degree in medieval literature if they didn't teach, then I found her and no longer wondered.

Oddly enough, I just did a brief search on her and didn't find a single site that included her educational attainments, nor is she in Wikipedia. They were listed in one of her earlier books, one of the Roselynde Chronicles, I think.
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Old 11-02-2010, 12:27 PM
 
Location: Colorado
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Sharon Kay Penman has written several novels that take place during the Mediaeval era. Her Henry II trilogy for one, as well as Here Be Dragons, Falls The Shadow and The Reckoning. If you like non-fiction I HIGHLY recommend The Lady Queen: The Notorious Reign of Joanna I, Queen of Naples, Jerusalem and Sicily.
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Old 11-04-2010, 05:09 PM
 
Location: Way up north :-)
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Years ago I read a novel set around the later part of the 17th or 18th century. It was about a female painter, and told of her struggle to be taken seriously as an artist. The protaganist was pretty strong-willed and determined, making for an interesting story. I thought it was called Althea but I could find nothing under that name. Naturally I can't remember the author either. I know it's not helpful but maybe it'll ring a bell with someone.
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Old 11-04-2010, 06:03 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
27,036 posts, read 28,939,347 times
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Thank you everyone! That gives me some good stuff to go on. I love stuff set in medieval times. I hate to just try to find a book without a recommendation. For those who recommended "Girl with a Pearl Earring," I have read that. It totally held my interest, but apparently not enough to be memorable, since I'd forgotten all about it when I started this thread.
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Old 11-04-2010, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Elsewhere
85,520 posts, read 80,846,970 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salonva View Post
I really enjoyed that Year of Wonders as well. I have read a lot of Philippa Gregory books (The Other Boleyn Girl, the Constant Princess as well as Meridor) which are very good story lines and easy to read in my opinion. She has written a LOT of books that you would probably enjoy, all historical fiction.
I am not positive of the time period but another one that was really good was The Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier.
Sharon K. Penman is a good historical novelist if you like medieval England. Her books are more complex and historically accurate than Phillippa Gregory's, although I've enjoyed Gregory's books as well.

An older historical novel (written in the early Sixties) that is my favorite of all time is The Heaven Tree by Edith Pargeter. The author became better-known later in her life for her Brother Cadfael mysteries, which she wrote under the name of Ellis Peters, but they don't compare to The Heaven Tree.
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