Genre Blending: Historical Fiction + SciFi/Fantasy

Genre Blending (also called Genre Crossing, Genre Mixing, Cross-Genre) is when an author mixes together aspects of two or more genre styles in the same work. In this case Historical Fiction, SciFi or Fantasy. That’s my rather simplistic definition of Genre Blending. I can’t decide if there have been more of these books coming out…

Jim Recommends: The Elizabethan Espionage Edition

As anyone knows who frequents this blog I love reading all things spy related. But I have a particular soft spot for Elizabethan espionage. So here are some fiction and non-fiction titles that I have either read or am looking forward to reading. Fiction A Column of Fire by Ken Follett. In 1558, the ancient…

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

For this Saint Patrick’s Day we thought we’d offer up some histories of Ireland that show Ireland’s interacation with the outside world throughout history. Also these titles might be a little less well known. Enjoy!   Ireland in the Virginian sea : colonialism in the British Atlantic by Audrey Horning. In the late sixteenth century,…

What I Didn’t Read On My Vacation

I have this fear (some might say pathological fear) of going somewhere and not having something to read. With libraries, bookstores, and of course ebooks that really isn’t a problem. However, I went on vacation last week, and that brought about a further problem I have: over packing books. Picture me standing in my bedroom…

Jim’s Bedside Table

Once again my bedside table has gotten so full of books that my eyeglasses case and alarm clock are threatening to move to some other bedside table. Lets see what’s on there. 1916: A Global History by Keith Jeffery When I picked up this book originally I thought, “oh goodie, another World War I book,”…

Jim Recommends

This is easily my favorite work by Umberto Eco and pretty high on my list of favorite works of historical fiction in general. The story is set in the late 12th century and early 13th century. The main character is Baudolino a boy from northern Italy who has two talents: he can learn any language in moments and he is a very good liar.

Jim Recommends

The Medici have been getting a lot of notoriety lately, both in fiction (for example The Medici Boy by John L’Heureux, and a whole slew of novels featuring Catherine De Medici) and in television (most notably Da Vinci’s Demons). The House of Medici, although an older book, is great for people who want some background on the Medici clan without getting bogged down in the Renaissance artists they patronized…