Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Armchair BEA: Best of 2012 and a {Give@way}


Today for Armchair BEA we are to list our top reads of 2012 (so far) and/or offer a giveaway.  I'm going to do both! Since the focus on this blog is primarily historical fiction I will be listing my top five historical fiction reads so far this year.  The giveaway will be for one of my favorite HF books of all time (details below).  Now...on with the list!

If you like, you may click the title to read my review of each book.


The King's Agent by Donna Russo Morin


The Crown by Nancy Bilyeau




The Sister Queens by Sophie Perinot


The Sumerton Women by D.L. Bogdan

Now for the giveaway! One of my most favorite historical fiction books, arguably my number one favorite, is The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.  I read it long before it became a selection for Oprah's Book Club, but once she selected it, it gained in popularity and received the recognition it deserved.  


About the book:
This book tells the tale of a twelfth-century monk driven to do the seemingly impossible: build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has ever known.

Everything readers expect from Follett is here: intrigue, fast-paced action, and passionate romance. But what makes The Pillars of the Earth extraordinary is the time—the twelfth century; the place—feudal England; and the subject—the building of a glorious cathedral. Follett has re-created the crude, flamboyant England of the Middle Ages in every detail. The vast forests, the walled towns, the castles, and the monasteries become a familiar landscape. Against this richly imagined and intricately interwoven backdrop, filled with the ravages of war and the rhythms of daily life, the master storyteller draws the reader irresistibly into the intertwined lives of his characters—into their dreams, their labors, and their loves: Tom, the master builder; Aliena, the ravishingly beautiful noblewoman; Philip, the prior of Kingsbridge; Jack, the artist in stone; and Ellen, the woman of the forest who casts a terrifying curse. From humble stonemason to imperious monarch, each character is brought vividly to life.

The building of the cathedral, with the almost eerie artistry of the unschooled stonemasons, is the center of the drama. Around the site of the construction, Follett weaves a story of betrayal, revenge, and love, which begins with the public hanging of an innocent man and ends with the humiliation of a king.

At once a sensuous and endearing love story and an epic that shines with the fierce spirit of a passionate age, The Pillars of the Earth is without a doubt Ken Follett's masterpiece.

Giveaway Details:
I will purchase a gently used copy of the book from Better World Books (their used books are great quality.  I've ordered from them many times) and have it shipped to you.  Since they ship free worldwide, this giveaway is international! Please do not enter if you are not okay with a gently used copy.  To enter, fill out the Rafflecopter form and complete both entries.  Giveaway will end on Friday, June 8 at 11:59pm EST.  Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Photobucket

25 comments:

  1. I see that you like a lot of Historical fiction. I have watched all of Kenneth Follets series about the church.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love historical fiction, as well. Hard to pick a favorite but MM Kaye's Shadow of the Moon and The Far Pavillions are two of mine.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi, Michelle, I read lots of historical fiction. My newest one that I'm getting into is "Isabella of Castile" by Gortner (I think that's the title...I'm at the library and not with my book!! :P)It's about Queen Isabella of Spain. Just love books about the different Queens! I'd love to read your book offered: "The Sumerton Women." Good luck with your very awesome giveaway!! Deborah/TheBookishDame

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am so yearning to read 'The King's Agent".


    CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  5. I really love historical Roman fiction so I'll recommend Gladiatrix by Russell Whitfield! As made obvious by the title, it's about gladiators!

    ReplyDelete
  6. These look like some awesome historical fictions! I need to read more of them!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I definitely want to try The Crown. I've heard many good things about it from the book tour, and I love the Tudor period. I suspect I will try all these if the library gets copies, eventually. Pillars is a good choice. I read it just before the miniseries started and just loved it.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Visitng because of BEA, and I realize how little I know of the good historical fiction out there. I will definitely be checking out your blog more! My Best of (short) list is here Bookish Whimsy and I am now following your blog through GFC! :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm not entering since I read Pillars. It's one of my favs too! I miss Historical Fiction...I should make a point to read one or two every once in a while.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I adore the covers of historical fiction. I don't read a lot of it, but when I do, I'm swept away. Glad you loved them. Thanks for visiting my blog.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I loved The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory. It's at least one of my favorite historical fiction novels. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I normally read Young Adult literature. So, right now my favorite Historical Fiction is the River of Time series by Lisa Bergren. It is a time travel novel set back in 14th Century Italy. So good!! Romance and adventure.

    Happy AC BEA.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I just started getting into HF. I'm reading the Cousins' War series by Philippa Gregory

    ReplyDelete
  14. I really enjoy reading about historical fiction. I just finished "Reign of Madness" by Lynn Cullen-it was amazing! I really want to read The King's Agent and The Sister Queens!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great picks! I love Tudor fiction the most and just bought Philippa Gregory's new book, Changeling. Very excited for the Kingmaker's Daughter in August.

    ReplyDelete
  16. This is a book I've wanted to read, and I know you love it. Thanks for the chance Michelle!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I tend to read a lot of alternate history these days, which you may like if you like historical.

    But for historical, let's see. I just read Carolyn Meyer's new YA on Mary, Queen of Scots -- "The Wild Queen."

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am a big fan of Margaret George when it comes to historical fiction...her Cleopatra biography is probably my favorite. Thanks for the giveaway and have a great week at Armchair BEA! Feel free to visit me at Stiletto Storytime if you get a chance.

    Courtney

    ReplyDelete
  19. Two of my favorite Historical Fiction books are The Marrowbone Marble Company by Glenn Taylor and Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The American Wild West is not that far back in history, but one of my favorite books is LONESOME DOVE by Larry McMurtry. A truly incredible read. Well deserving of the Pulitzer.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Excellent picks! I have read three of these and found them wonderful! :)

    ReplyDelete
  22. Tough to pick a favorite. I just finished reading Call of the Sea by Rebecca Hart. I loved it!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Thank you SO much for choosing AT THE MERCY OF THE QUEEN for your top five list! I'm thrilled! And In such good company, too. Again, many thanks! This is Anne Barnhill

    ReplyDelete
  24. You are more than welcome, Anne. Your book deserved the honor. =O)

    ReplyDelete
  25. The Crown and At the Mercy of the Queen are both great books. Glad to see them in your giveaway!!

    ReplyDelete

Your comments mean a lot. I will mostly likely respond to them here in the comments. If you ask a specific question, I will try to respond in an email (if I can access your email through your blogger profile).

Please do not be offended, but this is an award free blog. While I appreciate the gesture, believe me when I say that your friendship is award enough. Thank you.

Popular Posts