All posts filed under: Historical posts

Blood Ties – Mixing Modern With Old, Guest post by Hazel B. West

Today,  I have a guest post from the highly successful author Hazel B. West.  Hazel currently has five published novels out, and today she is discussing her latest novel Blood Ties.  I have posted a description of the novel, and it is followed up by a fascinating post by Hazel on how she has managed to combine her love of history with her fantasy writing.  I have also posted a link to Hazel’s website at the bottom of this post where you have a chance to win a signed copy of Blood Ties.  So over to Hazel… Thomas M D Brooke Blood Ties by Hazel B.West In an Ireland that mixes high kings, faeries, and modern warriors who drive fast cars, Ciran, a descendant from the famous warrior Fionn Mac Cool, bands together with a company of young warriors from the legendary order of Na Fianna to go on a quest to recover their missing family members who were captured by the Goblins in a shaky peace between the two kingdoms. Ciran and his companions must …

Women who took their husband’s throne…

Sometimes women in literature are portrayed as the power behind the throne, the silent partner who advises from the shadows, or from the other side of the pillow, cleverly controlling the king by their side.  However for some women in history, this arrangement hasn’t been enough to fulfil their ambitions, and they have felt moved to take the throne themselves.  This is the case for the following four remarkable women, all who have seized the crown themselves.  What is interesting about all four figures, is the different motives and methods that each used to achieve power. Cleopatra used her sexuality to manipulate the most powerful men of her age, whilst Margaret of Anjou’s motives were one of a protective mother and guardian of her enfeebled husband.  Isabella of France was so angered by her treatment by her husband and his mismanagement of his realm that she felt she had no choice but to act, whilst Catherine the Great took control so that reason, science, and the arts could hold sway in her adopted land of Russia.  …

The Rebels of History….

What is it that makes someone rebel against insurmountable odds? When an occupying force or despot King or Queen holds complete power over you, why do some still somehow find the power to say no, and rebel against their all-powerful overlord? Sometimes the reason can be the sheer brutality of their rulers, whilst others are inspired by an idea or a fierce sense of independence.  Either way, they are a constant presence throughout history.  Some were successful, most were not, but they left an indelible mark on history to inspire others.   Here are a few of my favourites… deadliestfiction.wiki.com Bessus.  Alexander the Great is possibly the greatest conqueror of all time, he swept into Asia defeating the Persians at Granicus and Issus, before driving into the heartland of the Persian Empire and crushed the vast Persian host at Gaugamela.  After taking the Persian capitals of Susa, Persepolis, and Babylon his complete dominance of the ancient world seemed complete.  However one man thought differently, Bessus, a one-time ally of the Persia Emperor Darius.  Darius was fleeing …

Somewhere to write…

So far in this blog I’ve written a few articles on the process I use when I write, the aspects of writing that are important to me, and also how I avoid issues such as writers block.  This time I want to discuss WHERE I write.  This may seem strange topic, as everyone’s situation is different, and a where a writer lives should never be a hindrance to writing – after all, most of my writing is done from my South London flat which is hardly exceptional.  However, sometimes London doesn’t provide the necessary inspiration, or the peace and tranquility to write my best work.  It may be because I am approaching a particularly difficult section of a novel, or I just feel flat and not in the correct frame of mind.  In these situations there is just one place for me to go, and that is my family’s cottage in Northumberland.  Far from the nearest city or town, the cottage truly is isolated in the Cheviot Hills, alone on a hilltop miles from the …

An interview with Thomas Brooke, author of Roman Mask

Originally posted on Woman on the edge of reality:
Thomas Brooke lives in London where he works in the exciting, and sometimes crazy, fashion world.  He is also a committed writer and he spends as much time as he can in his beloved Northumbrian hills. Roman Mask is Thomas Brooke’s second novel and is set it classical Rome. The Thomas Brooke Interview What is one thing that no-one would usually know about you? Strangely enough, up until recently, something that very few people knew about me is that I’m a writer.  When I started writing several years ago, I was never one to tell people at work or other acquaintances about my secret passion.  My closest friends knew of course, but otherwise writing was a private escape for me, something that I kept to myself.  Since the release of Roman Mask at the end of June, that all changed, and now I have become used to being open and honest about my secret life.  It’s been easier than I thought, perhaps being helped by how well…

Coming up on the site soon! Game of Thrones!

Coming up on the site soon! Recently, I have been writing quite a few posts on historical fiction, so I think it is about time I turned my attention back to fantasy.  A while back I discussed the importance of The Lord of the Rings to the fantasy genre, and the impact that both the books and the films made.  This week I will be addressing the other hugely successful fantasy series that now is rivaling Middle Earth in popularity.  I am of course talking about George R R Martin’s magnificent Game of Thrones.  The first post coming out later this week, will concern the novels in the series.  I will discuss what made the Game of Thrones books so popular and how George R R Martin managed to create such an exciting and vibrant world.  The following week I plan to write a post on the impact of the Television series, how this may affect the legacy of the novels, and how the fantasy genre could now be viewed differently thanks to the overwhelming …

The Coming- Part 2 by Alan R Lancaster

A couple of months ago, Alan R Lancaster kindly submitted a post for this site, that described the coming of the Vikings into the British isles. In this post he continues his history, and sets the scene for the later invasion of William the conqueror in 1066.  So over to Alan…. Thomas M D Brooke THE COMING – 2: EADWARD & GODWIN On Eadward’s accession he called Earl Godwin to task about the killing of his younger brother Aelfred a few years earlier when Harold Knutsson held the throne as regent for Harthaknut in 1036. Godwin had intercepted Aelfred on his way via Guildford to see his mother Emma, then in Wintunceaster (Winchester). Aelfred was taken from Godwin by Harold’s men, blinded and then murdered. To atone for his part in Aelfred’s fate Godwin had a ship built, decorated and manned at his expense to give to Eadward.            The king accepted the gift, grudgingly. Next Godwin had his daughter Eadgytha married off to Eadward, who assented to this dynastic connection, although also grudgingly. So Eadward found …

ROMAN MASK SALE!

A very merry Christmas to you all! I hope readers of this blog all have exciting plans for the Christmas season.  I’ll be spending Christmas day with my family, and then straight after, I plan to travel north, to my cottage in Northumberland.  The reason for this trip is to work on the sequel to my novel Roman Mask.  I’m really excited, and have lots of plans and ideas to develop.  It’s really important for my writing process to get off to a good start. Several days with just me and the (new) dog in the Northumbrian hills is just what is needed to start the long journey. In celebration of Christmas, I have decided to reduce the price of my novel Roman Mask until the December 31st.  After this date, the price will revert back to its normal pricing structure, so get it cheaply now whilst you still can!  Unfortunately this offer only extends to the kindle version as changing the price on the paperback is impossible (without me losing money!) as the margins are so …

The Gladiator!

Ancient Rome’s gladiators have both fascinated and horrified generations of historians in equal measure.  The concept of the gladiator came from the funerals of rich and powerful, where slaves were forced to fight as a funeral gift for the departed shade.  Ambitious politicians, such as Julius Caesar, realised what a powerful tool these fighters could be in gaining popularity from the masses, and the gladiator was born. The Romans loved to match gladiators with different fighting styles against one another, in order to produce the most dramatic and exciting contests.  Therefore there were a number of different types.  Here are ten of them: lottie52occache.wikia.com Thraex “The Thracian” Relatively lightly armoured, the Thraex carried a curved blade, small round or square shield, and helmet.  He was given small leg greaves as well, but the rest of his body was otherwise unarmoured and therefore a tempting target.  The Thracian needed to be light on his feet and be able to rely on his dexterity to survive in the arena. hotdog.hu Murmillo “The Sea Fish”  Often matched against the lightly …

Graham Clews – Eboracum!

It is always nice to meet someone who shares my passion for the ancient world and it is why I am always delighted to showcase other authors work on my site.  Today I am delighted to introduce Graham Clews who made contact with me and told me about his trilogy on Eboracum, set in ancient Roman Britain.  I have attached the description to the first novel of the trilogy, ‘The Village’ and underneath Graham has written a few words about the series, and why he felt impelled to write it. Thomas M D Brooke From the time Cethen Lamh Fadha and his sharp witted wife Elena see a Roman ship slam into their village dock, to the clash of arms that takes place almost two years later as a result, their life is an uprooted trail of turmoil. Led by a Brigante king who, at times, seems to be an affliction that rivals that of the Romans, the couple find their paths reluctantly crossing that of Gaius Sabinuis Trebonius, senior tribune of the Ninth Hispana …