Thursday, 2 July 2009

Shields of Pride

Brilliant summer weather again, but these warm
nights make sleeping difficult. Good thing I have unread books to hand when the clock hands move on to two and three in the morning, otherwise I'd be demented come morning!
Last night I finished Shields of Pride by Elizabeth Chadwick. It was first published in 1994 so she has "refurbished it" for re-issue in 2007. The style of her writing and the story lines she selects are a little different now, but not a great deal. I enjoyed this story of Linnet and Joscelin (I must admit I had trouble with that name for a hero. I had a female friend called Jocelyn, and almost every time I saw the name in print I stopped reading and had to remind myself "that's the hero.")
The arc of the story is their romance, from first meeting to settled happy relationship after the first child, with all the near disasters early medieval life can throw at them. The difference between this and an M&B type romance is that the mindset of the characters is very much medieval, as opposed to the newer M&B type historicals where heroines in particular are very much this century constrained by their some aspect of their setting - which they soon overthrow.
Scene setting may be easier for medieval hsitoricals, when the differences between 1200 and 2000 are so very much greater than 1800 and 2000, but I do prefer it when author takes the trouble to give me an authentic flavour of what life was truly like in the time period she has chosen to write about. For one thing, it almost cures me of the dream that I would like to have lived back in history. For another, it is pure reading pleasure, and ensures that I won't, with a curl of the lip, be throwing the book across the room.

3 comments:

Glynis said...

I have not read many medieval books, I will look out for this one.

Anita Davison said...

Gorgeous rose, Jen. Hot nights don't make sleep difficult, they make it impossible! Hope it's less sticky tonight. BTW - Sorry about Andy

Jen Black said...

I'm not a Murray fan, so I'm not disappointed. I worry more for Rafa's knees!
Jen