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Looking for a wonderful Medieval -- or just a real keeper !
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francescafromitaly



Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 17
Location: Italy

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 12:14 pm    Post subject: Looking for a wonderful Medieval -- or just a real keeper ! Reply with quote

Hi!

It's me again trying to fill my summer reading list with not just good books but unforgettable books! Am I asking too much?

It's just that I'm pretty fed up with books that are not that good but not that bad either. You know, books which I'd rate 4 /5 . I've read a pile of them this year! So far 'Private Arrangements' by Sherry Thomas is the best I've read ( It's a 5/5, no doubt about it!) but I haven't read the latest Loretta Chase's and Elizabeth Hoyt's yet, so I'll suspend judgment for now, but all the same I'm looking for very good books to read on the beach.

As I'm a bit tired of the general mediocrity, I'm asking you for help.

I haven't read a great story set in the Middle Ages for years,so now I'd like to get back to that sub-genre for a change...any recs? I'd rather read something new -- say written in the last five/eight years. Is there any chance I can finally read something different instead of the same regencies, romantic suspense and contemporaries I have been reading these days?

And if don't have any good recs for a Medieval to give me -- any recs for real keepers would do ! I'm not much into erotica, vampires & supernatural but suggestions on everything else will be heartly welcome!

Thanks a lot.

Saluti.

Francesca Confused Confused
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Sandlynn



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 1808
Location: Washington, D.C.

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem is your "date published" timeframe. Most of the books I can recommend were not published in the last five to eight years.

For My Lady's Heart by Laura Kinsale
Uncommon Vows by Mary Jo Putney
Madeline Hunter's three books, By Arrangement, By Possession, and By Design
Katherineby Anya Seton
Keeper of the Dream by Penelope Williamson
The Wolf and the Dove by Kathleen Woodiwiss
Through a Dark Mist by Marsha Canham (which I think is the first in a series).
A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel
If you can look past the paranormal: Son of the Morning by Linda Howard
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LisaW



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 173

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 2:37 pm    Post subject: Jo Beverly Reply with quote

Almost any of Jo Beverly's Medievals should suit you ... they tend to be a bit darker than a lot, but, more true to the period. However, they're more in the 10-20 year range.

Also, another one, Bride of the Lion by Elizabeth Stuart ... but it's older and very hard to find.

McNaught and Garwood have some good medievals.
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Retrograde



Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 458

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wicked by Jill Barnett is my favourite medieval romance of all time. It's simply perfect.
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Elaine S



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 667
Location: Rural England

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not really a great lover of medievals but rate Roberta Gellis very high indeed. Her Bond of Blood is one of my keepers.
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Tinabelle



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 874
Location: SE Wisconsin

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are looking for excellent writing, good stories, and interesting and complex characters, you might try these contemporary reads:

Deborah Smith:
The Crossroads Cafe
A Gentle Rain

Robyn Carr:
Virgin River
Shelter Mountain
Whispering Rock

I know you asked about more recent Medievals, but these are some that I have enjoyed by Lynn Kurland, who is highly underrated, IMHO:
This Is All I Ask (1997)
Another Chance to Dream (1998)
From This Moment On (2002)
Dreams of Stardust (2005)
When I Fall in Love (2007)
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Susan/DC



Joined: 26 Mar 2007
Posts: 1662

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:57 pm    Post subject: Medievals Reply with quote

Almost any book by the British Elizabeth Chadwick is wonderful. There was also an American by the same name, but she wrote Regencies while the British author writes medievals. The books are easily available on Amazon, and some have lovely covers -- not the most important thing to be sure, but it's still nice when a book is pretty to look at as well as good to read.
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Jane A



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 760
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Jo Beverly Reply with quote

LisaW wrote:

Also, another one, Bride of the Lion by Elizabeth Stuart ... but it's older and very hard to find.


Yay! Another rec for Bride of the Lion, I love that book and have mentioned it in several threads but this is the first time I've seen someone else bring it up. I did look and it is available at PBS, but unfortunately PBS is only available to those in the United States. Sad Maybe Bookmooch?
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francescafromitaly



Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 17
Location: Italy

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Jo Beverly Reply with quote

LisaW wrote:


Also, another one, Bride of the Lion by Elizabeth Stuart ... but it's older and very hard to find.


I do agree with you Lisa, this is one of the best ever...I have it in English and Italian! I recommend it to everybody else who might be interested in a great unforgettable love story !

Francesca
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Allyson



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 567

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not usually a medieval person, but I really liked "My Forever Love" by Marsha Canham.
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LeeB.



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1277
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I second the recommendation for Lynn Kurland's medieval books.

I also second the recommendation for Madeline Hunter's "By" series.

Betina Krahn has written some excellent medievals, including The Wife Test.

Others I've really enjoyed:

Tina St. John's "Lady of Valor"
Jayel Wylie's "A Falcon's Heart"
Tamara Leigh's "Blackheart"
Candice Proctor's "The Last Knight"
Patricia Ryan's "Silken Threads"
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Yulie



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1149
Location: Elsewhere

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2008 3:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll second Katherine by Anya Seton, which is great. Would Tudor/Elizabethan set books interest you too? That should allow for a broader range of options.
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Schola



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 1867

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2008 4:27 am    Post subject: Re: Jo Beverly Reply with quote

LisaW wrote:
Almost any of Jo Beverly's Medievals should suit you ... they tend to be a bit darker than a lot, but, more true to the period. However, they're more in the 10-20 year range.


Let me second this recommendation, as well as the warning. Yes, they're a bit darker that most Romances--but the Middle Ages would be "dark" compared to, say, the Regency.

My favourite Beverley Medievals are The Shattered Rose and Lord of Midnight.

In the former, the hero and heroine are already married, but the hero has been away several years on crusade. Be warned that the story has adultery and another really crushing blow to the leads. (A lovely and much lighter secondary romance gives some relief.)

I recently reread it after enjoying a straight and very gritty Historical about the First Crusade, Knight with Armour by Alfred Duggan; this was the Crusade the hero of The Shattered Rose took part in and I could honestly believe that he had crossed Europe, seen Constantinople, besieged Antioch, and took Jerusalem during his four years away from home. Beverley is very believable--which is why the only historical hiccup I found didn't bother me too much. It's great writing! Very Happy

As for Lord of Midnight, it's a bit lighter. No adultery; the hero has just killed the heroine's father! Razz He feels no guilt because the killing blow came in a "court battle"--both men swore before God that they would fight to the death and accept the outcome as His verdict. Yet the heroine refuses to believe that God decided against her father, and insists that the hero cheated--something impossible to do with God as one's witness.

Now, it's easy enough for a post-Enlightenment writer to make the characters dismiss court battles as superstitious; but Beverley lets the heroine stay true to her times. The way she works out the dilemma would have made St. Thomas Aquinas himself proud!

I've also read Beverley's Dark Champion, but it doesn't seem as true to the period as the other two; I couldn't get over the embarrassingly stereotypical "lustful cleric." Confused You might want to read it first, though, because its hero appears in the first two books I've mentioned.
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 2498

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Elizabeth Elliott's "The Warlord."
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xina



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 6635
Location: minneapolis

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love medieval settings...therefore, I have a lonnnnng list of books I have read and enjoyed. Probably my favorites are...
The Love Knot by Elizabeth Chadwick (really, you can't lose with any of her titles)
Katherine by Anya Seton
A Dove At Midnight by Rexanne Becnel (she has a few more titles that are good too..medieval settings)
Saving Grace by Julie Garwood
The Secret Swan by Shana Abe
Keeper Of THe Dream by Penelope Williamson
Candle In The Window by Christina Dodd

I do wish authors would write more medievals. Lately, they are few and far between. Maybe when the saturation of paranormal is over, they will return. here's hoping...
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