June 2014

Why Sarajevo?

June 28, 2014

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that today is the 100th anniversary of the assassination of the Austrian Archduke Ferdinand and his wife at Sarajevo–the long-tailed and tangled fuse that began World War I. And I’m not going to go through the details of the assassination itself–though it would be a nail-biting thriller, […]

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Drowning In Books About World War I

June 25, 2014

It is a truth universally acknowledged (at least in the circles I hang out in) that major historical anniversaries are celebrated not only with documentaries, blog posts and re-enactments, but with the publication of Big Fat History Books. It makes perfect sense from the point of view of writer and publishing house: the centennial of […]

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The Nile

June 22, 2014

In The Nile:A Journey Downriver Through Egypt’s Past and Present, popular Egyptologist Toby Wilkinson leads the reader on a historical travelogue that moves from Aswan, home of the river’s First Cataract, to Cairo’s Gezira Island, from Paleolithic rock drawings to the Arab Spring. The voyage that shapes The Nile is not simply metaphorical. Wilkinson floats […]

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In Which I Give Away A Copy of Nick Lloyd’s Hundred Days

June 19, 2014

As those of you who hang out in history-land know, the centennial of World War I is just around the corner. So far I’ve resisted the temptation to add to the flow of WWI-related blog posts, tweets, and images.* But the pile of books to review and the list of things I want to talk […]

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In which I consider historical novels

June 14, 2014

Occasionally two separate projects overlap in my head, creating bubbles of thought. (The process is a bit like pouring vinegar on baking soda: the end product is active and slightly acidic.) This is one of those times. As I mentioned before, I’ve been reading about Boudica’s revolt against the Roman empire. At the same time, […]

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In which I consider the nature of historical periods–and moving

June 11, 2014

Despite good intentions, and a couple of creative efforts,*  I succumbed to radio silence here in the Margins while My Own True Love and I moved four whole blocks.  The construction isn’t quite done, but we’re half-way settled into the new house. (Okay, maybe a quarter of the way.  Between us we have a lot […]

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