Friday, July 31, 2009

Mailing List!

I've been fiddling with my website, and one of the changes I made was to add a mailing list where readers (or anyone else) can be notified about my upcoming releases, giveaways, interviews, book signings, etc. If you'd like to be added, sign up here (the same address is also given in the sidebar). Don't worry, I won't share your information with third parties or send a mailing out every time Boswell sneezes!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Review: The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte by Syrie James

I admit that I was a little reluctant to pick up The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte, mainly because of the title, because with the exception of Sandra Gulland's Josephine Bonaparte trilogy, I haven't been terribly impressed by most novels that take the form of diaries, secret or otherwise. But pick it up I did, because I wanted a paperback to take to the beach, and I was very pleasantly surprised.

The title of this book is actually somewhat misleading, in fact, because although the narrator (Charlotte, of course) occasionally refers to her writing as a diary, the story is not in the usual day-to-day journal format. "Secret Memoirs" would be a more apt title. So if you're not keen on the diary format, there's no need to avoid this novel.

The event that prompts Charlotte to write about her life is the unexpected proposal she receives from her father's curate, Arthur Bell Nicholls. As Charlotte wrestles with the question of whether to accept, she reflects about her evolving relationship with Nicholls, her infatuation with a married professor in Brussels, her career as an author, and her life with her siblings, all now deceased.

James has researched her subject thoroughly, and it shows without appearing pedantic. Her portrayals of Charlotte's friends and family are true to life and three-dimensional, and where the author fills in gaps and creates dramatic tension between Charlotte and her suitor, it seems plausible. Having read more than my fair share of feminist critics who treat Charlotte's marriage to Nicholls as a tragic example of a gifted female succumbing to male domination, I was pleased to see that James treats the marriage positively, and even romantically.

Though one might enjoy this book better if one has read Charlotte Bronte's novels (and those of her sisters), it's not necessary. James' book also contains a number of extras: besides the usual afterword, there's a question-and-answer section for the author, excerpts from some of Charlotte's letters, and some poems by the Bronte siblings.

As I liked this book so much, I'll be picking up James' first novel, The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen.

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Kingmaker's Sisters by David Baldwin

The Kingmaker's Sisters: Six Powerful Women in the Wars of the Roses, a new book by David Baldwin, traces the lives of Joan Neville, married to William Fitzalan, Earl of Arundel; Cecily, married to the short-lived Henry Beauchamp, Duke of Warwick, and the notorious John Tiptoft, Earl of Worcester; Eleanor, married to Thomas, Lord Stanley; Alice, married to Henry, Lord Fitzhugh; Katherine, married to William, Lord Harrington, and William, Lord Hastings; and Margaret, married to John de Vere, the long-imprisoned Earl of Oxford. Through their husbands, the sisters often found themselves on opposing sides during the Wars of the Roses, and several experienced individual tragedies because of this.

As is typical of medieval women, little is known about the sisters' personalities and day-to-day lives, but Baldwin has unearthed what traces do exist through examining the sisters' letters, their dealings with others, and in one case (Katherine's) a will. There are nice color illustrations and a handy chronology. Baldwin also transcribes three previously unpublished letters from Eleanor and Katherine.

Baldwin makes note of a rather unsavory episode involving Richard III's ally Francis, Viscount Lovel, whose loyalty to Richard III means that he's generally portrayed by Ricardians as being only a shade or two less saintly than the king. Though Lovel had quitclaimed his interest in the Hastings manor of Ashby, Lovel's father had sold his manor of Bagworth to the Hastings family, and Francis's uncle William Beaumont had been attainted, Lovell nonetheless claimed that the Beaumont properties and those of Ashby and Bagworth, left in the hands of Katherine after the execution of her husband, belonged to him. In order to settle matters with the acquisitive Lovel, Katherine was forced during Richard III's reign to give him 200 marks in cash and to grant him lands totaling a maximum of 200 marks per annum. In return, she was granted the peaceful enjoyment of Ashby, Bagworth, and the rest of the Beaumont inheritance. Richard III, who's often praised by Ricardians for his chivalry toward women, seems to have done nothing to protect Katherine against Lovel, though he had specifically sworn to uphold the interests of Katherine and her children in their lands and goods. Ominously, Francis in his settlement with Katherine indicated that the matter could not "finally be appeased" during the minority of Katherine's son Edward, which suggests, as Baldwin states, that Francis might have driven even a harder bargain once Edward did come of age. Fortunately, the Battle of Bosworth meant that Francis never got the chance. Edward Hastings went on to fight for Henry VII against Lovel at the Battle of Stoke.

I saw one error that made me growl: Richard Woodville is described as "the fifth and last of Queen Elizabeth's brothers." This is not the case; had Richard been the youngest Woodville, his brother Edward, rather than Richard, would have succeeded Anthony as Earl Rivers in 1485. Moreover, although this book is about the sisters, I would have liked a bit more about their husbands' lives in order to better put the sisters' lives in context. Aside from this, though, I found this a very useful and informative book, one that puts a human face on the ever-revolving wheel of fortune during the Wars of the Roses.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Margaret Woodville, Daughter of Anthony Woodville

Of Elizabeth Woodville’s five brothers who lived to adulthood, none left legitimate children. Indeed, only one brother is known to have left an out-of-wedlock child—and that brother was Anthony Woodville, usually thought of as the most straitlaced member of the family. He left a daughter, named Margaret.

Margaret’s mother has been identified as Gwenllian, daughter of William Stradling. Nothing more is known about Gwenllian or her relationship with Anthony, but Margaret’s name suggests that the child might have been born before the battle of Towton, after which Anthony changed his allegiance from the Lancastrian cause to the Yorkist one. Of course, Margaret need not have been named after Margaret of Anjou; she might have been named for one of her mother’s relatives, for a saint, for her godmother, or after Anthony’s sister Margaret. Nonetheless, on New Year’s Day of 1465, John Howard, who was at Edward IV’s Christmas court at Eltham with Anthony and his wife, gave “to my lord Scales child 12d.” Anthony was married to Elizabeth Scales at the time, so the entry could possibly refer to a legitimate child who died young, but it seems more likely that the child is Margaret, since Anthony’s will makes no mention of deceased children.

Nothing else is heard of Margaret until her marriage to Robert Poyntz of Iron Acton in Gloucestershire. According to E. L. Barnwell, who doesn’t cite a source, on September 12, 1479 (19 Edward IV), Anthony settled 800 marks on Margaret, with 200 to be paid on the sealing of the deed; he also settled on her lands worth 100 marks a year. Poyntz was probably born in the late 1440’s and thus was probably about thirty or so. Their first son, Anthony, was born around 1480. Like her paternal grandmother Jacquetta, Margaret was fertile: she gave Robert five sons and four daughters.

Anthony Woodville was executed by order of the future Richard III on June 25, 1483. He made his will on June 23, 1483. Lynda Pidgeon makes much of his failure to name Margaret in his will, of which she writes, “It showed awareness of some of the wrongs he had committed but it displayed no affection. Perhaps he simply did not have feelings for anyone else.” Anthony’s feelings, or lack thereof, cannot be determined by a single document, especially one written when he was under the extreme emotional stress of his impending execution for a crime he most likely had not committed. Much of his will is taken up with directions to pay his debts (for which all of his goods were to “goo to the paying”), to right any wrongs he had done, and to arrange for the welfare of his soul and those of his deceased family members. Knowing that his property would be seized by the crown, he may have thought it futile to leave any bequests to his daughter. Notably, Anthony named Margaret’s husband one of his executors. Lacking more complete records of Anthony’s, we have no way of knowing whether he was generous to his daughter during his life or whether he held her in his affection.

During Edward IV’s reign, Robert Poyntz had been made constable of Carisbroke Castle and of St. Briavel’s (holding the latter office along with his father-in-law) and sheriff of Hampshire. Soon after Anthony’s arrest, the future Richard III stripped Poyntz of these offices. Later, he was replaced as steward of Sodbury. Not surprisingly, Poyntz was among those who rebelled against Richard III in the fall of 1483. He ended up in sanctuary at Beaulieu, where Anthony’s younger brother Lionel, Bishop of Salisbury, had also taken shelter. Poyntz was later pardoned, but in 1485 he fought for Henry Tudor at Bosworth Field. Following the battle, he was knighted on the field. It was the beginning of a long career in Tudor service for Poyntz, who was present at the Field of Cloth of Gold in 1520, where he appeared as a member of Katharine of Aragon’s household. King Francis gave him a gift of plate.

Margaret predeceased Robert, who died on November 5, 1520. In his will, made in October 1520, he asked that a black gown of Margaret’s be made into vestments for the Chapel of Jesus at the “church of the Gaunts beside Bristol,” where he asked to be buried. The vestments were to contain Robert’s arms and those of his wife. Barker, writing in 1892, described the chapel thusly:
The Chapel is entered by a panelled doorway, the sides of which are splayed. The fan-traceried roof is arranged in two main divisions, and in the centre of each is a boss in the form of a carved shield of arms. That to the East contains the arms of Henry VIII. and Catharine of Arragon, and that to the West, those of Sir Robert Poyntz and his wife Margaret Woodville, daughter of Anthony, Earl Rivers.

The “church of the Gaunts” is now known as St. Mark’s or the Lord Mayor’s Chapel. Evidently Robert's and Margaret’s arms can still be seen there in the Poyntz Chapel today. The remains of the couple’s home in Iron Acton—mainly a wing built by their grandson to impress the visiting Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn—are open to tourists (leave your high heels at home). On the premises is a sundial designed for Robert in 1520 by Nicholas Kratzer.


William Robert Barker, St. Mark’s, or the Mayor’s Chapel, Bristol (Formerly Called the Church of the Gaunts) (available on Google Books).

E. L. Barnwell, “Notes on the Perrot Family.” Archaeologia Cambrensis (January 1865), p. 32 (available on Google Books).

Anne Crawford, ed., Howard Household Books. Gloucestershire: Alan Sutton, 1992.

Frederick Arthur Crisp, Abstracts of Somerset Wills, 1890 (available on Google Books).

Louise Gill, Richard III and Buckingham’s Rebellion. Gloucestershire: Sutton, 2000 (paperback edition).

Alasdair Hawkyard, ‘Poyntz, Sir Robert (b. late 1440s, d. 1520)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 20 July 2009]

Rosemary Horrox, Richard III: A Study in Service. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991 (paperback edition).

John Maclean, ed., The Visitation of the County of Gloucester, Taken in the Year 1623 (available on Google Books).

Luke MacMahon, ‘Poyntz, Sir Anthony (c.1480–1532/3)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, May 2006 [, accessed 20 July 2009]

Lynda Pidgeon, “Antony Wydevile, Lord Scales and Earl Rivers: Family, Friends and Affinity. Part 2,” The Ricardian, 2006.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Again, Katherine Woodville Was Not a Cradle Robber!

As the research librarian for the American branch of the Richard III Society (yes, this is rather an anomalous position for a non-Ricardian to be in, sort of like a liberal in the Republican party), I just bought a shiny new book by Peter Hancock entitled Richard III and the Murder in the Tower. After inhaling that nice new book smell, I flipped to the parts about Henry Buckingham, and the first thing I saw was, "Buckingham most probably resented the Woodvilles because at the age of twelve in 1466, he had been forced to mary the queen's sister, Catherine Woodville, who was twice his age. Obviously, Buckingham had bided his time, and now saw the present situation as an opportunity to revenge himself upon his erstwhile oppressors."

People! First, Buckingham was born on September 4, 1455, so he was not 12 in 1466. Second, the description of Elizabeth Woodville's May 1465 coronation names Katherine as the younger Duchess of Buckingham, so Buckingham was most likely married to Katherine before May 1465, not in 1466. Third--and this is a big third--Katherine Woodville was not twice Buckingham's age! She was in fact probably only about seven when she married the nine-year-old Buckingham in 1465.

Hancock, like every other Ricardian who claims that poor little Buckingham was forced by the Evil, Nasty Woodvilles to marry a grown woman twice his age, doesn't cite a source for his claim, which is contradicted by every bit of primary source evidence available--a postmortem inquisition for Katherine's brother Richard, which puts Katherine's birthdate at around 1458; the description of Elizabeth Woodville's coronation, where Buckingham and Katherine are described as being toted around on squires' shoulders; and Elizabeth Woodville's household records, which show that Katherine was being raised in the queen's household. A birthdate of 1458 is also consistent with an old pedigree which states that Katherine was the youngest of the Woodville siblings and with the birthdate of Katherine's eldest son, who was born on February 3, 1478.

Is it really too much, she asked forlornly, to ask nonfiction writers to do a little research before writing about the Woodvilles?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Hugh and Bess Now Available!

I'm working on another post, but I did want to stop by and mention not at all subtly that Hugh and Bess is now showing up as "In Stock" on Amazon. It also seems to be on the shelves in some Barnes and Noble stores, though I haven't had the chance to stop by my local one yet to check. No doubt I might find myself stopping in there today and accidentally wandering by the H's--just to check on Georgette Heyer's books, of course.

My box of author's copies came in while I was out of town, and the new edition is lovely! Incidentally, it has some scenes, including the ending scene, that weren't present in the original self-published version. Hugh, the hero, is one of my favorite characters, so I hope you'll read his story!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

"Further Reading" Sections in Historical Novels?

I'm going out of town for a couple of days (work, not pleasure, but with pretty scenery, I hope). While I concentrate on lofty, airplane-encouraging thoughts, here's a question for you: Do you like it when historical novelists include a "Further Reading" section in their books? Or do you find it pretentious and/or unnecessary? Do you look at it, or pass it by?

Personally, I like it when an author provides a "Further Reading" section, and I've put one in The Stolen Crown. If I'm not familiar with a period or a historical figure, it's useful to have a list of resources so I can read further, and if I am familiar with the period or person in question, I can get a good idea of the slant an author's going to take simply by looking at the books he or she thinks are worthy of being included in the section. I can also get a sense of how much research an author's done: if a historical figure's been the subject of recent, well-thought-of biographies but the "Further Reading" section in a new novel doesn't include any of them, it's a red flag, though not always an infallible one.

Some authors, however, don't include a separate "Further Reading" section, but do take the opportunity in their author's note to mention some of the works they've relied upon. Some novels, particularly older ones such as some of Jean Plaidy's, contain a "Works Consulted" section but usually no author's note. Some compile a suggested reading list for their websites, but leave it out of their novels.

If an author does include a "Further Reading" section, how extensive should it be? Books only? Books and articles? Books that can easily be obtained at a local library or a bookstore, or books that a reader might have to utilize a university library or inter-library loan to obtain? Most authors seem to confine themselves to books, as I did, because listing articles would have made for a very long list, more suited for an academic book than a novel.

So what do you prefer?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Katherine Vaux and Her Children: From the Lancastrians to the Tudors

In researching Margaret of Anjou, I came across something that I hadn't expected--a happy ending of sorts. Not to Margaret's own story, but to that of her faithful lady-in-waiting, Katherine Vaux.

When Margaret of Anjou was taken into custody after the Battle of Tewkesbury, Katherine Vaux, along with the Countess of Devon and Margaret's daughter-in-law Anne Neville (future queen to Richard III), were with her. The death of Edward of Lancaster at the battle meant that Margaret had lost her only son and Anne her first husband. Katherine too was widowed: her husband, William Vaux, fell at Tewkesbury.

Born in Provence as Katherine Peniston, Katherine was the daughter of Gregory Peniston of Piedmont, said by some to have been an English exile. Katherine may have accompanied Margaret when she came to England in 1445 as its new queen. Under her maiden name, she is listed as one of the queen's damsels in the 1452-53 household records, which also list as one of Margaret's ladies a certain "Dame Isabel Grey," who depending on which historian one reads might or might not be Elizabeth Woodville. Margaret's jewel accounts for the same period show that Katherine received a gift of a "chopin," a drinking vessel.

On December 22, 1456, Katherine and three other people were granted letters of denization, a process that made them English subjects but that did not give them all of the rights of an English citizen. By this time, Katherine had married William Vaux, who was born in 1437. Vaux owned the manor of Great Harrowden in Northamptonshire. A loyal Lancastrian, he was attainted in 1461 and shared Queen Margaret's exile abroad before returning to England to meet his death at Tewkesbury.

Despite their political difficulties, William and Katherine had found time to start a family: they had two children, Nicholas (born in around 1460) and Joan (also called Jane). Nicholas is said to have been raised in Margaret Beaufort's household, and Joan might have been there as well.

Following the defeat at Tewkesbury, the widowed Katherine appears to have shared Margaret's imprisonment and to have accompanied her back to France in 1476 when she was returned to that country as part of the Treaty of Picquigny. In 1478, Edward IV granted her a life interest in the manors of Stanton in Buckinghamshire and Markham (Marcham) in Berkshire, which she had held jointly with her husband and should have received upon his death.

Margaret of Anjou died in 1482. Katherine was one of the witnesses to her will, made on August 2, 1482. She returned to England, where Richard III later granted her an annuity of 20 marks. Perhaps this kind gift was made at the request of Queen Anne, who would have known Katherine from Anne's days as Margaret of Anjou's daughter-in-law.

It was the defeat of Richard III, however, that signaled a new life for Katherine and her two children. Henry VII's 1485 Parliament reversed the attainder of William Vaux, allowing Nicholas to inherit his father's lands. Nicholas was also given the stewardships of Olney and Newport Pagnell in Buckinghamshire. It was the beginning of a long career in Tudor service for Nicholas.

Katherine Vaux was present at Prince Arthur's christening in 1486, and Nicholas was knighted the following year after the Battle of Stoke, where he fought for Henry VII. Katherine attended Elizabeth of York's coronation ceremonies in 1487, where Nicholas was one of the men who bore a canopy over the queen's litter as she proceeded to Westminster. A "Dame Johanna Gilforde" was also present at the coronation: this was probably Katherine's daughter Joan, who had married Richard Guildford by 1489. Guildford had participated in the October 1483 rebellion against Richard III and had fled abroad to join Henry Tudor in exile.

According to the Complete Peerage, which lists a source I haven't been yet able to check, Katherine Vaux was still alive on June 28, 1509, when the new king, Henry VIII, granted her an annuity of 20 marks. She had lived to see six kings on the throne of England: Henry VI, Edward IV, Edward V, Richard III, Henry VII, and Henry VIII. Meanwhile, her son Nicholas had a distinguished career. He was made Baron Vaux of Harrowden in 1523, but did not have much time to enjoy his new status, for he died about three weeks later on May 14, 1523, having married twice and had a number of children. His heir, Thomas Vaux, was painted by Hans Holbein. Thomas Vaux was a poet as well as a courtier: George Puttenham in The Arte of English Poesie wrote that "his commendation lyeth chiefly in the facillitie of his meetre, and the aptnesse of his descriptions such as he taketh upon him to make, namely in sundry of his Songs, wherein he sheweth the counterfait action very lively & pleasantly."

Like her mother, Joan Guildford served in a queen's household, in this case Elizabeth of York's. There she became particularly close to Elizabeth's daughter Mary. Joan accompanied Mary to her marriage to Louis XII in 1514. Unfortunately, Louis XII found the influx of English ladies, and the overbearing Joan in particular, too much to bear, and sent most of them home. Mary sent off indignant letters to her brother Henry VIII and to Thomas Wolsey begging for the recall of her "Mother Guildford," but to no avail; later, Louis XII informed an English ambassasor that he did not want "when he would be merry with his wife to have any strange woman with her." Joan returned to England and was given an annuity of twenty pounds by Henry VIII, who later raised the sum to sixty pounds.

Joan married twice. Her first husband, Richard Guildford, was prominent in Henry VII's administration, although he eventually had to leave office, perhaps at the instigation of Henry's unpopular ministers, Sir Richard Empson and Edmund Dudley. He died in Jerusalem in 1506. Joan's son with Richard, Henry Guildford, was a favorite of Henry VIII and remained in favor despite the mutual dislike between him and Anne Boleyn; he died in 1532. Joan's second husband was Anthony Poyntz, whose mother, Margaret, was the illegitimate daughter of Anthony Woodville. Poyntz died in 1533; Joan outlived him. She died in 1538. Though in a letter dated 1535, she had described herself dolefully as a "poor widow," this should not be taken literally: at the time of her death, her money, plate, and jewels totalled 12,000 marks.

Joan made a rather better impression on Erasmus than she had on Louis XII: on May 15, 1519, the humanist wrote a letter to Joan's son Henry Guildford in which he sent his compliments to Joan, with whom Erasmus had conversed on "one or two occasions."


Calendar of Patent Rolls.

The Complete Peerage.

Sean Cunningham, ‘Guildford, Sir Richard (c.1450–1506)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 12 July 2009]

Keith Dockray, ‘Guildford, Sir Henry (1489–1532)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [, accessed 12 July 2009]

Diana E. S. Dunn, ‘Margaret (1430–1482)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [, accessed 12 July 2009]

Kathy Lynn Emerson, Wives and Daughters: The Women of Sixteenth Century England.

L. L. Ford, ‘Vaux, Nicholas, first Baron Vaux (c.1460–1523)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 12 July 2009]

Mary Anne Everett Green, Lives of the Princesses of England.

Barbara J. Harris, English Arisstocratic Women: 1450-1550.

Michael Jones and Malcolm Underwood, The King's Mother: Lady Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby

John Leland, De rebus Britannicis collectanea.

Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, of the Reign of Henry VIII.

A. R. Myers, "The Household of Queen Margaret of Anjou, 1452-3," Bulletin of the John Rylands Library.

A. R. Myers, "The Jewels of Queen Margaret of Anjou." Bulletin of the John Rylands Library.

Maria Perry, The Sisters of Henry VIII.

'Parishes: Great Harrowden', A History of the County of Northampton: Volume 4 (1937), pp. 178-185. URL: Date accessed: 12 July 2009.

Mary Anne Everett Wood, Letters of Royal and Illustrious Ladies of Great Britain.

H. R. Woudhuysen, ‘Vaux, Thomas, second Baron Vaux (1509–1556)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 12 July 2009]

Monday, July 06, 2009

Ten of My Favorite Opening Lines

I'm in the midst of edits for The Stolen Crown, so I've been a bad blogger lately. Anyway, because some time ago, I mentioned some of my favorite closing lines from novels, I thought I'd do the same for opening lines I like. As was the case then, my favorite writers are overrepresented, but I at least did find one historical novel to round off the bunch:

Jane Austen, Persuasion:

Sir Walter Elliot, of Kellynch Hall, in Somersetshire, was a man who, for his own amusement, never took up any book but the Baronetage; there he found occupation for an idle hour, and consolation in a distressed one; there his faculties were roused into admiration and respect, by contemplating the limited remnant of the earliest patents; there any unwelcome sensations, arising from domestic affairs changed naturally into pity and contempt as he turned over the almost endless creations of the last century; and there, if every other leaf were powerless, he could read his own history with an interest which never failed.

Charles Dickens: Bleak House:

London. Michaelmas term lately over, and the Lord Chancellor sitting in Lincoln's Inn Hall.

[Yes, I cheated with two lines there.]

Charles Dickens, Dombey and Son:

Dombey sat in the corner of the darkened room in the great armchair by the bedside, and Son lay tucked up warm in a little basket bedstead, carefully disposed on a low settee immediately in front of the fire and close to it, as if his constitution were analogous to that of a muffin, and it was essential to toast him brown while he was very new.

Charles Dickens, Great Expectations:

My father's family name being Pirrip, and my Christian name Philip, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer or more explicit than Pip.

Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre:

There was no possibility of taking a walk that day.

Anne Tyler, Back When We Were Grownups

Once upon a time, there was a woman who discovered she had turned into the wrong person.

Barbara Pym, A Glass of Blessings:

I suppose it must have been the shock of hearing the telephone ring, apparently in the church, that made me turn my head and see Piers Longridge in one of the side aisles behind me.

Anne Tyler, Searching for Caleb:

The fortune teller and her grandfather went to New York City on an Amtrak train, racketing along with their identical, peaky white faces set due north.

P. D. James, Unnatural Causes:

The corpse without hands lay in the bottom of a small sailing dinghy drifting just within sight of the Suffolk coast.

Reay Tannahill, The Seventh Son:

"Sapphires for my bride-to-be and a severed head for the king my brother," said Duke Richard cheerfully.

Just a few: I'm sure I'll think of some more later that I wish I had included. Got some you want to add?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

June Search Terms

Per the fine folks at Tiger Technologies, who show me what search terms people have used to reach my website:

susan higginbotham bio

"The Childhood Years" has some interesting stuff in it, but "The Teen Years" is a bit of a drag. Skip forward to "The College Years."

susan higginbothams epidemiology

Only my epidemiologist knows for sure.

brief story of edward ii

He was king. Some people didn't like that. Including his wife.

did edward ii kill the ladies

No. (What are you trying to do, complicate my story?)

katherine wingfield or katherine wingfield or wingfield katherine

This is a person who's taking no chances.

jacquetta de luxembourg or jacquetta de luxembourg or de luxembourg jacquetta

If I were a matchmaker, I'd get this searcher together with the last one.

biography and ontributions of king edward 2

Evidently, the letter "c" wasn't one of them

are there still dukes and duchesses

Yes. Thanks to:

medieval duke and duchess sex

Resulting in:

son of duke and duchess

can isabella of france make you have money

She's certainly free to try. Just send it to my PayPal account.