INSTRUMENTS OF DARKNESS by Imogen Robertson

Imogen Robertson’s INSTRUMENTS OF DARKNESS is set in the village of Hartswood, West Sussex, at a time when the colonies were waging war against England. The male protagonist, the brusque Gabriel Crowther, is an eccentric and a recluse who has a wide-ranging knowledge of and interest in human anatomy. One day, a local woman, Mrs. Harriet Westerman of Caveley Park, pays him a visit and insists that his maid give him the following note: “I have found a body on my land. His throat has been cut.”

February 27, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, Mystery/Suspense, United Kingdom

THE THOUSAND AUTUMNS OF JACOB DE ZOET by David Mitchell

This is a modern, woolly mastodon of a book, a book with tusks and chewing teeth, a throwback to the most towering storytelling in literary history. But it is also a Seraph, a three-paired-winged novel that is full of zeal and respect, humility and ethereal beauty, an airborne creature that gave me five days in heaven. And, it is a sea serpent, because it lifted itself up like a column and it grabbed and swallowed me. Whole.

June 30, 2010 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: 2010 Favorites, Commonwealth Prize, Facing History, Japan, Literary, y Award Winning Author

THE DEVIL’S COMPANY by David Liss

Benjamin Weaver, Jew, thieftaker, and former pugilist, enjoys a certain notoriety and standing in 1722 London. As a Jew he is accustomed to derision and discrimination and has only in recent years come to bask in a sense of family and community. As a champion boxer he is a bit of a celebrity; feared and admired – a natural for the freewheeling, dubious profession of thieftaker, the 18th century private eye.

October 30, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, United Kingdom, y Award Winning Author

ANGEL OF THE ASSASSINATION by Graeme Fife

Novelizations of historic events can serve as an exemplary tool for understanding history for those who don’t have the patience to explore original documentation. Graeme Fife’s THE ANGEL OF THE ASSASSINATION, the story of Charlotte Corday: her life and her ultimate sacrifice, is no exception.

September 25, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, France

THE LIEUTENANT by Kate Grenville

Basing this fine novel about the settlement of Australia’s New South Wales on the real life and notebooks made by Lt. William Dawes from 1788 – 1790, author Kate Grenville subjects the empire-building attitudes of the Crown and its representatives to careful scrutiny and creates a novel filled with conflicts and well-developed themes.

September 7, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, Reading Guide, y Award Winning Author