In anticipation of the upcoming release of Daughters of Shadow and Blood – Book III: Elizabeth I am releasing a free excerpt once a week until release day on June 1, 2017. This is Part 4. Read Part 1, Part 2 , and Part 3 here. I hope you enjoy! Please share and order your copy today!
The Daughters of Shadow and Blood trilogy is crammed full of real history. Yasamin spans almost two years, from 1599 to 1601. Elena covers several months in the fall of 1689. Elizabeth takes place over a few weeks in the summer of 1878. Also, sprinkled throughout are vignettes from many other time periods. I did tons of research to get everything right. If you find yourself interested at all in the history I talk about, here are some books to get you started:
Black Lamb and Grey Falcon by Rebecca West. Rebecca West was a celebrated British journalist. She wrote this travelogue of Yugoslavia in 1941 when Europe was on the verge of World War II. It’s more than just a travel book, though. West’s masterful prose weaves the history and culture of the former nation into a compelling narriative. Fair warning, though. She does bring her biases. Don’t make this the only book you read on the Balkans.
Lords of the Horizons by Jason Goodwin. This book corrects many of the biases Rebecca West has. It is a short history of the Ottoman Empire with a strong emphasis on the culture of the Ottomans and how it drove them to persist. Goodwin is also the author of a series of detective novels set in Istanbul in the nineteenth century, beginning with The Janissary Tree. His sleuth, Yashim, is unique in that he’s a eunuch.
Osman’s Dream by Caroline Finkel. This is a very detailed, comprehensive history of the Ottoman Empire, from it’s beginnings as a Turkish tribe in central Anatolia through the height of its power, to its downfall shortly after World War I.
The Balkans by Misha Glenny. This book covers more recent history, from 1804 to the present, but it sets up perfectly how the violence and warfare of the late twentieth century came about by showing its roots in earlier conflicts.
Balkan Ghosts by Robert Kaplan. This is another travelogue by a journalist. Kaplan also delves into the roots of the recent strife in the Balkans. Unlike the other writers on this list, he focuses heavily on Romania and the toll of the Communist regime there.
Kosovo: A Short History by Noel Malcolm. The Serbs claim they were in Kosovo first. The Albanians claim they were there first. As Malcolm points out, the truth is somewhat more complicated.
Bosnia: A Short History by Noel Malcolm. Bosnia has always been a crossroads of culture. In this book, Malcolm explores how a place renown for its tolerance and the peaceful coexistence of religions was torn apart by war.
The Raven King by Marcus Tanner. Matthias Corvinus, King of Hungary, amassed the largest library in the Christian world. He also held Vlad the Impaler captive for ten years.
If you’ve dreamed of writing your own novel(s) but haven’t yet written anything besides the first two chapters—and trust me, I’ve been there—you’re probably wondering how I got it all done, in addition to my everyday workload and all of the other stuff that goes into a life.
Aside from finding consistent time to write every day (even just a few hundred words), a lot of the advice in this article probably wouldn’t work for me, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t work for someone else. Courtesy of Lifehacker.
The last volume in the saga of the Brides of Dracula is finally here. Pre-order Daughters of Shadow and Blood – Book III: Elizabeth today!
Berlin, Germany, 1878: Lady Elizabeth James, the neglected wife of a British diplomat, receives a disturbing reminder of her past—a calling card bearing her father’s name. But he disappeared ten years earlier, and Elizabeth believes him dead. When a murder at the British embassy raises even more questions about her father, Elizabeth finds a number of unlikely allies, including an American named Thomas Parson, a self-styled vampire hunter. She becomes embroiled in an intrigue involving fortunetellers, assassins, and foreign spies, but dark forces threaten her at every turn, and as she discovers, even friends harbor deadly secrets.
Bucharest, Romania, 1999: Adam Mire reels at the abduction of his one-time love, Clara MacIntosh. Left with the admonition to “work faster,” Adam knows he’ll only see Clara again if he can find Dracula’s infamous medallion. Using the clues he’s pieced together, he follows a bloody trail across Romania, but Clara’s time is running out.
Meanwhile, Clara finds herself in a secluded manor house, the captive of a man both seductive and terrifying. Plagued by dreams of Elizabeth’s life in Berlin, Clara works to uncover her mysterious host’s agenda. However, she soon realizes both she and Adam are pawns in the schemes of all three of Dracula’s Brides, and to stop them, someone will have to make the ultimate sacrifice.
Prince Charles has a fistful of royal titles, starting with Prince of Wales and heir to the British throne, but until now, heir to Vlad the Impaler, better known as the inspiration for Dracula, has not been one of them.
Courtesy of USA Today.
In honor of my 42nd birthday, here are 42 fun facts about the number 42:
- 42 is the natural number following 41 and preceding 43.
- 42 is an even number.
- 42 is a pronic number.
- 42 is an abundant number.
- 42 is a Catalan number.
- 42 is an alternating sign matrix number.
- 42 is a Størmer number.
- 42 is a sphenic number.
- 42 is a primary pseudoperfect number.
- 42 is a pentadecagonal number.
- 42 is a meandric number.
- 42 is the sum of the first six positive even integers (2 + 4 + 6 + 8 + 10 + 12).
- 42 is the maximum number of points awarded in the International Baccalaureate Diploma program.
- 42 is a Harshad number.
- 42 is the number of partitions of the number 10.
- “42” is an episode of the television show Doctor Who.
- “42” is a song by Coldplay.
- Cassius and Brutus, the main conspirators in the assassination of Julius Caesar, died in the year 42 BC.
- The Gutenberg Bible contains 42 lines per page.
- 42 is the number of Fox Mulder’s apartment in the television show The X-Files.
- The door to heaven in the television show Supernatural is marked with the number 42.
- 42 is one of “the numbers” in the television show Lost.
- 42 is the atomic number for molybdenum.
- The Messier object M42 is magnitude 5.0 diffuse nebula in the constellation Orion, also known as the Orion Nebula.
- The New General Catalogue object NGC 42 is a spiral galaxy in the constellation Pegasus.
- Kepler-42 is a red dwarf star in the constellation Cygnus.
- There are 42 US gallons on a barrel of oil.
- The Roman numeral for 42 is XLII.
- William Jefferson Clinton was the 42nd president.
- The board game Risk has 42 territories.
- In Egyptian mythology, there are 42 questions asked of persons making their journey through Death.
- 42 is the number with which God creates the Universe in Kabbalistic tradition.
- 42 is the number of the French department Loire.
- 42 is a trick-taking game played with a standard set of double six dominoes.
- Pope Boniface I was the 42nd pope.
- Washington was the 42nd state to be admitted to the Union.
- 42 was the calling code assigned to Czechoslovakia.
- 42 is the retired jersey number of Jackie Robinson.
- In Japanese culture, the number 42 is considered unlucky.
- 42 is the car number currently driven by NASCAR driver Kyle Larson.
- 42 in binary is 101010.
- 42 is the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything.