Monday, August 18, 2014

Historical Fiction Enticements 8/19

Along with introducing several newer historical novels, I would like to announce that Castles, Customs, and Kings: True Tales by English Historical Fiction Authors will be available in Audiobook format hopefully in November. Aaaaand! We are working on Volume II.


Bronze and Stones
Paul Burnette

2300 BCE, Hanavel struggles to escape a group of slavers abducting her from her home in Bretanye. Mate Aiman searches for her, finding clues, crossing the Sea Neck into Britain.

He eventually finds the Keepers of the Stone Circle. While Aiman describes his wife and what he knows or suspects of the kidnappers for the Keepers, Ulen studies the stranger again. His brown hair is braided and hangs down his back almost to his waist. . . . Even squatting, he looks ready to fend off any attack. In fact, Ulen sees that the warrior’s body is positioned so that he can see all of the Keepers as well as the leader.

The leader gestured again, this time toward the pack at the feet of the warrior.

“And here?”

Aiman placed his hand on the skin bag and left it there for a moment. Then he took the bag up in one hand, loosening the leather thong that held its mouth closed. Ulen also felt – with every one of the villagers – the impulse to look at the various gold-hued objects that fell from the bag to the ground. He had seen copper jewelry several times and gold a few. These – there were two knives, several pins, bracelets, an armband, more – they were another metal, gold in coloring, but not as deep a tone.

Several of the others had drawn their breath in sharply. But the warrior did not seem to notice, instead drawing his own knife and holding it out toward the leader in the palm of his hand. “Here, try mine.”

The Keepers will not let Aiman take his new metal-smithing skills away, so he sends new friend Ulen to search for Hanavel. At Beltane, Lammas, and Samhain festivals, Tellers stand on their clan’s Telling stone sharing the ancient stories of love, betrayal, trickery, and fate that resonate in their listeners’ lives.

While Hanavel suffers life as a slave to a rival clan’s chieftain, seeking opportunity to escape, the youth Ulen finds his own place adventuring among the ancient peoples who inhabited what we now call the United Kingdom, but which they know simply as the Land.

Amazon US
Amazon CA
Amazon UK

7 five-star reviews, 1 four-star.


The Portuguese Affair
Ann Swinfen

The year after defeating the Spanish Armada, England retaliates. The expedition to Portugal sets out to destroy what remains of Spain’s Atlantic fleet, drive the Spanish out of Portugal, put the claimant Dom Antonio of Aviz on the throne, and seize the Azores.

But from the time the English fleet, led by Drake and Norreys, reaches Plymouth, things start to go wrong. Christoval Alvarez, sent to carry out two missions by Walsingham, has a more important private plan in mind. Are any members of the family still alive? And what will become of the disaster-ridden expedition?


His Majesty's Confidential Agent 
Tom Williams

The war against Napoleon brought horror, death and destruction to countries across the world. For a young man anxious to improve his position in the world, though, it brought opportunity.

James Burke comes from a poor Irish background. Joining the army offers him a way of escape. Glory in battle might allow him to achieve his ambition to rise in society. But when his linguistic skills are noticed and he is plucked from the infantry to become a spy, James' hopes of advancement are crushed. Spying is no business for a gentleman. And when a mission to Buenos Aires means disguising himself as a merchant in leather goods, he feels he has hit a new low.

His mission, though, means fighting alongside men who see the collapse of the old order giving them a chance to break free of Spanish colonial rule. He falls in love with the country – and with the beautiful Ana.

urke tries to forward British interests, while keeping faith with the rebels. He gains the trust of the rebels, who plot with him to put the British in charge of Buenos Aires. Once their army is established there, though, the British renege on the promises they made to the rebels who helped them. When the people rise against the invaders, Burke is caught in the middle. Captured by revolutionaries and disowned by the British, he becomes a pawn in the three way fight between Britain, Spain and South American patriots. For once, he has more at stake than his own ambition. How can he honour the pledges he has made to his friends and his country and still stay alive?

Based on true events and meticulously researched, His Majesty's Confidential Agent follows James Burke from the jungle of Haiti through the courts of Spain and Brazil until, back in Buenos Aires, he is forced to risk everything to fight for the girl he loves.

UK Kindle
UK Paperback
US Kindle
US Paperback


The Bitter Trade
Piers Alexander

In 1688, torn by rebellions, England lives under the threat of a Dutch invasion. Redheaded Calumny Spinks is the lowliest man in an Essex backwater: half-French and still unapprenticed at seventeen, yet he dreams of wealth and title. When his father’s violent past resurfaces, Cal’s desperation leads him to become a coffee racketeer. He has just three months to pay off a blackmailer and save his father’s life - but his ambition and talent for mimicry pull him into a conspiracy against the King himself. Cal’s journey takes him from the tough life of Huguenot silk weavers to the vicious intrigues at Court. As the illicit trader Benjamin de Corvis and his controlling daughter Emilia pull him into their plots, and his lover Violet Fintry is threatened by impending war, Cal is forced to choose between his conscience and his dream of becoming Mister Calumny Spinks.

$0.99 through Tuesday 8/19

Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
Amazon AU


Gang Warfare
Peter St. John

Have you ever been blamed for something you didn't do?

Have you ever been caught up in a minor incident that grew into a major conflict?

An orphan, evacuated from the World War II bombing of London, comes to live with his pious aunt in an English village. A bag of sweets is knocked out of his hand in the school playground. This trivial incident has devastating consequences.

The villagers become increasingly quarrelsome. The tension reaches a climax at a fund-raising fete to buy a Spitfire aircraft. This ends in a riotous fight which causes the funds collected for the Spitfire to be last seen floating gently down the river in the twilight and a barrel.

Although this book follows-on from the previous ‘Gang Territory’, it can stand as a complete story in its own right.



Friday, August 15, 2014

Discovering the Diamond: Interview with Helen Hollick

Discovering the Diamond by Helen Hollick is an excellent read much like a mentor for the new author or wannabe who needs to develop a feel for the work and the field. Helen is well qualified to help after twenty years as an author, one who has been published in the mainstream and who also has done indie-publishing.

In Discovering the Diamond, Helen discusses tips of the trade for new novelists, going self-published, the basics of writing a good novel, and the importance of editing. I have interviewed Helen below.

So… who is Helen Hollick then and now?

I’ve always thought of myself as ordinary, if a bit of a loner. I like chatting to people (one bonus of being a writer is you get to meet lots of lovely people!) but I am also happy in my own company and quite content when immersed in my own fictional worlds – whether these are the ones I am reading or writing about. I had few friends at school (many years ago!) and found the world of books to be a much kinder place. I wasn’t bullied or anything, but extreme shyness combined with short sight and those awful bottle-bottom glasses eroded my confidence. You do not need to be confident when you are off adventuring with fictional characters though do you?

Now? Well I live in Devon, England, having moved in January 2013 from the noise, pollution and pressure of a London suburb. The decrease in stress levels and the quieter, slower life is wonderful – as is being able to write without neighbours shouting, radios blasting or sirens blaring. The noisiest things outside my study window are birds, cattle and sheep!

At what point did you find yourself becoming a writer?

Writers, I thought, were clever people who went to university and had degrees. Ordinary people like myself with minor, low-grade qualifications were not writers.

I was about thirteen when I started scribbling stories. I am sixty-one now, so a lot of words have been transferred from imagination to paper in the years between. I desperately wanted a pony, we could not afford one so I invented one in the world of fiction. I wrote dozens of stories about Tara, as she was called. (Must have been an unrealised influence from Gone With the Wind.) I was quite shocked when I discovered that living your dreams through writing stories was unuasual. I had assumed that everyone did it

I moved on from pony stories to fantasy and science fiction, still inventing my own worlds, then I discovered that King Arthur may have been a real person who lived during the fifth or sixth century. I had never much liked the traditional Arthurian tales of knights in armour and courtly deeds – they always seemed so out of place somehow, but the excitement of discovering that he might have been a post-Roman warlord fired my imagination. I delved deeper with research and suddenly the novels I were reading irritated me – they were not how I envisioned Arthur. So I wrote my own novel, which turned out to be the first book in the Pendragon’s Banner Trilogy. The books were picked up by William Heinemann in 1993 (Random House UK) and that was it. I was a published writer.

You review self-published novels for the Historical Novel Society. How did that come about, and what are your goals there?

I was delighted to discover that the HNS reviewed indie historical fiction; few such societies do as there is still an unfortunate element of disdain about self-published books. But the reviewers were all US based – what about us UK writers? It costs a fortune to mail books to America. Rather than moan I offered to become a UK editor, which set the ball rolling, but as is oftn the way, one thing led to another and I am now overall Managing Editor of Indie Reviews, with a fantastic and enthusiastic review team behind me.

The doubts about Indie books can be justified because, sadly, there are a lot of badly written, poorly produced self-published novels out there. But there are also some darn good ones! I wanted to introduce a standard into our HNS Reviews, aiming for the point where if it has been reviewed by the HNS then you know it is a good read. We take into account the standard of writing, of course, but also the quality of production – comic sans font, double- spaced paragraph breaks with text left justified is unacceptable. As are covers with no title on them (yes! I have had two books submitted with no text on the cover: the authors said that as the books sold on-line not in a book store why did they need to print a title? Words fail…!)

Recently, in 2014 I have also introduced the HNS Indie Award, which is to be an annual award for the best Indie Historical Novel, This is not a competition as such, and there is no entry fee, the books are selected from those submitted to us for review. If one of our reviews becomes an Editor’s Choice then it is automatically long-listed for the award.

I know most of your work is historical fiction. But I just read your Discovering The Diamond. What motivated you to write a writing book, and who is this book mainly for?

I wrote this in conjunction with my UK editor, Jo Field. Both of us were receiving so many e-mails asking for various bits of writing advice that we decided to produce some common answers on a quick to send attachment. This soon became six pages, then twelve, and then booklet-sized. In the end we thought we might as well publish our useful tips as a modest ‘how to’ book.

It is written with the intention of assisting novice and new writers to discover their talent and achieve a dream – of writing a good, readable book. Writing well is not just about thinking up a decent plot and getting the punctuation, spelling and grammar right. There is a technical side as well: to ‘show’ not ‘tell’ your story, not have too many point of view changes (often called ‘head-hopping’,) or not to use author’s voice. Although useful for prospective mainstream authors Discovering the Diamond is especially helpful for Indie writers as it also includes advice about layout – the dos and don’ts of self-publishing, many of which I learnt first-hand.

When I initially went Indie with my Sea Witch Voyages a nautical adventures series, I made many errors that are very common for the new indie writer – going it alone is a sharp learning curve, so I wanted to share my experiences and help other writers avoid the pitfalls.

Where can Discovering The Diamond be purchased?
I expect it can be ordered from any good bookstore, but it is available from any of the leading on-line stores, such as Amazon, in paperback format or on Kindle, Nook etc.

What are your historical fiction topics and titles?

The Arthurian Trilogy
The Kingmaking
Pendragon’s Banner
Shadow of the King

The ‘what might have really happened’ story of King Arthur. No knights in armour, no Lancelot or Merlin; just a boy, who became a man, who became a king… who became a legend.


The Forever Queen (US title) / A Hollow Crown (UK title)
USA Today Bestseller
The story Of Emma of Normandy, Queen of Anglo Saxon England

I Am The Chosen King (US Title) / Harold The King (UK Title)
The people and events that led to the Battle of Hastings in 1066 from the English point of view.


Sea Witch
Pirate Code
Bring It Close
Ripples In The Sand
On The Account (coming soon)
Pirate-based adventure series with a touch of fantasy.
I describe Captain Jesamiah Acorne as a blend of Jack Sparrow, Indiana Jones, Hornblower, Jack Aubrey, James Bond and Bernard Cornwell’s Richard Sharpe.
If you liked the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie, you will enjoy these sailor’s yarn adventures.

8) Where can we learn more about your books?
My website:
My Main Blog:
My (sort of monthly) Newsletter:
Twitter: @HelenHollick

Thanks Debra – this has been a most enjoyable interview!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Why set a story in 17th century Scotland?

by Anna Belfrage

If one is going to be financially successful as a writer of historical fiction, one should write about the Tudors. Or about Rome – or medieval England. Maybe even Regency (especially when thinking Romance). Somehow, the 17th century exists in a bubble of obscurity, trapped between the great drama of the 16th century and the bloody upheaval of the 18th. The 17th century has no Marie Antoinette, no Mary Queen of Scots.

Instead, the 17th century has religious strife a-plenty. It has war, it has pillage. It has the English Civil War, the execution of Charles I, Cromwell’s mass deportation of the Irish. It has Mazarin and Louis XIV, it has the Dutch rebellion against the Spanish, it has a Glorious Revolution, it has men like John Locke and Isaac Newton. Really, not much to write home about, right?

Reading through that rather impressive list, I can only congratulate myself on my choice of century. After all, there is no shortage of dramatic material. Besides, there is a very personal reason for my fascination with the 17th century, and that’s my husband.

Let me immediately disillusion you by assuring you my husband is not a time traveller. He is a man very much rooted in the here and now, but on his finger he carries a signet ring, and his family can be traced back to the more remote parts of time. He can claim ancestry from Erik XIV of Sweden (but rarely does, as Erik XIV was not all there, plus 90% of all Swedish noble families share that honour) but he can also claim Stuart ancestry – and all because of the religious upheaval that plagued Scotland in the 17th century.

Picture Gothenburg in the early 17th century: having brought in Dutch city planners to design his new city – as yet very much under construction – the Swedish king, Gustavus Adolphus, also needed to populate this city of his, preferably with merchants. Sweden at the time mostly traded in raw material. We exported timber, iron ore, wool and oats. We imported everything else – including capable people. On the opposite side of the North Sea lived a nation of savvy merchants, namely the Scots. Being a small and relatively poor country, Scotland produced a number of surplus sons, many of whom crossed the sea to Sweden (or elsewhere – a minority chose Sweden, having as yet not developed latter day’s appreciation for Swedish blondes).

To this building site, yet another Scot arrived in 1624 – no doubt attracted by the fact that so many Scots were already there. John Belfrage was twelve, and came with his mother, Joneta. As per the records, they were fleeing their homeland due to religious persecution – that was the reason Joneta gave. Given that they chose to go to Sweden, we must assume these refugees were Protestants. Sweden looked askance at Catholics. As John received an education and rose to local prominence, we can deduce that Joneta carried funds of some kind with her. Other than that, we know very little. In what straits did Joneta find herself that her powerful Stuart connections could not help her? And what became of John’s father?

Anyway; this little glimpse into my husband’s ancestry fascinated me. Where before my preferred historical reading matter tended to be focused on the 11th to 14th century, I began reading extensively about the sixteen hundreds, a period defined not only by religious conflicts but also by the birth of modern science, of modern concepts such as the rights of men. Sadly, at the time those human rights did not include the right to worship as one pleased, but the seeds for future liberties were sown.

And so The Graham Saga began to take form. My central character very quickly became a Scot, and because I was intrigued by the tales of Covenanters and the brutal persecution they suffered at the hands of the restored Stuart monarchy, this shadow man of mine developed into a former Commonwealth soldier, a man of convictions and a deep personal faith. Just to spice up his life a bit, I decided to endow this man with a woman very different from him. Enter Alexandra Lind, a modern day woman who had the misfortune (or not) to fall through time and land at Matthew’s feet. The rest, as they say, is history.

On July 1, the sixth instalment of the series, Revenge and Retribution, will be published. I am of course inordinately proud of this particular book, a heady mix of adventure, emotional drama and despair. But it all began in A Rip in the Veil, when Alex Lind first clapped her concussed eyes on Matthew Graham. Below an excerpt from that first book – I hope you enjoy it!

Alex rested back against the cave wall and concentrated on breathing without hurting herself. She studied him from under her lashes, irritated to find he’d gone back to gawking at her. What was the matter with him? Had he never seen a woman in jeans before? She looked closely at him. Tall, broad in shoulders and chest, but thin and with an underlying pallor to his skin – as if he’d been ill, just recently allowed out of bed. His hair was cut unbecomingly short except at the back where some longer strands still hung on, his cheeks were covered by a dark, unkempt bristle, like the one Magnus, her father, would sport at the end of his summer holidays – so far nothing alarming. His shirt though… Worn linen that laced up the front, mended cuffs – all of it hand stitched.

Maybe his girlfriend had made it for him, or maybe New Age people believed in doing everything from scratch, in which case they needed a serious fashion update. She moved, scraped her foot against the rocky ground, and winced.

“Is it alright if I touch you?” he said. “It might ease somewhat if I wash the blood off.”

“Sure, go ahead, touch all you want.” Well, within limits of course.

He looked at her with a hesitant expression. “All I want?”

She made a huge effort to look him straight in the eyes, despite the fact that she could see two – no, three – of him.

“Help me, I’m not feeling too good.” She turned her head to the side and retched, but this time it was just slimy yellow bile that burnt her throat as she heaved. “Damn,” she said afterwards, keeping her eyes closed to stop the whole world from spinning. “I must have hit my head really hard.”

He spent quite some time on her forehead, close enough that she could smell him, drawing in the scent of sweat and unwashed male. She wrinkled her nose. Phew! How about some soap?

“What?” he said. “Did I hurt you?”

“No, I’m fine.” She wasn’t; her brain was banging against her skull, the broken skin on her forehead itched, her ribs were using her lungs as a pincushion and her foot... no, best not think about her foot, because it looked absolutely awful, blisters like a fetter round her ankle and all the way down to her toes. She flexed them experimentally. It hurt like hell.

He poured some more water onto the rag he was using and wiped her face. She liked that, opening her eyes to smile her thanks at him. He smiled back, teeth flashing a surprising white in the darkness of his beard. He sat back on his haunches, a worried expression on his face.

“What?” Did she need stitches? Because she really, really hated needles.

“Your ribs, I have to do something about them.”

“Like what?”

“Bandage them, so that you don’t shift them too much.”

“You’ve done this before?”

“It happens, aye.”

“Oh, so you’re a doctor?”

“A doctor?” He laughed. “Nay, lass, I am no doctor. But setting ribs is no great matter, is it?”

“It is when they’re mine.” She shifted on her bottom. “It won’t hurt, will it?”

“No, but I will have to ... err ... well, I must ... the shirt, aye?”

“The shirt?”

“Well, you have to take it off.”

“Oh.” Where did this man come from? “That’s alright; you won’t be the first to see me in the flesh.” He looked so shocked she laughed, but the pain that flew up her side made her gasp instead.

He pulled his bundle close and rummaged in it, muttering something about having to find something to bandage her ribs with. Finally he extracted what looked like a rag and proceeded to tear it into strips.

He was very careful as he helped her out of her jacket and her shirt, and at the sight of her bra his eyes widened, but he didn’t say anything. She sat up so that he could wrap the torn lengths of cloth around her. His exhalations tickled her skin, and she took short breaths, staring straight ahead as his big, capable hands worked their way around her torso, a gentle touch that sent surprising and quite unwelcome tingles of warmth through her body.

She was aware of his eyes on her skin, on her neck, but mostly on her breasts, quick glances that returned time and time again to the lacy red bra edged with cream that cupped her breasts and lifted them high. She sat up straighter, shoulders pulled back. She peeked at him, met his eyes and looked away.

“What’s this?” He put a finger on the satin strap. Impossible; men that hadn’t seen a bra didn’t exist – not where she came from.

“It’s a bra.”

“A bra,” he echoed, tracing it round her middle. She jerked back, making both of them gasp.

“My apologies.” He raised his hands in a conciliatory gesture. “I shouldn’t … But there, now it’s done.” He gave her the shirt and averted his eyes as she struggled to put it back on.

Alex closed her eyes, trying to come up with a label to pin on this strange man. Isolated goat farmer? Recluse? Maybe he was an old-fashioned – extremely old-fashioned – Quaker, or maybe the Amish had set up a little colony up here in the Scottish wilderness.


All of Anna’s books are available on Amazon US and Amazon UK
For more information about Anna Belfrage and her books, visit her website!
For a somewhat more visual presentation of The Graham Saga, why not watch the book trailer?

Friday, June 20, 2014

New Release: The Hall of Tyr by Octavia Randolph

The Hall of Tyr, Book Four of The Circle of Ceridwen Saga, has just been released.

The Hall of Tyr: It is a new day. Dawn finds Ceridwen and Sidroc beginning their lives together on the Baltic Sea island of Gotland. It is a place of peace and beauty. But someone is searching for them...

To celebrate The Hall of Tyr, all the books have new covers. See them here.

Thank you for placing The Circle of Ceridwen in's Top Ten in Women's Adventure for five months running!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Game of 7s

I was tagged by Paula Lofting (see her Game of 7s here) to post 7 or so lines from page 77 starting at line 7. Since I start a new chapter just a few lines into that, I will just start in the new chapter.

"Do we have lamb tonight, Smills?" Mama said.
"We do, my lady. Shall I uncover that first?" he replied, frowning at Angel.
Angel turned her face from the everlasting glower of the man.
"Yes, that will be fine." The silver dome clanged as Smills lifted it from the plate, and Mama served herself. She did not look up, but asked for anyone's ears, "Has one of you broken Rules?"
Angel looked distraught. Dante straightened his back, looking more of a man, hoping to strengthen her. Nothing was wrong, and it was time to stand up for himself.
But Angel hastened to speak. “We intend to follow Rules, do we not, Dante? Do not be concerned, Mama.” She gave her brother a firm look.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Meet My Main Character by Scott Amis

Welcome, friends, to meet the main character of Scott Amis' book To Shine with Honor. I have enjoyed hosting several main characters here now, including two of my own, Dante and Evangeline. It is a fun blog hop, and I hope you enjoy reading about these (dare I say imaginary) persons.

I'd like to introduce Joseph Scott Amis who retired from thirty years as an architect (and when I said he needed help from a designer, he responded that he was also licensed in that field!) to turn his lifelong interest in medieval history and historical fiction into a literary career. He is currently working on To Shine with Honor, a three-volume tale of the First Crusade.

And now to introduce his character. 

1) What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?

Galien de Coudre. He is a fictional person, acting within the context of historical events.

2) When and where is the story set?

1086 – 1118, before, during, and after the First Crusade. Settings: Southeastern and northern France, the Middle East, and the Crusader States, formed from the Middle Eastern territories taken from the Seljuk Turks by the First Crusaders.

3) What should we know about him/her? 

Galien is the third son in a French family of minor nobility. As customary for the time and place, his father pledged his third son to the Church at his birth, and made provision that he learn to read and write in French and Latin prior to entering training for the priesthood at fourteen. His disposition is largely scholarly and retiring, but he also shares the martial blood and knightly heritage of his family and has been trained in sword and horsemanship by his father Henri de Coudre, a knight of distinguished reputation. At the opening of the story and age fourteen, Galien is well-educated as well as a capable sword and horseman, abilities rarely found in one person in the eleventh century.

4) What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life? 

The initial conflict is a bitter animosity between Galien and his eldest brother Thierré de Coudre. This is resolved in Volume I, Part I, a short twenty pages. In Part II, which begins five years later, in 1091, Galien and Thierré have long ago put aside their mutual hatred and developed the strongest of brotherly bonds.

In 1091, at the start of Part II, Galien is nineteen years old, compelled to remain at home to help his sister manage the family’s lands and kept from study for the priesthood due to the death of his mother and a crippling battle injury sustained by his father. The main conflict comes when Galien and the de Coudre family’s châtelaine Lisette fall hopelessly in love, but a marriage between a nobleman and a commoner is not acceptable by custom and opposed by Galien’s father. At the end of two years of surprising events, Galien and Lisette finally marry but after three years of happiness, she is murdered by a man with an old grievance against her family. This tragedy profoundly ‘messes up’ Galien’s life, and begins the series of consequences that will send him off to the Middle East as a knight in the armies of the First Crusade.  

5) What is the personal goal of the character?

At the opening of the story, Galien wants a quiet life of scholarship and writing, and doesn’t question his destiny in the priesthood. Later, to marry Lisette, and after her death, he reacts to events as they occur, with no strong vision for his future. In Volume III, toward the end of the story, he has found the life that he wanted when young, but circumstances again compel him to leave it behind and go back to war.   

6) Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?

To Shine With Honor is the present title; The Story and Travels of Galien de Coudre in the Time of the First Crusade the subtitle. More information can be found on my Facebook page, Jsa Literary; the link to a dramatic video presentation of a scene from To Shine With Honor by Facebook page Real Crusades History is on my Linkedin profile page.

7) When can we expect the book to be published?

Completion of Volumes I and II expected for Fall of 2014; Volume III to be written from manuscript in 2015. Date of eventual publication unknown, as is the means of publication.

To find more information about Scott and his work visit:

Influential authors:
Thomas Asbridge, historian, author of The First Crusade and The Crusades
Evan S. Connell, writer, author of Deus Lo Volt
Ken Follett, writer, author of The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End
Edward Rutherford, writer, author of Sarum
Zoe Oldenbourg, writer and historian, author of The World is Not Enough and The Crusades