This film was “inspired by a true story,” which should clue you in that while dealing with some actual historical events many details have been fictionalized. There was indeed a black man who served seven different US Presidents as a White House butler. But his name wasn’t Cecil Gaines, he didn’t grow up on a […]Read more "FILM REVIEW: Lee Daniel’s The Butler (2013)"
Chaucer’s People by Liza Picard (Historical/Literary Nonfiction, American Edition 2019). Liza Picard has written a series of books on various aspects of English history. For her latest, published in England in 2017, with its American edition now out, she uses Geoffrey Chaucer’s best known work as a springboard into an entertaining and informative account of what […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Chaucer’s People"
The Falcon of Sparta by Conn Iggulden (Historical Fiction Novel, 2019). Conn Iggulden, one of the more popular historical novelists working today, based this novel on the memoir by the warrior Xenophon, published in English translation as The Persian Expedition. This ancient literary classic details his experiences from 401 B.C., also known as the March of the Ten-Thousand. […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: The Falcon of Sparta"
The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel by Alyssa Palombo (Historical Fantasy Novel, October 2018). This involving novel takes “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” Washington Irving’s classic short story of love, jealousy and the supernatural, and simultaneously expands and re-imagines it with Katrina as the central character. As in the original, Katrina becomes the unwitting focal point […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel"
My two most recent publications should be of interest to horror fans–and especially those fascinated by the many ways great authors have portrayed that durable class of monsters–the ZOMBIES! Many of you may know that for the past several months, I’ve been doing a whole series of book reviews on outstanding zombie novels for another […]Read more "The Last Two of My Great Zombie Novel Reviews Now Posted"
Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey (Fantasy Novel, 2001). Phedre is a young woman born with a scarlet mote in her left eye. In her culture, this (known as Kushiel’s Dart) signals that she is destined to be a special sort of Sacred Prostitute. But the nobleman who takes her in as an indentured servant has other plans […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Kushiel’s Dart"
Murder in Bloomsbury by D.M. Quincy (Historical Mystery Novel, February 2018). An award-winning journalist, D.M. Quincy turned to fictional crime successfully with Murder in Mayfair, a historical mystery set in early 19th century England. That introduced readers to Atlas Catesby, an aristocratic world traveler turned amateur detective. Here, Catesby and those around him return to get involved […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Murder in Bloomsbury"