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Andrea Penrose/Andrea Pickens/Cara Elliott
historical romance author
Recent Activity
What a fun and interesting post, Nicola! Count me as old-fashioned! I have tried synthetics, but prefer my nice firm down pillow!
Toggle Commented 17 hours ago on Pillow Talk at Word Wenches
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Thanks so much for the New Yorker link, Karin! I somehow missed that article. Wulf's book also talks about his childhood, and how that his insatiable curiosity was evident right from the start. Truly an extraordinary man.
Toggle Commented yesterday on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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So glad you enjoyed it, Teresa! Humboldt is even more amazing than I was able to convey (not enough space to highlight more than a small part of his genius.) You're so right about the incredible courage, as well as curiosity, it took to leave Europe and head to exotic destinations. he truly embodied a life fully lived.(His one great regret was that he never got to mountain climb in the Himalayas. The East India Company would never give him a visa to enter India because he was an outspoken critic of slavery, and the mistreatment of native peoples.)
Toggle Commented yesterday on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Linnaeus is a wonderful choice, Linnea (What a lovely name, and how fun you are named after such a great mind!) He, too, was one of the scietific leaders of his era, and as we see, his way of looking at plant and animal life still shapes our our study of the flora and fauna.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Please save a seat at the table for me, Annette! Yes, he'd be fascinating to listen to. A warning though—even his good friends occasionally complained that he never shut up! There's a funny anecdote in the book about a young Darwin, who was so excited that he was going to meet his hero at a scientific gathering. He had a long list of questions he wanted to discuss . . . only to slink away, deflated, after three hours of non-stop Humboldt pontificating. Apparently Humboldt rarely even paused for breath and poor Darwin was never allowed to get a word in edgewise. I, on the other hand, would be perfectly happy to to sit and listen!
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Oh, Anne, I'm so envious. That energy and spirit of sharing is a huge source of support and inspiration for solitary writers. I haven't yet found a way to create it. I think the Wenches have to think about an annual retreat!
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Ten Years of Retreating at Word Wenches
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I'm so glad you enjoyed "meeting" Humboldt, Sue. I was vaguely aware of his scientific expertise from other reading, but had no idea of the depth and breadth of it, or of his artistic side, and his vision of an interconnected world that was so ahead of his time. So I really was excited to share this amazing individual.(And I highly recommend the book.)
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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So glad you enjoyed the post, Jan. Definitely track down the book. It's a really wonderful read. I didn't do him justice—he even more amazing than I described.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Jana, he's a REALLY fascinating man, and I think your students would love hearing about him. He loved nature, and is considered the Father of Ecology.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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SO true, Lillian. That's definitely why I find history so endlessly compelling and interesting.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Ha, I'm not surprised to hear the Mayhem Consultant enjoyed the book. Now, elbow your way to the front of the line to read it next! I really think it's a wonderful example of the best type of historical non-fiction, capturing both a fascinating individual AND the world/contextin which he lived.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Mary, I think you'll really enjoy it. Humboldt is truly one of those rare geniuses who occasionally graces the world. It was so wonderful to learn all about him and his inspiring accomplishments.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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So glad you enjoyed it! I highly recommend the book!
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on A Man For All Seasons at Word Wenches
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Andrea/Cara here, As a unabashed history geek, I’m always excited when I discover the in-depth story of a fascinating figure from the past about whom I don’t know much—and I’m even more excited when in the process I also gain a broader perspective on the world in which the individual lived and how his or her achievements helped shape it. So I’m here to gush about my newest historical hero heartthrob—Alexander von Humboldt. Today, most of us know dare only vaguely familiar with his name as an ocean current located somewhere off the Pacific coast of South America. But in... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Word Wenches
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Such a fun post, Mary Jo! I don't have nearly the collection you do, but my favorite foreign edition of one of my books is the Japanese manga of my Cara Elliott "To Sin With A Scoundrel."
Toggle Commented Mar 10, 2017 on Foreign Editions at Word Wenches
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Kathy, that's a very interesting suggestion! I will add it to our "Ask A Wench" question list.
Toggle Commented Mar 9, 2017 on Young and Old at Word Wenches
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What a wonderful story, Susanna. I have a feeling he and his wife had been looking for you . . . how wonderful that you found each other. My painted friends are some of the beautiful bird watercolors that my late mother painted. I had watched her working on them in her studio, so every time I pass by them (a bold crow staring straight out of the paper, a seagull hunched against the sea breeze) they make me smile, not just for their artistic flair but because my mother is there in spirit.
Toggle Commented Mar 9, 2017 on Young and Old at Word Wenches
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Teresa, the news is so crazy these days that doing a funny skit on it is the only way to stay sane. Some of the satire is incredibly funny . . . though also horrifying as reality is often hard to discern from farce. Sigh. Am chuckling over your "man of the cloth" comment. Coincidence, I swear!
Toggle Commented Mar 7, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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Frightening stuff, Annette. I think we're all trying to do 'the best we can do.' But your post is a reminder that we have to stay vigilant against propaganda.
Toggle Commented Mar 7, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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I find myself unable to tune in to most news shows these days. Too depressing. Skimming headlines just to know what's happening is enough. It's reminded me of the joys of reading thoughtful things, and visiting musuems to view positive achievements of mankind.
Toggle Commented Mar 7, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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Arrgh, yes, the press would have a field day with "yellow"! I've been trying to focus more on the arts, science, tech, etc. to keep up . . . and I wish we might have an Edward Morrow/Walter Cronkite-type of newscaster who could do a dispassionate, objective daily summary of the world news.
Toggle Commented Mar 7, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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Couldn't agree more with all of what you say. Opinion and conjecture should not be dressed up as facts. Science is a field where the standards for objectivity are high. As you point out, peer review keeps scientists from making gross exaggeration or telling flat-out bouncers. They won't get away with it.
Toggle Commented Mar 6, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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Teachers play such a critical role in teaching us to be careful, critical readers.That why good public education is so fundamental to a democracy. You're right that we, the consumers, do control who we listen to and to whom we will pay for their efforts. I wish more people would think about whether they want to news to be about the facts, or just entertainment. (Sigh.)Having good, professional, objective journalism is another fundamental of democracy. I, too am heartened that the NY Times subscriptions are soaring.
Toggle Commented Mar 6, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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Such a good lesson, Sue. Kudos to your teacher! I vividly remember a great lesson I got in high school history class. The teacher passed out a selection of American history books from various publishers and had us turn to the account of the Boston Massacre. Needless to say, they were different in tone, and even in fact. He said it was a reminder to always think twice about accepting a single account as being "true" because everyone perceives truth differently, and sees an event through their own eyes/biases. (Plus in a battle, where things are frightening and confusing, one doesn't always see things clearly.) It is a lesson that has really stuck with me.
Toggle Commented Mar 6, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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For me it's a hrad balance—I feel I need to know what's going on, but yes, the lack of discussion over the real issues or any sort of civil, constructive discourse, is frighteneing. That's why I find history reassuring. It's a reminder that all eras go through this, and it's not a new phenomena. And yes, like you, I find it heartening to read positive celebrations of the human spirit and intellect—ones that encourage us to see the best in each other, not the worst.
Toggle Commented Mar 6, 2017 on Faking It! at Word Wenches
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