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Cara Elliott/Andrea Penrose
historical romance author
Recent Activity
Heyer and sayers are high on my list too—and of course, Jo!
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Both wonderful choices, Denise!
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Love the growing list! I absolutely adore Elizabeth Peters!
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Oh. adore Mary Stewart too, as do all the Wenches. (We did a whole blog on her influence when she passed away.) And yes, L'Engle's YA are particularly wonderful because they encourage imagination in younger readers. So glad to hear your students connect with her.
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Sonya, I understand the dislike of the prejudices shown by historical writers, but I try to put them aside. We're all shaped by the zeitgeist of our times, and I think have to be aware of that in looking at the past. Attitudes change throughout history, and I try hard not to judge one age from the perspective of another. That said, if something bothers you, then by all means, it's your choice not to read it.
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Jude, it's wonderful to learn new things from our WW readers! I never knew about Agatha Christie's Mary Westmacott nom de plume (How did I miss that????)Must track down Endless Night.
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Oh, ha, Lillian. SO true! When I started making a list, I found the same thing. Interesting, isn't it?
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Thanks so much for sharing, Mary. I ALWAYS love hearing of new-to-me authors and Jennifer Worth is someone with whom I'm not familiar. But will go check her books out! Pearl Buck is treasure . . .and now I must put 'Their Eyes Were Watching God" on my TBR list.
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Cara/Andrea here, musing today about historical heroines, and how it’s a challenge to give them ways to flex their intellectual muscle while still staying true to the temper of their times. The Regency era is easier, as it was a time of great change in all aspects of society. Still, giving a highborn lady a “job” tests an author’s imagination. 

 But that’s part of the fun of crafting the concept for a book! And actually, in my latest series I had one of those “ah-ha!” moments that had me off and running. In my “Hellions of High Street” trilogy,... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Word Wenches
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Really wonderful blog, Nicola! I'm in awe that you iron your sheets (and now you make me feel slightly guilty!) I have some really nice Italian cotton ones that I splurged on because they feel so crisp against the skin . . .even when you don't iron them. And yes, it's one of life's little pleasures to slide into freshly laundered sheets. I love the rest of the list, and it made me stop and reflect. Sunshine on the face is high on my list, as is just pausing and watching a summer breeze ripple across water or meadowgrass. One of the tings I worry about these days is that so many people are hunched over constantly looking at their phones that they miss all those magical small moments, like just sitting and admiring a lovely view, or exercising, or making a pot of tea. If you aren't mindful of all those wonderful experiences, life has to become very gray. No wonder so many people are so highly stressed!
Toggle Commented Apr 18, 2015 on Simple Pleasures Then and Now at Word Wenches
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So true, Marina. One hopes that women in other cultures can slowly change the mores to allow themselves the freedom to choose.
Toggle Commented Apr 14, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Marina, I think it was in Victorian times that rules became more specific—and stricter.
Toggle Commented Apr 14, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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I'll never forget my first taste of real clotted cream. Sublime! It was fascinating to learn it's made by the waterbath cooking and cooling to thicken the already divinely rich cream. It's a good thing I don't live in Devon or I'd weight about three tons! There is nothing more sinfully delicious than a fresh baked scone slathering in clotted cream and homemade strawberry jam. (Confession, I have been known to skip the scone and just dip my fingers in cream and jam. I know, I know—BAD GIRL! )
Toggle Commented Apr 13, 2015 on A Proper Cream Tea at Word Wenches
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Yes, Bona, all those vintage relative photos do look awfully dreary. Those poor women who had no relief from unremitting black. They must have yearned for a bright dress! (And I love touches of red with black, white /gray too.)
Toggle Commented Apr 12, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Very interesting, Jo! The shiny could be it, as that apparently is a against the rules. But it does sound like white is the issue. I don't remember reading about white in regard to mourning in any period books, so was surprised to discover when I did a little research on mourning that it's considered as acceptable as black.
Toggle Commented Apr 12, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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You're welcome! Hope it helps.
Toggle Commented Apr 12, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Jo, I agree—this could make a fascinating research paper.
Toggle Commented Apr 12, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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True, Susan, but it does show that it happened—but I suppose it does in every era, especially when there is material gain involved. All the clothes in Downton Abbey are amazing. They have a wonderful designer . . .but then, they have Worth to refer to. Sigh. Talk about divine clothes . . .even mourning wear, which he did.
Toggle Commented Apr 10, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Very interesting, Jackie. I guess it depends on the degree of family closeness—immediate family would usually wait until after the mourning period to wed, but I guess a more distant relative wasn't held to those rules—but i didn't realize they would wear black for the ceremony.
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Nancy, that's a very good point about Victoria. I think the rules did become more rigid when she took up her eternal mourning And yes, men always seemed to have less expected of them. What about women needing a breadwinner!
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Ha! Yes, we are getting VERY philosophical about color—or lack of it. (The physics of light and color is fascinating.)
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Interesting, Alison. White doesn't work for me, but I always feel black looks chic on anyone.
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Sue, yes, it's so interesting that we all have colors we think enhance our looks. I'm partial to blues, and Mary Jo loves rich reds and burgundies. I look insipid in white, but think black is fine—but as you say, a touch of color to it adds pizzazz. Women bore the brunt of mourning traditions, so we all would have been wearing black for extended periods of time, given the health situation. Thank goodness we don't have such constricting rules anymore!
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Lillian, you raise a fascinating question! (And those are such interesting examples!) I don't know when a year became standard (and actually, I think it's a year and a day, which as you point out, seems to have no practical significance.) This may be a topic for another blog post!
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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Thanks very interesting, Nancy. I had not known that. The Ackermann fashion plate shown here was something new to me as well. I really didn't realize that white was as common as it appears to have been. I hadn't seen any other prints or actual dresses showing white.
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2015 on Fifty Shades of Black at Word Wenches
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