Monday, December 29, 2008

Back from the Holidays

It seems like ages since I last posted and I wanted to wish you all a very happy holiday season and New Year. I actually am just getting over the most evil cold in the universe, which felled me shortly before Christmas. I'm on the mend but still a bit woozy from the massive amounts of decongestants I imbued.

On the book news front, I've received some new revision requests from my editor for The Confessions of Catherine de Medici, which I'm currently at work on. While it feels as though this book simply refuses to leave me, in truth my editor's comments were very insightful and so I'm tackling this latest- and hopefully, final - revision in the spirit that it gives me an opportunity to highlight the book's characters and themes. I'm quite excited about the revisions, which is great, as I'll need all the passion I can muster to make my March 15 deadline! If all goes as planned, the book will be on the spring 2010 publication schedule.

And lastly, while I was sick, I read a terrific debut novel titled Company of Liars by Karen Maitland. Set in 14th century England during the time of the Pestilence, this is a chilling, riveting tale of nine travelers who come together seemingly by accident and forge an uneasy alliance in order to outwit the black death. As narrated by the one-eyed relic hawker, Camelot, we journey with them through a collapsing world of flood, fear, and famine, where townships are abandoned overnight to the plague and the road harbors both criminals and fugitives. As the travelers begin to sense an unseen presence stalking them, they must either face the secrets within their midst or fall prey to a force intent on destroying them. Along the way they will confront who they are to each other, and most importantly, who they are to themselves. This is a captivating novel; beautifully rendered, dark, frightening, and engrossing, replete with details of medieval life in a time when all semblance of order breaks down and magical in its depiction of the invisible collusion between the physical and the spiritual.

You can read more about Karen Maitland and her work here:
The book is available both in the UK and the US. The featured cover is the UK version.


Marg said...

I thought I had the worst cold in the world! I am still feeling average, but sound terrible!

Hope you feel better soon, and good luck with the revisions!

Pan Historia said...

The novel you review sounds interesting. The plague is not a sexy subject, but it is a fascinating one. I just read "The Great Mortality" by John Kelly and can recommend that for those that want to delve into the back ground of Maitland's novel.

Carla said...

Hope the revisions go well, and best wishes for the New Year! Get well soon.

C.W. Gortner said...

Thanks to all for the recovery wishes - it's slow but sure - and Happy New Year to you, too!

Marg, hope that cold gets better soon. It's the lingering congestion that drives me nuts! :)

Thanks for "Great Mortality" suggestion, Pan Historia. I'd like to delve more into the topic myself, after having read this novel. She has a new one coming out in May 2009, too, called "The Owl Killers", which sounds equally fascinating.

Amy @ Passages to the Past said...

Maitland has a new one due out in early 2009 called Owl-Killers and it looks really good too! I loved Company of Liars very much.