I wish I could say my recent hiatus from blog posting had resulted in a prodigious output in pages for my novel. Alas, nothing of the sort. I had taken time off work a few months ago that was a great boon to the novel, but my return to teaching has overwhelmed me. Not only has my novel languished, so has The Inspiratorium.
I received some very good news this week that might just rouse me from my sloth. My good friend and fellow blogger Anna Richenda has just published her first novel, The Saint and the Fasting Girl. The book will be officially released June 25, but Anna has informed everyone that she has copies in her hands. I imagine she is in the funny state of being able to hold her accomplishment in her hands, but not yet being able to enjoy the accolades that are soon to come her way. The waiting game. But it will soon be over, and we will all finally be able to see the work that Anna has been toiling away at for so long.
Anna is the author of HistoryFish.Net, her website devoted to medieval monasticism, abbeys and articles on the middle ages. It can only be described as a sprawling labour of love, as I described it in an earlier post on The Inspiratorium (click here to see it). Her work here has already been of enormous help in my own fiction-writing enterprise, and now she has taken things a step further by publishing this novel … which I assume was the driving force behind all the research she poured onto HistoryFish.Net.
The Saint and the Fasting Girl is about a remarkable nun attached to a Yorkshire nunnery in the time of Henry VIII. An interesting time, indeed, as Henry presided over the take-over and closing of almost all monastic establishments in England and the abrupt subjugation of the clergy by the crown. One of Henry’s legacies can still be seen today, as you tour England and come across old abbeys and monasteries in ruins, which he largely destroyed or allowed to fall into decay. Closing the monasteries was the end of a remarkable way of life that had endured for several centuries and, at one time, fueled England’s economic rise to power on the European stage. Setting a novel in this time is a brilliant move, as Henry VIII’s reign was always ripe with high drama. Never a dull moment!
A few weeks ago, Anna asked if I would be interested in reviewing The Saint and the Fasting Girl for The Inspiratorium. A brilliant idea, I thought, and something that might get me kick-started again on my own blog … not to mention inspiration for my own book. She offered to send me the book, but since this is a self-published venture, I insisted on buying my own copy through Amazon, so she could put her author’s copies to better use. I’ve already placed my order and am eagerly awaiting delivery.
As soon as I’m finished, you can expect to see a review on these pages. Meanwhile, if you’d like to check out the book yourself or order a copy, here is a list of locations: