Monday, May 17, 2010

Weekly Geeks: We Might Need a Shrink here!

Weekly Geeks has an awesome topic this week. Tara from 25 Hour Book suffers from P.A.B.D., short for Post Amazing Book Depression. I won't replicate the whole post here. I will only quote a few sentences here and there but make sure you read Tara's thoughts on this phenomenon. Anyway, I love the idea and believe that we all suffer from it, it's just that we didn't know the name and now here it is:

So what is P.A.B.D.?

Post Amazing Book Depression - The over-whelming sad feeling one gets after finishing a great book.

Some signs of P.A.B.D.:

*missing characters

* often includes talking about characters in day to day life

* hearing songs that remind you of certain characters/scenes

*constant rereading of the same book

Have you had PABD?
What book caused it? How did you deal with it?
Boy, did I have P.A.B.D.!!!!! Many times over! But I will limit my experiences to two books and one series.All of them I read many years ago and I still keep thinking about the characters and plots and about how amazing the whole experience was. The saddest part is that no matter how many times I re-read the books, this experience will never be the same. The best part is, these books are so awesome that every time they're re-read there is a completely new experience waiting right around the corner (or should I say, right around the page).

The Children's War
Book number one is:

The Children's War by J. R. Stroyar.When I bought this book from the bargain pile in Borders seven years ago , I had no idea what was in store for me. I'm surprised more people are not talking about it. It's the best alternate history book I have read so far.

From Publishers Weekly:

What if the Nazis had won WWII? This isn't the first time a writer has tried to visualize that possibility, but nuclear physicist Stroyar comes up with perhaps the most lavishly detailed scenario so far, realistically describing an alternate 21st century in her massive debut. The author, whose own family suffered under the Nazis, spent a decade on research and travel to Eastern Europe and areas of the former U.S.S.R. With frightening authenticity, she weaves a gripping page-turner that revolves around two men who strive to undermine the Nazi regime. First is Peter Halifax, an Englishman with multiple identities who was orphaned at a young age, adopted by the Underground, betrayed and then doomed to a life of abuse. Then there is Richard Traugutt, an ambitious Nazi official who secretly spearheads the Polish resistance movement's efforts to infiltrate the Third Reich and hasten its demise. When Peter miraculously escapes a life of tortured servitude to a ruthless Nazi official, he blunders into the Polish underground. As Peter and Richard's complex stories unfold, the author layers her fictional tale of modern-day life in the Third Reich with historical accounts of actual atrocities as well as the role of the Polish resistance movement during WWII. The most daring section of the book showcases the underground's plan to use Peter's tragic story as a means to gain support from the North American Union, the only free territory in the world. The author's uncompromising portrayal of an American public inured by evidence of atrocities and only interested in sensationalist personal revelations is a strong indictment of civilized society. Those entranced by what-if scenarios will find plenty to delight them in these pages.

Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles: A Novel
Book number two is:

Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles by Margaret George 
I know that a lot of people like this book by Ms George the least but it's my favorite of hers so far (beats even Memoirs of Cleopatra for me, even though this one's good as well). It's actually the book that sparked my love for historical fiction of which I had known nothing before. 

From Publishers Weekly:

From the author of The Autobiography of Henry VIII comes another massive, painstakingly researched novel that makes history live. Like all tragic figures, George's Mary Stuart has a flaw: a personal and political naivete, misunderstood to the end, that leads to her downfall. Recreating the Elizabethan era with a sure eye for telling detail, George uses her entirely plausible vision of Mary's private life to explain the failures of her public one. Mary's story becomes an allegory for the victory of morality over human weakness; her reign, a symbol of the abuses of rule by "divine right"; her death, of the triumph of the rule of law. Readers will empathize with Mary's pain over an unhappy first marriage, the wrenching upheaval of adultery and her searing realization of trust misplaced and loyalties lost, finally coming to know with her the peace of a soul at rest in God and the glory of a meaningful death. With her use of authentic period language, her gifts for assured pacing and accomplished characterization, and her ability to convey the complex political issues and intrigues of 16th-century England and Scotland, George has created an engrossing novel. Moreover, her deep sympathy for her subject renders Mary an entirely real and unforgettable heroine.

WITCH-HUNT The Legend of the Ice People.
Depths of Darkness: the Legend of the Ice PeopleBook number three is actually a whole series. The Legend of Ice People by Margit Sandemo. I first read it in Polish when I was 14 years old and my life has never been the same since. This is the best piece of historical paranormal fiction ever. Unfortunately, the English speaking world had to wait a very long time for this series to be translated and now it's still only available in England. I hope that some American publisher will jump in and buy the rights to it because we're missing a great series here. 

From the author's UK website:

Winter 1581: a deadly plague outbreak robs sixteen-year old peasant girl Silje of all her family. Homeless, starving and shepherding two foundling infants, she stumbles through the corpse-strewn streets of Trondheim on Norway’s northern coast.

Heading desperately for the warmth of the mass funeral pyres blazing beyond the city gates, she encounters in the shadowy forest one of the infamous Ice People, a fearsome, strangely captivating ‘wolf man’. He offers help -- and she feels irresistibly drawn to him. But what is the terrible fascination ? And where will it lead ?

Spellbound, the opening volume in The Legend of the Ice People, begins a journey that spans four centuries and interweaves romance and the supernatural in narratives that are passionate, earthy, often erotic and imbued above all else with a powerful narrative drive.