Sunday, July 08, 2007

Books for Summer Reading

Twice a year I like to pull together my reading and recommend archaeological-theme books to friends. I recently received a letter from one of our Archaeological Associates of Greenwich members who reads our Newsletter where these appear. She looks forward to my picks so it just dawned on me the list might be appropriate for my blog.
This summer its mostly historical novels:
The Chinese Nail Murders by Robert Van Gulik, last in the series about 13th century China. A Spectacle of Corruption by David Liss set in 18th century London. The Diamond by Julie Baumgold, a novel but based on the diaries of Napoleon’s biographer with intimate views of the Bourbons, Napoleon and his wives. Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende captures the madhouse of California’s Gold Rush days with a Chilean heroine. Purity of Blood by Arturo Perez-Reverte, the 2nd in the 17th century literary adventures of intriguing Captain Alatriste.

A delightful combination of Irish Folklore and modern archaeology can be found in Lake of Sorrows by Erin Hart. And finally history and archaeology: Peter Tremaine’s Act of Mercy: A Mystery of Ancient Ireland, once again featuring an intelligent heroine, Sister Fidelman, advocate of the Irish law courts in AD 666. Good series!

Non fiction: 1491 by Charles Mann; be careful because he doesn’t get Cahokia Mounds right but the reminder of what went on in the New World before the Europeans arrived is riveting. The Invisible Sex: Uncovering the True Roles of Women in Prehistory. by J. M. (Jim) Adovasio Olga Soffer & Jake Page. Excellent!

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