For this post, I decided to open one of my older containers and take a look at the books that have obstinately stayed with me through my numerous moves, some even international. Here they are:
I first read REPORT TO GRECO by Nikos Kazantakis in my troubled adolescence and have re-read it several times since. While Kazantakis is most famous for writing the exuberant Zorba the Greek, in this semi-autobiographical confession that remains defiantly unfettered by that genre’s restrictions, he details his complex journey to discover his relationship with himself and with his shared humanity. It is a rich testament to every person’s quest to know the inner workings of our soul.
IMMORTAL QUEEN by Elizabeth Byrd was a gift from my mother, who encouraged my burgeoning passion for history by giving me historical fiction to read. You can blame this book for starting my 16th century obsession; I fell madly in love with its eloquent account of the doomed Mary of Scots. Though my lifelong fatal attraction for powerful ladies in history has expanded to encompass many others since then, this is the novel which sparked my proverbial tinder.
I read HOUSE OF THE SPIRITS by Isabel Allende several years after my family had returned to the US after living in Spain. I was nineteen, struggling to assimilate US culture; a struggle that, for me, has never completely resolved. This novel, steeped in allegory and eccentricity, captured my imagination, reminding me both of the continent I’d left and the one I had yet to explore; it also spurred me for the first time to start writing a novel in earnest, even as I despaired of ever producing anything as gorgeously inventive as this.
C.W. Gortner’s latest release is THE CONFESSIONS OF CATHERINE DE MEDICI in trade paperback. He is also the author of THE LAST QUEEN and THE TUDOR SECRET. Visit him at http://www.cwgortner.com/.
This guest post is part of the blog tour for The Confessions of Catherine de Medici being run by Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours. You can follow the blog tour by visiting the tour schedule here.
We currently have a paperback copy of The Confessions of Catherine de Medici available to win! Read my review of the book, and enter the giveaway by commenting on the review post!