Since it’s almost the end of 2013, I’ve started putting together my reading list for 2014. For a variety of reasons, I’m going to have more time to read, but I’m also going to make an effort to set aside more time for it. Below are four of the books on the list so far for 2014:
1. Sugar in the Blood: A Family’s Story of Slavery and Empire, by Andrea Stuart: Stuart, who is known for her biography of Empress Josephine as well as her study of the history of the Caribbean, weaves her family history within her chronicle of the history of Barbados. She tells the story of her ancestor, George Ashby, a British colonist who settled in Barbados in the 1600s and who founded a sugar plantation which still exists today. Sugar in the Blood chronicles the experiences of not only those who profited from English colonialism, but also those who suffered from it, particularly Africans who were brought to Barbados as slaves and from whom Stuart is also descended.
2. The Light Between Oceans, by M. L. Stedman: Tom Sherbourne, a lighthouse keeper on a remote island, and his wife, Isabel, have just suffered the devastation of a stillbirth. Two weeks later, though, Tom discovers a rowboat washed ashore, and the lone survivor is an infant. Tom takes the infant, and Isabel insists on raising the baby as their own. Yet as the months pass, questions begin to surface about the baby’s identity, and Tom and Isabel find themselves caught between their own happiness and doing what’s right.
3. The Agincourt Bride, by Joanna Hickson: With all the renewed interest in the War of the Roses stemming from the release of Philippa Gregory’s Cousins’ War series, it’s no surprise that something would be written about the mother of Henry VI. I decided to add this one to my list as I’ve heard it’s very good. It tells the story of Catherine de Valois, the young French princess who would marry Henry V, through the eyes of her nurse Mette, and of how Catherine is used as a pawn in the political games between her brother, Charles VII, and England.
4. Sweet Revenge, by Zoe Archer. This is the first book in Archer’s Nemesis Unlimited series, which chronicles the adventures of the members of a secret league that rights injustices and fights for those who can’t fight for themselves. Jack Dalton, a prison escapee, is determined to exact his revenge on the man who killed his sister, but instead he’s met by a mysterious trio who insist they can help him. Eva Warrick, the crack shot who holds Dalton at gunpoint, is willing and able to help him, but she finds himself as drawn by him as he is attracted to her. Like all of Archer’s books, this promises to be a tale of love as well as high adventure.
Do you have any book recommendations that I ought to add to my list?