Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sharon Kay Penman: When Christ and His Saints Slept

I'm not sure what keeps drawing me to these long, long and longer books, but I should have known, right? I mean just looking at the cover of "When Christ and His Saints Slept" should have told me this was a saga. And sagas are long: physically and in the way they twist and turn and confuse the reader. I don't know Sharon Kay Penman (and probably won't pick up anything else she wrote, since I gave up this kind of historical saga when I was about 12) but it appears she writes historical fiction/sagas of the middle ages: kings and queens and knights and vassals and castles and England and Normandy, and oh, so romantic! The first and last parts of this book were quite interesting, but the middle half, where the knights and lords and queens and kings fought back and forth and killed and pillaged and never quite seemed to finish their war, while probably realistic, got really dull. I'm sure there wasn't really much suspense in the middle ages, although I would be practically a constant panic attack if I was waiting 3 weeks for a letter to be hand delivered to find out if my husband had conquered a territory for me, but I felt I knew what was going to happen before it happened. If you like sagas, I think this is probably a good one. If not, it's an airplane read- if you're traveling the world 6 times.


Anonymous said...

Great post. I was going to write something similar. Will check this blog more often I think.