My guilty pleasures often include reading a lot of Regency Romances and watching period films such as Persuasion and The Golden Bowl, or TV mini-series like, Downton Abbey and The Tudors. I love the glitz and glamour of it all. I do also enjoy injecting my pleasures with small doses of reality every once in a while.
Historical romances whether in written form or film all tend to gild the lily on what life was really like in whatever time period they are representing. It’s enjoyable, but gives us a rose-tinted view of what history was truly like.
My hubby and I recently watched a fascinating BBC mini-series from 2001 called The Manor House. They took a family along with twelve other volunteers and moved them into an estate house for a three month experiment where they all had to live as Edwardians. From clothing to food to everything, it all centered around them living life as it was in the early 1900s.
The family became nouveau riche, titled and waited on hand and foot. The other twelve volunteers became their servants from butler down to scullery maid. It was a true glimpse at what life in a Downton Abbey style home would be like. And it was nothing like the TV show.
It was fascinating to watch modern minds struggle with life in the 1900s. The upstairs folk, naturally, handled it better. The downstairs servants struggled with the inequality of it all. I found it really intriguing to watch.
Three months really gave them long enough to truly immerse themselves into the roles they were playing.
It’s definitely worth watching if you’re at all interested in period films/romances.
My Kindle Unlimited reading list for July. It’s a little more varied than some of my previous finds.
1. The Tidy Closet
Doesn’t everyone need tips for keeping their closet organized?
2. Dark Quartet: The Story of the Brontes.
I loved Jane Eyre, and the Brontes; story has always fascinated me.
3. The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen
Jacques Pepin is one of my all time favourite chefs. His story is fascinating.
4. Wind, Sand & Stars
I adore The Little Prince, but I’d never read any other books by the author so I thought I’d pick up this one. I wasn’t disappointed.
5. 1,000 Years of Annoying the French
With a title like that, it was impossible not to want to read it.
6. As Always, Julia
Julia Child. What else do I need to say? I think I’d read every book about her aside from this one.
7. Shakespeare’s Sonnets
This one was for research. If I were buying it, I would’ve picked a different one.
8. A Man with a Pan
I read A LOT of cookbooks, chef’s memoirs, etc. I might be a tad bit obsessed with it.
9. A Love Poem Collection
Also for research.
I didn’t read as much in May as I’d hoped to. That’s the trouble with writing, sometimes I forget to take a break and read. Here’s what I’m hoping to read in June from my Kindle Unlimited list:
1. The Paper Magician by Charlie Holmberg
2. How to Talk Dirty (It’s a writing reference, I promise.=) )
3. 3-Day Guide to Dublin (also for research).
4. Dublin by Locals (also for research).
5. Inheriting Romance
What do you hope to read this month?
The books I’m reading from Kindle Unlimited this month:
1. The Rebel Earl
2. A Wilder Rose
3. Royal date
4. 65 House Cleaning Hacks
Useful, but nothing to write home about.
5. Cleaning and Organizing Hacks
See above lol.
6. Furniture and Draperies in the era of Jane Austen
It basically covers a lot of what would’ve been in Ackerman’s during the time. Fascinating.
7. Letters from the Heart
8. Jane Austen and Food
Completely and totally fascinating if you’re as obsessed as I am with Jane Austen and the Regency era.
9. All Roads Lead to Austen
This month, I’m reading:
1. Nothing Left Sacred – I’m always up for a good book on the Tudors
2. Anne’s Wardrobe – pretty light reading, but a fascinating look into Tudor times.
3. The Blood of the Fifth Knight – Haven’t read yet.
4. Katherine Howard: A New History – I don’t tend to read a lot about Henry’s fifth wife, so this was fascinating.
5. Helen of Sparta – Haven’t read yet.
6. The Marriage Mart – Have I mentioned I adore a good Regency Romance? I really do.
Last Month’s List:
1. The Creation of Anne Boleyn – Finished
2. Make Mine a Ranger – Finished
3. Cotswolds Memoir – Still Reading.
4. Edward III: The Perfect King – Finished
5. Frugal and Delicious – Finished
6. An Inconvenient Ward – Finished
7. Seal The Deal Finished
8. The Stolen Crown – DNF
9. A Love Most Dangerous – Finished
This month, I’m reading:
1. The Creation of Anne Boleyn – Fascinating. Not my favourite Anne Boleyn book, but I enjoyed parts of it. What I didn’t care for is how the book seemed to be an endless complaint about other Tudor historical authors. It got to be a bit annoying and turned me off of the book.
2. Make Mine a Ranger – sexy military men? What can I say, my weakness. Great book, might have to read the others in the series.
3. Cotswolds Memoir – I added this one because I’m going to be working on Judy & Carl at some point, and I think that’s where they’re going to go.
4. Edward III: The Perfect King – (To be read)
5. Frugal and Delicious – Interesting, but…not sure how much of it I’d actually use.
6. An Inconvenient Ward – I’m a sucker for a good Regency romance.
7. Seal The Deal (To be read)
8. The Stolen Crown – I wanted to enjoy this, I really did. But the first person POV just…felt really awkward.
9. A Love Most Dangerous – (To be read)
Last Month’s List:
1. Perseverance (Finished)
2. The Everything Zen Book (Still Reading – there was no way I was reading this in a month lol.)
3. Waking Up Catholic (Finished)
4. Sweating Sickness in a Nutshell (Finished)
5. To Marry an English Lord (Finished)
6. The Fiction Writer’s Book of Checklists (Finished)
7. The Yuletide Countess (Finished)
8. Kitchen Confidential (DNF)
9. Katherine (Finished)
So I have Kindle Unlimited at the moment, to make it worth it. I need to read at least nine books a month, otherwise there really isn’t much point in having the account.
This month, I’m reading:
I’ve finished this one already. It’s an interesting look into Anne Boleyn. (I’m a huge Tudor nerd).
2. The Everything Zen Book
Slowly making my way through this.
3. Waking Up Catholic
Finished this one as well. I enjoy reading books on religions. I tend to read a little bit of everything. It was well written and I did learn a number of things I never knew about Catholicism.
4. Sweating Sickness in a Nutshell
Finished this one. It was a fascinating look at an epidemic that went through England in the 1400s – 1500s, then disappeared. Have I mentioned I’m a history nerd?
5. To Marry an English Lord
6. The Fiction Writer’s Book of Checklists
7. The Yuletide Countess
8. Kitchen Confidential
I love Anthony Bourdain–in small doses. I enjoy his shows quite a bit–in small doses. His book is not small doses. I couldn’t make it through it.