Susan here, looking out on a snowy, lovely morning, very early. It’s cold and dark yet, with big snowflakes swirling down in the quiet. I’m surrounded by books, some I’m currently reading and some I’ve written. I’ve staring at a stack of books acquired recently as gifts and via gift cards, and I’m wondering if my TBR pile will ever diminish – on the other hand, why let it get smaller?
Take one or two from the top and read them; add three or four more; tug one or two from the bottom, because they look so great and I’d almost forgotten they were there; and so the reading goes.
Do you, too, have a teetering pile of books, new and sorta old? Want to share the current book or two with the rest of us? I'll pick a page from among the books scattered on the table here, and choose a paragraph to share. Today's date can determine the page: Friday, January 21: page 121.
So today I'll choose two books: one that I’ve written, and another that I’m reading.
Page 121, Queen Hereafter: A Novel of Margaret of Scotland – the page opens to a scene in which Eva, a female bard and kinswoman of Lady Macbeth, is introduced in the court of King Malcolm and Queen Margaret:
Distant thunder rolled outside, and the hearth flames flickered in a draft. Eva felt a quick chill, as if she had walked into a moment of great import in her life. She heard a few murmurs and whispers as she crossed the length of the room. Ruari walked beside her, strong and quiet, neither a step ahead nor a step behind, as it should be.
The queen smiled, and King Malcolm sat forward with keen interest. To Margaret’s left, Prince Edgar ceased his conversation with his sister, the princess Cristina, and sat straighter. “Who is this?” he asked, his voice so clear that Eva suddenly realized how very quiet the hall had become. “She is lovely."
"The Moray princess, “ Margaret’s sister said.
Cicero had already devoted more time than he would have liked to Egyptian affairs. They had about them always a whiff of dishonor. He had in Cleopatra’s youth hoped to be named envoy to her father’s court but worried about how history, and respectable Rome, might view that posting. Cicero had as well a vexed history with women. He had long complained that he first wife had too much taste for public affairs and too little for domestic ones. Having just rid himself of one strong minded, strong willed woman, he had no taste for another. . .
“The arrogance of the Queen herself when she was living on the estate across the Tiber makes my blood boil to recall,” Cicero fumed in mid-44. On that count he had met his match. He admitted to “a certain foolish vanity to which I am somewhat prone.”
To be honest I haven’t read this far in the book yet. I’m still in the early chapters and I'm absolutely fascinated by the subject, the depth of research and insight, and the quality and ease of the writing.
Now it's your turn – what’s stacked on your desk or nightstand, what’s toppled on the floor beside the sofa? Pick a book you’re currently reading (or one you’ve written!), and share a paragraph or so from page 121, today’s date. If you’re in Australia, like Wench Anne Gracie, and it happens to be the next day — share something from page 122.
I'm looking forward to seeing what you all choose to share — it's a great chance for all of us to dip into some books that we may not have read, but may want to after we've read the various paragraphs! Not that I need to add to the TBR pile — but if we get more snowy days like this, I'll have a better chance of getting through the fall and winter acquisitions. . .