What in the World is Diane reading?

I know Elena is going to talk about Beach Reads this week. I haven’t been near a beach and I do have the reputation as the World’s Worst Read Romance Writer, (nice alliteration) but I thought I’d let you peek in on the books I’ve been opening this week.

My treat for finishing the manuscript (new title ideas: The Scandal Seeker, Unbidden Scandal, Courting Scandal, A Certain Scandal–see a pattern?) was to pick up the Wellington biography that I won at the Beau Monde Conference tea. I was enjoying it a lot and he was well into Spain when it was time for my trip to Williamsburg with Amanda.

When Amanda and I were not looking at historical items and recreations, we bought books, and it is a bit hard to say which took up more time…. Anyway, the books totally distracted me from Wellington. Then we met with Deb Marlowe and I became even more distracted by our exciting anthology idea (stay tuned…)and when I got home I started reading some books that would help with that idea like Broken Lives by Lawrence Stone, Sex in Georgian England by A.D. Harvey. (Tantalizing, aren’t they?) I read the appropriate parts of each of those books.


But since I really must be about the business of developing a new story idea and a proposal for Harlequin/Mills & Boon, I’ve been leafing through Beloved Emma by Flora Fraser (wonderful book!) and The Wheatley Diary edited by Christopher Hibbert.

This all sounds so lofty and impressive, but the real distractions have been Janet’s The Rules of Gentility and Amanda’s A Notorious Woman, both of which I purchased on my trip. I snagged the last copy of Rules of Gentility in the College of William and Mary Bookshop in Williamsburg, and Amanda’s A Notorious Woman at the Walmart near home (where we went to see if it was on the shelf).

If you have not yet purchased these books, HURRY! (Especially Amanda’s which will only stay on bookstore shelves this month). Amanda’s opening is sooooo intriguing, and Janet’s book is over-and-above charming and witty. Both books are on my nightstand, warring with the need to read my research books!

What glorious problems I’m having!

What is on YOUR nightstand?
Any good research books to share, ones I may not have purchased yet? (I just bought The Girl in Rose by Peter Hobday, about Haydn’s last love. I came across it while writing this blog!)

About diane

Diane Gaston is the RITA award-winning author of Historical Romance for Harlequin Historical and Mills and Boon, with books that feature the darker side of the Regency. Formerly a mental health social worker, she is happiest now when deep in the psyches of soldiers, rakes and women who don’t always act like ladies.
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17 Responses to What in the World is Diane reading?

  1. Susan/DC says:

    At the moment I’m in the middle of Amanda’s latest and enjoying the different time (1525) and place (Venice). Just bought Janet’s “Rules of Gentility” yesterday so that’s sitting on my nightstand too. Of course, this doesn’t count the hundreds of TBR books waiting for me in various non-nightstand places around the house. They call to me too, just that Amanda’s and Janet’s books are calling louder at the moment.

  2. Diane Gaston says:

    Oh, answer the call, Susan! You won’t be disappointed!

  3. I ADORED Janet’s Rules of Gentility. On my nightstand, I currently have Amanda’s NOTORIOUS, To Scotland With Love by Karen Hawkins and Hocus Pocus by Kurt Vonnegut.

    Here are some title suggestions for you, Diane: Scandal on the Mantle, Bitten by Unbidden Scandal, Seeking Scandal Here Seeking Scandal There…

  4. At any given time, I have two books going–one for research and one for leisure. On the research side, I just started a compilation of quotes from Napoleon on various subjects. Reading it I alternate between nodding my head in agreement and wanting to strangle the man.

    The current leisure book is A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini. It’s about women’s lives in Afghanistan, and it’s not what I normally read–generally I run hard the other way whenever confronted by anything in the literary fiction/book club selection genre! But so far, 40 pages in or so, I’m glad I made an exception for this one after hearing the author interviewed on NPR awhile back.

    I recently finished The Rules of Gentility, incidentally, and wrote a brief review here.

  5. Cara King says:

    I only just got my hands on Amanda and Janet’s books, so I haven’t yet read them! (Blame it on my local Borders, who took the special order weeks ago and said “we’ll phone you when they’re in” but secretly have a new policy which dictates they never phone customers…)

    So what have I been reading? Lois McMaster Bujold’s latest. And INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, for the SFF reading group I’m in…

    Cara

  6. Diane Gaston says:

    Here are some title suggestions for you, Diane: Scandal on the Mantle, Bitten by Unbidden Scandal, Seeking Scandal Here Seeking Scandal There…

    Thanks, Keira. Those are right up there with Todd’s Peterloo and Pomroy Too.

    Susan, if I come across any good Napoleon quotes (“I tell you, Wellington is a bad general”) I’ll let you know. Maybe we can blog about Napoleon quotes someday!

    How nice of you to review Janet’s book. It was a nice review, too!

    I have The Kite Runner, but have not even cracked that one open. I’ve had it for ages.

    Cara, I read almost all of Bujold’s Vorkosegan (sp?) series. Miles is such a wonderful but unlikely hero! I have not read anything else by her, even though Mary Blayney (Traitor’s Kiss, Feb 2008) and my friend Julie keep urging me to. They were the one’s who forced me into reading Bujold in the first place. I’m grateful to them!!

  7. I finished Rules of Gentility overnight, it was that good. And I have Amanda’s NOTORIOUS on my bedside table along with Eleanor Herman’s Sex with Kings, and Linda Scottoline’s Daddy’s Girl.

  8. Cara King says:

    Diane wrote: Miles is such a wonderful but unlikely hero! I have not read anything else by her, even though Mary Blayney (Traitor’s Kiss, Feb 2008) and my friend Julie keep urging me to.

    Yes, I think her Vorkosigan books are wonderful. From a romance perspective, it’s amazing how she makes such a physically unprepossessing, and emotionally slightly bizarre, hero so very attractive! 🙂

    As for her other books, I think her fantasy The Curse of Chalion is just amazing. (Hard to take, in some ways, as are many of her books, but it way pays off.)

    Cara

  9. Susan, if I come across any good Napoleon quotes (“I tell you, Wellington is a bad general”) I’ll let you know. Maybe we can blog about Napoleon quotes someday!

    There’s a whole section in the book, which I haven’t read in detail yet, where he criticizes Wellington’s battle plan and decision-making at Waterloo. My reaction: “God, you’re such a sore loser. And may I remind you: you lost. How does it make you look better to disparage the guy who beat you?”

    (Yes, I talk to the dead people who’ve taken up residence in my head, not to mention assorted fictional characters, both my own creations and those of others. A crowded place, my brain.)

  10. Oh, thanks so much everyone for buying The Rules and saying such nice things about it. Big thanks for the review, Susan!

    Diane, I love the cover pic on Sex in Georgian England, although it’s a very depressing book (other than the illustrations. Condom testing! BWAHA!).

  11. janegeorge says:

    I am SO frustrated. I have the same six books staring at me as I did when when I packed them to take on a lake houseboating vacation a week ago.

    Turns out I can no more read on a houseboat than I can in a car. Urp.
    I finally got my sea legs six days into the trip. Now, I’m home and my desk is swaying.

    Candice Hern’s Lady Be Bad tops the pile, I think Colette Gale’s Unmasqued is next, and I can’t see what’s further down, but I know they’re good. Once the land legs kick in, I’ll dig in!

  12. Diane Gaston says:

    As for her other books, I think her fantasy The Curse of Chalion is just amazing. (Hard to take, in some ways, as are many of her books, but it way pays off.)

    Cara, Julie and Mary would agree with you. It is one of the books awaiting on my shelf!

    (Yes, I talk to the dead people who’ve taken up residence in my head, not to mention assorted fictional characters, both my own creations and those of others. A crowded place, my brain.)

    Well, that beats the vast empty spaces in my brain!! Um….what book on Napoleon are you reading, Susan?…

    Turns out I can no more read on a houseboat than I can in a car. Urp.
    I finally got my sea legs six days into the trip. Now, I’m home and my desk is swaying.

    Oh, Janegeorge, this just is soooo cruel..You poor thing.
    I forgot about Unmasqued! I had to put that one down in order to finish writing my untitled book!

    Diane, I love the cover pic on Sex in Georgian England, although it’s a very depressing book (other than the illustrations. Condom testing! BWAHA!).

    It was boring, wasn’t it? Except the condom testing part.

  13. Tracy Grant says:

    I’m currently in the midst of rereading “Persuasion” but I took a break to read “Lady Be Bad” which is quite wonderful. I just found myself wanting to reread “The Scarlet Pimpernel” after an interesting discussion in response to a post on my website.

  14. what book on Napoleon are you reading, Susan?…

    One from 1955 that I discovered while browsing the history section at my local UBS. It’s called The Mind of Napoleon, and it was complied by a J. Christopher Herold.

  15. Todd says:

    I usually have a bunch of books going at any given time…I just read Dreamsnake by Vonda McIntyre, and I’ve just started Amanda’s A Notorious Woman. And on the nonfiction side I’m reading I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas Hofstadter, The Pea and the Sun by Leonard Wapner, and Why Aren’t More Women in Science?, edited by Wendy Williams and Stephen Ceci. (I’ve read more than half of it so far, and I still don’t know why there aren’t more women in science. Oh, well.)

    And then there is my TBR stack, which fills my entire house…

    Todd-whose-world-is-one-big-TBR-stack

  16. Todd says:

    Keira wrote:

    Scandal on the Mantle, Bitten by Unbidden Scandal, Seeking Scandal Here Seeking Scandal There…

    Diane wrote:

    Thanks, Keira. Those are right up there with Todd’s Peterloo and Pomroy Too.

    Aww, Diane, that’s so sweet! But Keira’s suggestions were great–really, I couldn’t hold a scandal to them.

    Todd-who-is-running-for-cover-now

  17. Diane Gaston says:

    You’d better run, Todd!

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