"The Gods are jealous, and when you have good fortune you should conceal it."

George Orwell, “Such, Such Were the Joys”

"The text is a tissue of quotations drawn from the innumerable centres of culture…[The Author’s] only power is to mix writings, to counter the ones with the others, in such a way as never to rest on any one of them. Did he wish to express himself, he ought at least to know that the inner ‘thing’ he thinks to ‘translate’ is itself only a ready-formed dictionary, its words only explainable through other words, and so on indefinitely."

Roland Barthes, ”The Death of the Author”

"This conception of a…narrative as a protection against death has been transformed by our culture. Writing is now linked to sacrifice and to the sacrifice of life itself; it is a voluntary obliteration of the self that does not require representation in books because it takes place in the everyday existence of the writer. Where a work had the duty of creating immortality, it now attains the right to kill, to become the murderer of its author."

Michel Foucalt, “What is an Author?”

"He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it."

Douglas Adams

"No opera plot can be sensible, for people do not sing when they are feeling sensible."

W. H. Auden
Day 14 (Favorite book of your favorite writer) | The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory
Considering I have already posted my favorite book by this author, Philippa Gregory, I thought I might post another novel of her’s that I really like. It is the predecessor to The Other Boleyn Girl. It is a well-written novel that takes you across two nations, two romances, and pulls you deep into the mind of a loved woman is often lost in history in the shadow of the widely hated Anne Boleyn. 
The Constant Princess tells the story of the first wife of Henry VIII, Catherine of Aragon. The daughter of Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain was engaged to Prince Arthur and shipped off to England. In the process of getting accustomed to a new way of life in a foreign country, Catherine and her betrothed fall in love and begin to make plans for the future of England. However, when Arthur dies unexpectedly of sweating sickness, Catherine makes him a deathbed promise to become Queen and carry out their plans. As Catherine cannot become Queen without a royal marriage, she knows the only way to keep her promise is to convince the royal court that her marriage to Arthur was unconsummated so that she may be free to marry Arthur’s younger brother, Henry. It is a story of love and undying ambition. 
This novel was my introduction to Philippa Gregory, as well as my first foray into historical fiction in quite a while when I read it. It was actually the first novel to make me fall head-over-feet for a part of history. There is so much mystery surrounding Prince Arthur and his marriage to Catherine that I found this particular take on it to be very interesting, especially because it’s obvious that Gregory has a passion for researching it.

Day 14 (Favorite book of your favorite writer) | The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory

Considering I have already posted my favorite book by this author, Philippa Gregory, I thought I might post another novel of her’s that I really like. It is the predecessor to The Other Boleyn Girl. It is a well-written novel that takes you across two nations, two romances, and pulls you deep into the mind of a loved woman is often lost in history in the shadow of the widely hated Anne Boleyn. 

The Constant Princess tells the story of the first wife of Henry VIII, Catherine of Aragon. The daughter of Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain was engaged to Prince Arthur and shipped off to England. In the process of getting accustomed to a new way of life in a foreign country, Catherine and her betrothed fall in love and begin to make plans for the future of England. However, when Arthur dies unexpectedly of sweating sickness, Catherine makes him a deathbed promise to become Queen and carry out their plans. As Catherine cannot become Queen without a royal marriage, she knows the only way to keep her promise is to convince the royal court that her marriage to Arthur was unconsummated so that she may be free to marry Arthur’s younger brother, Henry. It is a story of love and undying ambition. 

This novel was my introduction to Philippa Gregory, as well as my first foray into historical fiction in quite a while when I read it. It was actually the first novel to make me fall head-over-feet for a part of history. There is so much mystery surrounding Prince Arthur and his marriage to Catherine that I found this particular take on it to be very interesting, especially because it’s obvious that Gregory has a passion for researching it.

Interview of Audrey Niffenegger on influences and themes in The Time Traveler’s Wife

This is an interview from when Niffenegger had dyed her hair red as a kind of omage to Clare, the novel’s main female character. She talks about some of the themes she was trying to develop in her novel, as well as some of the classic literary references scattered throughout the narrative. Niffenegger explains the reasoning for putting these kind of references in perfectly.

I also enjoyed her discussion of the novel’s infrastructure. She admits that the story is ultimately simplistic, but through play with the detail and the structure, she created the fantastic story that has been a best seller in both the US and the UK.