History Reimagined

Dedicated to searching out what lies behind the chronicles and commissioned writings, to delve behind the propaganda and seek out the truth.

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The further back historians search the more unreliable the sources.

In common with historians, authors of historical fiction have this problem: distinguishing  the truth from the propaganda. I first found this to be the case when carrying out the research for The Wayward Prince Trilogy. This is the life story of Robert, Duke of Normandy, the eldest son of William the Conqueror, and it became obvious that attempts had been made to marginalise his achievements and concentrate on his perceived shortcomings.

An examination of the chroniclers themselves became the priority, and several aspects which called their accuracy into question came to light.

In the period I write about, 11th _13th century, the chronicles were penned by monks, in Latin, loaded with misogyny and written to order, so usually from the viewpoint of either the victor or the church, or created for some other political purpose. Recognising those important facts is something I’ve kept in mind as I’ve written my novels.

My books are as near to the truth as it’s possible to get. Research is cross-checked with as many sources, both contemporary and secondary, as I can discover. The facts remain milestones while the stories in-between will always be the results of credible speculation, combined with the author’s own lifetime experiences, and the art of the possible – or even the probable.

Adventures – romances – political intrigues and family treacheries – battles won and battles lost – lives lived and lives sacrificed – all become more interesting when they are soundly based on fact, and are better stories because of it.

Often they were stories handed down, conforming to popular legend and myth, and not often written by direct witnesses, and so to view them as ‘the historical truth’ might be to give them a veracity that they do not deserve. Nevertheless, they provide the novelist with access to a flavour, an atmosphere, that can be just as important to the success of a story as the facts.

The Making of an Empire

Robert the Wayward Prince
Book One

Warrior of the Cross

Robert the Wayward Prince
Book Two

The Vengeful Son

Robert the Wayward Prince
Book Three

The Women Who Saved England

The Women Who Saved England – Nicholaa and Matilda

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