The Cadfael novels gave me a love for the medieval period as a teenager that has never diminished - Ms Pargeter wore her scholarship lightly, the mark of a truly gifted writer, I think :)PS Hardwick Hall is a favourite destination, and what a woman was Bess!!
I have to agree, I adore the Cadfael Novels for their day to day life, the way they had to use the light, got up at dawn regardless to get everything done in the day. Light and indoor plumbing are the two things I would miss the most in the past. I love how there were strong women in the past who we now see and enjoy for their very life!
Hard choice. I love All the Way home by Anne Tatlock...partly for the characters, which seem so realistic and relatable but perfectly right in their time (not sort of plucked out of history). But along with that are the settings, which for the first half of the book was places I've been at, old neighborhood that she helped me imagine as if they were new. The day to day-ness was not so much in lots of little historical details, but in making those details she did share feel real and living. Also, actually, the Laura Ingalls Wilder books...I know, you probably weren't thinking children's books, but I remember so many small details of daily life in those.
More Cadfael love here, too. But also Mary Renault. Particularly 'The Last of the Wine', which was the first of hers I read. I think because all the details were so matter of fact, it didn't feel as though the research was being rammed down my throat!
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