The Things I Read

Sitting on the couch, wrapped in a blanket, watching the snow swirl against the windows, and wishing it were January rather than March. I wouldn’t have minded this so much in January.

But I guess I don’t mind it that much now. It’s warm in here, I went grocery shopping yesterday, we haven’t lost power (at least not yet), and I have a vase of $4 Whole Foods yellow tulips to lift my spirits.

I also have haphazard piles of books of different genres – source material for different projects, some current, some future, some past, and some hypothetical. I so love inter-library loan. It never ceases to amuse me what I wind up using as reference material.

In the hopes that it will amuse you as well, here are some lists for a snowy Tuesday afternoon.


Read For The First Time While Researching Timekeeper:

  • The Reign of Napoleon Bonaparte by Robert Asprey
  • Waterloo by David Hamilton Williams
  • Napoleon and the Conquest of the World (there’s a story behind this one, but I’ll wait until the publication of the new edition of Timekeeper before I tell it)
  • Fodor’s Travel Guide To Vienna
  • The Stars Look Down by A. J. Cronin (fiction, but an excellent source of information on everyday life in Welsh mining villages)
  • Articles on Clément Duval, François Frean, Paul Renuci, Raymond Vaude, Giovanni Batistoti, Henri Charriere, and their escapes or alleged escapes from the French penal colony of Cayenne (a.k.a Devil’s Island)


Reread While Researching Timekeeper:

  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (obsessively, to get the timeline and choreography right)
  • Waterloo: A Near-Run Thing by David Howarth (ditto)


Movies Watched While Researching Timekeeper:

  • Ocean’s Eleven
  • Ocean’s Twelve
  • Ocean’s Thirteen
  • The Italian Job

(the “heist” subplot ended up being downplayed by the final draft, but the research was fun)


Read For The First Time While Researching Timebound:

  • The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler’s Atomic Bomb by Neal Bascomb
  • Assault in Norway: Sabotaging the Nazi Nuclear Program by Thomas Gallagher
  • The Mountains Wait by Theodore Broch
  • The Village of Secrets: Defying the Nazis in Vichy France by Caroline Moorehead
  • History of England, Volume 3 by David Hume (can anyone guess why?)
  • Under These Restless Skies by Lissa Bryan (fun read, but didn’t turn out to be much help, since the character I was interested in only appeared briefly – can anyone guess who?)


Reread To Get The Feel For A Specific Tiny Scene In Timebound:

  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (and there’s a virtual cookie in it for anyone who figures out which scene it is, when the book is finally done. It’s not a mad wife in an attic, I’ll tell you that much.)


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