Skip to main content

Weekly Geeks #24

The rules are:
1. Choose a writer you like.
2. Using resources such as Wikipedia, the author’s website, whatever you can find, make a list of interesting facts about the author.
3. Post your fun facts list in your blog, maybe with a photo of the writer, a collage of his or her books, whatever you want.
4. Come sign the Mr Linky below with the url to your fun facts post.
5. As you run into (or deliberately seek out) other Weekly Geeks’ lists, add links to your post for authors you like or authors you think your readers are interested in.

I recently finished reading Victoria Holt’s Mistress of Mellyn, so I thought I might talk about her for this week’s Weekly Geeks. The following information comes from Wikipedia.

Holt was born Eleanor Alice Burford in London in 1906, and married George Percival Hibbert, a leather merchant, when she was in her twenties. Hibbert wrote most of her 200-plus novels under about seven or eight pen names, the most common of which was Jean Plaidy, for her historical novels. Victoria Holt was the name that Hibbert used for her novels of Gothic suspense. She died at sea, somewhere between Greece and Port Said, Egypt, in 1993.

Hibbert was greatly influenced by the great nineteenth century novelists—the Bronte sisters in particular (you can definitely see this if you read Mistress of Mellyn). She also admired the works of Charles Dickens, Victor Hugo, and Leo Tolstoy. Hibbert’s first novel was published in 1941 under her maiden name, and in 1945 she began using the name Jean Plaidy. As Victoria Holt, she published her first book under that name, Mistress of Mellyn, in 1960. Other names she used were Elbur Ford, Kathleen Kellow, Ellalice Tate, Anna Percival, and Philippa Carr. The reason why she used so many names was because she wrote books in so many genres, and wanted to keep them separate. Hibbert has often been called the “Queen of Romantic Suspense,” and more and more of her books are coming back into print.

Comments

Andi said…
This looks like a fun WG project! Thanks for sharing. I knew nothing about Victoria Holt.
Kim said…
Great author to pick! I read all of *Victoria Holt's* books when I was a teenager and into my 20's. She has always been one of my favorites.
*smiles*
Kim
Very interesting! I've never read anything by Victoria Holt, but you have me intrigued.
Maree said…
I knew she was prolific but I had no idea she was that prolific!
I have some Jean Plaidy novels here, it makes me want to go dig them out _ thanks! :)
Chain Reader said…
I will have to try something by the "Queen of Romantic Suspense!"
Kerrie said…
She's one of those amazing writers isn't she?
Marg said…
I read a lot of Jean Plaidy books when I was a teenager - loved them. They are probably why I am such a Historical Fiction fan now!
Bogsider said…
Thanks for an interesting post about Victoria Holt. I also read everything I could get my hands on written by Victoria Holt when I was a teen. I haven't picked up any of her books (under either pen name) for many years. I am not overly good with romances, although the romantic suspense novels can be a good thing to read in between other genres.

Louise / http://louspages.blogspot.com
That woman could really write, couldn't she? I haven't read any Victoria Holt yet, but I have picked up quite a few at library sales, etc... I don't typically read romance that often, but eventually I'm planning on reading many of hers. I'm sure that they're great.

Popular posts from this blog

Review: Forever Amber, by Kathleen Winsor

Pages: 972 Originally published: 1944 My edition: 2000 (Chicago Review Press) How I acquired my copy: Amazon.com, 2004

Forever Amber takes place in the 1660s, immediately follwing Charles II's ("the Merry Monarch") return of the Stuarts to the English throne. The book features Amber St. Claire, a young woman who starts out as a sixteen-year-old country girl, naieve to the workings of the world. She immediately meets Bruce Carlton, a dashing young Cavalier, with whom she has a passionate love affair in choppy intervals throughout the book. They have two children together, but Bruce won't marry her for the reason he tells his friend Lord Almsbury: that Amber just isn't the kind of woman one marries.

Upon following Bruce to London, he goes to Virginia, leaving her to fend for herself. What follows is a series of affairs and four marriages, with Bruce coming back from America now and then. Amber's marriages are imprudent: her first husband is a gambler, her second is…

Review: Jane Austen's Letters, ed. by Deirdre Le Faye

Pages: 667 Original date of publication: 2011 My copy: 2011 (Oxford University Press) Why I decided to read: How I acquired my copy: Amazon.com, April 2013
This is a compilation of many of Jane Austen’s letters, most of them sent to her sister Cassandra between 1796 and 1817, the year of her death. Although many of Austen’s letters were destroyed by her sister in order to preserve the family reputation, the collection contains over 160 letters in which Austen gives her sister details about her life in Chawton—as well as giving us a tantalizing glimpse of what was going through her mind as she was writing her novels (especially the novel that was to become Pride and Prejudice, First Impressions). There are other letters here, too, giving advice to her niece and professional correspondence to publishers—as well as a couple of letters that were written by Cassandra Austen after Jane’s death.
To the sisters, the letters acted in the way that phone calls do today; Austen’s news is all about pe…

Review: Midnight in Peking, by Paul French

Pages: 259 Original date of publication: 2013 My copy: 2013 (Penguin) Why I decided to read: How I acquired my copy: Phoenix bookstore, May 2013
In January 1937, the body of a young British girl, Pamela Werner, was found near Peking’s Fox Tower. Although two detectives, one British and the other Chinese, spent months on the case, the case was never solved completely, and the case was forgotten in the wake of the invasion of the Japanese. Frustrated, Pamela’s father, a former diplomat, tried to solve the crime. His investigation took him into the underbelly of Peking society and uncovered a secret that was worse than anything he could have imagined.
At first, I thought that this would be a pretty straightforward retelling of a true crime, but what Paul French (who spent seven years researching the story) reveals in this book is much more than that. Foreign society in Peking in the 1930s was stratified, with the British colonials at the top and the White Russian refugees at the bottom, but…