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on Katherine Swynford
I do find Katherine's ideas on religion pretty interesting; if you think about it, you don't read too many novels where the heroines turn down the chance to be the mistress of rich and powerful royalty. Especially when the girl is attracted to the guy. Of course, she gives in, but not after becoming a widow. I have to respect that since I am of a moral nature myself.
Even though the novel has its deficiencies, I have to respect the amount of research Anya Seton put into the novel. Can you imagine having to actually visit the places where your novel is set? Sure it is preferable, but not necessary in this day and age. I certainly would love to visit Ireland again to research for my newest work. And I was fortunate enough to visit Frankfort, Kentucky when I was writing The Enemy Within. But for the most part, a quick click of the mouse can get you what you want. I was flabbergasted by the idea that Ms. Seton probably spent many an hour in a dusty archive in England perusing medieval letters and records. Now that is dedication. And I say that as a almost professional historian (OK, really I am an architectural historian). I'm supposed to love trawling through libraries and archives! But in this fast paced world, I have to admit that I enjoy the freedom of clicking over to Google books and getting a wide variety of sources when I start my research. I am interested in delving into period works for Rebellion. Since they were all authored by Englishmen, I am certain to find out what they were really thinking. Bias always has a way of showing through.
So what about you? Do you thrive on getting out in the real world to do your research or are you an armchair historian (researcher) like me?