January 1st, 2020


My tweets


Hild, by Nicola Griffith

Second paragraph of third chapter:
“It would have been a girl, my king,” said Breguswith. “It would have been your peaceweaver.”
I start the year with ten books which I read last month but have not yet blogged. Will clear that backlog over the next week or so.

First up is Hild, by Nicola Griffith, a fictionalised account of the childhood of St Hilda of Whitby. There are no fantasy elements - Hild is treated as a seer by her king and his household, but in fact she is just very observant and smart. Griffith really brings seventh-century Britain (especially what's now North-East England) vividly to life, with convincingly depicted cultures, languages, religions, and people. Hild grows from little girl to young woman in an intensely political and violent society, which is turning from paganism to Christianity and also evolving from tribalism to some new destination. The pace is quite slow, but that just gives you time to appreciate the detail. You can get it here.

This was my top unread book by a woman and my top unread non-genre fiction book. Next on those piles are Seraphina, by Rachel Hartman, and Unsheltered, by Barbara Kingsolver.