Thursday, September 16, 2010

BBAW: A Forgotten Treasure: Anya Seton

Book Blogger Appreciation Week is almost over! Wow, how did that happen? Today, the theme is to promote a forgotten treasure, or in other words, a book we feel deserves more attention.

After much pondering I've decided to bend the instructions just a little (of course) and highlight an "old" favorite author, Anya Seton (1904-1990).

Back when I was just a "normal" reader, back in the days when I would wander aimlessly into the library not knowing what was "the thing" at the moment, or what it was I just had to read, back before YA or endless trilogies and series to keep up with..... I discovered Anya Seton.  After the first book I read, I devoured everything the library had by her. I think my fascination waned before I'd read all of her books, but while it lasted, it was a blast!

Here's a list of her books (swiped from Wikepedia) with notes if I've read them:

My Theodosia (1941): about the daughter of VP Aaron Burr and her romance with Meriwether Lewis. I think I have this one but have yet to read it!

Dragonwyck (1944): about Miranda Wells and her marriage to Nicholas Van Ryn. I don't remember ever reading this one, though it sounds familiar.

The Turquoise (1946): New York Society in the mid 19th century. I have NOT read this one.

The Hearth and the Eagle (1948): about the author's own ancestors in Marblehead, Massachusetts. I think this is another one I have on hand, but didn't ever get around to.

Foxfire (1950): a western set in the time of post Depression. Did not read this one yet.

Katherine (1954): about the romance of John of Gaunt and Katherine Swynford. One of my all time favorite books. Wonderful love story.

The Mistletoe and the Sword (1956): set in England during the time of the Romans. I didn't read this one, but wow, it sounds good!

The Winthrop Woman (1958): about the niece and daughter-in-law of John Winthrop, governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. I remember really enjoying this one too.

Devil Water (1962): set in the time of the Jacobite Risings in the 1700's. I did read this one, yes. Wonderful!

Avalon (1965): set in the time of Anglo-Saxon England and the Viking expansion. I'm quite sure I read this one, but I don't remember much from it.

Green Darkness (1972): this is the first one of hers I read. It's a time travel book, going back to the time of Edward VI. I loved it! I need to re-read in a really desperate way!

Smouldering Fires (1975): I know I missed reading this one. It's about reincarnation set in the same time period as Green Darkness

Now, after having done that, you may think why would I highlight this author if I can't hardly remember her books! Yes, I'm wondering that too, EXCEPT, I do remember loving every bit of the books I read! I remember being caught up in the time period complete with just enough details to make you feel like you might be learning something. At the same time, the romances were just steamy enough to get you fanning your face and keep you glued to the page. Oh, I would love to re-read and remember those wonderful stories all over again. It seems that they are unique and amazing enough that we should be hearing more about them today. So yes, I think they all deserve a highlight and definitely fit the category of forgotten treasure.

Have you read any Anya Seton books? Which was your favorite? If not, do any of these sound interesting?

Edited to add: If you were paying attention, you may have had a sneak peak of this post when I accidentally published it yesterday, too early. So, then I copied, pasted, deleted and scheduled it to post on the appropriate day, today! If you saw this post earlier and wanted to comment, but couldn't, I hope you come back!

Ah, the things we do to keep people on their toes around here!!


  1. I loved The Winthrop Woman when I read it a few years ago. I have always meant to read Katherine, as my sister was named after that book! I really need to get round to it soon - thanks for the reminder.

  2. I gotta read her! I do have couple of her books!

    Here is my BBAW: Forgotten Treasures post!

  3. I *think* I've heard of her. Love that line about the "Before" days when we were all normal! ha

  4. I haven't read any of her books, though I've heard her name praised far and wide! Must rectify that.

  5. Like you, I highlighted a "forgotten" author. I hadn't heard of Seton either, but I would consider looking for her works after your writing about them...even if you haven't read many of them.

    I know what that's like: for myself, it's the poet, H.D. I can't remember specifically what I've read and I do have a collection of her work, but I do know something about the quality of her writing struck a chord with me.

  6. I haven't read anything by Anya Seton, although it sounds like I need to add her to my list.

  7. I've heard of Katherine but I have a block against it for some reason so I doubt I'll ever read it. But I do want to check out Avalon. That time period fascinates me.

  8. I think I attempted Katherine once upon a time. I'm not sure I really liked it, though maybe I should give her another try.

  9. I have read Katherine. I think it was a case of my expectations being a tad bit too high, because I didn't like it all that much.

  10. I have had Katherine on my bookshelf for years, but haven't read it. I haven't even heard of most of the rest of these! I'll have to remedy that soon.



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