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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
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Cananyone recommend any novels about Renaissance Italy?

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So far I have read and really enjoyed Daughter of Siena and The Glassblower of Murano by Marina Fiorato, Leonardo's Swans by Karen Essex, and the Sarah Dunant series set in Venice and other Renaissance cities.

Can anyone recommend any other similar novels?

Many thanks.

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How To Be Both by Ali Smith has one half set in Renaissance Italy, with a first person narrative from the perspective of a painter, but it's quite unconventional, as the other half is set in contemporary England, and Smith has written the book so that you can read either half of the book first.  The publishers have published half the books with the artist story first and the contemporary story second, and the other half the books with the sections reversed.  If you read on Kindle, depending on which icon you click on will give you one story or the other as your first chapter (and be warned that because both version are in the same ebook, when you've finished reading both sections, the display will show as 50% complete, or you'll start at 50% and read to 100% - so a bit confusing).


It's not been everyone's cup of tea, so I'm hesitant to recommend it, but I love Ali Smith's work, and thought this was a great read, but I was prepared for her unusual style and the concept before I started. :)

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