Wednesday, October 7, 2009

REVIEW: HUGH AND BESS by SUSAN HIGGINBOTHAM and GIVEAWAY!!!





Not to be over dramatic, but this book came at the PERFECT time in my life. I literally JUST finished “Three Day Road” by Joseph Boyden, and while not being a BAD book, it was not an overly HAPPY one. And from the first sentence of Hugh and Bess I knew that it was going to be a delightful read. Which it totally WAS.    I LOVED IT.

I really do not know much about Edward II, but interestingly enough I DID know about the standoff at Calais so parts of the book were very cool for that reason. What I LOVED about the novel is  that each of the characters had a very distinctive VOICE. And Bess’s voice is so endearing, I liked her immediately. She is only 13 when we meet her, and she is a widow (thaaaat’s right.. I said WIDOW) and her parents have figured she had been widowing around long enough and it was high time for her to be married off.. again.  Bess is not impressed, to say the least, especially when she finds out that her dear friend Joan is marrying her brother Will who is around their age, and Bess has to marry this old guy who is a whole 32 years old for heaven’s sake!
Eventhough this novel is set in the 14th century Bess's character is, in many ways, very typical of a any thirteen year old girl.  For example how she is secretly annoyed at the fact the Joan has developed breasts long before she has.

"So why didn't you tell me?  Don't you want to marry Will?"
"No."
"Why?"
"I have my reasons."
This had become Joan's favourite saying since she had started her monthly courses and developed those breasts of hers. 

She is feisty, and outspoken, but also self conscious.  All completely endearing qualities.  Hugh, although relatively handsome, has a dark family history which horrifies Bess.  But since she has no choice in the matter agrees to marry him. 

Flashbacks to Hugh's past help us to understand his character and how it is vastly different to that of his distasteful and cruel father and Grandfather.   He is a respectable and lovely man who is always trying to "do the right thing".  We also learn of Emma, Hugh's first real love whom he will never be permitted to marry.    A very respectable woman in her own right,  who knows the rules of the court well enough to know she will never be married to Hugh, the only man she has ever really loved. 

Throughout the story we are gently taken along as Hugh and Bess's feelings for one another grow, and we learn that their love is the stuff of fairy tales.  That, which is to say, is not without its nightmares.

"Hugh and Bess"  is a love story, and it is very well written and lovely to read.  Personally, I could not put it down and read it in two days.  And I will be ordering Higginbotham's other book "The Traitor's Wife" and then "The Stolen Crown" when it comes out.  If this book is any indication of the story telling ability of the author than I know I will LOVE her other books as well.  Historical fiction can be tricky.  You need to have enough HISTORY to frame the story in it's place in time, but not TOO much and not TOO DRY to make it like a text book.  Higginbotham's historical fiction blends the "historical" and the "fiction" perfectly.  In fact, in my opinion, the mark of a great historical fiction novel is that you want to go on after you finish it and devour anything having to do with the family or historical persons portrayed in the book.  Higginbotham's novel made me want to do that very thing.    Also, the mark of ANY good book is at the very very end, when you finally close its cover , you actually sigh audibly as in "that was SUCH a great book." 

RATING:  4.5/5

You can read more about Susan Higginbotham and her works at her website here.

NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY PORTION OF THIS POST!!!!!

The publisher,  Source Books, of Hugh and Bess has GRACIOUSLY allowed me to giveaway a COPY OF THE BOOK!!!!!

Here is how to enter:


  • Leave a comment with your email adress. (one entry)


  • Becomea  follower and leave a SEPERATE comment that you have done so or that you are one already. (2 entries)


  • Post or Twitter about this giveaway and then leave a SEPERATE comment providing the link. (2 entries)


  • Put this giveaway in your SIDEBAR for 2 more entries!

This giveaway is open until October 30th at midnight Alberta Time, and the winners will be announced on October 31.  The winners will have ONE WEEK from that DATE to reply by sending me their mailing address or their winning number will be forfeit. 
The winner will also be notified via email. 

GOOD LUCK!!!!

135 Blabs:

Alita said...

Widowed at 13?! I can't even imagine what that would be like.

Great review! You totally sold me on the book and I'd love to win a copy.

alitareads[at]gmail[dot]com

Alita said...

I'm also a follower.

alitareads[at]gmail[dot]com

V said...

Pick me! Pick me!

vbenson@hotmail.com

V said...

I'm a follower!

vbenson@hotmail.com

V said...

I just did a sidebar post!

vbenson@hotmail.com

Susan Higginbotham said...

Thanks for the lovely review, Lisa!

Lisa said...

ACK!!! Susan Higginbotham commented on MY BLOG!!! WOOOOOOOOT!!!!!! I am glad you liked me review, Susan, as I said to your publisher, I loved your book SO much that I was nervous to do it justice with a review! In the end, I just went with my exact thoughts on it, and, well, not being the most eloquent review ever written, it was from the HEART. And you are an EXTREMELY talented writer and I can't wait to read your other books! Thanks for stopping by! You made my month! :)

Lori said...

Great review, Lisa!
Please enter me.

mrshedgy@yahoo.com

Lori said...

I am an existing follower.

- Lori (mrshedgy@yahoo.com)

Lori said...

I posted a link on the sidebar of my blog.

- Lori (mrshedgy@yahoo.com)
www.psychoticstate.blogspot.com

Lori said...

And I posted about your giveaway here:
http://psychoticstate.blogspot.com/2009/10/another-excellent-giveaway.html

- Lori (mrshedgy@yahoo.com)
www.psychoticstate.blogspot.com

Thanks for the opportunity!

Lori said...

p.s. - Congrats on the author posting on your blog. What a wonderful feeling!

Jo-Jo said...

I would love to be entered to win this book.
joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Jo-Jo said...

I'm also a follower!

joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Neas Nuttiness said...

I'd love to read this book. I love historical fiction...and you did a great review on this one! Please count me in.

libneas[at]aol[dot]com

Neas Nuttiness said...

I'm already a follower - thank you.

libneas[at]aol[dot]com

Diane said...

please enter my email; thanks

bibliophilebythesea AT gmail DOT com

Gwendolyn B. said...

I'd love to read this - thanks for the chance to win a copy. I enjoyed your review, too!

geebee.reads AT gmail DOT com

Gwendolyn B. said...

and, I'm a Follower!

geebee.reads AT gmail DOT com

Gwendolyn B. said...

Posted on my sidebar at http://aseaofbooks.blogspot.com/

geebee.reads AT gmail DOT com

Stacie said...

Please count me in.

simplystacieblog at gmail dot com

Stacie said...

I am a follower.

simplystacieblog at gmail dot com

Christy said...

I'm in! I read her first book and have been eager to read Hugh and Bess.

runaway84(at)gmail.com

Christy said...

And I'm a follower.

runaway84(at)gmail.com

Christy said...

And I posted a link on my right sidebar: http://christysbooks.blogspot.com/

runaway84(at)gmail.com

My Eclectic Reads said...

This sounds like the perfect read right now. Please enter me!


oregonkimm(at)gmail(dot)com

My Eclectic Reads said...

Okay, I'm a new follower now!


oregonkimm(at)gmail(dot)com

My Eclectic Reads said...

Here's my tweet:

http://twitter.com/OregonKimm/status/4702554748

oregonkimm(at)gmail(dot)com

My Eclectic Reads said...

I've also posted on my sidebar.

http://myeclecticreads.blogspot.com/


oregonkimm(at)gmail(dot)com

Sarah said...

Please enter me in this giveaway.

saemmerson at yahoo dot com

Sarah Emmerson

Mystica said...

I would love to be given an opportunity to win this book. Your review made the book so intriguing.

Thank you for your generosity.

mystica123athotmaildotcom

A Bookshelf Monstrosity said...

Please enter me for this one!
Thanks

fitz12383(at)hotmail(dot)com

A Bookshelf Monstrosity said...

I'm a follower.

fitz12383(at)hotmail(dot)com

A Bookshelf Monstrosity said...

Posted on my blog sidebar (under Other Giveaways).

http://bookshelfmonstrosity.blogspot.com

fitz12383(at)hotmail(dot)com

Indigo said...

This book sounds like something that would play your heartstrings. Please include me in this drawing. Thanks! Indigo

ravensquietscreams@gmail.com

Indigo said...

I'm now following you. Thanks! Indigo

ravensquietscreams@gmail.com

Anna said...

No need to enter me. Just wanted to say I'm glad you liked it as much as I did.

--Anna
Diary of an Eccentric

Mary said...

Hi, I posted a review today so don't enter me in the contest. I LOVED this book and can't wait to read more by the author. Nice review!

Laura's Reviews said...

Great review - this book sounds intriguing! Please enter me in this great giveaway. My email address is laarlt78(at)hotmail(dot)com.

Thanks!

Laura's Reviews said...

I just became a follower! laarlt78(at)hotmail(dot)com.

Thanks!

graspingmara said...

I found my way to you by way of Susan Higginbotham's blog and am glad I did. Your review of her book makes me want to read it soon. So add me to the list of I Want This Book contestants.

graspingmara said...

I'm now a follower too and am adding you to my Google Reader feed.

Veronica said...

Oh wow, I've been wanting to read her books since I first heard of them!

Veronica said...

And I follow!

grottis6 [at] gmail [dot] com

Diane said...

Lisa...please enter me in this giveaway; loved your review.

bibliophilebythesea AT gmail DOT com

Poltzie said...

I would LOVE to win this book! My email:
poltzie at gmail dot com

Poltzie said...

I'm also a follower!

Jessica (BookLover) said...

Please enter me!

bookloversdiary@yahoo.com

Jessica (BookLover) said...

I'm already a follower.

bookloversdiary@yahoo.com

Jasmyn said...

Please enter me! I'd love to read this.

jasmyn9[at]hotmail[dot]com

Jasmyn said...

+1 entry please. I just became a follower. Medieval Woman recommended you.

jasmyn9[at]hotmail[dot]com

Kristi said...

I have seen this a few places now - it does look like a good one!

kherbrand at comcast dot net

Kristi said...

I follow.

kherbrand at comcast dot net

Jo-Jo said...

I blogged about your contest here.
joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Jo-Jo said...

I've also added the contest to my sidebar here.
joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Carol said...

This book sounds really good! I'd love to win it!
Carol M
mittens0831 at aol dot com

Carol said...

I follow your blog.
Carol M
mittens0831 at aol dot com

nfmgirl said...

This one has been on my Wish List. Please count me in. Thank you!

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

I follow

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

heatherzilla said...

I love historical fiction and this sounds like a fantastic book. Great review! Please include me in the giveaway.

heatherzilla(at)care2(dot)com

heatherzilla said...

I tweeted.

http://twitter.com/heatherzilla8/statuses/4847903134

heatherzilla said...

I follow your blog.

heatherzilla(at)care2(dot)com

Jemima said...

I would like to enter: thereadingjourney[at]gmail[dot]com

Jemima said...

I also follow

thereadingjourney[at]gmail[dot]com

FrankSandy said...

I love to read. Please enter me. walkerd@primus.ca

Jennie said...

You can never have too many books :)
jennie.webb@gmail.com

Spud said...

I have never run across this author before, but this sounds really good! I am a huge historical fiction fan.

nfmgirl said...

Tweet:
http://twitter.com/nfmgirl/status/4944296823

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

Blogged:
http://cerebralgirl.blogspot.com/2009/10/book-giveaways-in-blogworld-10-17-09.html

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

Pam said...

I've read such great things about this book! Please enter me!

melacan at hotmail dto com

Carol said...

Please enter me in the contest.

wolfcarol451(at)gmail(dot)com

Carol said...

I follow. #1

wolfcarol451(at)gmail(dot)com

Carol said...

I follow. #2

wolfcarol451(at)gmail(dot)com

edmontonjb said...

Great review!
dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

edmontonjb said...

I became a follower #1
dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

edmontonjb said...

I became a follower #2
dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

Carol said...

I'm eager to read this. Please enter me in the giveaway.

wolfcarol451(at)gmail(dot)com

kristinemarie7 said...

I would like to be entered. Thanks!
kristinemarie7 at gmail.com

kristinemarie7 said...

I also added it to my blog.
kristinemarie7 at gmail.com

Andie Reads said...

This book looks really good.
andie.v107(at)yahoo(dot)com

pippirose said...

Sounds like a great book!
:o)
pippirose59 at gmail dot com

pippirose said...

I am a follower.
:o)
pippirose59 at gmail dot com

pippirose said...

I tweeted.
http://twitter.com/pippirose77
:o)
pippirose59 at gmail dot com

Katy said...

Great review! It makes me want to read this book! :)

Katy said...

I am a follower. :)

srfbluemama at gmail dot com

Katy said...

I tweeted this giveaway at http://twitter.com/afewmorepages

srfbluemama at gmail dot com

rubymoon said...

I also do not know a lot about this era in history so would love to read this book.

rubymoonstone at gmail dot com

rubymoon said...

New follower

+1

rubymoonstone at gmail dot com

rubymoon said...

New follower

+1 again (so 2 total entries)

rubymoonstone at gmail dot com

Jasmine said...

Please add me to the list!

enchantingdragon@gmail.com

Jasmine

Allison said...

Please enter me.


allygotts567 at hotmail dot com

Allison said...

I'm also a follower


allygotts567 at hotmail dot com

Rebecca N. said...

This sounds like a really good read! I would love to be entered to win! Thanks for the great giveaway!

imsosweepy { at } gmail { dot } com

Rebecca N. said...

+2 I follow your blog!

imsosweepy { at } gmail { dot } com

Rebecca N. said...

+2 I Tweeted!

imsosweepy { at } gmail { dot } com

http://twitter.com/Sparkleglow/status/5036606204

Sarah said...

tweet

http://twitter.com/saemmerson/status/5045697827

saemmerson at yahoo dot com

Sarah Emmerson

Sarah said...

I am a follower.

saemmerson at yahoo dot com

Sarah Emmerson

Neas Nuttiness said...

I would love a chance to win a copy - thanks so much.

libneas[at]aol[dot]com

exiledbyaccident said...

I'm a follower and I would love a copy.

laraa.corona at gmail dot com

tetewa said...

Sounds good, count me in! tWarner419@aol.com

Amanda said...

Thanks for the giveaway!

nycbookgirl at gmail dot com

Amanda said...

And I'm a follower. Thanks!

nycbookgirl at gmail dot com

Bridget said...

Hi! I also saw this on Historical-Fiction. Just posted on Win A Book. No need to enter me.

Pam said...

I was still playing with Barbie's when she became a widow! This sounds like such a great book!

melacan at hotmail dot com

Kaye said...

Thirteen? Yow, talk about rushing things. Sheesh, this sounds like a good book though. Please enter me in the drawing.

I'm a follower

florida982002[at]yahoo.com

Rachel said...

Thanks for the giveaway!

Rachelhwallen@gmail.com

Rachel said...

I'm a follower as well!

a real librarian said...

Thanks for the chance to win!!

areallibrarian{at]gmail[dot]com

MoziEsmé said...

Would love to read this!

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

MoziEsmé said...

And I'm already a follower...

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

Esme said...

Sign me up please.-chocolateandcroissants at yahoo dot com

Valerie said...

Please sign me up. Thanks.
valleauATsuddenlinkDOTnet**

Susan said...

Would love to win this! Thanks for the giveaway :)

susanaudrey316 -at- gmail -dot- com

Susan said...

And I am a new follower!

susanaudrey316 -at- gmail -dot- com

Wendy said...

Enjoyed your review! Sounds like a fabulous read!

Thanks for the entry!

Wendy
amateur_artiste AT yahoo DOT com

Wendy said...

I follower your blog and on Twitter!

Thanks!

Wendy
amateur_artiste AT yahoo DOT com

Vera said...

Please enter me - vvperesk@gmail.com

Vera said...

I'm a follower. vvperesk@gmail.com

Sandee61 said...

I just found your blog, and enjoying it very much. I'd love to be entered in your giveaway.
Thank you!

Sandee

Muzzley56[at]aol[dot]com

cantabile--xx said...

Hello!

I would love to be entered - alannakurt at gmail dot com

Thanks so much!

pixie13 said...

I'd love to win this book. Thanks for the chance!

gevin13{at}gmail{dot}com

pixie13 said...

I follow your blog

gevin13{at}gmail{dot}com

Raspberry said...

rae_sunshine4(at)yahoo.com
What a great review - thank you.

Raspberry said...

I just became a follower.
rae_sunshine4(At)yahoo.com

Raspberry said...

Put this giveaway in your SIDEBAR for 2 more entries!
Check out my left hand sidebar at twoandahalfbooklovers.blogspot.com
Thanks!
rae_sunshine4(at)yahoo.com

~The Book Pixie said...

I'd love to be entered for this.

~Briana
thebookpixie[at]yahoo[dot]com

~The Book Pixie said...

+2 I'm a follower

~Briana
thebookpixie[at]yahoo[dot]com

~The Book Pixie said...

+2 Tweeted: http://twitter.com/thebookpixie/status/5278482159

~Briana
thebookpixie[at]yahoo[dot]com

~The Book Pixie said...

+2 Sidebar: http://frombrianaspointofview.blogspot.com/

~Briana
thebookpixie[at]yahoo[dot]com

MUM said...

I'd love to be entered for this.

Marie
utah91960[at]yahoo[dot]com

MUM said...

+2 follower

Marie
utah91960[at]yahoo[dot]com

MUM said...

+2 Tweeted: http://twitter.com/utah91960/status/5281402021

Marie
utah91960[at]yahoo[dot]com

avalonne83 said...

Please enter me in the contest. Thanks.

avalonne83 [at] yahoo [dot] it

Booklogged said...

I'm getting in just under the deadline. I'd love to win this book.

booklogged at gmail dot com

Booklogged said...

I am a follower.

booklogged at gmail dot com

Post a Comment