Reading has always been one of my favorite pastimes, and while I somewhat gave it up my first two years of college–who wants to read for fun when they’ve spent hours reading textbooks?–, I have restarted with a vengeance this summer/semester. I’m very picky when it comes to what I read, and I rarely venture out of the historical fiction genre. What can I say, I know what I like.
In the past three months, I have discovered two relatively new authors of this genre who are responsible for my newfound desire to read, read, read: Jo Graham and Michelle Moran. Their characterization and wording is breathtaking–you really do get drawn into the novel. It would be impossible for me to pick a favorite novel of the five written between these two, but the latest I read was ‘Cleopatra’s Daughter’ by Michelle Moran. I felt as though I truly connected with the narrator, felt what she felt, and saw what she saw. I was saddened by the loss of her kingdom, horrified by the humiliation she underwent during her first weeks with the Romans, disgusted by some Roman practices, and so upset over a tragic twist of fate at the end of the novel that my eyes filled with tears. I was in a haze of melancholy for the rest of the night, but I was also internally thrilled that I had finally found a book and an author who could so captivate my emotions. There’s really no rush like a good book, and it had been far too long since I felt that euphoria.
She may be new, she may be young(ish), but Michelle Moran sure knows how to write. My only regret is that her books are so engrossing, I finish them in just two or three days, and the thrill ends much too soon.