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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

New On The Shelf At Fiction Books This Week

One new author request this week and I am looking forward to reading this book on so many fronts ….

Mary together with her son and editor, Jon, have been so thoughtful in their review request, making it a pleasure to accept and add ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’ to my review list.

I always like to engage with local to me authors and living only a few miles apart, it would seem that Mary is truly on my doorstep.

I cannot be described as an avid historical fiction fan, however I do indulge from time to time. This book will take me into rather unchartered waters, with its true mix of Mary’s meticulously researched historical facts, blended with her equally accomplished storytelling technique.

The reviews and ratings to date have been suitably impressive.


Rahere, a humble young boy in 12th century England; not a good time to be an orphan. And yet he is in the right place at the right time. Raised and inspired by kindly monks, they arrange for him to be mentored musically by the countries’ finest. He learns well, playing at the court of King William Rufus.

Incurring the Kings wrath, Rahere disappears mysteriously one night. After years, he is found. Have the torture and beatings in Rochester Castle, reduced his resolve to create great things? Can he repay the monks for their unselfish support? Will a grand tour to Rome show him the way? How can his great dream be realised?
Rahere has better friends than he ever believed possible, but there is so much to overcome…

Subtle, moving, beautifully told, and based on all the real facts available, ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’ will take you in accurate period detail, to a time in the 12th century when life was brief and harsh. To the time a humble man, a mere court jester to King Henry 1st, yet a man with great vision was formed, who was to lay the groundwork to one of the worlds greatest institutions, hundreds of years ahead of it’s time … St Bartholomew’s Hospital


Image Of Author Mary DelormeMary Delorme has been a writer for many years. Her early published work consisted mainly of music, as she herself had been a concert pianist.

Since then, she has gone on to have published over a hundred articles, largely on education, history, topography and biography; for journals such as History Today, The Teacher and  The Historian. For five years she was a regular reviewer for Primary Education Review.

Her published books include ‘Wandering Minstrels’, a novel about modern musicians; ‘Alexis’, a historical novel about the life of the great chef, Soyer; and two topographical volumes, ‘Curious Sussex’ and ‘Curious Wiltshire’.

Mary lived in Trowbridge, Wiltshire for more than twenty years and not moving too far away, has now been settled in Somerset since 1986.

Catch up with Mary and read all the latest news about St Bartholomew’s Man, Here..

Follow Mary on Twitter, Here..

‘Like’ Mary on Facebook, Here..

Picture of an English red post boxMailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house during the last week. Be warned that Mailbox Monday can lead to envy toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

Mailbox Monday now has a permanent home, where links may be added each week. So why not stop by, leave a link to your own Mailbox Monday post, oh! and don’t forget to leave a comment for our three new joint administrators, after all, we all like to receive them … ‘Mailbox Monday’

 Leslie of ‘Under My Apple Tree’

 Serena of ‘Savvy Verse & Wit’

 Vicki of ‘I’d Rather Be At The Beach’

 This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from!


I am looking forward to sharing some of your great ‘new finds’ this week

Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Cheryl,

      I did read one series of books set back in the 16th Century, the ‘Catherine’ books by French author Juliette Benzoni, but that’s about as far back as I go, so visiting the 12th Century, is going to be a whole new reading experience for me.

      Thanks for stopping by, I always appreciate your visits.

  • Hi Yvonne, I like the sound of St Bartholomew’s Man. It sounds very different from what I tend to pick.enjoy

    • Hi Diane,

      If I am totally honest with you, this book has a time setting and storyline, which is far outside anything I would have chosen for myself. However, this is one of the things I enjoy about reviewing so much … never knowing what is going to land in my inbox and coming across some great new titles and authors who might otherwise have slipped under my radar. I have read some really good ‘surprise’ books and although I may still not rush to read more from that particular genre, have enjoyed the experience immensely.

      Thank you so much for stopping by this week. It seems like ages since we last spoke, I really must schedule in some quality blog hopping time!

  • I have trouble getting into books set before the 20th century and I can’t figure out why since most of my friends love historical fiction. This book probably isn’t for me but I suspect it will have a wide audience.

    • Hi Kathy,

      I think that my take on historical fiction on the occasions that I have chosen to read it, have been influenced mostly by the traditional historical romance storylines and this will be one of very few times I have tackled a more serious historical fiction theme.

      The views seem to be quite evenly split between; Yes, I would love to read ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’ and No Thanks, this one is definitely not for me!

      Historical fiction, either serious or romantic, is not a genre that I would rave over, however I have come across some excellent authors and I suspect that Mary’s name will be another to add to that list.

      Thank you for taking the time to comment, despite this not being your book of choice.

  • St. Bartholomew’s Man sounds very good. I do like historical fiction.

    I hope you enjoy the read, Yvonne.

    I haven’t heard of this author. She seems like a very interesting and talented lady.

    THANKS for sharing.

    Silver’s Reviews
    My Mailbox Monday

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      I don’t think you get to be as many years young as Mary is, without having a whole raft of interesting stories to tell and I am sure that the vast amount of research she must have undertaken or ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’, has only added to her experiences.

      I think this is why it takes me so long to keep up with comments and responses, on my blog posts and articles, as I tend to stop and check out almost every book or fact that is mentioned!

      Thanks for another much appreciated visit, it is always good to share views and thoughts about the books we read.

  • This sounds right up my alley! In fact, I’ve just gone and added it to my Kindle. I love historical fiction.

    My only purchase this week might not be to your taste. I added “Islands – The Epidemic” by Patricia Smith to my Kindle. She is an author Tracy introduced me to and I really enjoy her work. While I’m still looking forward to her writing the third in her Distant Suns trilogy, I was thrilled when she contacted me that the first in this trilogy was available. I’m hoping to read it when I finish the Sue Grafton book.

    • Hi Kelly,

      It looks as though you and Tracy are singing from the same hymn sheet, in your praise for ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’ and I am sure that Mary will delighted that you have actually been so quick off the mark in dowloading the book! I am certain that you will probably get to read your copy long before I do, so I shall look forward to hearing what you think about it.

      I have checked out Patricia’s site and all of her books and still can’t really decide whether they are for me, or not. At first glance they don’t appear to have too much of a science fiction quality to them, or am I mis-reading the storylines? and I did enjoy the descriptive qualities of the excerpts provided on Goodreads.

      I may not click the ‘Want To Read’ button just yet, but ‘Islands …’ is firmly on my radar and once again I shall probably need to be guided by your opinion.

      Thanks for stopping by

      • While maybe not “hard core” Sci-fi, I do consider Patricia’s books as such. They read quickly, are exciting, and are totally entertaining, in my opinion. Knowing you aren’t a sci-fi fan, I hesitate to make a recommendation. Based on that, though, I think you might want to start with Islands rather than the Distant Suns books. (both are set to be a trilogy) Although I did enjoy her novella, Time Split, I preferred the other books.

        • I have so many other great books to read right now, that based on what you have said, I shall probably hold off on downloading anything by this author, just now.

          Sci-fi just isn’t my thing at all, so I am grateful for your honest response. It sounds as though you are looking forward to getting started on this new series.

  • What a great story, sounds like! I’m not much of a historical fiction reader, primarily because I’m not a fan of reading about history too much…unless ghosts or spookiness are involved! How awesome that she’s been able to have such a long and successful career.

    • Hi Stephanie,

      i don’t think there are any ghosts or spooks in this story, although it does sound as though there is the odd bit of torture.

      Mary has certainly enjoyed a long life and successful career and I can imagine her having plenty of stories to tell. I am really hoping that the blend of historical fact and fiction gel well together, in which case I suspect that I am in for a reading treat.

      It wouldn’t do for us all to like the same books and reading genres, so I am doubly grateful that you took the time to comment, I appreciate it.

    • Hi Tracy,

      I had a funny feeling that this book would be right up your street somehow!

      I certainly had no idea that ‘Barts’ is the oldest hospital in Europe and has stood on its original site since 1123.

      Despite loving both world and social history at school. I was a bit unsure about this one at first, as I thought that there might be a little too much historical fact and not enough historical fiction. However, the more I have read about this and Mary’s other couple of historical fiction books, the more I have become hooked on the whole idea!

      Mary actually lives so close to me that I could literally be with her in a matter of 15 or so minutes, so who knows … one day I might actually get to meet her. I can imagine her having plenty of stories to tell and being a mine of useful information!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by today’s post and I am pleased that it was of interest to you.

    • Hi Naida,

      It is always good to be able to support local authors, it just makes the whole experience a bit more personal somehow.

      I know that ‘St Bartholomews Man’ is probably not a book that you will be adding to your own reading list anytime soon, so I am grateful for the time you have taken in reading the post and taking the time to comment.

      Take care.

    • Hi Vicki,

      It wouldn’t do for us all to like the same thing and that applies to our books as much as anything else!

      It is still always good to check out what everyone else is reading, lest we miss out on that hidden gem of a book, so thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment.

  • I’ve been going back through your blog and looking at some of the recent recommendations you’ve posted – this one in particular really jumps out, because of the subject matter and the fact that it seems moving and rich. I love that the author was a concert pianist 🙂 Authors often have such fascinating lives.

    • Hi Hila,

      I have to say that Mary has probably had more life experiences than most of us. These days she is helped with much of her media and social networking by her son, Jon. However as a proud nonagenarian, that she is still researching and writing books, is surely something to be celebrated!

      Thank you for your continued interest in Fiction Books, I always appreciate your observations and thoughtful comments.

    • Hi Emma,

      I don’t normally care for too much fact mixed in with my fiction, but I have to confess to being more than a little intrigued and interested in the subject matter of ‘St Bartholomew’s Man’. It has already made me curious enough to spend longer than I should have on Google and Wikipedia checking out the history and facts, so a review of the finished blend of fact and fiction will be great …. I shall be stopping by a little later to check out your post and thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Written by Yvonne