I recently learned that This Old World is a finalist for the M. M. Bennetts Award for Historical Fiction. This award was established to honor the longtime book critic for the Christian Science Monitor, who went on to write two highly regarded historical novels, May 1812 and Of Honest Fame. More about M. M. Bennetts here.

Needless to say, I am thrilled at this honor. As I looked over the list of other finalists (there are 12, counting myself), I was struck by the diversity of the nominees. There are novels from several different countries and novels about eras all the way from ancient to modern. And that’s when I decided to give myself a challenge.

I am going to try to read and review all the other finalists’ novels, and to interview each finalist. I’d like to have them all read and reviewed by the date of the announcement of the winner (June 27), but admittedly that might be an over-ambitious deadline. But I’ll read as many as I can by then and finish up the rest later.

I have contacted the other finalists and so far have heard back from ten of them. And I’ve already finished one book! Check out my blog soon for the review and interview.

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