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Monday, May 24, 2010

Meeting Laurie R. King

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to see author Laurie R. King at a nearby library.  I'm a huge fan of Laurie's Mary Russell & Sherlock Holmes books and this was a real treat for me, especially since I missed her when she came to town last year.

She is touring to promote the latest book in the Mary Russell series, THE GOD OF THE HIVE so the first part of her talk included a few short readings from the book. She then moved on to audience questions, and here's where things got really interesting for me.

Being a history buff myself, one of the things I most appreciate about the Mary Russell books is the wealth of historical information I gain from them.  But one thing I didn't realize was that the relationship Laurie created between Russell and Holmes was truly based on historical circumstances.  What I mean is that, due to World War I, there was an enormous shortage of young, eligible men (I knew this already) and a corresponding abundance on young, eligible women (which I also knew).  Many women of this time period did not marry, and many others became single mothers.  What I didn't realize (duh!) is that many young women married men who were much older than would normally have been acceptable.  So Russell and Holmes as a couple would not have been that unusual in this time.  I don't know why that didn't occur to me before, but it didn't, and it hit me like a ton of bricks when Laurie explained it.


She went on to tell the following story, which had the audience laughing out loud ...

When she was on tour for one of the early Mary Russell books, a man approached her signing table and said "I want to talk to you about this relationship between Russell and Holmes. It doesn't seem right. He's too old for her!" Laurie responded by saying that she herself was married to a man 30 years her senior and that she was well aware of what a man of that age was capable of.  The man turned beet red and walked off as quickly as possible.  Poor Laurie didn't realize what she'd said - she only meant to imply that her husband was quite capable of taking out the trash and helping around the house!


After Laurie's talk I got in line to meet her.  I'd been in touch with her publicist via email so Laurie knew I'd be there to say hello.  I was so excited to get the chance to talk to her!  I had her sign my copy of the first Mary Russell book, THE BEEKEEPER'S APPRENTICE.  This is the only book in the series that I currently own - I use it to lure unsuspecting friends into the series, then tell them they are on their own for the rest of the books. :)

I had a great time meeting Laurie and chatting with other fans that evening.  Now I've just got to make time to read THE GOD OF THE HIVE ...

6 comments:

Shelley said...

This was great for me to read because I was one who had an issue with the age difference. Well, not so much the difference, but the fact that she was just a young teenager when they met. Other than that I loved the books I've read--just the first two.

Aarti said...

I just bought the first two books in this series and am so excited to read them!

Kay said...

Heather, thanks for sharing your experience with Laurie King. I've read THE BEEKEEPER'S APPRENTICE maybe 3 or 4 times. I've not ever gone on with the series, but I keep meaning to. Nudge to me!!

Chris said...

I love the picture of you two!! And she sounds so fantastic :D I've been wanting to read her series for so long! Can't wait to finally dig into it!

Dreamybee said...

Yay! I'm so glad you got to meet her-I know what a fan you are!

Dawn @ sheIsTooFondOfBooks said...

What a fun author event, especially since she knew you were coming to the reading.

LOL about what she unintentionally said about her husband's "abilities" :)

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