OK. I've decided to leave the meeting date unchanged at Thursday, 23 April.
My proposed venue is the Barbican Centre. I was there this evening after work and I think it's very suitable. There are lots of places to sit and chat and it's easy to get to.
A few days before the meeting, I'll send an email explaining where exactly I propose we meet, but I think we should make it at 6.30pm so that we find a nice spot before it gets too busy. Hope that suits everyone.
I'm sure many if not most of you know how to get there but the Barbican Centre is an easy walk from Moorgate or Barbican tubes and other nearby stations, with good signposting.
I'm going to suggest we meet on Level 1 by the lifts. This floor is relatively quiet and you can't miss the lift area. There are some nice pairs of banquettes near there that would be suitable if we can nab one. And if the weather's pleasant (wishful thinking), there are some great bench areas right on the water, or we can try the cafe.
When I send out that email, please take note of my mobile number so that you can call if you have any trouble finding us on the evening.
PS. All being well, I will be abroad from 6th to 16th April so I won't see any emails.
Welcome all avid fans of historical fiction! We meet every 6-7 weeks on a Monday evening in central London to discuss a historical novel that we have selected beforehand.
We aim to have the book for each meetup selected at least two months ahead so that everyone has plenty of time to get hold of it and read it. All members get the chance to help select the book from a shortlist of five.
Our current venue is The Heights bar at the Saint Georges Hotel in central London.
Just to clarify: the "London" in the group name relates to where the group is based. It doesn't relate specifically to London history. We are reading historical fiction set all over the world!
We ask for a voluntary contribution of 50p to £1 if you attend a meetup - just to go towards the cost of hosting the group on Meetup.com, which is actually quite pricey.
We also occasionally have social-only meetups, including our Christmas meals. And we're open to other suggestions for activities/events.
We also list on our calendar other historical fiction-related events that take place locally may be of interest to our members - although these are generally not officially associated with our book group. Chief among these are the monthly meetings of the London chapter of the Historical Novel Society. These are not book group meetings in the traditional sense, but more theme-based discussions and a general social to mix with other historical fiction fans, both readers and writers.
NOTE TO AUTHORS, PUBLISHERS, AGENTS, FRIENDS OF AUTHORS AND SUCH LIKE: We do not take kindly to being spammed with promotional messages about new novels that we "absolutely" have to read or discuss. We are all perfectly capable of finding out about new releases by ourselves. If you have joined this Meetup group purely for the purpose of pushing your own or someone else's book, please remove yourself or you will be removed by the organizer.
This does not preclude genuine members from sending a message to the organizer if they hear about interesting events that they feel other members would be interested in or books that they would recommend be considered for selection for future meetups.
Our next book discussion meetup will be on 30 November 2015. We will be discussing "The White Castle" by Orhan Pamuk.
Our previous group reads were:
"Lust for Life" by Irving Stone
"The Maid" by Kimberly Cutter
"Some Luck" by Jane Smiley
"Gideon's Angel" by Clifford Beal
"The Lie" by Helen Dunmore
"The Devil in the Marshalsea" by Antonia Hodgson
"A Name in Blood" by Matt Rees
"The Summer Queen" by Elizabeth Chadwick
"After Flodden" by Rosemary Goring
"Augustus" by John Williams
"Burial Rites" by Hannah Kent
"Shadow on the Crown" by Patricia Bracewell
"City of Women" by David Gillham
"The Last Caesar" by Henry Venmore-Rowland
"The Garden of Evening Mists" by Tan Twan Eng
"Death and the Devil" by Frank Schaetzing
"The English Monster" by Lloyd Shepherd
"Jezebel" by Eleanor de Jong
"The Winter Palace" by Eva Stachniak
"The Bone Thief" by V. M. Whitworth
"The King's Diamond" by Will Whitaker
"Theodora" by Stella Duffy
"A Bloody Field by Shrewsbury" by Edith Pargeter
"The Song of Achilles" by Madeline Miller
"The Ground is Burning" by Samuel Black
"Half of the Human Race" by Anthony Quinn
"Pure" by Andrew Miller
"The Paris Wife" by Paula McLain
"A Moveable Feast" by Ernest Hemingway
"Memoirs of Hadrian" by Marguerite Yourcenar
"The Golden Mean" by Annabel Lyon
"Silent in the Grave" by Deanna Raybourn
"Helena" by Evelyn Waugh
"The Leopard" by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa
"The Confessions of Catherine de Medici" by CW Gortner
"The Siege" by Helen Dunmore
"As Meat Loves Salt" by Maria McCann
"Spartacus" by Lewis Grassic Gibbon
"The Heretic's Daughter" by Kathleen Kent
"Azincourt" by Bernard Cornwell
"The Fraud" by Barbara Ewing
"Wolf Hall" by Hilary Mantel
"The Great Stink" by Clare Clark
"The Founding" by Cynthia Harrod-Eagles
"Affinity" by Sarah Waters
"Empress Orchid" by Anchee Min
"The Last Queen" by CW Gortner
"The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher: or the Murder at Road Hill House" by Kate Summerscale
"The Floating Book" by Michelle Lovric
"I, Claudius" by Robert Graves
"The Last English King" by Julian Rathbone
"The Lost Diary of Don Juan" by Douglas Carlton Abrams.
New members are welcome at any time. There is no commitment to come more often than you wish, though we have many regulars. All we ask is that you keep your attendance status up to date. If you say you're coming to a meetup but then find you can't, please change your status to No as soon as you know. (You can always change it back again!)
Feel free to simply join up here and you'll get all the updates. If you have any particular questions, please just drop the organizer, Justin, a message.