Until we move on April 23, we are going to highlight one item from our extensive collection de stuff each day on the blog. One lucky commenter will win the highlighted thing. The more times you comment in one day, the greater your chances to win said thing, should it be worth winning. I don’t mind shipping said thing to you, wherever you are. So, is this thing Trash? Or Treasure? You decide………
I met British author Philippa Gregory in the autumn of 2009. She was on a book tour of the United States, and she made a pit stop in Highlands, North Carolina to recover from the trauma of the trip. The Other Boleyn Girl had just been released on film, and she was suitably harried. And haggard. And appalled at the movie version. But wise enough as a businesswoman to largely keep her mouth shut about it.
I paid a stupid amount of money to view the movie in a civic hall in Highlands, with a lecture by Ms. Gregory beforehand that can be distilled into the following: “The film is NOT the book.” I even paid the up charge to attend another luncheon with an expanded lecture by the author the following day. On the menu: “The film is NOT the book.”
In the process of this whole ‘saving of the book’s reputation/correcting of very altered history’ extravaganza, I actually met Ms. Gregory. She was signing copies of her then new book The Other Queen, a tome I was interested in reading because of its portrayal of Bess of Hardwick, a woman I would line up to meet should she ever be exhumed and revived. (American readers, follow the link on her name. English readers all know Bess, I’m sure.)
It quickly became clear that Ms. Gregory had been duped in Highlands. What she thought was to be a meet-and-hand-slap with a few dozen die hard fans morphed into mixing-and-mingling with several hundred women. By the time I got to her at the autograph table, she was exhausted and showing it. The person in front of me went on and on and on and on and on about herself, her daughter, her friends, her life and her extended interests in the process of getting her books autographed. Then, it was down to me.
“Just your autograph, please. And, thank you for doing this on your vacation.”
She smiled a weary smile and said, “Thank you,” before scrawling her name and moving to the next gushing fan.
One lucky commenter (today only) will win the autographed first American hardcover edition of the book The Other Queen. From my collection. Dust jacket intact and bookmark thrown in. Tell me why you want the book in your comment. Multiple comments by the same person constitute multiple entries, as I will draw from a hat.