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Sue recommended a book by H. Turtletaub, Justinian, because he has his Ph.D. in byzantine history (I guess that should be capitalized, but Byzantine history is byzantine anyway). After I read her e-mail I realized that I have sitting on my table where books waiting to be read reside a book by the same author--Ruled Britannia by Harry Turtledove. He writes alternate history under both names.

Following up on her recommendation, I started the book last night: The year is 1597. For nine years the island of Britain has suffered under the heel of King Philip II of Spain. Queen Elizabeth is imprisoned in the Tower of London and William Shakespeare, playwright, exercises great caution in the face of public burnings by the Inquisition.

And to think this book sat on my table gathering dust. It's excellent and I can hardly wait to go home to continue reading it. He's a topnotch writer. I ordered two of his Turtletaub books--Justinian and Over the Wine-Dark Sea yesterday. They should arrive just about the time I finish this one, unless I stay up all night reading--not an unlikely possibility.

You know, of course, I'm now going to read everything the man ever wrote, except his Ph.D. dissertation. His dissertation was titled, The Immediate Successors of Justinian: A Study of the Persian Problem and of Continuity and Change in Internal Secular Affairs in the Later Roman Empire During the Reigns of Justin II and Tiberius II Constantine (AD 565–582).

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