Thursday, June 1, 2017

Birthday Book of the Day: Colleen McCullough's your cicerone to ancient Rome

Today is the 81st birthday of one of Australia's most popular and successful writers:

caesar's women.jpg

McCullough, Colleen, Caesar’s Women (William Morrow, 1st ed. 1st printing, 1996). ISBN 0-688-09731-X.  Absorbing tale of the ten years of Julius Caesar’s rise to power in Republican Rome. One of a series of novels by the author of The Thorn Birds on the first emperor’s life and times. Extravagantly autographed on the title page. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition.  696 pp. HBB price: $50 obo.


Trained in medicine, Colleen Margaretta McCullough (1937-2015)  was a researcher and teacher in London and at Yale Medical School. As The Writer’s Almanac puts it, she was a practical sort:

“She spent 10 happy years there; she was good at her job, and it gave her time to pursue her hobbies. But when she discovered that her male colleagues were making twice as much money as their female counterparts, she decided that she needed a backup plan. She said, “I loved being a neurophysiologist, but I didn’t want to be a 70-year-old spinster in a cold-water, walk-up flat with one 60-watt light bulb, which is what I could see as my future.”
“Although she had never tried to publish anything, she decided to try her hand at professional writing. She began writing in the evenings after work, and she based her first novel on a situation she had encountered at Yale, working with a middle-aged woman and her husband, who was a much younger man with developmental disabilities. Her novel Tim (1974) was a modest success.
“A few years earlier, one of her colleagues at Yale, the classics professor Erich Segal, had published the wildly popular novel Love Story (1970). Before writing her second novel, McCullough interviewed Yale students about what they loved about Love Story. She distilled those elements, used an Australian setting, and wrote a long romantic novel about an illicit love affair between a beautiful young woman and a Catholic priest, following three generations on a sheep farm in the Australian outback. That novel, The Thorn Birds (1977), became an international sensation, selling more than 30 million copies. The American paperback rights sold for a record $1.9 million. She quit her job and moved back to Australia, to Norfolk Island, where she lived for the rest of her life. She wrote more than 20 books, including An Indecent Obsession (1981), Morgan’s Run (2000), and Bittersweet (2013).”
 Henry Bemis Books is one man’s attempt to bring more diversity and quality to a Charlotte-Mecklenburg market of devoted readers starved for choices. Our website is at Henry Bemis Books is also happy to entertain reasonable offers on items in inventory; for pricing on this or others items, kindly private message us. Shipping is always free to US locations; local buyers are welcome to drop by and pick up their purchases at our location off Peachtree Road in Northwest Charlotte if they like. 
We accept electronic payments via Facebook Messenger.
 We regret that while California Assembly Bill 1570 (2016) remains in force we are unable to do business with California residents. 
We offer 25% off to fellow dealers.
 What’s your favorite social media outlet? We’re blogging at www.henrybemisbookseller.blogspot. com. We tweet as Henry Bemis Books. Have you liked us on Facebook yet? Henry Bemis Books is there, too. And Google+! 
You can also see Henry’s alter ego, Lindsay Thompson, on a three weekly Facebook Live programs: Rare Book Cafe, a 2:30-3:30 pm EDT Saturday panel show about books; Book Week- Rare Book Cafe’s weekly Thursday noon news program (both on Rare Book Cafe’s Facebook page); and Gallimaufry, a Wednesday nights at 11 show about literary history on Henry Bemis Book’s Facebook page.

#IdesofMarch #CaesarsWomen #ColleenMcCullough #Autographs #FirstEditions #HenryBemisBooks #Charlotte


No comments:

Post a Comment

We enjoy hearing from visitors! Please leave your questions, thoughts, wish lists, or whatever else is on your mind.