Share our Passion

Posted in: Women’s History Month

Women’s History Month: Catherine The Great

In celebration of Women’s History Month, we’ve asked our authors to write about the strong women their books focus on. This week, Eva Stachniak, author of Empress of the Night, a book about Catherine the Great of Russia, gives us a peek at the Queen’s story.   Creating fiction around a historical figure, especially a powerful woman monarch, is a vivid reminder that such women were blazing new trails, not just in politics. They were pushing the boundaries of our understanding of gender roles and the mysteries of the human heart.   As I prepared to write Empress of the Night I often reflected on Catherine’s love affairs. In spite of what had frequently been said about her, Catherine the [...]

Women’s History Month: Mozart’s Muse

This piece, in a series of posts highlighting women in history, comes from Vivien Shotwell, author of Vienna Nocturne, a fictionalized account of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and soprano Anna Storace, his muse. In reading about Mozart, and studying his letters, and listening to his operas, it’s hard not to come away with an impression of his great respect and love for women. Although he lived in a time when women had little freedom, and were often poorly educated, he had a warm relationship with his mother and with his brilliant older sister, Nannerl. Nannerl in her own right was an extraordinarily gifted pianist, but she was not allowed, by her father or by society– so at least is my impression — [...]

Women’s History Month: Amazons–An Endangered Species?

For over two thousand years, the faces of the Amazons have been veiled in mystery. Who exactly were these foreign warrior women that pop up again and again in ancient literature? One of the main problems with the Amazon legend is that it is made up of numerous conflicting stories about women … all told by men. Let’s not fool ourselves into thinking the Greek male of yore looked up to these formidable femmes the way our men of today get all steamed up about female superheroes in squeaky-tight outfits. No, without a doubt the tales of Amazons searing off breasts and killing their male offspring had the same function then as scary bedside monster-stories have today. They were, in [...]