An Evening With Elodie Harper

This morning I was in a terrible mood – I had to go into town for some errands and decided to console myself by popping into Waterstones for a comfort book I had been promising myself for quite some time now. This was how I found out about the Evening With Elodie Harper at the last possible minute (more accurately, 4 hours before it was due to start).

For full disclosure, The Wolf Den was a book that I Did Not Finish (DNF). These are books that I don’t generally blog about because I view that to be a reflection of myself and my mood/ preferences rather than the book itself.

I bought The Wolf Den while on holiday in the Lake District in February, along with The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo – After spending a very boozy night tearing through the latter book I began The Wolf Den.

The first thing that interfered was the journey home. The second thing was starting a new job. The third thing was an almighty cold, and spilling the hot toddy all over the paperback, resulting in some pretty mangled pages (whoops).

As such, I never actually finished The Wolf Den, I merely had an idea that it was a book that I was enjoying but that life got in the way. When I sat down to listen to Elodie Harper talk about her book tonight I peeked at my copy and realised that I hadn’t even made it 100 pages in yet. I felt like a bit of a fraud to be honest.

I was glad that I went – listening to her talking about her lifelong fascination with Latin texts and the Roman tales was inspiring. She described visiting Pompeii and the actual Wolf Den that the books are based on in such a way that made me want to jump on a plane myself. She talked about the cliche of books about brothels and wanting to break that mold and write a book about the women and the relationships between each other, not from the perspective of the rich men in power, which I love.

She also talked about the ‘bad guy’ in her first book ‘Felix’, and the interview with a psychologist which prompted her to develop his character further. I loved Elodie as a speaker and felt like I wanted to read more about these characters she was describing – I had met them briefly, and now felt a need to know them better. I was clearly going to be restarting The Wolf Den. I was also buying a copy of the second book The House Of The Golden Door. I was even buying a copy of a book that Elodie mentioned during questions that she had enjoyed. Did I mention that she was a rather good speaker?

So here I am, with two more books than I walked in with, and a vague idea of how the rest of the trilogy is going to pan out before I am even 100 pages into the first book, and I want to answer a couple of my own questions from this afternoon for the rest of you.

1 – Is there much point going to an author talk when you haven’t finished the book?

The answer is yes, I loved it. I really appreciate the authors attempts not to reveal too many plot twists, because I was that person in the audience who hadn’t read the book already. I loved hearing more on the themes, inspirations and experience of writing the books.

2 – Should I go to an author talk by myself?

Yes – the book shop was open, I got to browse books before the event (Yay), they gave me wine (thank you) and I met a couple of people there, including a particularly delightful woman called Chelsea who confessed to reading the last page of books before the rest of the story just for funsies. I liked her despite being a self-confessed lunatic, and she had excellent taste in books – should you read this, we are going for drinks to further discuss Elsie.

In summary, Elodie Harper is a marvelous speaker with a lot to say on topics that I find absolutely fascinating, particularly the representation of common people and slaves/ women/ uneducated peoples in Ancient Rome. I loved her talk about Pompeii, I loved her plans for further books (very excited for Fulvia) and am looking forward to finally giving The Wolf Den the time and attention that I am certain it deserves having heard the story from the author herself.

If you need me, I am reading my new (and old) books.

P.S. does anyone know how to unstick wet pages?

Published by BeckyBookBlog

My name is Becky and I run a blog about Books

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