The Making of Victorian Sexuality.
You might have noticed I do a lot of reading in Victorian & earlier primary sources. And one thing I keep running into is this difference between our perceptions of that era and what was actually happening. Like, at least in Tasmania, family sizes for most of that period are actually quite small. Less than a handful of kids, and often, as with the Shearn family I was talking about on FB today, one child. Ah, you say, that's because of the high infant mortality. To which I say, that's a fair comment but I first actually realised this when I was checking burials. If family sizes were small due to so many babies dying, they must have been burying them in the background because they don't appear in the death registers or burials. After a while of this, you have to consider that, maybe family sizes were small because the birth rate was also low? And if so, how/why? Also, much of what we are told about Victorian times concerns the middle & upper classes, and if you've read things I've written, whether blog posts or fiction, you might have noticed that's not the part of society I tend to deal with. So, this book apparently takes a look at these preconceptions and what was actually going on. I hope it might answer some questions/confirm some observations. And who doesn't like having their observations confirmed?
The Social History of Tea.
This is a hardback with lots of coloured pictures, about tea. Also, I need a book about the history of tea drinking so I don't have to look up such things on Regency web sites. This rarely ends well. (High tea was not so called because it was taken at the "higher" (full-size table). Seriously. If you ever get told this, run away.)
Sex/Machine: Readings in culture, gender and technology.
Back in th 1980s, Omni published an article on male pregnancy. Everything that has been written on the topic since refers back to this article, or the studies mentioned in it. This book claimed to have an essay on the topic, but, la, it's the Omni article. Still, there are some other interesting topics in there.
I got a couple of books on bouncers for reference for novel(la) I am editing.
The Fire in the Fiction.
I borrowed a book by Maass and one of the chapters was very useful. It made me see a way to strengthen what I was writing. So, I thought it might be handy to keep a copy about to read, and this book apparently dealt with the same topic. If it does, I have yet to find it. So far it's just the usual sort of general/shallow writing advice stuff.
Death Comes To The Village
See, I do read fiction, but most of it comes from the library so not an acquistion. This one, well I wanted to read some Historical Romantic Suspense. Romantic Suspense is when you combine a romance story with mystery/crime story. I read a couple. One that was late Victorian and this one was supposedly Regency. I did manage to read the first chapter. I did. Fortunately, as you can tell from the cover, it was cheap.
I have come to the conclusion that Victorian/Regency novels, like FBI TV shows, exist in their own universe. They have their own set of internal rules, expectations, vocabularly that doesn't necessarily bear any resemblance to the real world. This is what their readers expect but hmmm... I refer you to my comments under The Making of Victorian Sexuality.