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Maurice Druon, RIP

French novelist, historian, and World War II resistance fighter Maurice Druon has died at 90. He lived a pretty extraordinary life. You can read his obit here:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/16/world/europe/16druon.html

I never had the honor of meeting M. Druon, and I have not even read all of his work (yet). But I am a huge fan of his best known novels, the wonderful "Accursed Kings" series of historical novels. I have often said that my own SONG OF ICE AND FIRE was inspired as much by historical fiction as by fantasy, and Druon's series was one of my major inspirations (along with the work of other favorites like Thomas B. Costain, Mika Waltari, Bernard Cornwell, and many more). The ACCURSED KINGS is great stuff. Philip the Fair, the Curse of the Templars, the end of the Capetians and the roots of the Hundred Years War... I don't read French, but even in translation these are great reads. (Although I don't believe the last volume has ever been published in English, which some publisher should rectify).

Every writer hopes that he will still be read after his death. Here's your chance to make M. Druon's dream come true, and do yourself a favor at the same time. Go off to ebay or ABE books and find yourself a copy of THE IRON KING, the first volume of the series. You won't regret it.

Comments

anthony_debot
Apr. 17th, 2009 08:25 am (UTC)
Maudits ! Maudits jusqu'à la treizième génération de vos races !
Long time reader, first time poster.

M Martin, I can't begin to tell you how moved I was by your post. As a French reader and fan of yours, I've always wondered if you knew of this masterpiece that is "The Accursed Kings".
When I encourage people around me to read ASoIoF (which happens quite often !), I always tell them : it's like "The Accursed Kings" with a measure of fantasy thrown in. It usually works !

I urge all your readers to read these books and to watch the TV series that was made in the early 70's (not too sure if they are available in NTSC format though).

Once again, thank you for your post. It made may day !

Anthony

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