Friday, October 1, 2010

J. Anderson Coats - The Wicked and the Just

J. Anderson Coats has dug for crystals, held Lewis and Clark’s original hand-written journal and been a mile underground. She has a cool surgery scar unrelated to childbirth, she reads Latin, and she's been given the curse of Cromwell on a back-road in Connemara.

J writes historical fiction set in the middle ages that routinely includes too much violence, name-calling and petty vandalism perpetrated by badly-behaved young people. Her work is represented by Ammi-Joan Paquette of the Erin Murphy Literary Agency.

J studied history at Bryn Mawr College, where she graduated magna cum laude with departmental honors. She also holds a master’s degree in library and information science from Drexel University and a master’s degree in history from the University of Washington. She loves the smell of old books, and she’d set up camp in the archives if they didn’t keep locking the door at night.

Currently, J lives in the Pacific northwest in a hundred-year-old house with her husband, teenage son, and a cat with thumbs.

DEBUT: THE WICKED AND THE JUST (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 17 April 2012)

1293. North Wales. Ten years into English rule.

Cecily would give anything to leave Caernarvon. Gwenhwyfar would give anything to see all the English leave.

Neither one is going to get her wish.

Behind the city walls, English burgesses govern with impunity. Outside the walls, the Welsh are confined by custom and bear the burden of taxation, and the burgesses plan to keep it that way.

Cecily can’t be bothered with boring things like the steep new tax or the military draft that requires Welshmen to serve in the king’s army overseas. She has her hands full trying to fit in with the town’s privileged elite, and they don’t want company.

Gwenhwyfar can’t avoid these things. It’s all she can do to get through one more day.

But the Welsh are not as conquered as they seem, and the suffering in the countryside is rapidly turning to discontent. The murmurs of revolt may be Gwenhwyfar’s only hope for survival – and the last thing Cecily ever hears.

FIVE CANDIES FOR THE APOCALYPSE: jelly beans, Swedish Fish, Smarties, Hot Tamales, jawbreakers

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