Book Appreciation with Kate Heartfield

In the Book Appreciation segments of the Lesbian Historic Motif Podcast, our featured authors will talk about one or more favorite books with queer female characters in a historic setting.

Listen to Kate Heartfield talk about her favorite books here.

In this episode we talk about:

Books mentioned

Everfair by Nisi Shawl
Orlando by Virginia Woolf

Links to the Lesbian Historic Motif Project Online


Links to Kate Heartfield Online


Transcript for Today’s Show

Please note this transcript has not been edited and is automatically generated meaning certain words will be incorrect.

the lesbian historic motif podcast is brought to you by Heather Rose Jones under the tilt podcast group we look at lesbian relevant themes in history and literature and talked about current historical fiction with queer female characters including fantastic versions of the past we feature interviews with authors and readers and in months when we have a fifth show we’re proud to present new original historical fiction for your enjoyment last week we had Kate Hartfield on the show to talk about her own writing in this show she’s here to talk about books that she’s particularly enjoyed that have queer female characters in historic settings welcome back Kate hey so what books would you like to tell our listeners about couple years old now is ever fair by me see shawl which is an alternate historical book about the Belgian Congo and it’s got a sort of a steampunk aesthetic there are strange flying machines and and prosthetic devices and it also is a very hopeful look at what might have happened differently in the history of that horrible time in the 19th century with and it features a wonderful relationship between two women Daisy and Lisette who are just enchanting and throughout the whole book there they’re constantly being separated and having to deal with the patriarchy and toxicity and racism all around them but they keep coming back to each other as a sort of harbor and there the way they speak to each other is just wonderful and I really enjoyed that relationship yeah I loved that book and there’s at least one other FF relationship in the the less central characters I think that’s right yes there is yeah yeah okay what’s your second book alright my second book is is a classic and probably one that will be familiar to many listeners but I thought I’d mention it because it was so formative to me which is Orlando by Virginia Woolf haha and so it’s a very shall we say it’s an an imperfect book 20 it’s not you know there’s a lot to grapple with in the book and a lot to criticize in the book but it was definitely formative for me coming up as a writer the idea of what does it mean to be a woman in history and to be a career woman in history which is central to that book and how how does a woman live in this world and look at the past and create a new future and I think those are always the questions that I’m still grappling with as a writer today so I I can see the influence there and I feel like a lot of my books are in conversation with Orlando in some way and plus Virginia Woolf’s writing is just so beautiful on a sentence level so it is one of the books that I returned to every few years every time I do I find that oh yes there there are parts of it that don’t hold up the way they used to but it is something that will always be in my shelf for sure fabulous I invest I’ve never read it but though I did see the the wonderful adaptation for the screen which I have no idea how faithful it is to the book did an excellent job portraying that character and it is it’s a beautiful strange book and it’s so it’s so wonderful the way that Orlando’s long life and and change of gender is is not explained and is not even shown to be something that needs explaining we have a character who lives for a long time and is sometimes a woman and sometimes a man and deal with it which was great it was really eye-opening for me as a young person to to read that and to think about the possibilities that it opened oh well thank you for sharing some of your favorite books with us and I will put links to those books in the show notes thank you again for being on the show thank you I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of the lesbian historic motif podcast see the show notes for links to people and topics most shows will have a transcript linked as well if you have a book announcement a topic suggestion or might like to appear on the show please drop me an email if you enjoyed this podcast please read it and subscribe on your favorite podcast app and consider supporting our patreon