Livingston's new book is The Shards of Heaven, the first in a trilogy of historical fantasy novels.
Recently I asked the author about what he was reading. Livingston's reply:
I'm a professor specializing in the cultural history of the Middle Ages while writing a historical fantasy series set during the rise of the Roman Empire … so my reading list at any given moment is, well, diverse.Visit Michael Livingston's website.
On the Roman front, I've been reading Philo of Alexandria's De vita contemplativa, the study of a sect of ascetic Jews living near Alexandria. The work has been very useful for one of the major plot elements of the sequel to The Shards of Heaven, but I can't say I'd recommend it for pure pleasure reading.
On the other hand, if pure reading pleasure is your thing, I did just finish one fun novel (John Scalzi's Redshirts) and am preparing to jump into another: Aliette de Bodard's The House of Shattered Wings. I've known Aliette's work for a very long time, and I've long been a fan. I'm incredibly anxious to get into this new novel of hers. It looks absolutely terrific.
And then there's Livingston-the-medievalist. That part of me is engaged in a reading of Simon Armitage's Death of King Arthur, a translation of one of my favorite poems of the Middle Ages: the wonderful Middle English Alliterative Morte Darthur. I'm finding that I'm pleasantly surprised at Armitage's ability to modernize a work that was, even at the time of its composition, deliberately archaic.
My Book, The Movie: The Shards of Heaven.
The Page 69 Test: The Shards of Heaven.