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Historical Fictions

“Possible-Probable, my black hen/She lays eggs in a negative when/ She can’t lay eggs in a positive now/ ‘Cause she’s unable to postulate how” — from The Space Child’s Mother Goose by Frederick Windsor. I don’t know why my writer mind trends pastward,  but the pages I’ve set there far exceed those set in the now. While pondering the false histories and labile pasts of the Ægypt Cycle I visited other pasts, one of them (The Translator) taken from my own.”

Four Freedoms (2009): Building bombers In a huge defense plant in World War II. The workers fall in love, renew their lives, lose spouses, work like hell – women and men, all ethnicities, differently abled – until the war ends and life takes new turns. “So rich and so evocative and so authentic” – Tom Brokaw, author of The Greatest Generation “Crowley’s extraordinary characters, and the poignant, funny, disturbing ways they find to connect with one another make you wish this war would never end.” – San Francisco Chronicle

Lord Byron’s Novel: The Evening Land (2005): A young feminist historian finds an encoded manuscript of Lord Byron’s only novel, a version of his own life. With her code-writing partner she recovers it, and the notes by Byron’s daughter Ada, who first imagined a general-purpose computer. ” Crowley is generous, obsessed, fascinating, gripping. Really I think Crowley is so good he has left everybody else in the dust.” – Peter Straub

The Translator (2002): a young woman goes to college at the time of the Cuban missile crisis, and meets an exiled Russian poet who asks her to help him translate his poems – some of which tell of gods and powers, and of the greater and lesser angels of the nations: is he one himself? “The Translator” is intense, austere, humane novel, deeply felt and thought, elegantly written. It could not be more timely.” – Ursula K. Le Guin

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