The Writer Behind The Chronicles of History: Answering Book Questions!

The Chronicles Of History is still a fairly small blog that has been growing quite nicely despite my sporadic posting schedule. I am extremely thankful for everyone’s support in my writing, short-stories, poetry, and literary reviews. It has been so wonderful. I love the history and book community.

In today’s post I am going to take everyone a little behind the scenes and let readers get to know me a bit better by answering some book challenge questions about my favorite things. This will be the first of many getting to know Samantha blog pieces I plan to write. Leave your answers to the same questions in the comments below. We should all have some fun getting to know one another. I can’t wait to read your replies to some of the questions!

To begin, my name is Samantha James. I was born and raised in California my whole life. It is a beautiful state in my opinion. My family is rather large and fairly close.  My two favorite people on earth are my nephews, D & C. I have two dogs, Emily and Millie, and one cat named Max, Animals are very awesome. I work full time in alarm dispatch for police, medic, and fire while also attending school to get a masters degree in History. This blog is where I write for the fun of it and as a hobby. My first book is well under way and in the works titled Women of War. It will be published very soon hopefully!


Les Miserable written by Victor Hugo because it is the first one that comes to mind when seeing the question. I know there are plenty of good books to movie adaptions but have always loved the 2012 rendition starring Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, and Anne Hathaway. I love the story and book itself. It is a favorite; however, I especially loved seeing this book turned into a movie musical. How could you not love Hugh Jackman singing? Thoroughly enjoyed both the books and movie, Hugo is an excellent writer!


Spare by Prince Harry immediately comes to mind. I’ve always been a bit of a royal watcher and truly do enjoy history involving the royals. Prince Harry’s book was so unexpectedly good. I wrote a review (click here to read) on it at the beginning of the year. It was an emotional, impactful, and thoughtful memoir that truly provides insight into how difficult it can be to grow up with the world watching your every move. A book well worth picking up! The audible book is also narrated by Prince Harry, and to say that he is the best narrator of all times is an under-statement. Just wow!


My favorite movie is definitely Gone With The Wind. I set aside time every year to watch it at least once or twice. I first discovered it about seven years ago and just fell in love. It is hard to put into words the reason behind such feelings. I just get so caught up with the hardship, realness, history, and romance it offers. The book and movie are both so epic; however, the movie has Vivian Leigh and Clark Gable. The acting is beyond incredible!


My favorite song is easily Even If It Breaks Your Heart by Eli Young Band. I simply adore the lyrics and melody. It is such a moving and uplifting song that just sticks with you. Eli Young Band members are talented musicians. Each is an amazing artist. The band is my favorite when it comes to soul music. It goes without saying that I am a huge country music fan and that is my favorite genre. The song is just good. I highly recommend a listen!


America Singer from The Selection series by Kiera Cass is the character that is standing out in my mind at this moment. She is strong, realistic, and definitely a hero. She is a young girl who despite her intentions of flying under the radar is thrusted into a situation not of her choosing. American manages to single handily takes down an governmental system full of injustice and takes a stand against a corrupt king. With simple acts of bravery. she lights the world on fire while fighting for the love of a prince on national TV. America does what is right according to her moral compass and all else can be damned. Why I love her! Its one of my favorite book series.


That is easily The Tudors by Showtime. I am a history fanatic and obsessed with Henry VIII and the Tudor era. I realize that the show is not factual based in a lot of ways and highly dramatized; however, that is why I love the show. It is four seasons long and just epic. My favorite character is Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. The role is played by none other than Henry Cavill. That is right. Let me say here and now for the record, I loved Cavill long before he ever was Superman. I am an original fan and will forever remain so. Been in love for years. It is a great show worth checking out!

Click Here To Get The DVD

Thank you so much for taking the time read. Please send me the answers to these questions so I can get to know you! Leave a reply in the comments below. I’ll be looking forward to seeing some of your favorites! I do have a couple more reviews coming up of my more recent reads and tv viewing; also, awhile back, I mentioned that I was working on a Lewis & Clark mini-series post but unfortunately never got around to getting it posted at the start of the year. Hopefully I can can that published in the week ahead!


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Share in a love of history, writing, books, or just reading! Everybody can join who love history. The rules are pretty relaxed. The main ones are to be civil towards each other and keep modern politics out of the discussion.



  • Gone With The Wind’s my favourite film too. People tend to give you filthy looks these days when you say that, but I love it. It’s my favourite book too – so well-written.

    • Yeah, I know, and I am under the belief that you can still love Scarlett’s story and acknowledge at the same time that the depiction of slavery isn’t accurate but honestly at the end of the day, I think that was the point. This was suppose to be a story about southern views and wasn’t suppose to be nice. Scarlett wasn’t nice. She literally uses abused prisoners for slave labor while barely feeding them and allowing her foreman to beat the prisoners so they produced more lumber. It is a good depiction on the faulty beliefs of the south at the time of the American Civil War and their ultimate downfall. There is a lot of problematic issues that come with that. Still excellent literature and depiction though!

      • Agreed! It’s told from the viewpoint of wealthy Southerners. It’s not meant to be objective!

      • Exactly and I can’t speak to the intent of Margaret Mitchell, but to me Scarlett represents the South. Her naivety and immaturity mirror the historical events around her. Similarly, her attitudes reflect those of her society. So I think there is a certain irony to her behavior and that of her family, including the racism.

      • Hi, I know you love the movie. Have you read the book? There’s so much to it that the movie leaves out although the movie is the gist of the main story. ~Nan

      • I have read the book about three times so far. I really enjoy it. When I first read it, I was kind of shocked at the things the movie left out such as the fact she has two other kids! and lots of details. The book is very good too!

      • I’m sorry to butt in into this discussion like that, but I also agree with both of your views. The film was supposed to present the views of the South and it was also said to be “the place of imagination”. It was 1939, Hollywood stereotypes were a way of life.

        I also believe that the revisionist approach to Gone with the Wind is quite bad for another reason. Even when Mitchell penned her book, the views, especially in her “white” circle, were different and not as drastic about it as it is now. She also simply put there what her upbringing, education and other books at that time told her. She could not possibly suddenly become a 21st century woman with Internet at her disposal and what not or an underprivileged black person campaigning for rights when she wrote Gone with the Wind. We should not forget that and it is very easy to judge in retrospect. I mean, there were even segregation requirement when Hattie McDaniel got her Oscar for Gone with the Wind. It is easy for us now to think that people could have done one thing, should have said another thing, but the times were different as well. Heck, Mitchell faces her own prejudice and discrimination in the literary world simply because she was a woman writer at that time, being ignored and mistaken for someone else even during the premiere of the film. Gone with the Wind is still a great book and a great film.

  • Love to follow your posts, always honest critique and voiced with enthusiasm. Thanks for posting when you can.

  • graycliffsgirl

    Margaret Mitchell fan. I grew up watching Gone with the Wind every year as TV miniseries. It was my favorite for the majority of my life. I do prefer the book but the cinematography and epic actors make the film one of my top 10s. (My current long-time fave is Pride and Prejudice, BBC production). Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Butterfly McQueen and my favorite, Hattie McDaniel.

    • All my favorites too without a doubt. Hattie Mcdaniel won academy awards of for her depiction of mammy too. Opened the door for black actresses in hollywood to be spotlighted and given the accolades they deserved for their talented acting!

  • Samantha, it’s great to learn a little more about you 🙂 We share a lot in common when it comes to favorite movie/TV Series and books. I’m not familiar with your favorite song. My favorite is “Singing in the Rain” by Gene Kelly. I look forward to reading your book Women of War 🙂

  • Q1: Favorite book made into movie? Well, Pride and Prejudice has to be up there. Or, flipping the question, the most recent book on my shelves that got made into a good movie was The Shining.

    Q2: Favorite book published this year: I haven’t yet bought a book published in 2023. Sigh. The next book I mean to buy is Flaubert’s Salammbo (1862), because I’ve just been teaching a course on the Punic Wars. That said, the late David Graeber’s latest book, on the “pirate enlightenment,” sounds interesting.

    Q3: Favorite movie: hopeless question for me. Not GWTW, though it was my mother’s favorite. The movie I’d seen before that I still enjoyed seeing again recently was the 1967 Bonnie and Clyde, a film that has held up very well, and is quite stylish, to boot. (Historical accuracy? Nah, just look how Bonnie’s injury is completely missing.)

    Q4: Favorite song: “Driver’s Seat” by Sniff ‘n’ the Tears is my favorite underappreciated rock song, but I have a place in my heart for the unhelpfully titled “Mother,” a lengthy ballad about the origins of the Shakers: “In Manchester in England/This blessed fire began . . .”

    Q5: Favorite book hero: Lizzie Bennet from Pride and Prejudice is an obvious choice. Though I liked Myfanwy Thomas (both versions) out of The Rook by Daniel O’Malley well enough to watch the TV series it was based upon (which was not as good, sigh).

    Q6: Favorite TV show: I used to be a big Star Trek fan, but haven’t had a working antenna or cable since 1996, and so haven’t kept up with all the more recent series. The Avengers from the Emma Peel era is good fun, same for the original The Addams Family. As for history, HBO’s 2005-07 Rome was great in historical details even though its treatment of history earned it the nickname “Desperate Roman Housewives,” and I’ve seen the first season of “The Great,” another bit of good fun, but let’s skip historical accuracy on that one, shall we?

  • I love this! What a delight to get to know you a little more. I always love your posts and the things I am learning from them. Sending you a wave and a hug from Tennessee 🙂

  • Not even close to my tastes 😂

    But that’s exactly what makes you special.

    I love the song you put there. I would have never come across it if not for you. Thank you!

    Tough question. I love both the book and the movie versions of To Kill A Mockingbird, and it it is, imo, one of the finest stories/movies ever made. But I am a sci-fi fanatic at heart and Ender’s game and Do Android’s Dream of Electric Sheep? Blade runner wins by a slim margin for lines that are not even in the book. “I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe… Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion… I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain… Time to die.” Incredibly powerful.

    I haven’t picked up a new book this year. My kids have had a list of books to read, and i am way behind. I’ll have to pick one published from 2021… Wow, I am way behind… Cytonic in the Brandon Sanderson Skyward series.

    How does one pick an all-time? My favs ebb and flow with my mood. Rogue One for its hopeless desperation, and ultimately, hope given to a galaxy in chains. Blackhawk Down for courage in the darkest moments, and the ultimate sacrifice by men who lived larger than life. Cosmos, for opening my eyes.

    Again, my moods dictate what I listen to. And my music tastes run the gamut. I always come back to Fear by Blue October, for its message of hope in darkness.

    Gregor Eisenhorn form the trilogy bearing his name by Dan Abnett. A man struggling to combat the darkness, and embracing that same darkness in a quest to protect those he loves.

    Band of Brothers. A miniseries, I know, but it was perfection of the war movie.

    Your blog is always fun and interesting. So many facts and ideas to linger on. Keep it up!

    To Kill a Mocking Bird is my favorite book and the movie is in my top ten favorites. The main take away for me is that the reasons people do things are not always apparent.

    I’ve yet to read a book published this year.

    Tough question. I have trouble limiting it to ten. I’ll pick Glory today. Great story with excellent cast.

    Night Rider’s Lament written by Michael Burton and Jerry Jeff Walker.

    Frodo Baggins. An ordinary soul who accepts his fate and goes above and beyond to do what is needed to save others

    TV shows are difficult. Sometimes the first few seasons are very good and then they start to loose their charm. For this I’ll say the first few seasons of The Gilmore Girls. Witty fast paced dialogue and quirky characters.

  • Love that you made this! It’s always fun to learn more about the person behind the blog.

  • I love to think of my favourite things. Good to read yours as it makes me think again. Perhaps my favourite book/film adaptation is The French Lietenant’s Woman, John Fowles, film starring Jeremy Irons. But I will probably come up with another one in a few hours.

  • Interesting choice ‘here & there’ ^^ Good weekend & June 🙂

  • It has been awhile since I visited but lovely to do so. I have been wandering about in Iraq for the past month. I figure as a fellow enthusiast of history you might like a vicarious tour. 🙂

  • Hi, Samantha. It’s good to blog-meet you. I enjoyed reading your answers here. It’s a fun post. I’m terrible about not having favorites… and when I do, they change without warning. Plus I’m never current with movies or TV.
    Good luck with your book. That’s a great topic. Hugs!

    • It’s wonderful to meet you Teagan. I read a review of your book today and it really peaked my interest! Beautiful cover, love the era, and setting in bayou. It sounds like quite a read! I can’t wait to pick it up!

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