June 4, 2019
Do you love making lists?
Top Ten Tuesday:
10 Favorite Historical Fiction Reads
I’m linking up today with That Artsy Reader Girl for Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Books In My Favorite Genre. Last week, I made a list of my favorite historical fiction books for each of the last ten years. This week’s list is comprised of my absolute favorites in historical fiction! I actually didn’t think I could make this list! My initial list had several more titles and it was difficult to cut, so I’ve cheated a bit. How do I choose my favorites when I’ve read so many titles? The following titles are the stories that I connect with emotionally, the stories I still remember weeks and months and years later, and the stories I recommend over and over again! All are five-star reads and all have great themes. I recommend them without hesitation.
How many of these titles have you read and loved? Are you a histfic fan?
*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.
(in no particular order)
My Dear Hamilton by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie
I love the (less public) story of the determined, smart, influential, and driven woman who was Alexander Hamilton’s wife, partner, and best friend. America’s First Daughter by the same authors is also excellent.
My review here.
From Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon
and We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter
(I read these almost back to back and because of the themes I always think of them together….so this is my sneaky trick to include one more!)
Themes make these stories memorable: I love the theme of faith in Sand and Ash; in We Were the Lucky Ones, I love the themes of family and faith….especially the beautiful ending). Sand and Ash review here. We Were the Lucky Ones review here.
The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
I love this imagined story of two brave women who were actual pioneers in the abolitionist movement. Review here.
News of the World by Paulette Jiles
I love the theme of found family and the moral dilemma at the story’s end of doing the right thing versus doing things right. I also love the beautiful prose. Brief review in this post.
Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
I love the compelling themes of determination and survival. Brief review in this post.
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
I love this inspiring and sweeping (300+ year) multigenerational family saga. No review available because I read this before I started blogging.
The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom
I love this unique look at slavery in which a young Irish girl becomes a slave because of her dire circumstances and is raised by slaves who become her family. I loved the sequel just as much and possibly more: Glory Over Everything. No review available because I read these before I started blogging.
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
I love the unique narrator, the poignant friendship, and the survival themes. No review available because I read it before I started blogging, but I need to mention that the film adaptation is well done.
Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb
and Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
(Yes, I’m cheating again…..I often think of these two titles as a pair because of the format and because they are gentle and lovely reads)
I love the epistolary format of both of these love stories. Last Christmas review here. Guernsey not reviewed because I read it before I started blogging, but I must mention that the film adaptation of Guernsey is lovely.
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
The mention of this classic is a shout out to the beginning of my love for historical fiction. I still remember how I was captivated by and immersed in the reading experience as a high school reader. Have you read it?
Do you like to make book lists or think about your favorites?
Do you have a title you can add to my list in the histfic genre?
What is your favorite genre?
What is your favorite book in your favorite genre?
Happy Reading Book Buddies!
“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke
“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes
“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection! Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us to understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text
I have reviews coming soon for On the Come Up, The Lost For Words Bookshop, The Cactus, and The River. Amazingly, none of these are historical fiction!
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Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.
Book Cover and author photo are credited to Amazon or an author’s (or publisher’s) website.
The Book Thief is such an incredible book! Lovely list.
Thank you Chrissi! I’m happy to hear we both loved the Book Thief! Did you see the movie?
I thought about reading “My Dear Hamilton” after I was disappointed by “I, Eliza Hamilton” because it ended right after Hamilton’s death. In the afterward, the author talked about what Eliza did for the many years she lived after he died. That’s when I realized what bothered me about the book. I wanted to hear the story about HER and her life, not about her being someone’s wife. When people told me that “My Dear Hamilton” also doesn’t go into much of that part of her story, I decided not to read it. If I was doing this one, my first choice would be “Flight of Dreams” by Ariel Lawhon. I highly recommend it. I would have also included “Girl in Disguise” by Greer Macallister – excellent book. I’ve read SO much historical fiction, I’d have a hard time cutting my list down to 10 (as I see you did as well)! I also loved “Last Christmas in Paris”! I’ve read everything that Heather Webb has written or collaborated on so far, and I’ve got an ARC of another of her collaborations as well.
Thanks for your thoughtful comments and book recs Davida! I’ll look them up👍
Actually, I think My Dear Hamilton does a nice job of telling about Eliza’s life after Hamilton’s death. She’s an amazing woman and I’d encourage you to give the book a try!
I’ve read Anastasia by Lawhon and I’ve read Woman 99 by G Macallister….. so I really will check out the two books you mentioned by these authors! There are so many great histfic books! Next week I could come up with a different list! But these are the ones I end up recommending over and over!
I love Heather Webb too! Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter was terrific!
Happy reading! 👍😍
Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter is Hazel Gaynor. She writes with Heather Webb. Webb’s first book was Becoming Josephine (as in the wife of Napoleon), then she wrote Loving Rodin. Her last solo work was The Phantom’s Apprentice. She and Gaynor have a new book coming out “Meet Me in Monaco”. Lots of good stuff for you to look for!
Oh yes you’re right! I’m sorry for not mentioning Gaynor along with Webb. I have the Monaco book on my TBR! I was disappointed when I couldn’t get the ARC.
I keep hearing good things about Salt to the Sea. Gone with the Wind is a classic, although I’ve only seen the movie.
I think you’d love Salt to the Sea Brooke! It’s memorable and inspiring! I hope you have a chance to read it! Thanks for commenting!
Lovely list! I don’t think I’ve read any of these yet, but do have a couple on Goodreads.
Thanks Nicki! I’d love to hear back if you end up reading something! I’m a little surprised you haven’t read Guernsey??? (Because it’s in your neck of the woods!) Did you see the Netflix movie?
I tried the book years ago but couldn’t get into it. I haven’t watched the film yet but really want to see it.
I understand….. try the film though! It’s lovely I think 😍👍
BTW……my very fav quote is from that book…. “Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.” 😍 😂
It’s so true! My mother-in-law shared that quote with me ages ago but I didn’t know it came from there.
I love historical fiction too! I think fantasy just wins out for me though. I’ve added From Sand and Ash to Goodreads, I hadn’t heard of that one before and I think I’ll enjoy it! I’m a big fan of Kristin Hannah’s books, such as The Nightingale, have you read that one? So worth it!! And I’ve been meaning to read Salt to the Sea for such a long time!
Thanks for your thoughtful comments Kirstie! I’m happy you love fantasy!
Yes I’ve read Nightingale and it’s a memorable page turner! It’s on my list of runners up! That’s a very long list! 😱
I hope you get a chance to read Salt to Sea and Sand and Ash…I think you’d like them both!
Happy reading! 😍👍
Thanks for commenting Cathy! I’m happy to hear we both love histfic! There are so many excellent titles to choose from! I’m off to check out your list! 😍👍 Happy Reading!
For me, it was a toss between fantasy and historical fiction but went with fantasy in the end. The Book Thief is one of my all-time favourite books, so I`m so happy to see it made your list. Although I adore the movie, I`m still intimidated about reading Gone with The Wind. But it will happen at one point.
Thanks for commenting! I’m happy to hear we both love The Book Thief! 👍😍 I’ve been tempted to do a reread of GWTW but I always worry it won’t hold the same magic for me as that first read! I’m sure it’s also not politically correct for our current thinking! It’s a commitment of time but taking a chapter a week or a certain # of pages per week while you’re also reading other books might be doable. Happy reading!
The Invention of Wings does sound interesting.
Thanks for commenting and leaving your link! I’ve been recommending Invention of Wings for years! I hope you get to read it! I’m off to check out your link!
Of these I’ve only read The Book Thief and Salt To The Sea, The Book Thief is one of my favourite books ever and Salt To The Sea I really enjoyed. I’ll have to look up the rest of the books on your list, I love historical fiction!
My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/06/04/top-ten-tuesday-214/
I’m happy to hear you enjoy histfic and that we share a couple of favs! Thanks for commenting and leaving your link! ….I’m off to check it out!
No problem, thanks!
Some of my all-time favorites here: GWTW, Gurnsey, News of the World. My list is also historical fiction–but of real people.
I enjoy historical fiction as well, but haven’t read it as much as I would like recently. I’ll will have to look into some of these. I’d especially like to read The Guernsey Literary…Society. Here is our Top Ten Tuesday.
Thanks for commenting! I hope you find some histfic you enjoy! Thanks for leaving your link…I’m off to check it out!
I love The Book Thief 💛 I’m going to have to read My Dear Hamilton too because I just saw the musical in London in May and it was incredible! Great list!
My TTT: https://lifewithallthebooks.com/2019/06/04/top-ten-tuesday-books-from-my-favourite-genre/
Thanks for commenting! I think you’ll really enjoy My Dear Hamilton if you’re a Hamilton fan! Happy reading! Thanks for leaving your link…I’m off to check it out!
I’m going to have to order it I think because it sounds just great! 💛
I hope you enjoy! Happy reading!❤️📚
Great list! I couldn’t choose a favorite genre so I did three, one of which is historical fiction too. I haven’t read Salt to the Sea yet, but I read Between Shades of Grey and loved it!
It’s so difficult for prolific readers to choose favorites! Thanks for commenting! I think you’ll love Salt to the Sea! I hope you get a chance to read it. Thanks for leaving your link…I’m off to check it out.
I think it might already be sitting on my Kindle shelf actually 😅 I have a feeling I’ll go into a historical fiction run this month, so maybe it’ll happen soon!
I hope you have a great reading month….and that you’ll find some fav histfic as well! 👍 happy reading!
I’ve only read The Book Thief out of this list, but I feel like I’m slowly getting more interested in Historical Fiction books, which is surprising to me! I will be a cover snob and say that the cover for My Dear Hamilton makes me want to read it solely because I feel like the cover is beautiful. Thanks so much for this list!
I feel like I need to make more lists, or at least think about these lists more. Not always lists about favorites, but other lists like least favorite, or whatever these books may have in common. My favorite genre is YA Fantasy/Paranormal, but I’m working on getting out of my comfort zone.
Making lists of favs is so difficult…..like choosing your fav child difficult!!! I also like selected YA and two of my favs are YA! The Book Thief and Salt to the Sea. Happy reading Leelynn! ❤️📚
Thanks for sharing! I also enjoy historical fiction! My TTT features ten authors of my favorite genre and setting.
I’m happy to hear we’re book twins in our love for histfic! Thanks for commenting and leaving your link….I’m off to check it out! 👍
I did Historical for my list as well! I want to read My Dear Hamilton and The Book Thief ! The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society made my list as well! https://paigesofbook.blogspot.com/2019/06/top-ten-tuesday-top-ten-historical.html
Thanks for commenting and I’m happy to hear we’re book twins! 👍 I’m eager to check out your list!
Invention of Wings is one of my favorites too. I haven’t jumped on the Hamilton bandwagon yet… I’m always late to the party 😆
It’s never too late to read a good book! 👍😍
From Sand and Ash is one of my all time favorites!
I’m happy to hear you loved it too! 👍😍 I don’t hear it talked about too much.