Historical Fiction

Oct 21, 2021

You will find it hard to put down Lovely War by Julie Berry! The book is a combination of historical fiction and myth. The Greek gods Aphrodite, Hephaestus, Ares, Hades, and Apollo appear in the 1940s, as Aphrodite is found secretly meeting with her lover Ares. Stalling for time, Aphrodite recounts what she calls “the love story of the century.” The gods interrupt each other and talk over each other to jointly tell the World War I story of two couples: Hazel and James, and Collette and Aubrey.


Hazel and James, both English, meet at a party. James is enchanted by Hazel’s lovely piano playing

Oct 21, 2021

At the beginning of Chainbreaker, Tara Sim’s sequel to Timekeeper, Danny and Colton’s story continues for a little while before it is interrupted by concerning news: clock towers in India are falling, but time somehow manages to keep running. Danny and Daphne are whisked off to India to investigate and solve the issue, but back home in England, Colton finds a threat addressed to Danny and another message addressed to himself claiming that Danny is in danger and that if Colton doesn’t leave Enfield to save him, Danny will die. On top of that, Colton starts to experience strange dreams. Soon

Oct 21, 2021

This historical fiction book written by Jennifer A. Nielsen is an engrossing and suspenseful novel with crazy plot twists and diverse characters. Chaya (the main character) is a resistance fighter against the Nazis. She teams up with a girl she despises at first and quickly learns to love her like a sister. They move from ghetto to ghetto, trying to help their people fight.


This book discusses the struggles the Jews had to face in the hands of their enemy. This book has made me realize what true courage and strength is. The most appealing aspect of this book is when Chaya reunites with a

Oct 21, 2021

Winnie is a 16-year-old girl that can see things no one else can. She can see “splits,” when two outcomes diverge; also known as the multi verse theory. She keeps her power a secret, because she knows it could be used among the midst of the WWII.  Her physicist father experiments on her to see if she could change the future and the past. It was all fine until Scott, her father’s lab assistant, gets injured. Winnie chooses the reality where he is fine, but she finds out she doesn’t belong there.


This book contains themes about science, war, and romance that seemingly blend together nicely

Oct 21, 2021

Meet Kitty Granger, a girl from London in 1967. She spent her whole life trying to hide that she was different. But when she finds herself following a man into a Russian spy ring, her life takes a wild turn. After this encounter, she lands herself a job as a British secret agent. Will she survive her secret missions? Will she make a difference? Read more to find out!


This is an action-packed book that was hard to look away from! I could not put this book down and I finished it quickly. The characters are very likeable and I enjoyed reading their experience. The plot is very interesting; the

Oct 6, 2021

The Sword and the Dagger is an epic novel set during the time of the Crusades. Princess Elaine of Tripoli is betrothed to Prince Conrad of Antioch, but she cannot stand the idea of being married to a young man as imperious and sententious as him. Meanwhile, Conrad insists that the marriage must occur in order to unite their Christian kingdoms against enemies lurking east of their home. However, Rashid, a Muslim assassin, is ordered to kill Elaine. In a poorly attempted assassination, Rashid is caught and thrown in the dungeons, but Elaine demands he explain why he tried to murder her. When she

Oct 5, 2021

White Rose is an inspiring and active historical fiction novel by Kip Wilson. This book is about Sophie and her brother who fight for not their freedom but the freedom of others. They hand out pamphlets outside their college classrooms talking about World War II that has taken many innocent Jewish lives. They get caught and are sentenced to death for their betrayal to their country. 


I love the way the author used poetry to tell the story, but it's sometimes hard to understand what's going on. I recommend this book to those wanting to learn about the world’s history and how it unfolds. That

Oct 1, 2021

This novel is about two characters and their stories while living through the Second World War. Marie-Laure is a young, blind girl who lives with her father in Paris but is forced to move to Saint-Malo after German occupation. Werner is a young orphan from Zollverein with incredible talent who is enlisted in the army after attending a Nazi training school. Ultimately, their paths collide and they try surviving the devastation of the war.


Marie-Laure Leblanc, a blind curious French girl, lives in Paris with her father. Werner Pfennig is an orphan with an evitable fate, he is also an

Jul 8, 2021

This historical fiction book written by Jennifer A. Nielsen is engrossing and suspenseful, with crazy plot twists and diverse characters. Chaya (the main character) is a resistance fighter against the Nazis. She teams up with a girl she despises at first and quickly learns to love her like a sister. They move from ghetto to ghetto, trying to help their people fight. This book discusses the struggles the Jews had to face in the hands of their enemy. Resistance has made me realize what true courage and strength is. The most appealing aspect of this book is when Chaya reunites with a lost family

May 21, 2021

This book is realistic fiction. The main characters of this book are Maxine, London, Alice, and Rose (Maxine’s sister). The main characters want to get out of the place they are trapped in (The Massachusetts School for the Feeble-Minded) because they are diagnosed as morons, imbeciles, and idiots because of something “bad” they did. Their parents dropped them off there because they didn’t want them, and the main characters know that they won’t come back. That is why they don’t see a reason to leave.  London tries to get out but she gets caught on a farm she ran to for food and water. London

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

The Help

4
Rated by
May 9, 2021

The Help is a historical fiction novel set in Jackson, Mississippi in the 1960s. It revolves around three main characters: Aibileen, Skeeter, and Minny. Skeeter has returned from college determined to become a writer. She causes a stir in her hometown by deciding to interview the black women who work for the white families in the town. At first, only Aibileen will help her, but eventually, more and more gather till there are over ten. The publication of her book causes everyone in her town to forever change the way they view the black women and the way they are treated in their town.


I

We Were the Lucky Ones cover. Man and woman sit on bench with their backs facing us.

We Were the Lucky Ones

By Georgia Hunter
5
Rated by Kari E.
Apr 30, 2021

What a book. What a story. What a family. The Kurcs are a Polish family who will not let the cruelty and dehumanizing Nazi and Soviet rule crush their spirit.  


We see babies born, weddings, and a family desperately wishing they were all together again. They feel lucky just to be with one another.  We follow the lives of the Kurc families’ five children through the war.  


Addy moved to France to finish his studies and stayed after finding a job. Now, he cannot return to Poland because there is no safe way to get there and he doesn’t have the right paperwork. His one hopeful thought is

Apr 30, 2021

The Scarlet Pimpernel is a classic historical fiction novel about a mysterious figure, after whom the title is named, who rescues French nobility from the guillotine. He is famous both in France and England for his cunning disguises and daring rescues of the aristocrats from under the very noses of the people who want them dead. His identity is a secret which both his archnemesis, Chauvelin, and his great admirer, Marguerite Blakeney, desire to know. Marguerite, who is unsatisfied in her marriage to the foppish Percy Blakeney, becomes entangled in the fate of the elusive Scarlet Pimpernel by

Sherwood by Meagan Spooner

Sherwood

5
Rated by
Apr 23, 2021

When Robin of Locksley dies in the Crusades, Lady Marian of Edwinstowe is left without her best friend in a world that expects her to be little, quiet, and defenseless—everything she is not. While trying to help her maid’s brother, Marian is mistaken for the dead Robin— and she doesn’t correct them. With taxes rising to pay for the King’s crusade and the people of Robin’s land starving, Marian teams up with outlaws Will, Alan, and John under her new identity to do as she believes Robin would have done to help his people. But as she continues her act, it gets harder and harder to hide her

Apr 20, 2021

The Book Thief is a historical fiction novel about a girl named Liesel who loves words and books, to the extent that she is willing to steal them. It is narrated by the sarcastic, ever working, overwhelmed, and caring Death throughout the period of World War II. Given by her mother, who is unable to care for her, to foster parents, she learns from her foster father, Papa, how to read so that she will be able to read the first book she ever stole, which is the last link to her little brother, who died on the way to their new home. Gradually, Liesel grows to love books, stealing them from Nazi

Apr 14, 2021

In The Three Musketeers, a historical fiction novel, D’Artagnan, a young man from Gascon who is loyal to the king and queen, travels to Paris seeking to become a musketeer. There he discovers his future best friends, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, and a plot by Cardinal Richelieu to steal the throne. The four friends go on many adventures in service of the queen and her reputation, but are often foiled by Milady, a beautiful, evil, and mysterious agent of the Cardinal. In a surprising twist at the end, Milady is brought to justice and D’Artagnan receives his wish and is promoted in the musketeers

Feb 27, 2021

It is France, 1714, and a young French village girl named Addie kneels on the forest floor on the eve of her wedding and prays for freedom from an arranged marriage. She forgets, though, that it is after dark, and the gods that answer after dark never play fair. In a moment of desperation, she makes a bargain with the devil himself — freedom to wander, to explore, to dream, but with one catch: she will be forgotten by everyone she meets. However, three hundred years later, Addie’s life is turned upside down when she walks into a bookstore in New York City and the owner, a boy with a broken

Feb 13, 2021

Written by John Knowles, ​A Separate Peace​ is a realistic fiction story about a boy named Gene who attends boarding school in New England and is set during the years of World War II. The plot mainly follows Gene and his best friend Phineas. Gene is quiet, inverted and an intellectual. Phineas is everyone’s favorite person; he is athletic, charming, and a daredevil. The two are complete opposites but could be described as “inseparable.” Although, they struggle with their friendship as certain events unfold through the story.


Overall it was a simple story with a strong message. This is very

Feb 9, 2021

In 1893, witch trials are rampant, especially in the town of New Salem.  Juniper, Agnes, and Bella are three sisters bound together by magic after years of separation.  While having to work through buried conflicts with themselves and each other, these sisters realize how magic and witchcraft are on the brink of extinction.  Together, these sisters work with witches in the town of New Salem to combat the misogyny and anti-witch attitudes that dominate New Salem society, all the while learning the value of their own witching abilities and womanhood.


The most compelling aspect of the book was

Feb 3, 2021

Lovely War​ by Julie Berry is a romance and historical fiction novel that follows the lives of four individuals during World War I, told from the perspective of Aphrodite (goddess of passion and love). Hazel, James, Colette, and Aubrey’s paths cross by mere circumstance, and with Aphrodite’s help, beautiful relationships are formed. As time passes, the perils of war threaten to interfere with the romances and friendships. Will the power of love be enough to salvage the fates of these individuals, or will the war be the demise of their relationship?


Although I am typically not a huge fan of

Book Cover

Deacon King Kong

By James McBride
5
Rated by Chris K.
Feb 2, 2021

Deacon King Kong is a sort of love letter to a few blocks of New York City projects in 1969, and to the endearing cast of colorful characters brimming with personality. McBride has a magical touch bringing to life the adage everyone has a story. His descriptions are vivid, engrossing, and entertaining, giving both people and setting depth and truth. His dialogue, as well. It's a hard setting full of people living hard, flawed lives. McBride never ducks the grit and grime, violence and suffering, yet still manages to find some measure of joy and an abundance of humor. He paints a breathing

Dec 18, 2020

Beatrice Clayborn is a young, powerful sorceress secretly practicing magic in a patriarchal world that doesn’t allow women the freedom of sorcery. Beatrice’s greatest dream is to become a Mage, but her family is relying on her to secure an advantageous marriage in order to avoid financial ruin. There’s only one problem with this — once married, she will be locked into a collar that will cut off her magical powers to protect the children she will inevitably bear. While scouring the bookshops of Bendelton, Beatrice discovers a grimoire that could help her become a Mage, but she is swindled out

Dec 17, 2020

Lovely War, written by Julie Berry, is a historical fiction romance novel narrated by the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite, as a defense for her infidelity to her husband Hephaestus with Ares, god of war. She speaks of two couples whose stories intertwine with each other, both of whom met during the first World War, and recounts their tragic yet beautiful tale to explain why love and war are attracted to each other and to demonstrate how love requires vulnerability. As she does so, she masterfully weaves together a story of music, acceptance, prejudice, and sacrifice which draws to a close in

Dec 16, 2020

After sixteen-year-old Alice Prewitt’s French grandmother passes away, she finds out that she has inherited an abandoned apartment in Paris. Alice travels to Paris in order to see the apartment for herself, but she makes a shocking discovery — her grandmother had a sister: Adalyn, a resistance worker during WWII. However, Alice has no idea about her great-aunt’s work, and what’s more, Adalyn’s old photos and diary suggest that she was a Nazi sympathizer. With the help of Paul, a handsome French teenager, Alice starts to uncover the truth that Adalyn took to her early grave.


This novel was

Dec 10, 2020

Ever wondered what happens after the “and they all lived happily ever after?” Emma Theriault is here to tell you in her 352 page novel that continues Beauty and her Beast’s story against the backdrop of the French Revolution. Belle, who has chosen to not take the title of princess after marrying her prince, is torn between the world of her past as a commoner and her future as the wife of a royal. Her inner turmoil is only amplified by the stirrings of revolution threatening to overtake Europe. Belle must use her unique upbringing to heal her country and root out betrayal within her own circles

The Right Sort of Man book cover. Woman with back to camera looking down a sunny street

The Right Sort of Man

By Allison Montclair
5
Rated by Kari E.
Dec 7, 2020

Gwendolyn Bainbridge and Iris Sparks attend a mutual friend’s wedding and hit it off immediately, both taking credit for the match. After a lovely lunch the pair decide to go into business together opening The Right Sort Marriage Bureau in Mayfair, London in 1946. Their services are much sought after and their pairings have lead to many happy marriages so far. They both have the ability to size people up and get a clear reading of personalities and secrets being withheld. 


Iris doesn’t talk about her training and time spent during the War. But she’s got a lot of particular skills useful for

Traitor by Amanda McCrina "Betrayal is a matter of life and death"

Traitor

5
Rated by
Dec 7, 2020

Traitor highlights the societal division and question of morality that was prominent during World War II. In this novel, the lives of two teenagers, a Ukrainian orphan named Aleksey who fights to protect his brother and stay alive, and Tolya, a half-Polish, half-Ukrainian seventeen year old who is unsure of where his loyalties lies. As the lives of these two teenagers intertwine, they encounter both old and new, good and bad, all the while trying to stay alive in the midst of not only an international war, but an internal war.     


The most compelling aspect of this book was how the lives

Picture of a woman with only lower face shown, dressed in a 1950's style gown that is coral in color. The title is printed on the lower part of her full skirt, with an image of the skyline of the city of Havana on the very lower edge of her skirt.

Next Year in Havana

By Chanel Cleeton
4
Rated by Lisa H
Oct 21, 2020

The historical fiction novel Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton is a fascinating look into Cuba before and after Castro comes into power. The novel is told in split timelines with stories about two women in Cuba: one facing a revolution that would tear apart everything she knows, another facing a Cuba she has only heard about in family stories.


In Cuba 1958, Elisa Perez is a nineteen-year-old sugar heiress when she meets Pablo at a dinner party. Their chemistry is immediate and undeniable. It is love at first sight and the relationship is doomed from the start due to Elisa and Pablo

Oct 21, 2020

The year is 1957, and Spain has something to hide. Under fascist dictator General Franco’s tyrannical rule the only option is silence, and defiance comes with a hefty price —imprisonment, death, or worse. Meanwhile, 18-year-old Daniel Matheson, the rather spoiled son of a wealthy oil tycoon, journeys to Madrid with his parents, who are brokering a deal with Franco. However, through his photojournalism and the friendship of Ana, a maid at the hotel he is staying at, he realizes that there is a different side of Spain hidden under the image of sunny streets and luxurious accommodations presented

Jul 24, 2020

As a teen invested in equal rights, I really enjoyed this book. I didn't know much history about this topic and because of that the most compelling aspect of the book is how it provided a new perspective. Lots of other teens like me will find this book informative and inspiring, and that is what makes it awesome. I also love books that have multiple POVs and make each person’s story come together in the end, and this book did a really good job with that. I think publishing novels like this one is really important to the current generation. We need books like this to empower us to do better