Historical Fiction

A-
A Most English Princess

When I opened up A Most English Princess to begin I was a little miffed at myself. Over 500 pages on Princess Vicky (eldest daughter of Queen Victoria) - what was I thinking to pick this book to review!?! Well it turns out to have been a good decision after all. A Most English Princess is a most fas ...

C-
The Exiles

Christina Baker Kline, a usually fine fiction writer, gives us a story that’s well-sketched but only marginally gripping with The Exiles, a novel about women convicts living in an Australian penal colony, and the aboriginal teenager struggling against white oppression who becomes a friend. Evan ...

F
The Queen of Tuesday

Darin Strauss came up with The Queen of Tuesday by asking himself one question – what if his philandering insurance salesman grandfather, Isidore- Iz -  Strauss had met actress and sitcom queen Lucille Ball at a benefit thrown by Donald Trump’s father – which they both actually attended – a ...

B-
Brontë’s Mistress

The alleged affair between Branwell Brontë – mercurial, addicted, and soon tubercular – and Lydia Robinson, the married mother of his tutee - has been gilt with legend. Lydia, in fact, inspired that classic adulterer and seducer of young men, Mrs. Robinson of The Graduate fame, turning her name ...

B+
Fast Girls: a Novel of the 1936 Women's Olympic Team

Fans of sports-centered books won't want to miss the latest offering from author Elise Hooper. Fast Girls: a Novel of the 1936 Women's Olympic Team is a fictionalized account of three American women and their journey to the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. As one might imagine, these early Olympians di ...

B
Miss Graham's Cold War Cookbook

Historicals taking place in the WWII time period are among my favorites, and I’ve loved the fact that they’re experiencing a surge of popularity right now. Miss Graham's Cold War Cookbook offers a glimpse into a unique moment of that era, examining just how the Allies handled the immediate after ...

B+
Her Last Flight

In 1947, photographer and war correspondent Janey Everett arrives at a remote surfing village on the Hawaiian island of Kauai to research a planned biography of forgotten aviation pioneer Sam Mallory, who joined the loyalist forces in the Spanish Civil War and never returned. Obsessed with Sam’s f ...

C
Mrs. Lincoln's Sisters

Mrs. Lincoln’s Sisters is a perfectly okay slice of historical fiction that ends up getting subsumed in too dry, too technical prose. While Chiaverini tries to balance the points of view of a slew of Mary Todd Lincoln’s sisters, they often come off as rather plain of speech. Elizabeth, France ...

A
The Last Train to Key West

I became a huge fan of Chanel Cleeton's writing in late 2018 when I picked up a copy of Next Year in Havana. Ever since then, I've kept an eye out for her new releases and even purchased a few of her backlist titles. Her writing is deep and affecting, never shying away from tough topics but also man ...

B+
The Last Train to Key West

The Last Train to Key West, Chanel Cleeton’s handsome and engrossing look into life in Key West, Florida, just before the infamous 1935 Labor Day Hurricane focuses in on three different women who end up on the island for disparate reasons, yet manage to make friendships and find romantic relations ...