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Historical Fiction

What Should I Read?

In what order should you read a series? Read everything written by Sue Grafton or Malcolm Gladwell and would like to try a similar author? Books & Authors, available in Canton Public Library's databases, allows you to search by title and/or author, subject, keyword, time period, geographic location, or character. Follow the series links for additional titles, or take advantage of the Expert Picks & Librarian's Favorites for recommendations based on some of your favorite titles or topics.

A Mixed Bag of Teen Reads from 2010

Some of my favorite teen books from 2010 include fantasy, historical fiction, and a few plain old realistic fiction reads.

Ostrich boys by Keith Gray

Sisters red by Jackson Pearce

Countdown by Deborah Wiles

Historical Romance

If you enjoy historical romances by Bertrice Small or Sabrina Jeffries, try these authors:

Heart of a Samurai

Margi Preus has created a masterpiece with this fascinating, exciting, and factual historical novel. In 1841, fourteen-year-old Manjiro and his four friends find themselves fighting for survival on a deserted island after their fishing boat is destroyed in a storm. Luckily, an American whaling ship rescues them before they perish. They cannot return to Japan because the country's borders are closed to both foreigners and to citizens who have strayed. Imprisonment or even death would await them. Manjiro is curious, intelligent and eager to help with the work on Captain Whitfield's ship. They become very close and Captain Whitfield takes Manjiro home with him to Massachusetts where he attends school and helps on the Whitfield's farm. He is believed to be the first Japanese person to set foot in America.

Fiction Set in the Sixties

If you liked The Help by Kathryn Stockett, here's a selection of other novels which explore their characters' lives in this time of social change:

The secret life of bees by Sue Monk Kidd

Plum wine: a novel by Angela Davis-Gardner

Fiction Set in (or just after) World War II

The following novels focus on interpersonal relationships, exploring romantic entaglements and friendships during this time of global upheaval:

The Granville sisters by Una-Mary Parker

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows

The wedding officer: a novel of culinary seduction by Anthony Capella

Murder Will Out — June 2010

Historical mysteries have become increasingly popular in the last decade. If you are a fan of historical fiction, and historical mystery stories in particular, you've read many of the well-known authors of this sub-genre: Steven Saylor, Anne Perry, Eliot Pattison, I. J. Parker, Lindsey Davis, John Maddox Robert, Margaret Frazer, and the list goes on, but have you read the works of:

Nefertiti: the book of the dead by Nick Drake

Critique of criminal reason by Michael Gregorio

The fifth servant by Kenneth Wishnia

Thirteenth night : a medieval mystery by Alan Gordon

A test of wills by Charles Todd

Murder on Astor Place by Victoria Thompson

Fiction with a Historical Twist

Like a good story? Travel back in time to read about young people from all times in history.

Catherine, called Birdy by Karen Cushman — (1290) Karen Cushman has written several books set in medieval England.  This one is about a thirteen-year-old girl who is not quite ready to be married off.  She has several adventures and records her thoughts in her diary.

Girl in a cage by Jane Yolen & Robert J.

K. J. A. Wishnia Is Back

Prague, 1592. A young girl has been brutally murdered and Christians and Jews will be pitted against each other in Edgar nominee, K. J. A. Wishnia's (aka Kenneth Wishnia) soon-to-be released, mystery The Fifth Servant.

"Wolf Hall" Wins Man Booker Award for Fiction

Hilary Mantel’s historical novel set in 16th-century Britain has won the £50,000 ($79,400) Man Booker Prize for Fiction. Wolf Hall (Fourth Estate) is the story of Thomas Cromwell’s tumultuous rise in the Tudor court.

'Cool Canadian Crime'

For several months now David Cole has been interviewing Canadian writers of crime, mystery, and/or suspense for Mystery Fanfare in his column Cool Canadian Crime. Cole recently interviewed Vicki Delany, a favorite of mine. Scare the Light Away Delany's debut novel was highly acclaimed when it was published in 2005.

The White Queen

Philippa Gregory has done it again! If you enjoyed The Other Boleyn Girl, you will enjoy her newest novel, The White Queen. It takes place earlier than the Tudors and has all the same great elements she is famous for romance, family "scheming" for power, and lots of insight to a period of history you may not have known about. Read it and enjoy!

In the Shadow of Gotham

In the Shadow of Gotham, Stefanie Pintoff's debut, won the first Minotaur Books/MWA Best First Crime Novel award. It's the Twentieth Century and crime detection has begun to take advantage of the new sciences available: fingerprints, profiling. Detective Simon Ziele has moved to Dobson, a small town in New York's Westchester county, a train-ride from New York City, following the tragic death of his fiance in the wreck of the steamship General Slocum in 1904. Ziele had been one of the NYC detectives called to scene to rescue survivors, but he was unable to save Rachel, his fiance.

Canton Seniors Book Discussion - September 23, 2009

March by Geraldine Brooks. From Louisa May Alcotts beloved classic Little Women, Geraldine Brooks has taken the character of the absent father, March, who has gone off to war, leaving his wife and daughters to make do in mean times. In her telling, March emerges as an idealistic chaplain in the little known backwaters of a war that will test his faith in himself and in the Union cause as he learns that his side, too, is capable of acts of barbarism and racism. As he recovers from a near mortal illness, he must reassemble his shattered mind and body and find a way to reconnect with a wife and daughters who have no idea of the ordeals he has been through. Pulitzer Prize Winner for Fiction (2006). Beginning August 26, you can pick up a copy of MARCH at the Adult Reference Desk.