Monday, March 23, 2009

Weekly Geeks 2009.11: Historical Fiction

This week for Weekly Geeks: Ali asks us about historical fiction. She has a bunch of questions, but I've focused on these two:

Is there a particular era that you love reading about? Tell us about it--give us a book list, if you'd like.

Ah, man! I can't pick a favorite. Really and truly, I love them all. But I DO love making a list! And in fact, I was thinking of making more book lists as part of a regular blog feature, so what a perfect way to start that, right here on a Weekly Geeks post! So introducing,

Suey's Top Ten Historical Fiction Novels

1. Katherine by Anya Seton (British royalty history)

2. The Far Pavilions by M.M. Kaye (British occupation of India)

3. Sacajawea by Anna Lee Waldo (Lewis and Clark expedition)

4. The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck (China)

5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (The Holocast)

6. Chesapeake by James Michener (settling of the Chesapeake Bay area)

7. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell (Civil War)

8. The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George (Egypt and Rome)

9. Sarum by Edward Rutherford (history of Salisbury England, sweeping all eras)

10. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet (medieval England)

Wow, there's so many more to list! I need a top 50 or something! Anyway, these books are not only some of my favorite historical fiction, but some of my all time favorites of any genre. So so good! Many of them I read way "before blogging" so sometime in a dead blogging moment, I'll have to remember them and review them. Or, I could always re-read!

A member of your book group, Ashley, mentions that she almost never reads Historical Fiction because it can be so boring. It's your turn to pick the book for next month and you feel it's your duty to prove her wrong. What book do you pick?

Well, it would all depend on what sorts of books Ashley DOES like, you see. But not really knowing her that well, I would suggest Katherine by Anya Seton. It's pretty much got it all. And I just really don't know how you could call it boring.

I look forward to reading what everyone else's favorites are and adding big-time to my TBR!


  1. oh,wow.In my Google Reader catastrophe, I had no idea that Weekly Geeks was going on! Good to know :)

    This is a great list!

  2. I LOVE Chesapeake. It's a great book and I live right near the Chesapeake Bay, so it's like reading local history.

  3. Ooh, I love historical fiction.

    I have really enjoyed most of Phillipa Gregory's.

    There is another one, The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn by Robin Maxwell that I loved.

    There was one similar to that, The Hidden Diary of Marie Antionette by Carolly Erickson that was also a really good historical fiction.

  4. [IMG][/IMG]

    This shows up top on Google for New Historical Fiction Books

  5. I didn't think about making a Holocaust list...The Book Thief is so awesome! Maybe I need to make a second post...Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. Michener is fantastic..loved everything he ever wrote, but my ultimate favorite writer is John Jakes. Great list and one that I think I may have to steal from!!

  7. those are some great historical fictions...I loved the book thief after my initial trepidation. I would add Galway Bay to that list!

  8. Love your list!

    Gone with the Wind I'm reading right now. The Book Thief is on my nightstand for next month. The Far Pavilions has been on our shelves since I was a child, but haven't read it. Unfortunately, I live across the globe now so I'll have to get my own copy. The Good Earth I've been meaning to read as well.

    I posted about Medieval England this week so I've gotten at least three recommendations for The Pillars of the Earth. And then I'll bookmark your list 'cause I'll probably be adding all the rest of those titles that I haven't heard of before but sound so wonderful. Thanks, Suey! :D

  9. I've got Katherine in the TBR too...

  10. I am going to admit that I have not read The Good Earth. It's on my list. Thanks.

  11. I am going to admit that I have not read The Good Earth. It's on my list. Thanks.

  12. I have to read Seyton. I've heard good things about her.

  13. I have really enjoyed Ann Rinaldi. I have read from her, Nine Days a Queen (the story of Lady Jane Grey), The Coffin Quilt (story about the Hatfield/McCoy feud), and The Girl in Blue (story of a girl joining the Union army during the Civil War, then being discovered and later joining the Pinkerton Agency). All three of these were really good. Rinaldi has a whole list of historical fiction.

  14. I read Katherine in high school and LOVED it but I've wondered since if it was as good as I remembered it. I'm glad to hear that you love it too. It's not really easy to find though. It's not in my library but I did just look on amazon and there is a new edition published in 2004. Maybe I'll just have to buy it.

  15. Hey Suey! Thanks for sharing this list. I'm passing it on to a non-blogging friend who loves historical fiction. :)

  16. Great list. I see a few more that I could have included on mine.

    About Ocatavian Nothing - it requires your full attention and thoughtful reading. If you do take it on vacation be sure to also pack something light and breezy just in case. You may not have any problem with it. May be that I just wasn't that focused.

  17. I love, love, love Katherine. Love Gone With the Wind, read Sarum in fits and starts, and enjoyed World Without End more than Pillars (it was my companion through Hurricane Gustav), though liked both.

  18. Oh! And Memoirs of Cleopatra: loved it. Loved George's Henry VIII even more.

  19. Shogun was another glorious historical fiction novel. If you like Japanese history, or if you are curious about the derivations of Japanese culture, you will enjoy reading this loose historical fiction novel set at the end of the 16th century in Feudal Japan.



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