Genre: Historical Fiction

Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart: A Bold Historical Romp

Posted September 8, 2015 in Reviews / 11 Comments
Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart: A Bold Historical Romp

Constance Kopp has never been one to conform to expectations. At 35 years old, she is unmarried, residing in a farmhouse with her two similarly unattached sisters (Norma and Fleurette), and trying desperately to hold onto the farm as the family funds dwindle. The Kopp sisters’ troubles are only compounded when the automobile of wealthy silk merchant Henry Kauffman collides with their buggy during a trip into town. When Constance demands restitution for the damaged buggy, Kauffman repays the sisters […]

Mini Reviews: Saint Mazie and Land Where I Flee

Posted June 5, 2015 in Reviews / 11 Comments
Mini Reviews: Saint Mazie and Land Where I Flee

Something must be in the air, because I’ve been in a major reviewing slump for the last month. I’ll read a book, have many thoughts about it, and then move on to something else, unable to find the motivation to sit down and write. Today, I’m going to try to get back into the groove, little by little, starting with mini reviews of two books that came out this week: Saint Mazie by Jami Attenberg and Land Where I Flee by Prajwal […]

Five Reasons to Love The Rebellion of Miss Lucy Ann Lobdell by William Klaber

Posted March 12, 2015 in Reviews / 11 Comments
Five Reasons to Love The Rebellion of Miss Lucy Ann Lobdell by William Klaber

In 1855, Lucy Ann Lobdell cut her hair, donned her brother’s clothing, and ran away from her home in southern New York to live the rest of her life as a man. Her travels took her down the Erie Canal to Pennsylvania, to the western frontier in Minnesota, and back east again, where she found love with a fellow runaway named Marie. During her lifetime, Lucy, who went by Joseph, professed a desire to write a memoir of her life; now, more […]

Book Review: Girl Runner by Carrie Snyder

Posted February 10, 2015 in Reviews / 11 Comments
Book Review: Girl Runner by Carrie Snyder

As a young woman, Aganetha “Aggie” Smart made history as a gold medalist in the 1928 Olympics, the first games in which women were allowed to compete in track events. Many decades later, at the age of 104, she is languishing in a nursing home when two young strangers, a boy and a girl, appear and ask to interview her for a film they are making to help fund the girl’s own Olympic dreams. Aggie eagerly agrees; although she is bound to […]

Five Special Things About Almost Famous Women by Megan Mayhew Bergman

Posted January 5, 2015 in Reviews / 12 Comments
Five Special Things About Almost Famous Women by Megan Mayhew Bergman

I first read Megan Mayhew Bergman in 2012, when her debut short story collection, Birds of a Lesser Paradise, came out. I really enjoyed the way Bergman wrote about the relationships humans have with animals, and I was very excited when I heard she would be releasing a new book in early 2015. And my anticipation ramped up even more when I learned it would be called Almost Famous Women! Stories about women on the fringes of history are one of my kryptonites, and […]

Book Review: The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

Posted September 24, 2014 in Reviews / 5 Comments
Book Review: The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

It’s 1922, and London is facing hard times in the wake of the war. Spinster Frances Wray has lost her father and both of her brothers, and she and her mother have had to say goodbye to their servants. Unable to pay their bills, they are forced to admit lodgers into their South London villa. In come a modern young couple of the clerk class, named Lilian and Leonard Barber. Although Frances is resentful, at first, about having to share […]

Book Review: Neverhome by Laird Hunt

Posted September 22, 2014 in Reviews / 5 Comments
Book Review: Neverhome by Laird Hunt

“I was strong and he was not, so it was me went to war to defend the Republic.” With the first line, Laird Hunt sets the tone for Neverhome, a novel about a woman named Constance who leaves behind her husband, disguises herself as a man, and joins the Union forces to fight in the Civil War. This novel isn’t quite what I was expecting, and at first, I was a bit underwhelmed. But as the weeks have passed, it has stuck with […]

Book Review: Mrs. Hemingway by Naomi Wood

Posted September 4, 2014 in Reviews / 7 Comments
Book Review: Mrs. Hemingway by Naomi Wood

The life and wives of Ernest Hemingway have long been a subject of fascination for literary types, and they have proved popular fodder for novels in recent years. I enjoyed Paula McLain’s The Paris Wife, which tells the story of Hemingway’s first wife Hadley, so I was intrigued to see really positive reviews of Mrs. Hemingway, a novel that is narrated by each of his four wives in turn — Hadley, Fife, Martha, and Mary. I was excited to pick up a […]

Book Review: The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

Posted August 25, 2014 in Reviews / 11 Comments
Book Review: The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

After her family falls on hard times in 1686, 18-year-old Nella is married off to a wealthy merchant with the Dutch East India Company. She moves into his Amsterdam house with high hopes for her marriage but is disappointed by her reception: her husband, Johanne, is distant and rarely home, and his sister, Marin, is cold and unfriendly. Sensing her loneliness, Johanne gives Nella an ornate cabinet house as a gift. The beautiful object is an exact replica of their […]

Book Review: The Visitors by Sally Beauman

Posted July 7, 2014 in Reviews / 9 Comments
Book Review: The Visitors by Sally Beauman

In 1922, 11-year-old Lucy is sent to Egypt to recover from typhoid, chaperoned by the adventurous Miss Mack. While visiting the pyramids, Lucy meets Frances, the precocious daughter of an American archaeologist. The two girls become fast friends, and Lucy and Miss Mack are welcomed into the group of archaeologists (and their families) who are excavating the Valley of the Kings. Lucy and Frances, and their friends Rose and Peter, have a front-row seat as Howard Carter and his team of workers search […]