April Spotlight : Historical Fiction

“The past is a foreign country, the do things differently there.” according to PL Hartley, whose book, The Go-Between, surprised me by being in the collection, both in print and CD.

This month, for the first time, book coasters circles back on itself to spotlight a field we spotlighted some time ago. Why the repeat? Well, there’s just so much to see!

BETTER IN THE DARK COVEROne of the pleasures of being a librarian is that you get to open the boxes of new books, and this week, I saw one of my favourites is back in print. It’s historical, romantic and has vampires in it, so if those sorts of things appeal to you, can I suggest Better In The Dark by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro?  I collect her books and of the couple of dozen she has out in this series, this is my favourite. I’m onto my third copy: people keep borrowing them and not giving them back.

As a warning for romance fans, in the first book of the series, the hero met the love of his immortal life. The later books are generally set before this, and so not all of the Count’s lovers  make it out alive. Some of the books are tragedies, and you can’t tell which end badly in advance.


Flashman coverPerhaps you’re looking for a comedy instead?  If so, I think you could do far worse than perusing The Flashman Papers. Come see what a mixture of cowardice, drunkenness, lechery, tailoring and a jaunty moustache can do for a man at the height of the British Empire.

That’s the strength of historical fiction, of course. It’s not a genre, so it can be blended with other genres you enjoy.  If there’s a piece of historical fiction you’ve really enjoyed, please share it in the comments.