Category Archives: Historical Fiction

The Murder of Mary Russell

How’s that for a title to make long-time fans of a series nervous? The fourteenth book in Laurie R. King’s Russell/Holmes series begins with Russell facing down an unexpected visitor in her and Holmes’s Sussex home. The intruder appears to be … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mysteries | 4 Comments

Dreaming Spies

I’m not sure how I managed to miss this, the thirteenth novel in Laurie King’s series of Mary Russell/ Sherlock Holmes novels, when it came out in 2015. I’ve been reading them since the very beginning, and normally I leap … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mysteries | Leave a comment

Fools Crow

Fools Crow is a deeply engaging historical novel by James Welch, following the lives of the Pikuni (Blackfeet) in the early 1870s in Montana. The main character is a young man named White Man’s Dog, but after a few brave and … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction | 10 Comments

Old Mortality

I’ve read a reasonable amount of 19th-century British literature, but somehow up until this point, I’ve never read anything by one of the most important and influential 19th-century British authors around: Walter Scott. I don’t know how I missed such … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction | 18 Comments

The Observations

If you’ve read much in the way of Victorian pastiche, you’ll know it’s a tricky business. It can be as marvelous as Sarah Waters’s Fingersmith or Michael Cox’s The Meaning of Night, or it can be as annoying as Michael … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction | 3 Comments

East of Eden

When Leslie, Christy, and I decided to read East of Eden together, I thought, “No big deal. Steinbeck’s books aren’t that long, and they read quickly. I’ll polish it off in a couple of days.” If you’ve seen this chunkster, you know … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction | 10 Comments

The Coroner’s Lunch

Dr. Siri Paiboun shouldn’t really be a coroner. He’s served most of his life as a doctor for the Laotian people, and now, at the age of 72, he thought he’d be able to take a peaceful, if not ideal, … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mysteries | 6 Comments

Tipping the Velvet

Although I’ve read and enjoyed all of Sarah Waters’s other books and consider her one of my favorite authors, I went into Tipping the Velvet with low-ish expectations. Not many people seem to list this as their favorite Waters novel, and I figured … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction | 16 Comments

The Sisters Brothers

It’s a little difficult to pin down Patrick DeWitt’s novel The Sisters Brothers. It’s definitely got elements of the picaresque. It’s a Western, certainly, but not of the Zane Grey variety (nor of the Cormac McCarthy variety, if that’s not … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction | 7 Comments

The Reverse of the Medal

I confess. I enjoy the Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin books more when they’re set on land than when they’re at sea. Does that make me a bad fan? After 11 books, I’ve gotten used to the nautical lingo and am far less … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Historical Fiction | 6 Comments