Historical fiction books are set in the past, at least 25-50 years before the novel was written. They could also be novels that were written in the past that give us a view of the period of history that the novel was written in. Historical fiction allows us to learn about detail of the past from the book, although maybe not totally accurate as some artistic license may have been taken.
Often in historical books real characters from the time will feature to give a sense of realism and as a way to explore real historic figures in their actual environment.
Expect all kinds of stories and plots - it is the historical setting that ties these books together into a single genre. You will find stories about everything.
Historical fiction been around for a long time. Even the Ancient Greeks wrote stories set in the past. The genre got really popular in Europe in the 19th century. A great example is Charles Dickens Tale of Two Cities. Written in 1859 it looks back at London and Paris during the French Revolution in the 1790s.
Another classic from this time is Thackeray’s Vanity Fair (1847-48). Set in early 1800s it tells the story of two women from different backgrounds ascending social ladders, and falling from grace into poverty and other problems. Set in the historic background of the time with real events such as the Battle of Waterloo.
Another well know historical novel of the early 1800s is Last of the Mohicans: A Narrative of 1757. It was made famous by a number of blockbuster movies over the years. Set in 1757 during the time France and Britain were fighting in America. Both sides used support of Native Americans to help win the fight and this book tells the story of the time giving us insight to the lives of people who lived through it.
In French literature, The Hunchback of Notre Dame was written in 1829 by Victor Hugo and is set in 1482 in Paris. Alexandre Dumas wrote the The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers which are both considered to be historical novels
One of the greatest historical novels of all time is Tolstoy’s War and Peace written in 1869. It tells the story of the Napoleonic wars set 60 years before it was written and uses real life accounts from people who had lived through it. Because of this attention to detail historians have been able to use a work of fiction to build up a picture of what life was actually like.
Download some of the best historical fiction from obooko and take yourself back to another time. Enjoy the story and enjoy the rich historical detail. Learn what it was like to live in that part of history and feel like a time traveller looking into the past.