Tuesday, March 13, 2012

TOP TEN TUESDAY: My Top Ten Historical Fiction Books

Top 10 Tuesday is hosted at The Broke and the Bookish. Today’s topic is My Top Ten Historical Fiction Books.
I love history and historical fiction is partially what made me want to teach history. However, for all the historical fiction out there, a lot of it just isn't good. It is boring or ridiculously inaccurate and it makes history seem dull. Below is a list of historical fiction books that are memorable and worth the time you take to read them.

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
This novel actually made me want to do research on that era. And I did. And I was disappointed that the book was true to history because I wanted things to end happily.

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
This is a great book about the Holocaust that does show the fear Jews lived in, but it also gives one hope that not all people are evil.

True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi
This was one of my favorite historical fiction novels growing up. I LOVE the strong female character and the contrast between refined people of the early 1800s and the rough sailors on the ship.

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
I can’t say enough good things about this book. It was well researched, had characters readers could connect to, was exciting and full of twists and turns, and was beautifully written. Even people who don’t like historical fiction would love this book.

Before We Were Free by Julia Alvarez
There are few books about Latin America and even fewer historical fiction books about Latin America. This takes place in the Dominican Republic during the overthrow of the dictator in the 1960s. I was engaged from the start and honestly could not put the book down (I read it in one sitting).

American Girl Books
I know, this isn’t the best historical fiction out there, but it got me and thousands of other girls interested in history. I learned a lot about history through these books, especially because the last few pages of each book gave the history behind the story.

My Brother Sam is Dead by Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
I don’t think I ever realized how much the American Revolution tore families and towns apart until I read this book. Wow. People could be hurt or killed just for declaring which side they supported during the war and you never knew who to trust.

One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia
The 1960s fascinate me. The music. The tension. The new ideas. The desire for a better situation in life. This book takes all of that, rolls it into one clever book, and shoes the era through the eyes of young girls.

Resistance by Carla Jablonski & Leland Purvis
World War II and the French Resistance told as a graphic novel. What could be better?

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse
This book does take place in the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression. And people die. And it is sad. BUT it is a great book that depicts the hope and the hopelessness of the era in beautifully written prose.

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