Historical Fiction Books – Free & Bargain Priced!

Whilst history books are often dry, and don’t attract a wide readership, novels with fictional storylines based within significant historical periods, and events, are widely read and educate as well as entertain their readership. Historical Fiction books are often a person’s first experience learning about a particular period in history, and an author of such a book will put in as much historical research as a historian working in the period. There are some history novels which are recommended by college and university departments for their educational value, and to assist the history student to better understand the people of the period – by empathising with characters in the novel and their struggles and experience, as imagined by the author.

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There are many classics in this broad fiction genre: the first that comes to mind are Mary Renault’s series of novels based in ancient Greece. These are a great read, by the way! The study of ancient Greece can be, at times, a rather dry and especially academic exercise, but Mary Renault puts humanity at its core and tells a great yarn, at the same time – absorbing and utilizing many historical and mythological elements into her story, including making the ancient hero Theseus the main protagonist of one of her stories. Naturally, there is a great deal of invention in her novels, there has to be because the detail is missing from history, but Renault is a highly capable historian, as well as an excellent imaginative story teller, and her imagining of ancient Greece is entirely credible – and recommended by respected classics professors as a way in to their topic.

But Mary Renault has some great company in this genre. A more contemporary author that comes to mind is Steven Pressfield, who also broke into the bestseller list for his novels on ancient Greece, but has gone on to create numerous, equally popular, books on a variety of other historic periods with a focus on conflict and war – right up to the modern day Afghan war. Other popular authors include: Patrick O’Brian and his ‘Master And Commander series; Robert Graves’ ‘I, Claudius; Umberto Eco’s The Name Of The Rose; Leo Tolstoy’s War And Peace; and the 2012 Booker Prize Winner Wolf Hall, by Hilary Mantel.

In fact, when you look down any bestseller list of great historical fiction novels, you’ll find very many books you thought of first as thrillers, mysteries, romances, or action adventure stories – but set years in the past.

The imagination required to create a work of fiction is something that can be applied in many directions. Imagining a contemporary environment is no different, in the research required, to imagining an historic period. But historical fiction books can bring history alive for the reader, and educate as well as entertain – and as such, they perform a particular type of service to us all. Long live the history novel!

Historical Fiction Books - The King Must Die by Mary Renault

Classic Historical Fiction Book – The King Must Die by Mary Renault

Historical Fiction Books - Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield

Bestselling Historical Fiction Book – Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield

Historical Fiction Books - Master and Commander by Patrick OBrian

Bestselling Historical Fiction Books – Master and Commander by Patrick OBrian

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A Beautiful Poison

Just beyond the Gilded Age, in the mist-covered streets of New York, the deadly Spanish influenza ripples through the city. But with so many victims in her close circle, young socialite Allene questions if the flu is really to blame. All appear to have been...

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The Tattooist of Auschwitz

The #1 International Bestseller & New York Times BestsellerThis beautiful, illuminating tale of hope and courage is based on interviews that were conducted with Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov—an unforgettable love story in...

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Three Daughters

From the fertile hills of a tiny village near Jerusalem to the elegant townhouses of Georgetown, Three Daughters is a historical saga that chronicles the lives, loves, and secrets of three generations of Palestinian Christian women.Born in rural Palestine, just before...

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Only Our Destiny

The Mezzogiorno (Southern Italy). Up to 85 per cent of Italian Americans have their roots in this region. The story of the Coriello family begins in the fictional fishing village of Punto Roccioso along the Amalfi Coast. Alta Italia (Northern Italy) looks down on...

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Ebbing Tides

For Alexander Cavendish and his crew-mates aboard 'The Kestrel', life has taken a turn for the worse. The cruel Captain Grahams has usurped their beloved but vanished Nathaniel Winters, bringing ever-worsening conditions along with him. Treachery and murder abounds as...

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The Torch Betrayal

A disgraced agent. A missing battle plan. Will he find redemption or damage the Allies beyond repair? London, 1942. OSS Agent Conor Thorn is desperate for a second chance. After a botched mission in Tangier, Thorn knows failure is not an option. When confidential...

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King Rat

Japanese POW camp Changi, Singapore: hell on earth for the soldiers contained within its barbed wire walls. Officers and enlisted men, all prisoners together, yet the old hierarchies and rivalries survive. An American corporal, known as the King, has used his...

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Carnegie’s Maid

The USA Today BestsellerFrom the bestselling author of The Only Woman in the Room comes a mesmerizing tale of historical fiction that asks what kind of woman could have inspired an American dynasty.Clara Kelley is not who they think she is. She's not the experienced...

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Cilka’s Journey

From the author of the multi-million copy bestseller The Tattooist of Auschwitz comes a new novel based on a riveting true story of love and resilience. Her beauty saved her — and condemned her. Cilka is just sixteen years old when she is taken to Auschwitz-Birkenau...

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Calling Me Home

Calling Me Home by Julie Kibler is a soaring debut interweaving the story of a heartbreaking, forbidden love in 1930s Kentucky with an unlikely modern-day friendship.Eighty-nine-year-old Isabelle McAllister has a favor to ask her hairdresser Dorrie Curtis. It's a big...

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Cashelmara

The New York Times–bestselling saga: In nineteenth-century Ireland, a titled English family keeps an estate in an era of famine and violent conflict.  When Edward de Salis travels to America after the death of his first wife, he is astonished to find himself falling...

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White Houses

For readers of The Paris Wife and The Swans of Fifth Avenue comes a “sensuous, captivating account of a forbidden affair between two women” (People)—Eleanor Roosevelt and “first friend” Lorena Hickok.NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Financial Times • San...

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Rich Man, Poor Man

This New York Times–bestselling saga of two brothers in postwar America, the basis for the classic miniseries, is “a book you can’t put down” (The New York Times).  Siblings Rudy, Tom, and Gretchen Jordache grow up in a small town on the Hudson River. They’re in their...

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The Last Painting of Sara de Vos

"Written in prose so clear that we absorb its images as if by mind meld, 'The Last Painting' is gorgeous storytelling: wry, playful, and utterly alive, with an almost tactile awareness of the emotional contours of the human heart. Vividly detailed, acutely sensitive...

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Into the Americas

INTO THE AMERICAS (A novel based on a true story) is a gritty, real-life adventure based on one of history’s greatest survival stories. It was inspired by the diary entries of young English blacksmith John Jewitt during his time aboard the brigantine The Boston and...

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The Paris Architect

THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!An extraordinary book about a gifted architect who reluctantly begins a secret life of resistance, devising ingenious hiding places for Jews in World War II Paris.In 1942 Paris, architect Lucien Bernard accepts a commission that will...

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A Man Called Smith

For fans of The Dutch House, Ask Again, Yes, and other emotionally gripping, generation spanning, family dramas. A spellbinding story with characters so painfully vivid they almost leap off the page. Readers' Favorite finalist Tanya E Williams weaves a complex and...

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Hot Wheels (Cool Assassins 2)

Here is the saga of Dog Breakfast, an elite security outfit and two of its top female agents. ___Jen disrupts a meeting of the world's most powerful oligarchs. She escapes via paraglider and joins her partner JoAnna who drives a Humvee. The women are chased through...

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The Elephant’s Journey (Vintage Classics)

For two years Solomon the elephant has lived in Lisbon. Now King Dom João III wishes to make him a wedding gift for a Hapsburg archduke in Vienna. The only way for Solomon to get to his new home is to walk. So begins a journey that will take the stalwart elephant...

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East Wind: West Wind

The classic coming-of-age novel about a young Chinese woman torn between Eastern and Western cultures by the Nobel Prize–winning author of The Good Earth.  Kwei-lan is a traditional Chinese girl—taught by her mother to submit in all things, “as a flower submits to sun...

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The Novels of Alexander the Great

A New York Times–bestselling trilogy about the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and its leader from an author hailed by Hilary Mantel as “a shining light.” Fire from Heaven is a gripping account of the formative years of Alexander’s life. The story tells of his...

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The Gamekeeper’s Wife

A gripping tale of love, duty, sacrifice and determination in the aftermath of the First World War. Martha Walters is the widow of an abusive man. Martha has nothing and is about to lose her home. Christopher Shipley is the reluctant heir to a substantial family...

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Blockade Billy

"I love old-school baseball,and I also love the way people who've spent a lifetime in the game talk about the game. I tried to combine those things in a story of suspense. People have asked me for years when I was going to write a baseball story. Ask no more; this is...

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The Robe

A Roman soldier, Marcellus, wins Christ's robe as a gambling prize. He then sets forth on a quest to find the truth about the Nazarene's robe-a quest that reaches to the very roots and heart of Christianity and is set against the vividly limned background of ancient...

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Waxing Moon

Waxing Moon is an epic story set in feudal 19th century Korea, in the household of wealthy landowner Mr. O. Outside, there is political unrest as Western missionaries attempt to make inroads into the country. While the servants and wives within the O household compete...

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The Lives of Stella Bain

'Atonement with just the tiniest dash of Downton Abbey' Red magazine'Gripping and moving' Sunday TimesHauled in a cart to a field hospital in northern France in March 1916, an American woman wakes from unconsciousness to the smell of gas gangrene, the sounds of men in...

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Centennial

Written to commemorate the Bicentennial in 1976, James A. Michener’s magnificent saga of the West is an enthralling celebration of the frontier. Brimming with the glory of America’s past, the story of Colorado—the Centennial State—is manifested through its people:...

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Gilead

The 2004 Pulitzer Prize winning novelA New York Times Top-Ten Book of 2004Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for FictionNearly 25 years after Housekeeping, Marilynne Robinson returns with an intimate tale of three generations, from the Civil War to the...

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City of Thieves

From the critically acclaimed author of The 25th Hour and When the Nines Roll Over and co-creator of the HBO series Game of Thrones, a captivating novel about war, courage, survival — and a remarkable friendship that ripples across a lifetime. During the Nazis’ brutal...

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The Lotus Eaters

A New York Times Best Seller! A New York Times Notable Book!A unique and sweeping debut novel of an American female combat photographer in the Vietnam War, as she captures the wrenching chaos and finds herself torn between the love of two men. On a stifling day in...

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Deep Fire Rise

2019 Spur Award Finalist for Best Western Contemporary Novel"The greatest geological event of our times finally has the novel it deserves."--Robert Michael Pyle, 2x Washington State Book Award winner and author of Wintergreen and Where Bigfoot WalksIt is 1980 and...

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The Thin Red Line

With “shattering prose,” the New York Times–bestselling author of From Here to Eternity captures the intense combat in the battle of Guadalcanal (San Francisco Chronicle).  In August of 1942 the first American marines charged Guadalcanal, igniting a six-month battle...

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The Painted Bird

The classic novel of a boy’s struggle for survival in WWII Poland, from the National Book Award–winning author of Steps and Being There.   “In 1939, a six-year-old boy is sent by his anti-Nazi parents to a remote village in Poland where they believe he will be safe....

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A Column of Fire

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER“Absorbing . . . impossible to resist.” —The Washington PostAs Europe erupts, can one young spy protect his queen? #1 New York Times bestselling author Ken Follett takes us deep into the treacherous world of powerful monarchs, intrigue,...

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The Postmistress

Experience World War 2 through the eyes of two very different women in this captivating New York Times bestseller by the author of The Guest Book.“A beautifully written, thought-provoking novel.”—Kathryn Stockett, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Help In...

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A Hundred Summers

As the 1938 hurricane approaches Rhode Island, another storm brews in this New York Times bestselling beach read from the author of Her Last Flight and The Golden Hour. Lily Dane has returned to Seaview, Rhode Island, where her family has summered for generations....

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