Time Was... New Historical Fiction

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We can't give you a time machine, but we can give you the next best thing - historical fiction. Explore the world's vast history with these gripping reads. 

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Megan Chance
Description: The eve of destruction. After her mother's death, penniless May Kimble lives a lonely life until an aunt she didn't know existed summons her to San Francisco. There she's welcomed into the wealthy Sullivan family and their social circle. Initially overwhelmed by the opulence of her new life, May soon senses that dark mysteries lurk in the shadows of the Sullivan mansion. Her glamorous cousin often disappears in the night. Her aunt wanders about in a laudanum fog. And a maid keeps hinting that May is in danger. Trapped by betrayal, madness, and murder, May stands to lose everything, including her freedom, at the hands of those she trusts most. Then, on an early April morning, San Francisco comes tumbling down. Out of the smoldering ruins, May embarks on a harrowing road to reclaim what is hers. This tragic twist of fate, along with the help of an intrepid and charismatic journalist, puts vengeance within May's reach. But will she take it?
Call Number: FIC Cha
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Ben Hopkins
Description: "At the center of this story is the Cathedral. Its design and construction in the 13th and 14th centuries in the Rhineland town of Hagenburg unites a vast array of unforgettable characters whose fortunes are inseparable from the shifting political factions and economic interests vying for supremacy. From the bishop to his treasurer to local merchants and lowly stonecutters, everyone, even the town's Jewish denizens, is implicated and affected by the slow rise of Hagenburg's Cathedral, which in no way enforces morality or charity."--Amazon.
Call Number: FIC Hop
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Marty Wingate
Description: "Ever since she was 10 years old, Rosalie Wright's eyes have been on the skies. But at the age of 18, on the verge of earning her pilot's license, the English farmer's daughter watches her dreams of becoming an aviatrix fly away without her. Britain's entry into World War II brings civilian aviation to a standstill. Then, Rosalie's father dies, leaving her, her mother, and her brothers to run the farm. Everything changes when she learns that the Air Transport Authority is recruiting women pilots to ferry warplanes across Britain to RAF bases. Despite her mother's objections, Rosalie cannot resist the call of her country--and the lure of the skies. During her training on Gipsy Moth aircraft, Rosalie forms a fast friendship with fellow flyer Caroline Andrews. Her trusty Ferry Pilots Notebook by her side, Rosalie delivers to five airfields in a day--while fighting an endless battle against skeptical male pilots and ground crews. She would much rather spend her time on the wing than on the arm of any man...until she meets gruff pilot Snug Durrant and RAF squadron leader Alan Chersey. Snug is a cynical, wisecracking playboy, and Alan is every WAAF's heartthrob...and Rosalie catches both their eyes. As the war drags on, and casualties mount, will love and tragedy send Rosalie's exhilarating airborne life crashing to the ground?" -- Publisher's description.
Call Number: FIC Win
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Florence Reiss Kraut
Description: "When Ida and her daughter Bessie flee a catastrophic pogrom in Ukraine for America in 1905, they believe their emigration will ensure that their children and grandchildren will be safe from harm. But choices and decisions made by one generation have ripple effects on those who come later--and in the decades that follow, family secrets, betrayals, and mistakes made in the name of love threaten the survival of the family: Bessie and Abe Weissman's children struggle with the shattering effects of daughter Ruby's mental illness, of Jenny's love affair with her brother-in-law, of the disappearance of Ruby's daughter as she flees her mother's legacy, and of the accidental deaths of Irene's husband and granddaughter" --Author's website.
Call Number: FIC Kra
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Nuala O'Connor
Description: "Dublin, 1904. Nora Barnacle, from Galway, works as a maid at Finn's Hotel. Her life is changed when she meets Dubliner James Joyce, a fateful encounter that turns into a lifelong love. Despite his hesitation to marry, Nora follows Joyce in pursuit of a life beyond Ireland. As their life unfolds, Nora finds herself in conflict between their intense desire for each other and the constant anxiety of living in poverty throughout Europe. She believes in Jim's singular gift and knows that he thrives on being the toast of the town. As Jim writes, drinks, and gambles his way to literary acclaim, Nora provides unflinching support and inspiration, but at a cost to her own happiness and that of their children."--Publisher.
Call Number: FIC OCo
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Shirley Dickson
Description: "England, 1943: When twenty-five-year-old May Robinson's mother is tragically killed one foggy night, May is heartbroken and terrified. She isn't sure she has the strength to harbor the secret they have kept for so many years--the secret her mother devoted her life to hiding. The secret that would tear their broken family even further apart. Instead, May vows to make her mother proud by training to be a nurse at Edgemoor General Hospital in South Shields. Surrounded by wailing air-raid sirens and the eternal drone of enemy planes, May tends wounded, ashen-faced soldiers. Working tirelessly alongside her is kindhearted Richard Bentley. May is immediately drawn to his sparkling brown eyes and the way he makes her laugh. Among the death and despair, May and Richard become beacons of hope for each other--but May wonders why he isn't fighting in the war like the thousands of other brave young men. Yet May, longing to escape her past, has kept her own secret hidden from Richard. As the peril and uncertainty around them grows, she finds herself asking: How well do they really know each other? And with the war coming closer to home, May cannot keep her shocking truth from coming to light" -- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Dic
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Fei Ge, Canaan Morse
Description: "In 1898, China experienced one hundred days of utopia, after a cabal of reformist intellectuals persuaded the young emperor to enact sweeping changes intended to modernize the country and bring about the "Great Unity." Their movement ended in blood and the crowning of two more dictators, but not before it whetted an appetite for revolution all across the country - an appetite that would eventually consume millions of lives. One such life belongs to Xiumi, the young daughter of a wealthy landowner and former government official who goes insane over a painting, then mysteriously disappears. Days later, Xiumi's mother welcomes to the estate a young man who carries a grand but brutal vision in his heart and a gold cicada in his pocket. When his plans collapse, Xiumi inherits his vision, just as she herself begins fighting the Confucian social mores that view women as property. On her wedding day, she becomes a pawn in a series of violent transactions carried out by men who think they are building paradise; as each one fails, she attempts to repay them in kind by spearheading a movement of her own. Her campaign for change is always a fight to win control of her own body; and the cost of even that is nearly total."--Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Ge
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Laura Joh Rowland
Description: "London, October 1890. Crime scene photographer Sarah Bain is overjoyed to marry her beloved Detective Sergeant Barrett--but the wedding takes a sinister turn when the body of a stabbing victim is discovered in the crypt of the church. Not every newlywed couple begins their marriage with a murder investigation, but Sarah and Barrett, along with their friends Lord Hugh Staunton and Mick O'Reilly, take the case" -- Publisher's description.
Call Number: FIC Row
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Viola Ardone, Clarissa Botsford
Description: "Though Mussolini and the fascists have been defeated, the war has devastated Italy, especially the south. Seven-year-old Amerigo lives with his mother Antonietta in Naples, surviving on odd jobs and his wits like the rest of the poor in his neighborhood. But one day, Amerigo learns that a train will take him away from the rubble-strewn streets of the city to spend the winter with a family in the north, where he will be safe and have warm clothes and food to eat. Together with thousands of other southern children, Amerigo will cross the entire peninsula to a new life. Through his curious, innocent eyes, we see a nation rising from the ashes of war, reborn. As he comes to enjoy his new surroundings and the possibilities for a better future, Amerigo will make the heartbreaking choice to leave his mother and become a member of his adoptive family."-- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Ard
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
S. J. Parris
Description: Three exhilarating novellas'The Secret Dead, The Academy of Secrets,andThe Dead of Winter' following the early adventures of young priest Giordano Bruno in the dramatic days of sixteenth century Italy. Even the dead have a story to tell ...
Call Number: FIC Par
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Conn Iggulden
Description: "In ancient Greece an army of slaves gathers on the plains of Marathon... Under Darius the Great, King of Kings, the mighty Persian army--swollen by 10,000 warriors known as The Immortals--have come to subjugate the Greeks. In their path, vastly outnumbered, stands an army of freeborn Athenians. Among them is a clever, fearsome, and cunning soldier-statesman, Xanthippus. Against all odds, the Athenians emerge victorious. Yet people soon forget that freedom is bought with blood. Ten years later, Xanthippus watches helplessly as Athens succumbs to the bitter politics of factionalism. Traitors and exiles abound. Trust is at a low ebb when the Persians cross the Hellespont in ever greater numbers in their second attempt to raze Athens to the ground. Facing overwhelming forces by land and sea, the Athenians call on their Spartan allies for assistance--to delay the Persians at the treacherous pass of Thermopylae" -- Publisher's description.
Call Number: FIC Igg
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Jennifer Ryan
Description: "Two years into World War II, Britain is feeling her losses; the Nazis have won battles, the Blitz has destroyed cities, and U-boats have cut off the supply of food. In an effort to help housewives with food rationing, a BBC radio program called The Kitchen Front is putting on a cooking contest--and the grand prize is a job as the program's first-ever female co-host. For four very different women, winning the contest presents a crucial chance to change their lives. For a young widow, it's a chance to pay off her husband's debts and keep a roof over her children's heads. For a kitchen maid, it's a chance to leave servitude and find freedom. For the lady of the manor, it's a chance to escape her wealthy husband's increasingly hostile behavior. And for a trained chef, it's a chance to challenge the men at the top of her profession. These four women are giving the competition their all--even if that sometimes means bending the rules. But with so much at stake, will the contest that aims to bring the community together serve only to break it apart?"-- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Rya
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Sumi Hahn
Description: "In the aftermath of World War II, Goh Junja is a girl just coming into her own. She is the latest successful deep sea diver in a family of strong haenyeo. Confident she is a woman now, Junja urges her mother to allow her to make the Goh family's annual trip to Mt. Halla, where they trade abalone and other sea delicacies for pork. Junja, a sea village girl, has never been to the mountains, where it smells like mushrooms and earth. While there, she falls in love with a mountain boy Yang Suwol, who rescues her after a particularly harrowing journey. But when Junja returns one day later, it is just in time to see her mother take her last breath, beaten by the waves during a dive she was taking in Junja's place. Spiraling in grief, Junja sees her younger siblings sent to live with their estranged father. Everywhere she turns, Junja is haunted by the loss of her mother, from the meticulously tended herb garden that has now begun to sprout weeds, to the field where their bed sheets are beaten. She has only her grandmother and herself. But the world moves on without Junja. The political climate is perilous. Still reeling from Japan's forced withdrawal from the peninsula, Korea is forced to accommodate the rapid establishment of US troops. Junja's canny grandmother, who lived through the Japanese invasion that led to Korea's occupation understands the signs of danger all too well. When Suwol is arrested for working with and harboring communists, and the perils of post-WWII overtake her homelands, Junja must learn to navigate a tumultuous world unlike anything she's ever known" --Publisher
Call Number: FIC Hah
Format: Book
Date Added: Dec 28, 2020
Robert Jones
Description: "A singular and stunning debut novel about the forbidden union between two enslaved young men on a Deep South plantation, the refuge they find in each other, and a betrayal that threatens their existence"-- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Jon
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Susanna Calkins
Description: "London, 1667. On her way to a new market to peddle her True Accounts and Strange News, printer's apprentice Lucy Campion quickly regrets her decision to take the northwestern road. Dark and desolate, the path leads her to the crossroads - and to the old hanging tree. She doesn't believe in ghosts, but she's not sure ghosts don't believe in her. But before she even reaches the crossroads, she's knocked off her feet by two men in a hurry. What were they running from? To her dismay, she soon discovers for herself: there, dangling from the tree, is the body of a man. Did he commit self-murder, or is there something darker afoot? The more Lucy learns, the more determined she is to uncover the truth. But this time, even the help and protection of magistrate's son Adam, and steadfast Constable Duncan, may not be enough to keep her safe from harm . . ."--Publisher.
Call Number: FIC Cal
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Yaniv Iczkovits, Orr Scharf
Description: "With her reputation as a vilde chaya, a wild beast, Fanny Keismann isn't like the other women in her shtetl-certainly not her obedient and anxiety-ridden sister, Mende, whose "philosopher" of a husband, Zvi-Meir, has run off to Minsk, abandoning her and their two children in a small village in Russia's Pale of Settlement. As a young girl, Fanny felt an inexorable pull toward the profession of her father, Grodno's ritual slaughterer, who reluctantly took her under his wing and trained her to be a master shochet-incredibly skilled with a knife. It's a knife that Fanny keeps tied to her right leg even now, as a married woman, cheese farmer, and mother of five, long after she's given up that unsuitable profession. Horrified by her brother-in-law's actions and heedless of the dangers facing a Jewish woman travelling alone in Czarist Russia, Fanny decides that enough is enough and sets off to track down Zvi-Meir and bring him home-with the help of the mute and mysterious ferryman, Zizek Breshov, an ex-soldier with his own sensational past. In irresistible prose, Israeli novelist Yaniv Iczkovits spins a family drama into a far-reaching comedy of errors that soon pits the Czar's army against the Russian secret police and threatens the foundations of the Russian Empire."-- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Icz
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Patricia Falvey
Description: "Sisters Nora and Delia have been given the chance of a lifetime - to escape their poor Irish farm and travel on the Titanic to a new life in America. Delia is to become a treasured governess for a rich family, while Nora has only a lowly maid's position. But when disaster strikes, and Delia dies, a small misunderstanding leads to Nora taking Delia's place as governess. As Nora grows closer to her charge, and the girl's father, will she be able to reveal the truth to find a chance at happiness? And what will happen when she finds out that Delia is actually alive, and coming to take what is rightfully hers"--Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Fal
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Alexis Landau
Description: As a Russian Jewish émigré to France, Vera's wealth cannot protect her or her four-year-old-daughter, Lucie, once the Nazis occupy the country. After receiving notice that all foreigners must report to an internment camp, Vera has just a few hours to make an impossible choice: Does she subject Lucie to the horrid conditions of the camp, or does she put her into hiding with her beloved and trusted governess, safe until Vera can retrieve her? Believing the war will end soon, Vera chooses to leave Lucie in safety. She cannot know that she and her husband will have an opportunity to escape, to flee to America. She cannot know that Lucie's governess will have fled with Lucie to family in rural France, too far to reach in time.
Call Number: FIC Lan
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Mikael Niemi, Deborah Bragan-Turner
Description: "To Cook a Bear is a fantastic tale set in the far north of Sweden in 1852. It follows a runaway Sami boy and his mentor, the revivalist preacher Laestadius, as they investigate a murder in their village along with the mysteries of life."-- Provided by publisher.
Call Number: FIC Nie
Format: Book
Date Added: Mar 5, 2021
Sadeqa Johnson
Description: "Born on a plantation in Charles City, Virginia, Pheby Delores Brown has lived a relatively sheltered life. Shielded by her mother’s position as the estate’s medicine woman and cherished by the Master’s sister, she is set apart from the others on the plantation, belonging to neither world. She’d been promised freedom on her eighteenth birthday, but instead of the idyllic life she imagined with her true love, Essex Henry, Pheby is forced to leave the only home she has ever known. She unexpectedly finds herself thrust into the bowels of slavery at the infamous Devil’s Half Acre, a jail in Richmond, Virginia, where the enslaved are broken, tortured, and sold every day. There, Pheby is exposed not just to her Jailer’s cruelty but also to his contradictions. To survive, Pheby will have to outwit him, and she soon faces the ultimate sacrifice" --Amazon.
Call Number: FIC Joh
Format: Book
Date Added: Jan 25, 2021
Subscribe to New Best Fun List: Time Was... New Historical Fiction
A Splendid Ruin : A Novel
Megan Chance
FIC Cha
The Gates Of Athens
Conn Iggulden
FIC Igg
Cathedral
Ben Hopkins
FIC Hop
The Kitchen Front : A Novel
Jennifer Ryan
FIC Rya
Glamour Girls : A Novel
Marty Wingate
FIC Win
The Mermaid From Jeju : A Novel
Sumi Hahn
FIC Hah
How To Make A Life
Florence Reiss Kraut
FIC Kra
The Prophets : A Novel
Robert Jones
FIC Jon
Nora : A Love Story Of Nora And James Joyce
Nuala O'Connor
FIC OCo
The Sign Of The Gallows
Susanna Calkins
FIC Cal
Our Last Goodbye
Shirley Dickson
FIC Dic
The Slaughterman's Daughter
Yaniv Iczkovits, Orr Scharf
FIC Icz
Peach Blossom Paradise
Fei Ge, Canaan Morse
FIC Ge
The Titanic Sisters
Patricia Falvey
FIC Fal
Portrait Of Peril : A Victorian Mystery
Laura Joh Rowland
FIC Row
Those Who Are Saved
Alexis Landau
FIC Lan
The Children's Train : A Novel
Viola Ardone, Clarissa Botsford
FIC Ard
To Cook A Bear
Mikael Niemi, Deborah Bragan-Turner
FIC Nie
The Dead Of Winter : Three Giordano Bruno Novellas
S. J. Parris
FIC Par
Yellow Wife : A Novel
Sadeqa Johnson
FIC Joh