THE LATEST LITERARY TREND IN HISTORICAL FICTIONWhat do these books have in common?
- Strikingly similar covers, of course;
- Categorized under the historical fiction genre;
- Strong-willed, admirable female protagonists;
- Based on true characters and events;
- Female authors;
- Recently published;
- Highly rated; and
- Frequently popping up on ‘Book-Club’ lists.
As you can see, the latest theme in historical fiction runs deeper than cover similarities. Each heroine story challenges war-time gender associations and adds perspective in a way that the genre has skirted around before (probably because it was undocumented). Throughout history women have been discounted as secondary to men – they were the muse, the wife, the daughter, the trophy. In actuality, they were spies, activists, surgeons, and snipers. With the evolution of women empowerment in today’s society, it is no wonder we are seeing gynocentric historical novels hitting the shelves at a rapid rate.
War heroes are not exclusive to one gender.
Everyone’s story deserves to be told which makes each of these books worth reading regardless of their similarities. This trend of highlighting important, yet overlooked, female figures in history is something we can get on board with.
While It can certainly be said that the designers behind the cover art need to mix it up, that does not reflect the story within. The authors conducted their own research, developed their own characters, and should be celebrated for their efforts to champion the role of women throughout history.
The Alice Network
by Kate Quinn
06 June 2017
Goodreads Rating: 4.26
“In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women – a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947 – are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.”
The Lost Letter
by Jillian Cantor
12 June 2018
Goodreads Rating: 4.18
“A historical novel of love and survival inspired by real resistance workers during World War II Austria, and the mysterious love letter that connects generations of Jewish families.”
by Martha Hall Kelly
05 April 2018
Goodreads Rating: 4.3
“Inspired by the life of a real World War II heroine, this remarkable debut novel reveals the power of unsung women to change history in their quest for love, freedom, and second chances. New York socialite Caroline Ferriday has her hands full with her post at the French consulate and a new love on the horizon. But Caroline’s world is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939 – and then sets its sights on France.”
The Forgotten Girl
by Kerry Barrett
29 September 2016
Goodreads Rating: 3.9
“Two women. Two decades. One story. Fearne has landed her dream job to run Mode. Except the dream isn’t quite so rosy in reality, the print magazine is struggling and Fearne is determined to save it. In 1966, desperate to escate her life, Nancy moves to London with her brilliantly unpredicable freind Suze to achieve their dream of writing for Mode magazine together. Unbeknownst to [them all], what [they] discover might be the biggest story of [their] career.”