The marriage of opposites : a novel / Alice Hoffman (2015 historical fiction, F Hoffman)
Dreaming of an exotic life in Paris while coming of age in a St. Thomas refugee community, young Rachel is forced to marry a widower before falling scandalously in love and becoming the mother of Impressionist master Camille Pissarro.
Under the wide and starry sky : a novel / Nancy Horan (2014 fiction, F Horan)
Imagines the unconventional love affair of Scottish literary giant Robert Louis Stevenson and American divorcee Fanny Van de Grift Osbourne, who after meeting in late-19th-century rural France take refuge from their respective unhappy lives and embark on two shared decades of international turbulence.
The girl from the Savoy / Hazel Gaynor (2016 historical fiction, F Gaynor)
After taking a job as a chambermaid at a grand London hotel, Dolly Lane finds herself propelled into the glittering London theatre scene when she becomes the muse to a struggling songwriter.
The white queen / Philippa Gregory (2009 historical fiction, F Gregory)
A tale inspired by the War of the Roses follows the conflict from the perspective of Elizabeth Woodville, who ascends to royalty and fights for the well-being of her family, including two sons whose imprisonment in the Tower of London precedes a devastating unsolved mystery.
The passion of Artemisia / Susan Vreeland (2002 historical fiction, F Vreeland)
A sweeping novel, set against the beautiful backdrops of Rome, Florence, and Genoa, vibrantly recreates the life of Artemisia Gentileschi, one of the most extraordinary female painters in history, whose search for love, forgiveness, and wholeness through her art led to her fame as a painter and her induction into the prestigious Accademia dell’Arte.
Anna Karenina : a novel in eight parts / Leo Tolstoy (2002 ed historical fiction, F Tolstoy)
Tells of the doomed love affair between the sensuous and rebellious Anna and the dashing officer, Count Vronsky. Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and thereby exposes herself to the hypocrisies of society. Set against a vast and richly textured canvas of nineteenth-century Russia, the novel’s seven major characters create a dynamic imbalance, playing out the contrasts of city and country life and all the variations on love and family happiness.
Disgrace / J.M. Coetzee (1999 fiction, F Coetzee)
In a novel set in post-apartheid South Africa, a fifty-two-year-old college professor who has lost his job for sleeping with a student tries to relate to his daughter, Lucy, who works with an ambitious African farmer.
The winter sea / Susanna Kearsley (2010 fiction, F Kearsley)
Carrie settles into the shadow of Slains Castle in Scotland, creates a heroine named for one of her own ancestors, and starts to write about the Jacobite invasion of 1708. When she can no longer tell the difference between today and centuries ago, is she dealing with an ancestral memory– a memory that might destroy her?
West of sunset : a novel / Stewart O’Nan (2015 historical fiction, F O’Nan)
A tale inspired by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s last years in Hollywood finds him reflecting on past events at the height of the Jazz Age while falling in love, struggling to hold his family together and penning The Last Tycoon.
The Paris architect : a novel / Charles Belfoure (2013 historical fiction, F Belfoure)
A Parisian architect is paid handsomely to devise secret hiding spaces for Jews in his Nazi-occupied country but struggles with risking his life for a cause he is ambivalent towards, until a personal failure brings home their suffering.