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Is there a story about the past in your future? Booklist recently named their top ten historical fiction picks, and all of the titles are available to check out from the library.


Barkskins

Barkskins

By Annie Proulx

Working as woodcutters under a feudal lord in seventeenth-century New France, two impoverished young Frenchmen follow separate journeys—one of extraordinary hardship, the other of wealth and craftiness—that shape their families throughout three centuries.


The Bones of Paradise

The Bones of Paradise

By Jonis Agee

When a white rancher and a young Native American are found murdered on a remote part of his land a decade after Wounded Knee, the scattered members of the victims’ families gather to investigate and expose damning secrets against a backdrop of difficult cultural transformations.


The Book of Harlan

The Book of Harlan

By Bernice L. McFadden

successful pair of Harlem jazz musicians are invited to Montmartre, France to perform right before the Nazi occupation of Paris and end up in the Buchenwald concentration camp.


The Gustav Sonata

The Gustav Sonata

By Rose Tremain

Gustav Perle grows up in a small town in Switzerland, where the horrors of the Second World War seem only a distant echo. An only child, he lives alone with Emilie, the mother he adores but who treats him with bitter severity. He begins an intense friendship with a Jewish boy his age, talented and mercurial Anton Zweibel, a budding concert pianist. The novel follows Gustav’s family, tracing the roots of his mother’s anti-Semitism and its impact on her son and his beloved friend.


The Hamilton Affair

The Hamilton Affair

By Elizabeth Cobbs

Set against the dramatic backdrop of the American Revolution, a tale inspired by the true romance between Alexander Hamilton and Elizabeth Schuyler traces Hamilton’s rise to one of America’s most unlikely heroes and Schuyler’s establishment of New York’s first orphanage.


Huck out West

Huck out West

By Robert Coover

In the author’s interpretation of what happened after Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, Huck joins the Pony Express, scouts for both sides in the Civil War, joins a bandit gang, locates an ill-fated pal in a Lakota tribe and finds himself in the Black Hills just ahead of the 1876 Gold Rush.


Lincoln in the Bardo

Lincoln in the Bardo

By George Saunders

Traces a night of solitary mourning and reflection as experienced by the sixteenth president after the death of his eleven-year-old son at the dawn of the Civil War.


Music of the Ghosts

Music of the Ghosts

By Vaddey Ratner

Returning to the Cambodian homeland she fled as a child refugee decades earlier, Teera finds herself in a country of survivors and perpetrators of the Khmer Rouge holocaust before bonding with a mysterious musician who claims to have known her late father.


The Underground Railroad

The Underground Railroad

By Colson Whitehead

After Cora, a slave in pre-Civil War Georgia, escapes with another slave, Caesar, they seek the help of the Underground Railroad as they flee from state to state and try to evade a slave catcher, Ridgeway, who is determined to return them to the South.


The Wonder

The Wonder

By Emma Donoghue

Hired to care for a small Irish village girl said to have miraculously survived on nothing but “manna from heaven” for months, a journalist and nurse veteran of Florence Nightingale’s Crimean campaign quickly finds herself fighting to save the child’s life.


Booklist‘s selections were made from books reviewed between April 15, 2016, and April 1, 2017.

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