Archives de catégorie : Historical Fiction


A bravura re-imagining of the ‘discovery’ of the Americas, from a prize-winning writer.

by Nick Hunt
Swift Press, July 2023
(via Randle Editorial and Literary)

The year is 1521 in the Mexica city of Tenochtitlan. Twenty-nine years earlier, Islamic Spain never fell to the Christians, and Andalus launched a voyage of discovery to the New Maghreb.
For two decades the Jewish merchant Eli Ben Abram, who led the first ships across the sea, has maintained a delicate peace in the Moorish enclave of Moctezuma’s breathtaking capital, assisted by his Nahua wife Malinala. But the emperor has been acting strangely, sacrifices are increasing at the temples, a mysterious sickness is spreading through the city, and there are rumours of a hostile army crossing the sea…
A bravura reimagining of an alternate history, RED SMOKING MIRROR is a richly written novel of love and fate, of how cultures co-operate and clash, and of how individuals can shape and are shaped by the times they live through.

Nick Hunt has walked and written across much of Europe. He has written a loose trilogy of books about walking in Europe, the first two of which were shortlisted for the Stanford Dolman Travel Book of the Year. His articles have appeared in The Economist, the Guardian and elsewhere, and he works as an editor for the Dark Mountain Project. RED SMOKING MIRROR is his first novel.


A novel of one family, a century of war, and the promise of homecoming from Dayton Literary Peace Prize winner and National Book Award finalist Andrew Krivak.

by Andrew Krivak
Bellevue Press, May 2023
(via Kaplan/DeFiore Rights)

Rooted in the small, mountain town of Dardan, Pennsylvania, where patriarch Jozef Vinich settled after surviving World War I, LIKE THE APPEARANCE OF HORSES immerses us in the intimate lives of a family whose fierce bonds have been shaped by the great conflicts of the past century.
After Bexhet Konar escapes fascist Hungary and crosses the ocean to find Jozef, the man who saved his life in 1919, he falls in love with Jozef’s daughter, Hannah, enlists in World War II, and is drawn into a personal war of revenge. Many years later, their youngest son, Samuel, is taken prisoner in Vietnam and returns home with a heroin addiction and deep physical and psychological wounds. As Samuel travels his own path toward healing, his son will graduate from Annapolis as a Marine on his way to Iraq.
In spare, breathtaking prose, LIKE THE APPEARANCE OF HORSES  is the freestanding, culminating novel in Andrew Krivak’s award-winning Dardan Trilogy, which began with 
The Sojourn and The Signal Flame. It is a story about borders drawn within families as well as around nations, and redrawn by ethnicity, prejudice, and war. It is also a tender story of love and how it is tested by duty, loyalty, and honor.

Subtle and nuanced.” —Kirkus (starred review)

Krivak’s resplendent multigenerational family saga expertly braids the horrors of war with the struggles of those waiting for loved ones to return home.” —Booklist (starred review)

Krivak impresses with this layered story of deferred homecomings and the elusive nature of peace.” —Publishers Weekly

Andrew Krivak is the author of The Bear, a Mountain Book Competition winner and NEA Big Read selection, and the novels of the Dardan Trilogy: The Sojourn, a National Book Award finalist and winner of both the Chautauqua Prize and Dayton Literary Peace Prize; and The Signal Flame, a Chautauqua Prize finalist. He lives with his wife and three children in Somerville, Massachusetts, and Jaffrey, New Hampshire.


Set in 1700s Amsterdam, this historical novel explores the life of entomologist and artist Maria Sibylla Merian’s daughter Dorothea Graff.

by Melissa Ashley
Affirm Press (Australia), September 2023
(via Kaplan/DeFiore Rights)

Credit: David Merrylees

Set in 1700s Amsterdam, The Naturalist of Amsterdam follows the life of Dorothea Graff, daughter of the famed artist and naturalist, Maria Sybilla Merian. From her early years within the confines of the Labadist community of Walter Schloss to her mother’s artist studio in Amsterdam and the wilds of South America, Dorothea’s story charts an amazingly rich and colourful period of discovery and explores the challenge of being the offspring of one of the most famous female artists in history. For as long as she can remember, Dorothea Graff has served her scientist-artist mother, Maria Sibylla Merian, in the family atelier with her older sister Hanna.
At just twenty years old, Dorothea decides to join her mother on a once in a lifetime expedition to the Dutch Colony of Suriname to observe and paint its insect and plant life. A commercial artist, businesswoman and printmaker, Maria has previously published illustrated volumes of her studies of European butterflies and plants, but entranced by displays of Suriname insects in the collections of Amsterdam’s rich burgher merchant-traders, Maria decides to travel to their source, where she will conduct studies in their habitat to feature them in a magnificent, hand-coloured publication.
All Maria and Dorothea’s savings have been ploughed into the expedition, which is fraught with danger and peril, but fame and greatness are never achieved without enormous sacrifice and suffering – The Metamorphosis of the Insects of Suriname will one day make Maria world-famous.
asks the question: who are we really outside of our work, and given another chance at happiness, should we take it?

Melissa Ashley is a writer, poet, birder and academic who tutors in poetry and creative writing at the University of Queensland in Australia. Her first novel, The Birdman’s Wife, has been printed in three formats and sold more than 35,000 copies in Australia, and her follow-up novel The Bee and the Orange Tree was also a bestseller. She lives in Brisbane, Australia.

THE LITTLE LIAR de Mitch Albom

Beloved bestselling author Mitch Albom returns with a powerful novel that moves from a small village in Greece during the Holocaust, to America, where the intertwined lives of three survivors are forever changed by the perils of deception and the grace of redemption.

by Mitch Albom
Harper, November 2023
(via David Black

Credit: Jenny Risher

Eleven-year-old Nico Crispi never told a lie. When the Nazi’s invade his home in Salonika, Greece, the trustworthy boy is discovered by a German officer, who offers him a chance to save his family. All Nico has to do is convince his fellow Jewish residents to board trains heading towards “the east” where they are promised jobs and safety. Unaware that this is all a cruel ruse, the innocent boy goes to the station platform every day and reassures the passengers that the journey is safe. But when the final train is at the station, Nico sees his family being loaded into a large boxcar crowded with other neighbors. Only after it is too late does Nico discover that he helped send the people he loved—and all the others—to their doom at Auschwitz.
Nico never tells the truth again.
, his first novel set during the Holocaust, Mitch Albom interweaves the stories of Nico, his brother Sebastian, and their schoolmate Fanni, who miraculously survive the death camps and spend years searching for Nico, who has become a pathological liar, and the Nazi officer who radically changed their lives. As the decades pass, Albom reveals the consequences of what they said, did, and endured.
A moving parable that explores honesty, survival, revenge and devotion, THE LITTLE LIAR is Mitch Albom at his very best. Narrated by the voice of Truth itself, it is a timeless story about the harm we inflict with our deceits, and the power of love to ultimately redeem us.

Mitch Albom is the author of numerous books of fiction and nonfiction, which have collectively sold more than forty million copies in forty-seven languages worldwide. He has written seven number-one New York Times bestsellers – including Tuesdays with Morrie, the bestselling memoir of all time, which topped the list for four straight years – award-winning TV films, stage plays, screenplays, a nationally syndicated newspaper column, and a musical. Through his work at the Detroit Free Press, he was inducted into both the National Sports Media Association and Michigan Sports halls of fame and is the recipient of the 2010 Red Smith Award for lifetime achievement. After bestselling memoir Finding Chika and “Human Touch,” the weekly serial written and published online in real-time to raise funds for pandemic relief, his latest work is a return to fiction with The Stranger in the Lifeboat (Harper, November 2021). He founded and oversees SAY Detroit, a consortium of nine different charitable operations in his hometown, including a nonprofit dessert shop and food product line to fund programs for Detroit’s most underserved citizens. He also operates an orphanage in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti, which he visits monthly. He lives with his wife, Janine, in Michigan.


Told in assured, evocative prose, with impeccably drawn characters, DAUGHTERS OF SHANDONG is a hopeful, powerful story about the resilience of women in war, the enduring love between mothers, daughters and sisters, and the sacrifices made to lift up future generations.

by Eve J. Chung
Berkley, Spring 2024
(via Writers House)

Daughters are the Ang’s family curse.
In 1948, the civil war ravages the countryside, but in rural Shandong the wealthy landowning Angs are more concerned with their lack of an heir. Hai is the eldest of four girls and spends her days looking after her baby sisters. Headstrong Di, who is just a year younger, learns to hide in plain sight, and their mother, abused by the family for failing to birth a boy, finds her own small acts of rebellion in the kitchen. As the communist army closes in on their town, the prosperous household flees, leaving behind the girls and their mother because they are useless mouths to feed.
Without an Ang male to punish, the land-seizing cadres choose Hai, as the eldest child, to stand trial for her family’s crimes. She barely survives their brutality. Realizing that worse is yet to come, the women plan their escape. Starving and penniless, but resourceful, they forge their travel permits and embark on a thousand-mile journey to confront the family that abandoned them.
From the countryside to Qingdao, and onward to British Hong Kong and eventually Taiwan, they witness the changing hands of a nation and the plight of multitudes caught in the wake of revolution. But with the loss of their home and the life they’d known also comes a new freedom to take hold of their own fate, to shake free of the bonds of their gender, and to claim their own story.

Eve J. Chung is a Taiwanese American human rights lawyer, currently working for the United Nations as a human rights policy specialist focusing on gender equality and women’s rights. She has worked on a range of issues, including torture, sexual violence, contemporary forms of slavery, and discriminatory legislation. Her writing is inspired by social justice movements, and the continued struggle for equality and fundamental freedom worldwide.