Book Reviews

Top Ten Tuesday: Freebie: 2022 Historical Fiction About Real People

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I often enjoy reading novels telling the fictionalized story of a real person. We’re half way through 2022, and right now I haven’t read any of this type historical fiction released in this year. I’ve only read Hamnet, released in 2020). I’ve read some new books based on real events or real people, but none that tell the story of an actual real person. I thought I’d look and see what some of the possibilities were from the 2022 books. Here are a few that interest me.

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I usually also try to read a few of Reece Witherspoon’s book club choices, but I’ve only read one so far this year. Maybe this will be the second–it’s also a historical fiction telling the story (Honor by Thrity Umrigar) of a real person, in this case writer Agatha Christie. Christie disappeared for a few weeks and this story proports to fill in the blank of that time in her life. The Christie Affair by Nina de Gramont.

Two new books, one out the other coming this Fall, tell part of the story of Jackie Kenney’s life. I recently had the audio of Jackie & Me, but did not like the narrator, so I will try that one in print. Jacqueline in Paris by Ann Mah comes out this Fall, Jackie & Me by Louis Bayard is out now.

I keep seeing new “industries” of books. Mrs. Hemingway books, novels about the Windsors, and now the Romanovs–especially the tragic family of the last Tzar Nicholas II. The Last Grand Duchess is about one of the daughters of that family–Grand Duchess Olga. The Tzarina’s Daughter takes us back to an earlier Romanov family–that of Peter the Great.

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While I’ve never cared to watch Sister Wives, I’ve always been fascinated by cultish religion so Warren Jeffs and his crew have long been a group I’ve read about. This is the story of how it all began–seen through the eyes of the first wife of Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of Latter Day Saints–i.e. “The Mormons.” The Prophet’s Wife by Libbie Grant.

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While Marie Antoinette’s fate was worse, her little sister Charlotte faced an unhappy future, too. Antoinette’s Sister: A Novel by Diana Giovinazzo.

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While I’ve been hit-or-miss with Allison Pataki’s books, I do want to try this one. Top Drawer Society–what’s not to enjoy? The Magnificent Lives of Marjorie Post by Allison Pataki.

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The so-called Golden Age of Hollywood makes a great backdrop for a novel. Toss in a castle and a newspaper magnate and this should be a good one. The Blue Butterfly by Leslie Johansen Nack.

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And a high-society decorator? Sure! Grand Design by Joy Calloway.

Why not join in the Top Ten Tuesday fun next week?

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Check out the rules at That Artsy Reader Girl and join in next week!

21 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Freebie: 2022 Historical Fiction About Real People

  1. I like your choice of topic this week. Interesting comment about how there seem to be “industries” of books about the same people.
    I’ve read two this year that fit into this category – Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood which I loved and now want to read The Paris Wife. The other one I didn’t like much at all – On Wilder Seas by Mikki Marmery about a woman who was on Drake’s voyage to find the north passage. Good idea for a novel but not well executed

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  2. Great topic! I haven’t read any of these, although I’m interested in hearing how the Christie book works out. (There was another historical novel about Agatha Christie that came out last year, and I really enjoyed it, so I’m hesitant to read another take on her life).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great topic, Lisa. I think I will keep this topic tucked into my back pocket for the next Freebie. I have The Christie Affair to read and enjoyed The Last Grand Duchess.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve always stayed away from books about my religion because they often don’t get things right, but I’m curious what The Prophet’s Wife says about Emma Smith’s experience as Joseph’s wife. Also, just so you know, Warren Jeffs isn’t a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Church of Latter-day Saints is incorrect) nor are the people in Sister Wives. They’re an offshoot. And, Mormons no longer practice polygamy. It’s a hard topic to discuss as I have issues with it myself. I just wanted to make sure that you knew the difference because there’s a lot of false information out there.

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