Top Ten Historical Fiction Books

Live through the past with our compelling historical fiction books. We have novels ranging from the Roman times to the 1950s and titles from some of the best-known authors in historical fiction, including Philippa Gregory and C. J. Sansom. From courtly tales of kings and queens to gritty stories of soldiers and war, we have something for everyone in the mix so if you can't get enough of times gone by then check out our brilliant historical fiction books.

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1. The Last Tudor

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Philippa Gregory

Philippa Gregory is one of the biggest names in historical fiction and in her latest book, she tackles the remarkable story of Lady Jane Grey. After the death of the young Kind Edward VI, her father finds a way to place her next in line for the throne but the king's sister, Mary, is determined to put a stop to this bid for power and has Jane executed following a reign lasting just 9 days. The book then follows her two sisters, Katherine and Mary, and the letters they left one another. This gripping read will bring some of the most and least well-known historical figures to life in enthralling detail.

 

2. The Last Hours

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Minette Walters

Minette Walters is known for crime novels but this fascinating book sees her first venture into historical fiction. Set in 1348, when the Black Death was sweeping the nation, the novel follows Lady Anne of the Develish estate and a slave called Thaddeus as they try to quarantine their Dorset community. But, as tensions build between the social classes, who will be the first to leave the quarantine and face the plague outside?

 

3. C.J. Sansom Collection - 3 Books


C.J. Sansom Collection - 3 Books - Collection - 9781509858309 - CJ Sansom
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C.J. Sansom

The books in this collection are the first 3 instalments in C.J. Sansom's Shardlake series. Set in Tudor England during the Reformation, the first book, Dissolutions, follows lawyer Dr Matthew Shardlake as he investigates the murder of one of Cromwell's commissioners. Shocking and thrilling, you can follow Shardlake through his strange and sinister missions in one of the most pivotal periods of history in 3 bestselling books.

 

4. M.C. Beaton: The Six Sisters Collection - 6 Books

M.C. Beaton: The Six Sisters Collection - 6 Books - Collection - 9781472126641 - M.C. Beaton
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M.C. Beaton

M.C. Beaton is better known for her Agatha Raisin mystery novels but in this 6-book collection, her fans are treated to a very different type of story. Set in the Regency period, each novel follows one of the 6 Armitage sisters on their romantic adventures. Minerva joins London society, Annabelle falls in love with Minerva's betrothed, Diana takes to hunting and Frederica decides to run away! Get your chance to become acquainted with historical romance's most exciting family in this brilliant collection.

 

5. Eagles of Empire Collection - 5 Books

Eagles of Empire Collection - 5 Books - Collection - 9781472250872 - Simon Scarrow
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Simon Scarrow

This thrilling series is set in AD42 and follows Quintus Licinius Cato through his terrifying time in the Roman Army. With his imperial links, Quintus manages to move up through the ranks surprisingly quickly and is forced to prove himself when the army are sent to face the danger and wilderness of early Britain. With 5 exciting books to occupy you, you will become thoroughly engrossed in a mind-blowing part of history.

 

6. Pat Barker Collection - 3 Books

Pat Barker Collection - 3 Books - Collection - 9780241976234 - Pat Barker
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Pat Barker

Combining real stories with fiction, these 3 books are focused on casualties in World War I and how they were treated. Bringing together important issues from the time including the class system, politics and attitudes towards those who chose not to fight, these books are eye-opening for all historical and military history fans. Included in the collection is the Man Booker Prize-winning novel The Ghost Road.

 

7. The Butcher's Hook


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Janet Ellis

Set in Georgian London, this book by former Blue Peter presenter Janet Ellis is a pacey and thrilling read. After her family pick out a man they think will make a suitable husband for her, Anne Jacob decides to find any way to avoid an arranged marriage. That's when she meets a butcher's apprentice called Fub and starts planning a life with him, whatever the cost might be - even if that cost is deadly.






 

8. Child 44

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Tom Rob Smith

Set in the Soviet Union at the height of Stalin's time in power, where everyone fears being accused of showing disloyalty to the state, Leo Demidov has to make a difficult choice. Working to create a fair and just society, Leo witnesses an eye-opening interrogation which brings him face-to-face with the reality of the world he's helping to build. When tasked with investigating his own wife, he turns his back on everything he knows, just as a killer starts taking their first victims...

 

9. Brooklyn

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Colm Toibin

This Costa Novel Award-winning book was recently adapted into an Oscar-nominated film and now you can find out why this book has such a fantastic reputation for yourself. As Eilis, an Irish girl, emigrates to Brooklyn, New York, she faces the challenges of being a long way from home when she finds herself homesick and alone. But, just as she starts to wish herself back home, she meets someone who just might want to make her stay.




 

10. Six Tudor Queens: Anne Boleyn

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Alison Weir

This is the second book in historian Alison Weir's Six Tudor Queens series, where each book tells the story of one of Henry VIII's wives. This book is all about Anne Boleyn, her ambitious rise to fame and power and her fall at the hands of the wrath of the king. This compelling read brings one of England's most famous queens to life to tell her story.







 

Fall back in time with these fantastic historical fiction books that will leave you hooked until their last pages.