Friday, January 4, 2013

2013 Historical Fiction Challenge

20/6 books

Challenge Basics: 

Name: 2013 Historical Fiction Challenge
Hosts : Don't know. YA Bliss  hosted last year, but I don't know if she's doing it this year.
Starts: January 1, 2013
Ends: December 31, 2013
Eligible Books: Read YA or MG historical fiction books. I'm going to include adult books.
Levels: N/A. I'm going to set a personal goal of 6 books. 

Prizes? No
Sign up page   

Why I'm Interested:  

I seriously want to increase the number of historical fiction books I read. I love the genre, but I'm always pushing it aside in favor of fantasy and paranormal books. I ended up reading 9 books out of a goal of 15 last year, so I'm hoping I can at the very least accomplish six.

Bonus goal: I want to read historical fiction books that have been on my TBR for a while.

Some books I'm considering: 

Books from my Goodreads shelf. Even though it's sort of cheating, historical fantasy has been accepted for this challenge in the past, so I'm going to allow myself to include historical fantasy again, as long as the historical parts are strongly integrated and not just a loose backdrop. I don't want the majority of the books I read to be historical fantasy. My goal is really for straight up real historical fiction.

I'd really like to tackle at least one of these:

Something by Patrick O'Brian
Stephanie Dray's new Cleopatra Selene book
Fever 1793
The Agency by Y. S. Lee
Something by Lisa Klein
Something by Mary Hooper
Prisoners in the Palace by Michaela MacColl
The Queen's Daughter by Susan Coventry
The Devil's Queen by Jean Kalogridis
Cinders and Sapphires by Leila Rasheed (DNF'd)

Something by C. W. Gortner

Books Completed:

20. Becoming Josephine by Heather Webb
19. Daughters of the Nile by Stephanie Dray
18. The Secret History of the Pink Carnation by Lauren Willig
17. Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers
16. Palace of Spies by Sarah Zettel
15. Confessions of Marie Antoinette by Juliet Grey
14. A Countess Below Stairs by Eva Ibbotson
13. A Spark Unseen by Sharon Cameron
12. Delia's Shadow by Jaime Lee Moyer
11. Elizabeth, Princess Bride by Barry Benenberg
10. Days of Splendor, Days of Sorrow by Juliet Grey
9. Elizabeth I, Red Rose of the House of Tudor by Kathryn Lasky
8. Doomed Queen Anne by Carolyn Meyer
7. Haunting Violet by Alyxandra Harvey
6. The Queen's Handmaiden by Jennifer Ashely
5. Prisoners in the Palace by Michaela MacColl
4. Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
3. Katharine, The Virgin Widow by Jean Plaidy
2. Nine Days a Queen by Ann Rinaldi
1. The Last Queen by C. W. Gortner

Have you signed up for a historical fiction challenge? What books are you planning on reading? Do you have any suggestions that I absolutely MUST read?


  1. I definitely recommend Prisoners in the Palace-I just love young Victoria stories!

    I would also recommend Between Shades of Gray or the upcoming Out of the Easy, both by Ruta Sepetys and about less popular time periods (WWII Lithuania and 1950s New Orleans respectively).

    1. Oh good! I do think I'll be able to read Prisoners in the Palace this year. My new library has a copy and I want to use them more often.

      Is Between Shades of Gray serious? I have this impression that it's too slow and dreary for me, but I don't know why I think that.

  2. I've been meaning to read The Agency for a while now, as I purchased it for my Kindle some time back. Maybe we should joint review it. Or at least joint read it.

    I'm also looking forward to having you pre-read the last Celine book for me. Then you can let me know if you think I can handle it.

    1. YES! Joint whatever is awesome! hehe ok I will let you know how it is :)

  3. Ohhhh, I can't wait to see your review once you read The Agency! I've been wanting to read it for a while. A spy in the Victorian Era? Sign me up!

    Cinders and Sapphires has also definitely peeked my interest. Though, I'm a bit hesitant because I've already seen some not great reviews. But I'll give it a chance anyways :)

    So many historical fictions, so little time! I can't wait to read Dark Triumph (His Fair Assassin #2) by Robin LaFevers! April 2nd can't come quick enough!
    Great picks Small!

    All the best ♥
    Mackenzie @ Oh, For the Love of Books!

    1. I've heard of the mixed reviews for Cinders and Sapphires, but I haven't read any. I don't want to be biased one way or the other.

      I cannot wait for Dark Triumph! I already have it pre-ordered, and the only other book I've ever pre-ordered was the last Harry Potter.

  4. I want to get back into reading historical fiction because I totally grew up loving it (American Girl!) Your list gave me some good ideas of books to read! I already purchased Fever 1793, and heard it's great.

    If you want some middle grade historical fiction recommendations:

    I really enjoyed Newbery Honor book, Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Lawson about a sixteen year old girl who sets out to start a farm ALL BY HERSELF. A fast-paced read and based on Kirby Lawson's own family history. (And I cried.)

    I also enjoyed Newbery Honor Book The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly. It's about a girl's love of science and her relationship with her grandfather. It's a slower pace than Hattie Big Sky, but it was very charming.

    Happy historical reading!
    Lauren @ Hughes Reviews

    1. Ha I LOVED American Girl! Felicity was my favorite. I have a copy of Fever 1793 and that combined with the good reviews is why I have it on my list this year. Thank you for all the recs! I've had my eye on The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate for a while now. Glad to hear it's recommendation worthy.

    2. Yay Felicity!!! She was so courageous!

  5. I second the recommendation of The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate. I also strongly, strongly recommend Elisabeth Wein's Code Name Verity, about WWII. (I reviewed it on my blog.)

    And it's been a long time, but I remember quite enjoying Pauline Gedge's novels about ancient Egypt.

    (I love the idea of setting new years resolutions to read. Think I might actually be able to keep a resolution like that!)

    1. Oh my gosh, I adore Code Name Verity!

      I will for sure check out Pauline Gedge's Egypt books. I like reading about Egypt. Thanks!

  6. I am kicking around the idea of doing this one, but I'm scared. I don't know if I really like this genre or not???

    1. Hm, I think you'd like faster historical fiction, maybe more middle grade? I'll try to think of some. Oooh, you should read The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle. It's an old favorite of mine.

    2. True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle is EXCELLENT!!!

    3. Well, shoot I was all excited about this one, but then I found out its not available as an E-book. I have SUCH a difficult time reading real books because I have to sit down and read them and it makes me feel guilty, like I should be doing something else - uh like chores. Maybe I can find it in audio?

    4. You should go for it anyway it you're interested! I'm all about bending challenges to meet my own goals :) I'm including adult books even though this challenge is really only for YA books. I'm not even sure that the host is running it this year.


It's all about friendly conversation here at Small Review :) I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Be sure to check back again because I do make every effort to reply to your comments here.

Because I am absolutely terrible about following through with blog awards, I can't in good conscience accept any more. Thank you very much for thinking of me though!

Spam WILL be deleted. Attacks on myself or other comments WILL be deleted.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...