Top Ten Tuesday | Historical fiction on my TBR


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week you compile a list of ten books which coincide with that week’s theme. You can find everything you need to know about joining in here!

This week’s theme is a freebie, so I thought I’d talk about a genre I’ve been craving recently: historical fiction! Outside of fantasy, historical fiction is my favourite genre but I feel like I haven’t read any historical fiction without any speculative element for quite a while. I will always love fantasy, but sometimes I do crave historical fiction without it.

The Wolf Den by Elodie Harper: I haven’t really read any historical fiction set in the ancient world that hasn’t been some kind of spin on a Greek myth, but Pompeii is a place I’ve wanted to visit since I was a little girl and I’m so excited to give this novel, set in a Pompeii brothel, a try. I’ve got it on hold at the library and I’m even more excited to read it after seeing Stephanie’s review!

The Poison Keeper by Deborah Swift: I picked up a copy of this novel very recently after I came across the Kindle editon for just 99p, and it seems like fate that I came across it considering I only learned about the woman at the centre of this novel, Giulia Tofana, this year and I immediately wanted to know more about her.

The Forest of Stolen Girls by June Hur: I never knew I needed a thriller set in 15th century Korea until I saw the premise of this 2021 release.

The Foundling by Stacey Halls: Nat @ Too Short to Read recommended this book to me last year after she read and enjoyed it. I love stories about motherhood, so this one sounds right up my street.

Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman: I’ve heard so many good things about Penman’s historical fiction – I believe The Sunne in Splendour made a lot of readers reconsider their opinion of Richard III – and I’ve wanted to read this 800+ page novel for years because it follows Joan, Lady of Wales, who fascinates me.

A Book of Secrets by Kate Morrison: This novel follows a Black woman in Elizabethan England who becomes involved in the Catholic resistance. It sounds so good!

The Vatican Princess by C.W. Gortner: My friend Elena got me this book for my birthday last year. I find Lucrezia Borgia so interesting – and The Borgias is one of my favourite period dramas – so it’ll be interesting to see Gortner’s version of her!

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel: As a historical fiction fan it’s criminal that I still haven’t read this classic of the genre, which follows Thomas Cromwell’s rise to power at the court of Henry VIII.

The Book of Human Skin by Michelle Lovric: This is another book that was recommended to me by Elena. I’ve seen it described as historical fiction with Ramsay Bolton at its centre, so I imagine it’s going to be incredibly dark, but it sounds so good.

The Burning Chambers by Kate Mosse: The religious conflicts between Catholicism and Protestantism in the 16th century will always catch my interest, so it’s about time I read this chonk!

What did you talk about this week?

25 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday | Historical fiction on my TBR

  1. JonBob says:

    Have you read any of Hilary Mantel’s stuff? I’ve been wanting to read Wolf Hall for a while as well but the vast majority of blogs I frequent don’t talk about historical fiction at all so never really spoke to anyone who’s read any of their books. But it’s a genre I think I’d really like and am gonna start reading more of.

    I also added The Book of Human Skin to my TBR as well. Not heard of it before but that description hooked me!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jess @ Jessticulates says:

      I haven’t yet! Tbh the Wolf Hall books are the only ones that really intrigue me, but I’ve heard such good things about her work in general. I love historical fiction but I’ve definitely been neglecting it for fantasy in recent years! I think I’ve mentioned them before, but C. J. Sansom’s Matthew Shardlake books are great, and I can’t mention historical fiction without mentioning Sarah Waters, too. The Little Stranger is one of my all-time favourites. 🙂


  2. Dedra @ A Book Wanderer says:

    I’ve been so intrigued by The Forest of Stolen Girls. I hope you get to pick it up and share your thoughts!


  3. iloveheartlandx says:

    I definitely understand the feeling, I’ve been listening to a historical fiction audio recently (The Rose Code, very good) and I realised when I read your post that it’s the first one I’ve read in a while that’s been just history with no speculative element. I really need to get back to reading more, not that I don’t love historical fantasies, but it is nice to read a straight historical from time to time. I have The Foundling on my TBR, my friend got it for me for Christmas so I’m looking forward to reading that. The Wolf Den sounds super interesting, I’ll have to check it out. I saw the TV mini-series of Wolf Hall when it came out, but I’ve always avoided reading the book because it’s so big! One day I will need to get over myself because I love Tudor history.
    My TTT:


  4. Greg says:

    I like historical fiction too, and I feel like I haven’t read any in ages! I love it when books entertain me but also teach me things about historical period, especially England.


  5. Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies says:

    These all sound so interesting, especially The Wolf Den and The Foundling. I’ve read Wolf Hall — it’s brilliant, but a challenging read. I’m trying to steel myself for reading the 3rd book in the trilogy. Hope you enjoy all of these!


  6. Lexlingua says:

    Historical fiction is like catnip for me. And so you’ve single-handedly added multiple books today to my TBR! Wolf Hall is an old favorite, and I highly recommend both the book and the show. For my own part, I’m most curious about The Forest of Stolen Girls.


  7. Jaime says:

    I love historical fiction! It’s one of my favorite genres alongside fantasy. Ruta Sepetys writes great historical fiction. They’re usually categorized as YA books, but they’re appealing to an older audience, too!


  8. Rabeeah says:

    I keep seeing that stunning cover of The Wolf Den around, and it’s making me want to read the book asap! I always forget that I actually really enjoy historical fiction too! Great list!


  9. Stephanie - Bookfever says:

    Yay for The Wolf Den! I wanna visit Pompeii someday as well. I heard it’s so amazing! And I also got The Poison Keeper on my Kindle when it was on sale. 😏

    Liked by 1 person

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