November 2016 Discussion

For November we will be reading Historical Fiction.
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kio
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November 2016 Discussion

Post by kio » 09 Nov 2016, 13:50

Sorry, had a really rough week, but here is the discussion:

Historical fiction is defined as "a genre of literature comprising narratives that take place in the past and are characterized chiefly by an imaginative reconstruction of historical events and personages." Most librarians consider it to be 50 years in the past, but we won't get too technical, if it's around past events or has a historical feel, it probably works.

What was the name of the book you read? Did you like/dislike it? What did you like/dislike about it. What genres (ex. Historical and Fantasy) would you say it fits? How does it fit in those genres? What are some characteristics that you see in the book that seem unique to the genre? Would you recommend the book?

There are no right or wrong answers. The goal here is to see what makes these genres these genres, what might be some of the appeal factors with relation to the books we've picked, and, overall, getting to know the genre more in-depth in a fun way.
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Post by Tenderheart21 » 10 Nov 2016, 10:55

I love Historical Fiction and have been reading the series by Charles Todd
Bess Crawford Mysteries beach is a stand alone read so any order is OK. But best if you start w/the 1St
These that place during the 1St World War and Bess is a nurse wisely in the thick of the fighting
Great Series I recommend it

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Post by ramblinggnomes » 19 Nov 2016, 06:55

Historical fiction isnĀ“t a genre that IĀ“m typically drawn to but occassionally AmazonĀ“s free new release of the month sends one my way. IĀ“m currently reading Ā“The woman who breathed two worldsĀ“. IĀ“ve nearly finished and I have found it to be a lot more enjoyable than I had expected.
ItĀ“s a slow paced book following the life of a woman torn between her Malay culture and the Chinese culture of her husband. It shows the way both cultures influence her and change her cultural identity over time. It also deals with the impact of historical events such as the British rule on Malaysia and the influenza outbreak. ItĀ“s an interesting read for me as I love Southeast Asian cultures and I also struggle with the influence of two cultures.

ItĀ“s a book I would definitely recommend but only to a specific type of person.

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kio
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Post by kio » 21 Nov 2016, 10:46

I tend to prefer Historical fantasy. This month I read "Manners and Mutiny" by Gail Carriger. This is the final book in the Finishing School series, so if you haven't read it start with Eitquette and Espionage.

When Sephronia uncovers a plot for pickleman to take over the world using mechanicals, it's up to her and her friends to stop them. With lots of intelligence to sift through, can Sephronia figure it out before it's too late?

This has all the element of Victorian England, but with added steampunk elements. It also has vampires and werewolves intermixed in the story, which gives it a supernatural feel to it. It's true to the mannerisms of the time, but gives certain plot element to make it believable that Sephronia could be a spy. Overall, I'd give it 4 out of 4 stars. If you like steampunk, fantasy, and paranormal historical fiction you'll like this book.
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Post by littlefrog » 21 Nov 2016, 18:38

The last Historical fantasy that I read was last month, The Buried Giant, by Kazuo Ishiguro. Historical fiction has been one of my favorites for many years. This was the first time that I read Kazuo Ishiguro and I have absolutely fallen in love.

The Buried Giant is a novel about quests, and beside the main quest between Axl and Beatrice, the interwoven quest of Winston, and Gawain are also so important. I love this book because it was so thought provoking, even when I was not reading it I was still thinking about it, trying to figure out why, or how. Mr. Ishiguro weaves such a fantastic story using symbolism, allegory styles. His words pull you so into the story your are walking right along in the fields, the forests you feel and hear with the characters. I love that there were ogres, fairies, witches, dragons, knights, boatmen, monks, children...etc. Superstition and magic...it was a wonderful reading experience. This book is both historical and fantasy, it was thought provoking. I don't always like to be "spoon-fed" when I read.

Historical fantasy seems to be my favorite because you can block out the present day chaos for a while and not have to think about it. I have always thought I was born in the wrong era. I read a lot and like most genre. When the author can pull me in and everything else melts away, I am hooked. Historical seems to be the best at doing that. Most definitely the author has to do his homework...it has to feel realistic and doable. I particularly like when they can bounce between generations and keep it tied together.

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Post by kio » 21 Nov 2016, 22:41

littlefrog wrote: Historical fantasy seems to be my favorite because you can block out the present day chaos for a while and not have to think about it. I have always thought I was born in the wrong era. I read a lot and like most genre. When the author can pull me in and everything else melts away, I am hooked. Historical seems to be the best at doing that. Most definitely the author has to do his homework...it has to feel realistic and doable. I particularly like when they can bounce between generations and keep it tied together.
I often feel like I was born in the wrong era as well. I love when they make it feel realistic and pull you into the story. For me as well, if it's not accurate to the times and I'm not able to suspend my disbelief, I don't get into the book as well.
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Post by ramblinggnomes » 04 Dec 2016, 12:29

I have just read a book called God of Vengeance by Giles Kristian. It's set in Norway 785AD and is along the lines of Vikings and Game of Thrones.
I wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. It was very well written with a lot of details. You follow the story of Sigurd, the son of a lord. His father is betrayed by the king, his family and village slaugthered, leading Sigurd on a path of vengeance.
I was enthralled throughout and I am glad to see that it's the beginning on a series that I can well and truly lost in!

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Post by STBReader » 05 Dec 2016, 09:30

Just to clarify: If a fictional story incorporates dates and historical figures around the story to establish place and time with fictional twists in the historical references to bind the story together; Is that considered historical fiction? For example; In the book Abraham Lincoln Vampire Slayer was obviously altered to incorporate vampires in the story and events changed and added. Is this book entirely fiction or can it be classified Historical Fiction?

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Post by kio » 05 Dec 2016, 21:00

STBReader wrote:Just to clarify: If a fictional story incorporates dates and historical figures around the story to establish place and time with fictional twists in the historical references to bind the story together; Is that considered historical fiction? For example; In the book Abraham Lincoln Vampire Slayer was obviously altered to incorporate vampires in the story and events changed and added. Is this book entirely fiction or can it be classified Historical Fiction?
I still classify that as historical fiction, but call it historical fantasy or something to that extent, since it's not completely true to real history. But, since it still takes place in the past, I count it.

-- 05 Dec 2016, 22:00 --
ramblinggnomes wrote:I have just read a book called God of Vengeance by Giles Kristian. It's set in Norway 785AD and is along the lines of Vikings and Game of Thrones.
I wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. It was very well written with a lot of details. You follow the story of Sigurd, the son of a lord. His father is betrayed by the king, his family and village slaugthered, leading Sigurd on a path of vengeance.
I was enthralled throughout and I am glad to see that it's the beginning on a series that I can well and truly lost in!
that one's definitely going on my must-read :)
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Post by Odin908 » 07 Dec 2016, 12:47

kio wrote:
littlefrog wrote: Historical fantasy seems to be my favorite because you can block out the present day chaos for a while and not have to think about it. I have always thought I was born in the wrong era. I read a lot and like most genre. When the author can pull me in and everything else melts away, I am hooked. Historical seems to be the best at doing that. Most definitely the author has to do his homework...it has to feel realistic and doable. I particularly like when they can bounce between generations and keep it tied together.
I often feel like I was born in the wrong era as well. I love when they make it feel realistic and pull you into the story. For me as well, if it's not accurate to the times and I'm not able to suspend my disbelief, I don't get into the book as well.
I too feel this way constantly! This is why I am so strongly pulled toward all forms of entertainment and study that have to do with medieval times or earlier. Though I can certainly say that I would like to keep the current knowledge of medicine! Medieval medicine is as scary as any kind of torture I can think of! I'm currently reading "World Without End" by Ken Follett.

-- 07 Dec 2016, 12:54 --
ramblinggnomes wrote:I have just read a book called God of Vengeance by Giles Kristian. It's set in Norway 785AD and is along the lines of Vikings and Game of Thrones.
I wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. It was very well written with a lot of details. You follow the story of Sigurd, the son of a lord. His father is betrayed by the king, his family and village slaugthered, leading Sigurd on a path of vengeance.
I was enthralled throughout and I am glad to see that it's the beginning on a series that I can well and truly lost in!
I can't wait to check this out, thanks! I recommend you read a series called The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell. It takes place in the Danish invasions of what is now England. You follow the story of Uhtred, a Northumberland son of a usurped lord that gets raised by vikings and comes back to the Saxons. I am on the third book now.

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Post by Swara Sangeet » 17 Dec 2016, 11:43

Historical fiction is interesting to read, in a way. True, many a time I don't like it when facts are twisted, but imaginary assumptions are fine with me. I feel as if it's a bit like dystopian stories but with a twist in the past. I haven't read many of this genre, but the few which I have, I've enjoyed.

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Post by Jeyasivananth » 20 Feb 2018, 14:34

I recently read Brutal Valour: The Tragedy of Isandlwana. It is a historical fiction that recounts the battle of Isandwana waged between the British and the Zulus. The events recounted in the book are true. However, the conversations are imaginary making it a historical fiction. I loved the book and I would recommend it to all history lovers.

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Post by Lil Reads » 26 Jun 2018, 17:50

Should we consider books set in time contemporary to the author now as historical fiction?

For example, Jane Austen wrote about her time and social class, but since the story is a fictionalized representation of her era, should we now consider it and classify it as historical fiction?
:coffee3-smiley: :auto-mysterymachine:

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