Five Books that sum up the 20th Century Historical Fiction Trail

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If you love traveling to another time and using books as your medium for this time travel, we have a list of five best books cum time machines that you can hop on next. New to the genre? If some factual and lesser known things about different era drive you towards a book, your love affair with historical fiction has got to start now

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Book Buzzed, Historical Fiction
Book Buzzed

The book is based on 20th century Southern America and follows the life of Janie Crawford. She is not strong and certainly not unique – full of faults and mistakes is the best way to describe Janie. What makes this book so important is is its set up in the Harlem Renaissance scene. Janie’s family history is quite disturbed too with Nanny and Leafy both being subjected to rape and exploitation. The book also got made into a movie with Halle Berry playing the lead. Pick this if your destination for time travel is the 20th-century America amidst racial upliftment.



My Dear Hamilton by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie

Historical Fiction
My Dear Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton is a cult figure among the lovers of Historical Fiction. He can be said to be the Batman of American History – the hero we need but don’t deserve. The book introduces Hamilton through Eliza – a woman caught in the political scandal of New York and war crisis. The two fall in love but it’s short-lived amidst the chaos. You get a scoop of witty storytelling combined with a war & peace drama in this book. If you haven’t had your share of Hamilton reads yet, start here.



The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Seven Husband of Evelyn Hugo
The Seven Husband of Evelyn Hugo

If The Tyconist is your idea of a historical fiction, then Evelyn Hugo is certainly your cup of tea. In this Hollywood meets historical fiction, the background life of a Hollywood actress comes to life in form of an autobiography that she is getting written. Not much of history but quite a lot of spice, this book focuses on Evelyn’s seven husbands and their history.


The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

The Nightingale
The Nightingale

Set in 20th century France, the Nightingale is a war fiction revolving around the life of two sisters – Vianne and Isabella. France is suffering at the hands of the Nazis in WWII and Isabella runs into the resistance to fight for France after a terrible break up with her Parisian beau. Sentimentally, this book weeks more havoc than Schindler’s list did and you are advised to keep a box of tissues next to you at all times. The book has often been compared to Anthony Doerr’s Pulitzer winner All the Light We Cannot See but other than their setting Era, the two have little in common.


Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Half of a yellow Sun
Half Of A Yellow Sun

African History is one of the least explored segments in terms of Historical Fiction. In this book, Adichie knits the story of three people in the twentieth-century Nigerian war era. It is a typical narration of what the commoners of a particular African tribe went through during Biafra’s war for an Independent Nigeria. The book explores topics like the end of colonialism, it’s after effects and the violence that colonies were subjected to.



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