Being a member of a book club is an excellent excuse to escape everyday life where you have to deal with everything from toddler tantrums to tween drama time and teen tribulations. As a mom, I know this strategy first hand! As the host of both virtual and real life book clubs, I also know how important it is to mix things up and bring some variety to the book club table. A book club is the perfect opportunity to add some history, mystery, and romance to your reading list through historical fiction novels. Why not have your book club venture into this genre?
Not convinced? Here are five reasons why your book club should add historical fiction novels to their reading list!
You can’t go back in time...or can you? It’s always an adventure to discover how everyday lives were shaped by historical events. You and your fellow book club members can express your appreciation for all the research the author has done and discuss the attention to detail that goes into writing historical fiction novels. Historical fiction isn't just amazing entertainment, it's a history lesson - but unlike being bored-to-tears in a highschool classroom, you'll enjoy learning with friends and book club mates.
Do I need to say more? Historical fiction goes beyond smelling salts and bodice-ripping scenes. This genre tells stories about the lovelorn and shares love stories guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings! This is a great opportunity to put yourself in someone else's shoes (and bodice) to enjoy a style of romance no longer "in style."
Historical fiction brings with it lots of intrigue and adventure. You'll love the literary roller-coaster during your all-important "me time." Then, you'll get to relive the thrilling experience all over again when discussing the story with your book club members. Trying to see who among you can "crack the code" first is always fun. A fun book club game: Have each person turn in a secret ballot predicting the outcome of each plot mystery. Closest to the truth gets to pick the next historical fiction novel!
What is a good novel without a little drama? Historical fiction shares hope, heartache, happenstance and everything in between! No one wants too much drama in their own "real world" love lives, so books make a great place to experience the thrills of high-stakes problems...but from the safety and comfort of your own cozy reading corner.
Spoiler alert! Many historical fiction stories involve unveiling a hidden history or searching for missing pieces to complete a picture. Important truths are ultimately revealed, but not before many thrilling twists and turns. Historical fiction is great at using secrets in storylines because unlike today, lives were not under a social media magnifying glass, and there are so many great historical mysteries to draw from! No doubt you'll be hooked from beginning to end.
Convinced now? Great! So, now that you think transporting yourself to another era sounds enticing, here’s some good news! YMC is partnering with Simon & Schuster Canada to share The Timeless Tour. This tour features two authors and their new novels in special book events coming in May! This is a rare opportunity for you and your book club members to get up close and personal with two well-known historical fiction authors at one of the four tour stops. Meeting them will undoubtedly bring a whole new perspective to your book club dialogue! (see below for the tour dates and times)
The two of the authors taking part in the tour are Susanna Kearsley and Genevieve Graham and it just so happens that their new books are my 2 latest book club picks. I highly recommend these two books as an introduction (or continuation!) of historical fiction in your book club. Take a peek:
1. "A Desperate Fortune" by Susanna Kearsley
For nearly 300 years, the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has lain unread-its secrets safe from prying eyes. Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas has been hired by a once-famous historian to crack the journal’s cipher. But when she arrives in Paris, Sara finds herself besieged by complications from all sides: the journal’s reclusive owner, her charming Parisian neighbor, and Mary, whose journal doesn't hold the secrets Sara expects.
It turns out that Mary Dundas wasn’t keeping a record of everyday life, but a first-hand account of her part in a dangerous intrigue. In the first wintry months of 1732, with a scandal gaining steam in London, driving many into bankruptcy and ruin, the man accused of being at its center is concealed among the Jacobites in Paris, with Mary posing as his sister to aid his disguise. When their location is betrayed, they’re forced to put a desperate plan in action, heading south along the road to Rome, protected by the enigmatic Highlander Hugh MacPherson.
As Mary’s tale grows more and more dire, Sara, too, must carefully choose which turning to take…to find the road that will lead her safely home.
Click here to read a longer excerpt from "A Desperate Fortune."
2. "Tides of Honour" by Genevieve Graham
Watch the book trailer:
Click here to read an excerpt from "Tides of Honour."
May 9, 2015 - 7pm
#111-1644 Hillside Ave.
May 11, 2015 - 7pm
Fish Creek Library
11161 Bonaventure Dr S.E.
Hosted by Owl’s Nest Books
May 12, 2015 - 7pm
1120 Grant Ave.
In partnership with The Writer’s Festival
May 13, 2015 - 7pm
Wine and Cheese Night hosted by Angie Abdou
Wooden Sticks Golf Club
40 Elgin Park Drive
Presented by Blue Heron Books
Tickets for the Uxbridge event can be purchased here and you can visit timelesstour.ca for more details on all tour events.
Quick tip: Once you start with historical fiction, you'll be craving more! Here are some more suggestions from this genre for you and your book club members to enjoy.
Let me know in the comments section below if you and your book club members are in!