6 Reasons To Fall In Love With #HistoricalRomance during 2020

Happy New Year & New Decade!

What will you be reading this year?

I’m going to begin by enticing some of you to try a new genre.

6 reasons to fall in love with historical romance.

1) A refreshing change from email, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

Historical fiction brings back the art of conversation and hand-written letters. There is no constant checking for updates on social media, no stalking friends via the internet. Words like catfish and ghosting have completely different meanings in a bygone era.

2) Lessons in history that don’t feel like the schoolroom.

Historical romance can give readers insights into the past in the same way as other categories of the history genre, even if the main theme of a book is the romance.

I’ve learnt about real historical characters, social etiquette, smuggling and the Scottish witch trials, to name just a few examples.

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The Dressmaker’s Secret by Charlotte Betts,

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The Kings Elite series by Virginian Heath,

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The Beauchamp Betrothals by Janice Preston

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and The Mermaid and The Bear by Ailish Sinclair.

3) Escapism!

Modern life is fast paced, full of stress and worry. A well-written historical romance can transport you to another era and help you to forget about the outside world for a few hours. You can join characters in London ballrooms, country houses, foreign countries, or travel by horse-drawn coach and ocean steamer. Here are a few titles that I’ve escaped with:

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The 20’s Girl, The Ghost and All That Jazz by June Kearns,

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From Governess To Countess by Marguerite Kaye,

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Secrets Of A Highland Warrior by Nicole Locke,

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The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough.

4) We all deserve a chance on love.

For some readers the thought of a ‘Happy Ever After’ ending will have them running for the hills. However, for others the warm fuzzy feeling that you can get when you read a romance can be as healing as a strong cup of tea with two sugars. Reading about a couple who found love after adversity can be uplifting.

5) If you find a setting that you enjoy, you can stay for the series.

Who doesn’t love a series? If I discover an author that I like, I’m thrilled when I know they’ve written a series. Many authors offer book one of a series for free or at a reduced rate, which helps me to try an unfamiliar author, and once I’m hooked by a series I like meeting characters that I fell in love with when they appear again in later books.

6) You can appreciate romantic elements in other historical works.

I read quite a lot of historical romance and one point that stands out is that it needs to be believable. It has to fit the era and the actual romance, no matter what level of heat is used, it has got to be realistic. A good piece of romance can enhance an historical novel by helping to create passionate, layered characters that the reader wants to invest their time in. The books below had romance which supported the main themes:

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The Wild Air by Rebecca Mascull,

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The Alice Network by Kate Quinn,

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Never Say Goodbye by Hilary Green

What books in the historical romance genre can you recommend to me?

 

If you’ve enjoyed this post, then you might also enjoy:

6 Reasons To Read Books That Feature The Paranormal

5 Reasons To Start Reading Urban Fantasy

 

 

 

2018 WHEN Are You Reading? @SamAnnElizabeth ‘s Challenge – Completed

Way back in January I decided to try this challenge run by Sam Ann Elizabeth 

The complete challenge was to include at least 12 books, one from each of the following eras:

  • Pre 1500
  • 1500-1599
  • 1600-1699
  • 1700-1799
  • 1800-1899
  • 1900-1919
  • 1920-1939
  • 1940-1959
  • 1960-1979
  • 1980-1999
  • 2000-Present
  • The Future

I wasn’t sure if I read widely enough across the timeline, but today my results surprised me. In sections where I’ve read a high volume of books, I’ve chosen a selection of books. Book titles have links to my reviews.

Pre 1500s

Athena’s Champion by David Hair and Cath Mayo – Greek mythology

Brethren by Robyn Young – Knights Templar

Smile Of The Wolf by Tim Leach – Set in Iceland

The Greenest Branch by J.K. Adams – Set in Germany and features Benedictine abbess Hildegard

The Heart Of The Conqueror by G. Lawrence – About William the Conqueror

Daughter Of War by S .J .A. Turney – Knights Templar

1500-1599

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The Golden Lynx by C.P. Lesley – Set in Russia

1600-1699

Flood by Ann Swinfen – Set in England’s Fenlands

The Green Phoenix by Alice Poon – Set in China

1700-1799

The Earl And The Enchantress by Paulette Golden – Historical romance

Whales And Strange Stars by Kathy Sharp – Set in Kent

1800-1899

The Tides Between by Elizabeth Jane Corbett – YA tale of emigration

The Mysterious Lord Millcroft by Virginia Heath – Historical romance

From Governess To Countess by Marguerite Kaye – Historical romance

The Dressmaker’s Secret by Charlotte Betts – Features Princess Caroline Of Brunswick

Winds Of Time by Lilly Gayle – Historical romance set in Texas

My Antonia by Willa Cather – Classic American historical fiction set in Nebraska

1900-1999

The Wild Air by Rebecca Mascull – Featuring early women aviators

Call Of The Canyon by Zane Grey – Set in Arizona

The Captain And The Calvalry Trooper by Catherine Curzon – M/M romance set during WW1

1920-1939

Trusting The Currents by Lynnda Pollio – Set in small town America, with a spiritual theme.

The Madonna Of The Mountains by Elise Valmorbida (begins in 1923) Set in Italy

1940-1959

A Ration Book Christmas by Jean Fullerton – Family saga set in London during WW2

Never Say Goodbye by Hilary Green – A resistance-themed WW2 drama

1960-1979

Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen (begins in 1962) Set in southern Georgia

Mourning Dove by Claire Fullerton – Set in Memphis

1980-1999

Nightfall Berlin by Jack Grimwood – A cold war thriller

Dear Comrade Novak by Silvia Hildebrant – Set in Romania during the revolution

Lucky Star by Holly Curtis – Coming of age story

2000- present

Connectedness by Sandra Danby (begins in 2009) – Story featuring adoption

Lush by Gabrielle Fernie – A true story soaked in gin

The Woman At Number 24 by Juliet Ashton – Set in Notting Hill

Future

Amendments by Hannah Lynn – Set in futuristic Britain

The Afterlife Of Alice Watkins by Matilda Scotney – Mild scifi

If you’d like to join in with the challenge for 2019 check out Sam’s blog post here.

Rosie’s #Bookreview of #Histfic The Dressmaker’s Secret by @CharlotteBetts1 #SundayBlogShare

The Dressmaker's SecretThe Dressmaker’s Secret by Charlotte Betts

4 star

The Dressmaker’s Secret is historical fiction. It opens in 1819 Italy, with Sarah and Emilia Barton who are dressmakers. We first meet them when as they move location, in what has been a lifetime of travelling. Emilia cannot understand her mother’s nervousness and insistence that they leave every home secretly and run to yet another destination.

On the way to Pesaro they are involved in a coaching accident, which results in them becoming friends with Princess Caroline Of Brunswick. Luckily, the Princess is able to offer Emilia a home when an unexpected event leaves her alone. Later Emilia travels to London on behalf of Caroline, and it gives her an opportunity to investigate recently revealed details of her own past.

The sprinkling of details involving Princess Caroline added good historical interest to this storyline. There’s romance and intrigue as well as glimpses of life among London’s aristocracy. I particularly enjoyed the moments of countryside residence that were set in my home county of Hampshire. In general, it was a solid piece of historical fiction and I would happily read more books from this author.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Book description

Italy, 1819. Emilia Barton and her mother Sarah live a nomadic existence, travelling from town to town as itinerant dressmakers to escape their past. When they settle in the idyllic coastal town of Pesaro, Emilia desperately hopes that, this time, they have found a permanent home. But when Sarah is brutally attacked by an unknown assailant, a deathbed confession turns Emilia’s world upside down.

Seeking refuge as a dressmaker in the eccentric household of Princess Caroline of Brunswick, Emilia experiences her first taste of love with the charming Alessandro. But her troubling history gnaws away at her. Might she, a humble dressmaker’s daughter, have a more aristocratic past than she could have imagined? When the Princess sends her on an assignment to London, she grasps the opportunity to unravel the truth.

Caught up in a web of treachery and deceit, Emilia is determined to discover who she really is – even if she risks losing everything . .

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