List Love: Ten Historical Novels I Can’t Believe I Haven’t Read

list love
Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is a good one! Actually this is a list of Ten Standalone Historical Novels I Can’t Believe I Haven’t Read. Talking about historical series is a whole other post.
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (a murder mystery set in a 14th century Italian monastery)

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (about the1832 uprising in France)

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (Great Depression)

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks (1666 Plague)

The Black Arrow by Robert Lewis Stevenson (Wars of the Roses)

Company of Liars by Karen Maitland (a re-imagining of the Canterbury Tales)

The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George (yay Egypt!)

The Long Ships by Frans G. Bengtsson (10th century Vikings)

A Place of Greater Safety by Hilary Mantel (French Revolutions)
An Instance of the Fingerpost by Iain Pears (1663 England)

I need to get on it! So many great books to read aghhhhhh!!!!



  1. If I was making a list your first three would have to be on it – I’ve been meaning to read Name of the Rose for ages……..and Grapes of Wrath. The size of Les Mis always puts me off.

  2. About 1/2 of these would be on my list of the same genre. I actually made a list of mystery writers I haven’t read e.g. Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, etc. and included Eco’s book on it. So many books, so little time! 🙂

  3. The only one of those that I have read is “The Grapes of Wrath”. It is a fine novel, but strictly speaking it is not a historical novel since Steinbeck was writing about events that were happening at the time that he was writing about them. I would like to read some of those others.

  4. I haven’t read any of these either and I was just thinking the other day how I want to read The Grapes of Wrath. I’ve read other books by Steinbeck and love his writing. I’d also to read that Mantel novel but I’ve only read her memoir and modern fiction.

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