Category Archives: Historical Fiction

If All the Swords in England by Barbara Willard

Edmund and Simon, orphaned twins, are split up when Edmund enters the service of the king and Simon goes to work for the exiled Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. The story covers from when all relations, no matter how distant, of Becket were sent into exile with him through his murder. It took a bit to really get into the story due to many stretches where it dragged a bit. I recommend this book to kids studying Becket or the late 1100s.

4 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 109
Pages Read in 2017: 29,897
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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Son of Charlemagne by Barbara Willard

Told from the point of view of Charlemagne’s son, Carl, Son of Charlemagne tells of King Charles of the Franks reign through being crowned Holy Roman Emporer. The story is engaging and drew me in. I recommend this book to kids learning about the Middle Ages.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 105
Pages Read in 2017: 28,939
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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Augustine Came to Kent by Barbara Willard

Set at the time Pope Gregory I sent Augustine to England, Augustine Came to Kent is the story of the first Archbishop of Canterbury through the eyes of a boy. It tells of Augustine preaching, baptizing King Ethelbert, and on through the end of Augustine’s life. It’s a gentle story with excellent pacing. I recommend it for kids studying medieval England.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 102
Pages Read in 2017: 28,464
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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My Story: The Great Plague by Pamela Oldfield

Alice is just shy of 14-years-old when the plague comes to London. She survives only to see fire break out in her beloved city the next year.

My Story: The Great Plague is written in diary format. It tells the story of the plague and fire in a quick, easy to read way perfect for middle grade age kids. I highly recommend reading it!

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 101
Pages Read in 2017: 28,226
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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Viking Warrior by Judson Roberts

Halfdan is the son of an Irish princess and a Danish chieftan, but because his mother was a slave, Halfdan is also. As his father is dying, his mother makes a bargain requiring the chieftain to recognize Halfdan as his son and make him a free man. He must then learn they ways of a world that had always been closed off to him.

Viking Warrior, the first of the Strongbow Saga, is an excellent book written in a way that makes you feel as if you are there in the middle of the action. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it and will likely read the rest of the books in the series. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in Vikings or studying Viking history.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 92
Pages Read in 2017: 25,802
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Cameron for Next School Year

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Theras and His Town by Caroline Dale Snedeker

Theras is a little boy growing up in Athens. His life is turned upside down when he must move to Sparta. He wants nothing more than the escape back to Athens even though the journey would be very dangerous.

Theras and His Town is historical fiction written for children that allows the reader to really get a good glimpse into life in Athens and Sparta and the extreme differences between the two. It is very biased toward Athens being good and Sparta being bad. I enjoyed it as much as my sons (even though I was reading it to my 8-year-old, my 10-year-old listened in and kept commenting on how good it was). I highly recommend it as a family read-aloud and for those studying ancient Greece.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 68
Pages Read in 2017: 20,039
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Assigned to Adrian for School

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Anna of Byzantium by Tracy Barrett

Anna Comnenus is the heir to the throne of Byzantium, but then her power-hungry grandmother realizes she cannot control and twist the child for her own purposes. Anna is an intelligent thinker and, guided by her slave schoolmaster, learns her history.

Anna was a real person who wrote an eleven-book epic about her father, The Alexiad. Her book is where we get much of our information about Byzantium today. Anna of Byzantium is an excellent historical fiction about Anna. The author’s note at the end tells what is real and what was made up or changed. I found the story extremely engaging and well-written. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction or is studying the Byzantine Empire.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 60
Pages Read in 2017: 17,810
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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