Sunday, January 24, 2021

#HistoricalFictionReader: Most Anticipated New Releases of 2021

Greetings Book Community!

Like many readers, I haunt the new release lists for reading material. Every year, I bookmark more titles than I can actually get through, but I also have a shortlist of new release titles I flag "must-reads". 

I set a budget for this list. If I see my library is getting a copy I put myself on the waitlist. When my budget won't stretch or the library doesn't have a copy, I put these titles in as requested acquisitions or suggest them as gift ideas to anyone who asks me for ideas. The point is that by the end of the year, I will have experienced these "must-read" stories and for the first time in my blog career, I've decided to share them with the world. 

Before I get too far ahead of myself, I want to give an honorable mention to each of the following: 
      • Libertie by Kaitlyn Greenidge (a semi-biographical coming of age story set in Reconstruction-era Brooklyn and Haiti)
      • The Women of Chateau Lafayette by Stephanie Dray (a triple narrative about the women who lived, loved, and resisted injustice from Ch√Ęteau de Chavaniac)
      • The Rose Code by Kate Quinn (a novel about the codebreakers of Bletchley Park)
All three of these books were on my "must-reads" list for 2021, but I somehow managed to read all three before composing this post. All three are absolutely fabulous and I highly recommend tracking them down, but I can't claim to be looking forward to these books as I've already read them cover to cover. 

As of today, my "must-read" list for 2021 is, in no particular order, as follows: 
      • The Cape Doctor by E.J. Levy (a biographical fiction about Dr. James Miranda Barry)
      • The Collector's Daughter by Gill Paul (a novel about the discovery of Tutankhamun's Tomb)
      • The Girls in the Attic by Marius Gabriel (a novel about WWII)
      • Shallow Waters by Anita Kopacz (a novel of Black resilience and feminine strength, set against the Atlantic slave trade)
      • The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba by Chanel Cleeton (a cultural-historical inspired by the life of Evangelina Cisneros)
      • The Last Garden in England by Julia Kelly (a novel about WWII)
      • Island Queen by Vanessa Riley (a biographical fiction about Dorothy Kirwan Thomas)
      • Surviving Savannah by Patti Callahan (a novel about the Pulaski disaster)
      • Three Words for Goodbye by Heather Webb and Hazel Gaynor (a novel about two sisters on a journey inspired by Nellie Bly)
      • The American Adventuress by C.W. Gortner (a biographical fiction about Jennie Jerome)
      • The Invisible Woman by Erika Robuck (a biographical fiction about Virginia Hall)
      • Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson (a novel of love and survival, set in Lumpkin's Jail)
      • The Second Mrs. Astor by Shana Abe (a biographical novel of Madeleine Force)
      • Sisters In Arms by Kaia Alderson (a novel about the only all-Black, female U.S. battalion to be deployed overseas during World War II)
      • Clever Girl by Stephanie Marie Thornton (a biographical fiction about Elizabeth Bentley)
      • A Marriage of Lions by Elizabeth Chadwick (a biographical fiction about William de Valence and Joanna of Swanscombe)

Am I an addict? Yes. Am I ashamed? Not on your life. 

Do you keep a "must-read" list? Are any of these books on your radar? What titles are you looking forward to? I'd love to hear from you!

Happy Reading
Erin Davies

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