The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

Based on the true stories of the brave and intrepid women spies of WWI, this novel flies with excitement, terror, dread. Told in two voices, that of the spy Eve Gardiner, code name Marguerite, as she is recruited and, in spite of enormous fear, acts with great ingenuity, and of Charlie St. Claire, an unmarried […]


Hardscrabble

Hardscrabble

2019 Wrangler Award for Outstanding Juvenile Book Winner 2019 Spur Award – Western Writer’s of America Finalist  This is a nicely plotted,  heartfelt Middle Grade Western that looks into the lives of folks homesteading in 1910 Colorado. Belle Martin is 12 years old and excited about the adventure of trying to farm the Colorado prairie. […]


The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

Gentler than I expected, this is the story of a morally upright German woman whose husband was one of a band of conspirators who tried unsuccessfully to assassinate Hitler. She promised at the time to take care of the wives and children if their husbands did not survive the attempt. Marianne lives with her children […]


Honeybee Hotel: The Waldorf Astoria’s Rooftop Garden and the Heart of NYC

Honeybee Hotel: The Waldorf Astoria’s Rooftop Garden and the Heart of NYC

This is a slim volume, part reminiscence about the Waldorf Astoria’s recent history before the Anbang remodel began, part fascinating, deeply researched introduction to honey bee life. Strong recommendation for anyone interested in pollinators! Lesley Day is a New York City naturalist who authored 3 field guides to the NYC natural world and she writes […]


The Lake on Fire by Rosellen Brown

The Lake on Fire by Rosellen Brown

Chaya and Asher’s story circles around and runs through the 1893 Columbian Exposition. The two, immigrants from the old country, flee the midwest farm where they have landed to come to find their fortune in the big city. Chicago, recovered from the Fire of 1871, is booming. The factories, stockyards, sweatshops, brothels employ thousands of […]


Never Caught; the Washingtons’ relentless pursuit of their runaway slave, Ona Judge

Never Caught; the Washingtons’ relentless pursuit of their runaway slave, Ona Judge

After reading In the Hurricane’s Eye (2018) by Nathaniel Philbrick,  the story of George Washington and the battle of Yorktown, I wanted to learn more about Washington and his position on slavery, which is only touched on briefly in that book. Never Caught brings us a heroine from history, Ona Marie Judge, Martha Washington’s lady’s maid. […]



The Last Hours by Minette Walters

The Last Hours by Minette Walters

The Last Hours (Black Death #1) is great British mystery writer, Minette Walters’, first historical fiction and it is amazing! Both painstaking historical research and terrific character development make this book really special. The Black Death enters England from a ship docked at a port in Dorsetshire in June 1348. The countryside is emptied by […]


The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

The Victorians weren’t all prudish, repressed, unfeeling, dismissive of new ideas. Like the characters in this entrancing book, they were often overrun by their various passions, be they escape or scientific discovery or good works.  Cora, released by the death of her sadistic husband, uses her new freedom to run from London in search of […]


Dragon Springs Road by Janie Chang

Dragon Springs Road by Janie Chang

1908 Shanghai As the last Chinese dynasty collapses, a young mixed race girl awaits the return of her mother, hiding in the Western Residence of the house on Dragon Springs Road. Using Chinese magical realism and gritty historical detail, author Janie Chang tells the coming of age story of young Jialing, from that time awaiting […]