First I hope that this post will be posted and that you’ll be able to see it because since Sunday, the website is up and down and extremely slow due to problems at my host provider!
I know I have tons of comments to reply to but it’s very difficult at the moment.
Anyway, in the hope it posts properly, this is day 14 of Blogmas 2021 and we are talking about the best historical fictions I have read this year!
The Rose Code by Kate Quinn
Kate Quinn is the queen of historical thriller/fiction!
I hope she lives a very long time and get to write many more books because I am totally in awe and addicted to her writing!
She weaves a double timeline again like she usually does, going back and forth between the beginning of the war and after the war until we only follow the “now”. By that time, I was gripping the edge of my seat as I was hoping we could catch the traitor on time!!!
I love many things about Kate Quinn’s stories but especially that she chooses to go for less known aspects of history and also that she has the knack to make her characters feel real. They certainly are multi-dimensional. With their past, their cracks, their fears and their hopes.
On a background of World War II and cryptography, filled with historical figures like Winston Churchill, Alan Turing, Lord Mountbatten and Prince Philippe of Greece soon to be Elizabeth’s husband, we follow that riveting friendship cementing between these three women just to be torn into pieces by the oath of secrecy they took while joining Bletchley Park.
But the threat of a traitor will force them to work back together one more time, in a race against the clock to save Beth and the future of England.
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Funny but it was Goodreads winner this year in historical fiction!
This was one of my most awaited reads this year and it didn’t disappoint in the least! Taylor Jenkins Reid is a formidable storyteller and Julia Whelan was the perfect choice to narrate this story with her cultured and smoky voice.
The book focuses on the party of the year: Nina Riva’s party. Where everything happens, careers are made and scandals erupt between the rich and famous every year.
This year though Nina doesn’t want to hold the party.
Yet she’ll do it for her siblings as it’s their tradition.
Every sibling attending the party has a secret or a burden that they wish to share but once out in the open at the end of the night, it will shape their future.
The plot switches between “that night” and the sibling’s past. How their mother June met their father, Mick Riva, soon to be a legend in the music world. How some men are not reliable and won’t hold to their promises, abandoning their wife and children to chase fame, leaving them to fend for themselves.
That book succeeds in combining a very good plot, a perfect pacing, an amazing world building going back to the 1980ies and multi-dimensional characters.
Taylor’s elegant and effective writing transported me back in time, following that story filled with love, hope, betrayals and life.
Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau
I’d recommend this one to anyone who loved Daisy Jones and the Six or Malibu Rising.
If you’d like to listen to that book instead of reading it, go for it you won’t be disappointed! The narrator Caitlin Kinnunen was perfect for Mary Jane’s young voice!
That story, a mix of young and fresh view on life with lots of wisdom and rock’n roll moments!
This was the collision of two different worlds that shouldn’t have worked together but strangely did thanks to Mary Jane making the bridge between these two universes.
I adored the “feel “of that story.
The mix of innocence and debauchery. The blend of purity and rock’n roll.
I think the seventies are perfectly featured into vivid details, from the hairdo to the cars and TV shows.
There are also plenty of sensitive topics from anti-Semitism, racism, addiction, sexuality.
I breezed through that book and was just so sad when it ended. It’s one of my top 5 reads this year and certainly not my last book by that author!
Thanks for reading!