I've got a bevy of beautiful historical fiction titles to share with you! Break out the wishlists, folks!
The Fortune Hunter
by Daisy Goodwin
US Publication Date: July 29, 2014
UK Publication Date: April 24, 2014
In 1875, Sisi, the Empress of Austria is the woman that every man desires and every woman envies.
Beautiful, athletic and intelligent, Sisi has everything - except happiness. Bored with the stultifying etiquette of the Hapsburg Court and her dutiful but unexciting husband, Franz Joseph, Sisi comes to England to hunt. She comes looking for excitement and she finds it in the dashing form of Captain Bay Middleton, the only man in Europe who can outride her. Ten years younger than her and engaged to the rich and devoted Charlotte, Bay has everything to lose by falling for a woman who can never be his. But Bay and the Empress are as reckless as each other, and their mutual attraction is a force that cannot be denied.
Full of passion and drama, THE FORTUNE HUNTER tells the true story of a nineteenth century Queen of Hearts and a cavalry captain, and the struggle between love and duty.
Queen Elizabeth's Daughter
by Anne Clinard Barnhill
Publication Date: March 18, 2014
From Anne Barnhill, the author of At the Mercy of the Queen, comes the gripping tale of Mary Shelton, Elizabeth I’s young cousin and ward, set against the glittering backdrop of the Elizabethan court.
Mistress Mary Shelton is Queen Elizabeth’s favorite ward, enjoying every privilege the position affords. The queen loves Mary like a daughter, and, like any good mother, she wants her to make a powerful match. The most likely prospect: Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford. But while Oxford seems to be everything the queen admires: clever, polished and wealthy, Mary knows him to be lecherous, cruel, and full of treachery. No matter how hard the queen tries to push her into his arms, Mary refuses.
Instead, Mary falls in love with a man who is completely unsuitable. Sir John Skydemore is a minor knight with little money, a widower with five children. Worst of all, he’s a Catholic at a time when Catholic plots against Elizabeth are rampant. The queen forbids Mary to wed the man she loves. When the young woman, who is the queen’s own flesh and blood, defies her, the couple finds their very lives in danger as Elizabeth’s wrath knows no bounds.
by Sally Beauman
Publication Date: July 1, 2014
Based on a true story of discovery, The Visitors is New York Times bestselling author Sally Beauman's brilliant recreation of the hunt for Tutankhamun's tomb in Egypt's Valley of the Kings-a dazzling blend of fact and fiction that brings to life a lost world of exploration, adventure, and danger, and the audacious men willing to sacrifice everything to find a lost treasure.
In 1922, when eleven year-old Lucy is sent to Egypt to recuperate from typhoid, she meets Frances, the daughter of an American archaeologist. The friendship draws the impressionable young girl into the thrilling world of Lord Carnarvon and Howard Carter, who are searching for the tomb of boy pharaoh Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings.
A haunting tale of love and loss, The Visitors retells the legendary story of Carter and Carnarvon's hunt and their historical discovery, witnessed through the eyes of a vulnerable child whose fate becomes entangled in their dramatic quest. As events unfold, Lucy will discover the lengths some people will go to fulfill their deepest desires-and the lies that become the foundation of their lives.
Intensely atmospheric, The Visitors recalls the decadence of Egypt's aristocratic colonial society, and illuminates the obsessive, daring men willing to risk everything-even their sanity-to claim a piece of the ancient past. As fascinating today as it was nearly a century ago, the search for King Tut's tomb is made vivid and immediate in Sally Beauman's skilled hands. A dazzling feat of imagination, The Visitors is a majestic work of historical fiction.
by Barbara Taylor Bradford
Publication Date: April 1, 2014
Cavendon Hall is home to two families, the aristocratic Inghams and the Swanns who serve them, just as their ancestors did over the centuries. Charles Ingham, the sixth Earl of Mowbray, lives there with his wife Felicity and their six children: Guy, the heir, who is studying at Cambridge; their younger son Miles, attending Eton; and their four daughters Diedre, Daphne, DeLacy and Dulcie, affectionately called the Four Dees by the staff. Walter Swann, the premier male of the Swann family, is valet to the earl. His wife Alice, a clever seamstress, who is in charge of the countess's wardrobe, also makes clothes for the four daughters. For centuries, these two families have lived side-by-side, beneath the backdrop of the imposing Yorkshire manor. But now, with World War I looming, these two families will find themselves tested in ways they never thought possible. Loyalties are tested and betrayals are set into motion. In this time of uncertainty, one thing is sure: these two families will never be the same again. Set over a period of sixteen years (from 1913 to 1929), Cavendon Hall is Barbara Taylor Bradford at her very best.
The Beautiful American
by Jeanne Mackin
Publication Date: June 3, 2014
From Paris in the 1920s to London after the Blitz, two women find that a secret from their past reverberates through years of joy and sorrow....
As recovery from World War II begins, expat American Nora Tours travels from her home in southern France to London in search of her missing sixteen-year-old daughter. There, she unexpectedly meets up with an old acquaintance, famous model-turned-photographer Lee Miller. Neither has emerged from the war unscathed. Nora is racked with the fear that her efforts to survive under the Vichy regime may have cost her daughter’s life. Lee suffers from what she witnessed as a war correspondent photographing the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps.
Nora and Lee knew each other in the heady days of late 1920s Paris, when Nora was giddy with love for her childhood sweetheart, Lee became the celebrated mistress of the artist Man Ray, and Lee’s magnetic beauty drew them all into the glamorous lives of famous artists and their wealthy patrons. But Lee fails to realize that her friendship with Nora is even older, that it goes back to their days as children in Poughkeepsie, New York, when a devastating trauma marked Lee forever. Will Nora’s reunion with Lee give them a chance to forgive past betrayals…and break years of silence to forge a meaningful connection as women who have shared the best and the worst that life can offer?
A novel of freedom and frailty, desire and daring, The Beautiful American portrays the extraordinary relationship between two passionate, unconventional women.