Faction
A.S. Byatt recently attacked 'faction': "I don't like the idea of going into the mind of the real unknown dead," she said, "It feels like the appropriation of others' lives and privacy." I also have misgivings about the ethics of putting words into the mouths of people who aren't around to speak for themselves (or sue!) But as writers can't seem to resist writing novels in which real historical figures are used as characters, let's make a list...
1 I, Claudius (Claudius, #1)
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2 Wolf Hall (Thomas Cromwell,...
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3 Katherine
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4 The Three Musketeers
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5 The Sunne in Splendour
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6 Claudius the God and His Wi...
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7 The Name of the Rose
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4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 146,391 ratings
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8 The Killer Angels
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4.26 of 5 stars 4.26 avg rating — 44,703 ratings
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9 In Cold Blood
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4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 304,617 ratings
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10 Here be Dragons (Welsh Prin...
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 12,583 ratings
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11 When Christ and His Saints ...
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4.27 of 5 stars 4.27 avg rating — 8,060 ratings
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12 The Other Boleyn Girl (The ...
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 316,160 ratings
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13 Falls the Shadow  (Welsh Pr...
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4.36 of 5 stars 4.36 avg rating — 5,240 ratings
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14 Girl With a Pearl Earring
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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 327,381 ratings
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15 Devil's Brood  (Henry II & ...
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4.34 of 5 stars 4.34 avg rating — 3,843 ratings
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15 Time and Chance (Henry II &...
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4.27 of 5 stars 4.27 avg rating — 4,547 ratings
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17 The First Man in Rome (Mast...
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 11,790 ratings
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18 The Greatest Knight (Willia...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 4,460 ratings
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19 The Agony and the Ecstasy
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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 43,698 ratings
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20 Ragtime
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 19,458 ratings
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21 The Scarlet Lion (William M...
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4.24 of 5 stars 4.24 avg rating — 2,945 ratings
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22 Joan of Arc
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 3,117 ratings
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23 Lionheart
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 3,055 ratings
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24 The Autobiography of Henry ...
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 18,768 ratings
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25 The Reckoning  (Welsh Princ...
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4.42 of 5 stars 4.42 avg rating — 4,931 ratings
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26 The Grass Crown (Masters of...
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4.25 of 5 stars 4.25 avg rating — 6,488 ratings
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27 Lady of the English
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 2,771 ratings
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28 Queen Margot, or Marguerite...
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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12 avg rating — 5,888 ratings
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29 To Your Scattered Bodies Go...
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3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 17,003 ratings
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30 The Book Thief
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4.36 of 5 stars 4.36 avg rating — 654,797 ratings
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31 Gates of Fire: An Epic Nove...
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 13,732 ratings
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32 Innocent Traitor: A Novel o...
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3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 19,383 ratings
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33 The Birthday Boys
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3.88 of 5 stars 3.88 avg rating — 406 ratings
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33 Fortune's Favorites (Master...
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4.31 of 5 stars 4.31 avg rating — 4,104 ratings
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35 The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of...
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3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 7,253 ratings
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36 Caesar's Women (Masters of ...
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4.19 of 5 stars 4.19 avg rating — 3,469 ratings
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37 Arthur & George
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3.66 of 5 stars 3.66 avg rating — 8,494 ratings
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38 The October Horse: A Novel ...
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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 3,009 ratings
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39 Bring Up the Bodies (Thomas...
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4.25 of 5 stars 4.25 avg rating — 28,413 ratings
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40 To Defy a King (William Mar...
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 1,904 ratings
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41 Roots: The Saga of an Ameri...
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4.39 of 5 stars 4.39 avg rating — 89,443 ratings
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42 Burr
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 4,367 ratings
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43 Lincoln
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 5,292 ratings
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44 Caesar (Masters of Rome, #5)
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4.32 of 5 stars 4.32 avg rating — 4,042 ratings
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45 Gods and Generals
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3.98 of 5 stars 3.98 avg rating — 17,923 ratings
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46 The Castle in the Forest
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3.12 of 5 stars 3.12 avg rating — 1,874 ratings
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46 The Alienist
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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 72,846 ratings
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48 Flashman (The Flashman Pape...
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 5,945 ratings
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49 The Complete Maus (Maus, #1-2)
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4.49 of 5 stars 4.49 avg rating — 44,204 ratings
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49 Naguib Mahfouz: Three Novel...
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4.21 of 5 stars 4.21 avg rating — 262 ratings
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51 Libra
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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 8,082 ratings
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52 Memoirs of Hadrian
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 6,158 ratings
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53 Fire from Heaven (Alexander...
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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 2,942 ratings
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54 A Dead Man in Deptford
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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83 avg rating — 734 ratings
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55 The Last Testament of Oscar...
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 292 ratings
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56 For the King's Favor (Willi...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 1,507 ratings
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57 The Dante Club
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3.37 of 5 stars 3.37 avg rating — 27,982 ratings
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58 Rob Roy
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3.66 of 5 stars 3.66 avg rating — 5,226 ratings
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59 Antony and Cleopatra (Maste...
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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 2,782 ratings
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60 Regeneration (Regeneration,...
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 12,982 ratings
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61 The Paris Wife
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3.75 of 5 stars 3.75 avg rating — 127,199 ratings
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62 Lust for Life
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4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 10,167 ratings
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63 The Plot Against America
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3.65 of 5 stars 3.65 avg rating — 20,356 ratings
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64 Girl in a Blue Dress
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3.53 of 5 stars 3.53 avg rating — 1,381 ratings
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65 Quicksilver (The Baroque Cy...
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 23,998 ratings
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66 I, Elizabeth
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3.99 of 5 stars 3.99 avg rating — 10,052 ratings
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66 Jane and the Unpleasantness...
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 3,027 ratings
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68 The Queen's Fool (The Tudor...
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3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 54,831 ratings
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69 Nothing Like the Sun
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 625 ratings
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70 Lotte in Weimar: The Belove...
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3.6 of 5 stars 3.60 avg rating — 325 ratings
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71 Shadow on the Crown
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3.79 of 5 stars 3.79 avg rating — 1,922 ratings
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72 Luncheon of the Boating Party
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3.6 of 5 stars 3.60 avg rating — 3,989 ratings
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73 True History of the Kelly Gang
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3.79 of 5 stars 3.79 avg rating — 11,302 ratings
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74 A Tabernacle for the Sun (T...
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4.41 of 5 stars 4.41 avg rating — 22 ratings
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75 Kenilworth
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 382 ratings
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76 The Whiskey Rebels
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 3,925 ratings
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77 Cain
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 6,659 ratings
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77 Newes from the Dead
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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 1,524 ratings
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79 Territory
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3.74 of 5 stars 3.74 avg rating — 1,184 ratings
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79 The Lambs of London
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3.1 of 5 stars 3.10 avg rating — 1,068 ratings
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79 The Prince and the Pauper
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 65,347 ratings
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82 The Boleyn Inheritance (The...
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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 54,773 ratings
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82 Rasputin's Daughter
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3.42 of 5 stars 3.42 avg rating — 2,169 ratings
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84 Josephus
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4.47 of 5 stars 4.47 avg rating — 126 ratings
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85 The Constant Princess (The ...
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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83 avg rating — 89,243 ratings
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85 The Virgin's Lover (The Tud...
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3.65 of 5 stars 3.65 avg rating — 33,615 ratings
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87 The Alexander Trilogy
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4.29 of 5 stars 4.29 avg rating — 162 ratings
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87 The Romanov Bride
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3.55 of 5 stars 3.55 avg rating — 1,418 ratings
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89 Shōgun (Asian Saga, #3)
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4.33 of 5 stars 4.33 avg rating — 78,392 ratings
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90 Conceit
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3.47 of 5 stars 3.47 avg rating — 205 ratings
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91 Bláznova moudrost aneb Smrt...
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4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 58 ratings
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92 Goya
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4.33 of 5 stars 4.33 avg rating — 707 ratings
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93 Jew Süss
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4.26 of 5 stars 4.26 avg rating — 247 ratings
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94 Catherine de Medici 1-3: Ma...
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 70 ratings
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94 The Uncommon Reader
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 13,506 ratings
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96 According to Queeney
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3.36 of 5 stars 3.36 avg rating — 425 ratings
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97 Slammerkin
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3.67 of 5 stars 3.67 avg rating — 8,997 ratings
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98 Dissolution (Matthew Shardl...
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4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 15,112 ratings
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99 Confederates
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 162 ratings
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100 Angelique (Angelique: Origi...
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4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 1,296 ratings
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276 books · 58 voters · list created September 17th, 2009 by Phillip Edwards (votes) .
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) (last edited Feb 07, 2011 10:15AM) (new)

Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Interesting. There WAS a time when Byatt herself at least came pretty close to faction writing, too ... (think of The Matisse Stories and The Virgin in the Garden ...)

Ditto, for that matter, The Children's Book!


message 2: by ☯Bettie☯ (new)

☯Bettie☯ Themis-Athena wrote: "Interesting. There WAS a time when Byatt herself at least came pretty close to faction writing, too ... (think of The Matisse Stories and The Virgin in the Garden ...)

Ditto, for that matter, The ..."


Good point!


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