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Historical Fiction Discussions > Historical Crime

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message 1: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments Hi Fiona, I think I posted this over on the Crime and Thriller group but fans of historical fiction might be interested too.

I belong to a face-to-face historical mystery group and here are some of the authors we have read.

Cora Harrison- Medieval Ireland

Charles Todd -Inspector Ian Rutledge series in post WWI England

Rebecca Pawel- Sargent Tejada - 1940s Spain

Suzanne Arruda - Jade Del Cameron mysteries - 1920s Africa

Susanna Gregory - Matthew Barthalomew mysteries - 14th century Cambridge

Colin Cotterill - Dr. Siri mysteries - 1970s Laos

Candace Robb - Owen Archer series - 14th century England

Will Thomas - Cyrus Barker series - Victorian England


message 2: by Felina (new)

Felina | 520 comments Does anybody know of any HF books about Jack the Ripper?


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 344 comments The Tea Rose involves Jack the Ripper, but it is not exactly a major theme throughout the whole book, it mainly just impacts the first part of the story.


message 4: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments Hi Fiona, The Maisie Dobbs books by Jacqueline Winspear are set post WW I in London.


message 5: by Jon (new)

Jon | 362 comments I think the Godfather would count for this - i have that on my shelf


message 6: by MBP (new)

MBP Hi Felina - there's a fairly new HF book that deals with the Jack the Ripper case: Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson by Lyndsay Faye. I read it and thought it was well done.


message 7: by Felina (new)

Felina | 520 comments Awesome!!


message 8: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3723 comments Mod
I have Dissolution by C.J. Sansom to read, as well as Mistress of the Art of Death, and also the book I won from the GR giveaway, The Tehran Conviction A Novel of Suspense, which is set in the 50's and 60's I believe. Looks very good. :)


message 9: by Jon (new)

Jon | 362 comments Name of the Rose would be Historical crime too. v good


message 10: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments Favorite historical mystery authors for me would be:

Laura Joh Rowland (Samurai Japan)
Peter Tremayne (medeival Ireland)
C. J. Sansom (Tudor England)
Steven Saylor (ancient Rome)
Diane Day (turn of the 20th century San Francisco)


message 11: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments Hi Shomeret, Great list of historical mysteries. I had forgotten about Diane Day. I think I read the entire series and really enjoyed them.

Have you ever read the Glynis Tyron mysteries by Miriam Grace Monfredo?


message 12: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments Donna wrote: "Hi Shomeret, Great list of historical mysteries. I had forgotten about Diane Day. I think I read the entire series and really enjoyed them.

Have you ever read the Glynis Tyron mysteries by [aut..."


I've read a few of these, but not all of them. I keep on meaning to get back to this series.

Shomeret




Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) Shomeret wrote: "Favorite historical mystery authors for me would be:

Laura Joh Rowland (Samurai Japan)
Peter Tremayne (medeival Ireland)
C. J. Sansom (Tudor England)
Steven Saylor (ancient Rome)
Diane Day (turn o..."


I certainly agree with Laura Joh Rowland. I have read about 3 of the books and fit them in whenever I can. I plan to check out the other authors on your list.


message 14: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments I just started reading The Language of Bees, the ninth book in the Sherlock Holmes/Mary Russell historical mysteries series. Some of the books in this series have been amazingly good especially Justice Hall and Locked Rooms.

Shomeret


Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) Again I have to agree, I have only read the first two, and Locked Rooms. But I LOVED locked rooms. It was really good. I am looking forward to reading the rest of them.


message 16: by Donna (last edited Sep 03, 2009 05:04PM) (new)

Donna | 49 comments I just finished The Watcher in the Pine by Rebecca Pawel. This is the third in a series set in Spain in the 1930s and 40s. I really enjoyed it and since I do not know a lot about Spanish history I had to look up a few things. A good mystery and a bit of education too.

Now on to Death on the Nevskii Prospekt by David Dickinson. Set in Tsarist Russia and so far so good.


message 17: by Rhea Ann (last edited Sep 19, 2009 08:41AM) (new)

Rhea Ann | 2 comments I love the Sister Frevisse series by Margaret Frazer! But I also love that Mary Russell series - I didn't know there was a new one! Also the Elizabeth Peters series with Amelia Peabody the Victorian Egyptologist is a great one!


message 18: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments I finished Death on the Nevskii Prospekt and I did enjoy it. The historical part was a bit better than the mystery part but I did enjoy it and I will probably read another one in the series.

Currently reading Absolution by Murder by Peter Tremayne. The first in the Sister Fidelma series.


message 19: by Carol (new)

Carol Kerry-Green The Maisie Dobbs mysteries by Jacaueline Winspear are some of my favourite Historical Crime novels. Also really enjoy Susanna Gregory's Matthew Bartholmew books, set in Cambridge in the 14th century and her Restoration London crime novels.

Not Historical Crime when they were written of course, but Dorothy L Sayers mysteries are excellent.

Peter Tremayne's Sister Fidelam books are also well worth trying to get hold of, especially the earlier ones, think the later ones are a bit too contrived, but enjoyed the first four or five.

Steven Saylor - Ancient Rome mysteries - a long time since I read these, but I did enjoy them at the time, more serious than Lyndsey Davies Falco novels, but the Falco novels are good fun.




message 20: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments My next read is The Owl Killers, a medieval mystery that sounds unusual.




message 21: by Jane (new)

Jane (mizrock) | 4 comments Caleb Carr --

The Alienist
The Alienist (Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, #1) by Caleb Carr

Timeframe: 1896

"Fast-paced and gripping, infused with a historian's exactitude, The Alienist conjures up the Gilded Age and its untarnished underside: verminous tenements and opulent mansions, corrupt cops and flamboyant gangsters, shining opera houses and seamy gin mills. Here is a New York during an age when questioning society's belief that all killers are born, not made, could have unexpected and mortal consequences." (Random House)

The Angel of Darkness
The Angel of Darkness (Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, #2) by Caleb Carr

"In one of the most critically acclaimed novels of the year, Caleb Carr-- bestselling author of The Alienist--pits Dr. Laszlo Kreizler and his colleagues against a murderer as evil as the darkest night. . . ." (Random House)

Both are just excellent, and while they can be read independently from one another, the first introduces Dr. Laszlo Kreizler and his colleagues.




message 22: by Felina (new)

Felina | 520 comments Those look really good, Jane. I had to add them to by already exploding TBR.


message 23: by Katharine (new)

Katharine (katharineb) | 6 comments Jane, thanks for posting The Alienist! I've been meaning to read it for years and just put in on my TBR shelf. Do you know of any other good novels set during the 1890s in America?


message 24: by Jane (last edited Dec 10, 2009 03:51PM) (new)

Jane (mizrock) | 4 comments The Devil in the White City Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson

Katherine and Felina, since reading both the Alienist and Angel of Darkness, I keep waiting for Carr to write another one -- they are both just "can't put down" reads.

Katherine, The Devil in the White City Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America, is about a serial killer during the 1890s. Also a must read for historical crime lovers.




message 25: by Katharine (new)

Katharine (katharineb) | 6 comments Jane, I read The Devil in the White City and thought it was very interesting -- nice balance of exposition and plot.

Glad to get another vote for the Carr. It's at the top of my TBR pile right now.


message 26: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie I highly recommend City of Light! You get mystery and a great depiction of Buffalo, the Niagra Falls and American life at the turn of the century.


message 27: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie I haven't read yet Mistress of the Art of Death but I want to. It is highly recommended by several GR friends. It has been compared to The Owl Killers, which several have mentioned here.


message 28: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments I really enjoyed the Mistress of the Art of Death and I have recommended it to my face to face book group for one of next year's reads. I haven't read The Owl Killers but I am putting it on my TBR shelf because I have heard so many good things about it.


message 29: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie Donna, which did you like best - the Alienist or Mistress of the Art of Death?


message 30: by Donna (new)

Donna | 49 comments Unfortunately, I haven't read The Alienist yet so I can't compare them.


message 31: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie Everybody loves the Alienist, but I am just not sure about tht one. Silly me! I DO want to read The Mistress of the Art of Death - maybe I will get weak and order it after Xmas. A little splurge :0) Have a nice Xmas.


message 32: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments Chrissie wrote: "I haven't read yet Mistress of the Art of Death but I want to. It is highly recommended by several GR friends. It has been compared to The Owl Killers, which several have mentioned here."

Mistress of the Art of Death is very good, but I haven't liked the sequels as much.

I am currently reading The Council of the Cursed which is part of a series in which the female main character is a dalaigh in early medeival Ireland. A dalaigh is a combination of an investigator, a lawyer, a judge, a mediator and an ambassador. She is the sister of a king as well. These books show us how different medeival Ireland was from the rest of Europe.




message 33: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie Shomeret - yeah I am very tempted by The Mistress of the Art of Death. I hazven't even looked at the other books by this suthor. I will keep in mind what you said. I usually only add one book by a new author, then if I really think they are good I read more. There are so many authors to test..... Have a nice Xmas!


message 34: by Midnightrider (last edited Dec 25, 2009 02:14PM) (new)

Midnightrider | 1 comments Hi I am newly arrived to this group and to historical crime.
I have recently read and enjoyed Ariana Franklin and her character Adelia Aguilar a female and early days (Circa 1171) forensic pathologist. A great start to what I hope is good series. Laura Wilson - DI Ted Stratton - WWII. Robert Wilson - A Small Death in Lisbon - WWII through to modern day. Barry Maitland - The Marx Sisters, C J Sansom - Dissolution - Tudor Crime. I have just started the Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly and it is going well. Good reading to all and I look forward to more "leads & reads" from my fellow "historical flatshoes".


message 35: by Katharine (new)

Katharine (katharineb) | 6 comments Chrissie, I just read The Alienist and liked it but wasn't wild about it, either. So there are two of us, at least!



message 36: by Chris (new)

Chris  (haughtc) Jon wrote: "I think the Godfather would count for this - i have that on my shelf"

Indeed. Mario Puzo's books are some of my favorites.

The Godfather - an all-time classic. Not better than the movie, but great to experience both.

The Sicilian - related to The Godfather, this covers events in Sicily during Michael Corleone's exile there. He's not the main character, but very important to the story.

Omerta - what's normally called the "third" of the Mafia trilogy. It was published after Puzo's death. While it was a good story, I didn't find that it was nearly as good as these first two.

The Family - also published after his death, and finished by his domestic partner. This book was incredibly interesting and gripping. I liked it better than the other Puzo's except The Godfather itself. It isn't Mafia. It is straight up historical fiction, centering around the family of Pope Alexander VI, the Borgia family. It takes place mostly in the early 1500s.


message 37: by Jane (new)

Jane (mizrock) | 4 comments I haven't read The Mistress of the Art of Death, so I will be interested in seeing how it stacks up with The Alienist.

Right now, I'm burried in the 1100s non-crime so it will be a bit before I'm ready to pick up a new historical crime.

If I don't get a good crime fix on a regular basis, a major part of my internal bibliophile begins getting a bit bored, no matter how excellent whatever my current non-crime book may be. Perhaps I need the vicarious excitement and the mental workout from the forensic parts.

Happy 2010 everyone -- and here's to a great year of reading!


message 38: by Jon (new)

Jon | 362 comments not sure if mentioned previously but Name of the Rose is good!


message 39: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (mom2grma) | 31 comments When I saw the title of this discussion my first thought was the Alienist. I read it years ago and enjoyed it. Have to look up some of the other titles you have all mentioned. *SIGH* more to add to my TBR list!


message 40: by Frances (new)

Frances | 9 comments I recently read Silent in the Sanctuary by Deanna Raybourn and enjoyed it very much. It's a murder mystery set in a fabulous old abbey, though I must say the murder is somewhat secondary to the characters and the ongoing love arc. I enjoyed it enough to get the first one in the series, Silent in the Grave, but I did not like that one at all and did not finish it.


message 41: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments I am currently reading Messenger of Truth. It's the 4th in the Maisie Dobbs series. Maisie Dobbs is an amateur detective who has been a nurse during World War I and studied psychology so she could work with shell shocked soldiers. The books take place between the two world wars. This one deals with the death of an artist who belongs to an unconventional family. There are some interesting characters to say the least.


message 42: by Christy B (new)

Christy B (runaway84) The Sebastian St. Cyr mysteries by C.S. Harris are very good.


message 43: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 247 comments I am now reading Cezanne's Quarry in which the artist Cezanne is a murder suspect.


message 44: by Chrissie (new)

Chrissie Shomeret, maybe you want to add it to the thread on artists in historical fiction?


message 45: by VMom (new)

VMom (votermom) | 7 comments I love historical mystery series.
My current favorite is the Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters. The first book is
Crocodile on the Sandbank. It features an eccentric Egyptologist in the Victorian era.

I also enjoy the Mistress of the Art of Death series, and she also wrote a crime mystery set in 1920-30 Berlin City of Shadows: A Novel of Suspense.

I second the rec for the Sebastian St. Cyr mysteries too.


message 46: by ToniS (new)

ToniS Has anyone read these Abigail Adams mysteries by Barbara Hamilton? I can't decide if the concept is lame or genius.


message 47: by Evelina (new)

Evelina | 1 comments Company of Liarsand The Owl Killers are amazing! :) I can't wait for next book from Karen Maitland :) Right now I want to read Mistress of the Art of Death:)


message 48: by Gayle (new)

Gayle (gretarahikkainen) I loved Mistress of the Art of Death and each of the sequels. C. J. Sansom's Matthew Shardlake series is excellent also. Karen Harper has a fairly good series with Queen Elizabeth I as the sleuth. Then there's the "Face Down...." series by Kathy Lynn Emerson, some of those have been fun to read. Michael Jecks Templar series.......

So many good historical mysteries to read, never enough time to read them all. :)


message 49: by Squirt (new)

Squirt Thorpe | 3 comments I love the Nancy Drew series by Carolyn Keene! Anyone like those?


message 50: by Lizz (new)

Lizz (ealisaid) I am going through the Sabastian St. Cyr series by C.S. Harris and Her Royal Spyness series by Rhys Bowen. Both are fantastic!


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