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Recommendations? > Great reads in first person?

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message 1: by A (new)

A (akrathan) Hi all,

Could you all please recommend some good historical fiction novels written in the first person? The only two I can think of are The Red Tent and Memoirs of a Geisha. Much appreciated!!


message 2: by JC (new)

JC (jmnc) | 528 comments I *think* these are first person:

In the Company of the Courtesan
The Remains of the Day
Cleopatra's Daughter
Abundance: A Novel of Marie Antoinette (Told from Marie's perspective)
The Witch of Blackbird Pond
Can anyone confirm if Diana Gabaldon's Lord John books are first person?
Lord John and the Private Matter

message 3: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3408 comments Mod
The Help is a good one told in 1st person with three different narrators. Wonderful book, by the way! :)

message 4: by Karen (new)

Karen (kl4bes) | 1 comments The Last Queen and Confessions of Catherine de Medici are both written in first person.

message 5: by Carol (new)

Carol Keogh (Goodfellow) (carolgoodfellowkeogh) | 2 comments Am I the only one who finds it difficult to read books written in the first person? The only exceptions I make is Jane Eyre, The Historian. Anyone else?

message 6: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3408 comments Mod
Nope... I don't have any trouble with it. I don't prefer them, because sometimes the internal monologue and "interpretation" of other people's actions and intentions can be aggravating, depending on the narrator, but when done well they are great. :)

I will say that it annoys me when 1st person narrators are made to misinterpret or refuse to see things to cause tension or drama in the story. LOL

message 7: by Maude (new)

Maude | 752 comments I think there are a lot of people who do not like to read books in the first person. My son absolutely will not even attempt one and I will never understand why. Why do people dislike first person? I never ever think about it when I pick up a book unless someone asks me if it is in first person. I would be able to tell them so I know what I am reading but either is fine with me. Do you find that some people dislike reading books which are not first person?

message 8: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3408 comments Mod
I have seen one person who says that they prefer books in 1st person because (if I recall correctly) they found it difficult to identify with characters through other narration techniques.

I read both and rarely think about it. It doesn't affect my enjoyment at all unless the narrator is obnoxious, like I mentioned before. LOL

message 9: by jb (last edited Jun 30, 2011 06:19PM) (new)

jb Byrkit (jbbyrkit) Not HF but the book Skippy Dies is partly in the first person....it changes characters. In this particular book at first I had trouble with realizing which character was talking, but now I am ok with it.

Victoria_Grossack Grossack (victoriagrossack) | -49 comments OK, this is one of my books, but you'll excuse me for me because the first person aspect is actually important. Jocasta, the Queen of Thebes who married her own son (Oedipus), is trapped in the palace - the incest is found out. She has the choice of taking her own life or letting the Theban mob pull her apart (the Theban mob has made a habit of doing this to leaders they consider blasphemous). However, the mob will not arrive until dawn. In the meantime, one of her daughters (Ismene) arrives and asks: Is it true? Did you know?

And so Jocasta tells her daughter the whole story, in Jocasta The Mother-Wife of Oedipus by Victoria Grossack , from before her time with Laius to the truth coming out about her marriage to Oedipus. (And if you want more information, go to www.tapestryofbronze.com)

message 11: by Chrissie (new)

message 12: by Jackie (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) | 2249 comments Exit the Actress- current group read :)

message 13: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Vorenberg | 16 comments Just finished Caleb's Crossing and it was one of the few times I thoroughly enjoyed reading in first person. Abundance was another great first person read, too.

Tierra Red

message 14: by Dorie (new)

Dorie (dorieann) JenC. wrote: "Can anyone confirm if Diana Gabaldon's Lord John books are first person?..."

They are not but her Outlander series is.

If you like historical mysteries, Deanna Raybourn's Lady Julia Grey novels are first person. They begin with Silent in the Grave.

Another historical mystery series that is completely charming (and written in first person) is Alan Bradley's Flavia de Luce series, starting with The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie.

message 15: by A (new)

A (akrathan) Thanks for all the great suggestions!

I agree with Becky, Maude and others that previously, I barely noticed if a book was first person. It would have to be a very recent read for me to even remember. But I'm writing my first novel and I'm having a hard time to deciding between first person and third person. I feel much more comfy in first person but quite a few people prefer third, and it would probably force me to be less prosy and more action-packed. Hmm.

But I now have a good list of books to help me decide either way!

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