NPR's list of the year's best historical fiction: To bring the past to life and make it matter, historical fiction must do more than conjure up an exotic backdrop for a conventional story. NPR Books has picked six books this year that challenge our preconceptions and help show how the past shaped the world we live in today.
(to read) On an isolated island off the coast of Australia, a lighthouse keeper and his wife rescue a baby who arrives, abandoned, by boat. What results from their decision to raise the child as their own will keep you reading late into the night.
Ten Days in a Mad-House Nellie Bly entered Blackwell's island Asylum in 1887 under the guise of insanity under assignment from Joseph Pulitzer. She wrote, "From the moment I entered the insane ward on the Island, I made no attempt to keep up the assumed role of insanity. I talked and acted just as I do in ordinary life. Yet strange to say, the more sanely I talked and acted, the crazier I was thought to be by all...." Her book Ten Days in a Mad-House, resulted in a grand jury investigation
Uncle Tom’s Cabin : A Tale of Life Among the Lowly (1897). Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811-1896). First released 1851-1852. Stowe, a teacher and an active abolitionist, featured the character of Uncle Tom, a long-suffering black slave. Depicts the reality of slavery while asserting that Christian love can overcome something so destructive. “Witness, eternal God! Oh, witness, that, from this hour, I will do what one man can to drive out this curse of slavery from my land!” (Stowe, Uncle Tom’s…