It's been a while since I have done a theme spotlight so here I am back at it today with fictional novels that feature real people. Many of these have female main characters because I love reading more about the women who have been pushed to the sidelines over the years. I have lots more on my TBR so you can expect a part two in the near future.
McLain is one of my favorite adult historical fiction writers. She tells the story of real women so well. This is her second novel that was released this year and I loved it! I think I liked her debut a bit better but I think that's because it's about the literary world. This one is about Beryl Markham, a female pilot living in colonized Africa. I loved that this followed her from childhood to adulthood and how much of a free-spirit Markham was. This one has a connection with Out of Africa if you are interested in that.
This is a fictionalized account of Zelda Fitzgerald and her life with F. Scott. I find the Fitzgeralds just as fascinating as the next person so this was a great read. Again, this is one of those books that tells a well-known story from the woman's side. Foweler paints an amazing picture of the Lost Generation's Paris as does the next book on my list.
This is McLain's debut which focuses on Hadley Hemingway, the first wife of the infamously masculine and jerkish Ernest Hemingway. Before reading this, I was not a fan of Hemingway as a person, I can't deny the quality of his writing but I don't like anything about him personally. This book did not change my mind but instead showed me the strength and class of his first wife. This book features a lot of 20's Paris literary and artistic legends and I was absolutely sucked in. In fact, it may be time for a reread.
Another favorite from before blogging, this series contains Oscar Wilde as the solver of murders along with his circle of literary figures including Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker. I love this series and how well Brandreth has captured Wilde's character. Another series I am hoping to revisit soon.
Bonus: Inspired by a real woman
This one is inspired by a true story and a real woman, but the characters did not exist. I had to add this one because it's a great female lead historical fiction novel that will make you feel every single emotion at once.
Leave me your recommendations for fictional books about real people in the comments!