Hi everyone! Another month, another book nook prompt. This month was actually Abbey’s birthday month so she chose her favourite genre – historical fiction. I won’t lie, if I had to say what genre I read the least I would say historical fiction. I did want to take part in this prompt, although you will see from my review that I’ve not become a convert. I have read a couple of historical fiction novels and had mixed reviews. I tried to read the book thief a couple of years ago but I couldn’t even finish it because I just couldn’t get into it. I’ve also read the catcher in the rye and the great gatsby, which although I read to the end I wasn’t a huge fan, as well as how to kill a mocking bird, which I actually really enjoyed. I couldn’t decide on what book to read for this prompt but I went to the library for the first time in years and found The Haunting by Alan Titchmarsh which I decided to pick up.
“”History is boring; and what does it have to do with us?”
Much as Harry Flint tries to fight against the beliefs of his pupils, there are times when he wonders if they are right. With a failed marriage behind him, he sets about changing his own life and researching that of his ancestors. How can the mysterious disappearance of Anne Flint in 1816 and the drowning of a young girl in the chalk stream when the Prince Regent occupied the throne possibly affect him? The deeper he digs, the more he realizes that the past is closer than he could have ever imagined. Set in the beauty of the Hampshire countryside, this is a story where people are not what they seem and the past is no more predictable than the future.”
Ok so as I’ve already admitted, I’m not a convert to historical fiction. I was initially intrigued by this book because it was set in two different centuries – the 19th and the 21st. I thought that it would make for a better read than something that was solely set in the past. However, I actually didn’t end up finishing the book, having not even read 100 pages. Although I didn’t finish it, I gave it three stars because I felt that it had the potential to be a good book and maybe if I was into historical fiction I would have enjoyed it more. I found it quite tedious because even the guy who was set more in the present day might has well have been from the 19th century, I just found him dull. I also feel like I maybe picked up the wrong book, maybe if I had picked up something like the help or a Jane Austin novel I may have enjoyed it more (although I have tried to read pride and prejudice but have never gotten into it). I wouldn’t rule out picking up a historical fiction novel in the future but it wouldn’t be my first choice.
Q1. If you could travel either to the past or the future, what would you pick and why? – I would most likely say future. I know I should be more inclined to say past but I feel like the future is new and unexpected so I would prefer to experience something that hasn’t already happened yet than go back to things that have happened. Although saying that, if I was to go back in time I would probably go back to the 1920s if not for the glamour of it all.
Q2. Historical novels aren’t always accurate in their details – is this something that bothers you? Why/why not? – So as I’ve already admitted I’m not the biggest fan of historical novels so I wouldn’t really know the answer to this question. I feel you probably aren’t going to find something that is 100% accurate unless it is nonfiction but at the same time you would want something to be well written and have some accuracy to it.
Q3) Is there one specific historical era that especially interests you? What novels set in that time would you recommend? – Again, I don’t really have an answer to this question but if I was to read more historical fiction, I would prefer to read novels that aren’t too far in the past from the present day.
Q4. Which historical figure (fictional or real!) would you most like to have dinner with? – I really have no clue…maybe someone like Einstein?
Q5. Do you find historical fiction an appealing genre? Why / why not? If you haven’t already gathered, I don’t find it to be the most appealing genre. I think the reason it’s not one of my favourite genres is the style of writing. I feel like because it’s set in the past, often in the 1900s there is obviously a certain way people spoke and I guess authors will want to portray that in their books but as a result I find it hard to get into them.
Have you read the hauntings? What are your thoughts on historical fiction? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
Thanks for reading!