3 Historical Novels to start this new decade off right!


As we carpool our way into a new year I wanted to share with you mamas what I’m reading while at my kids’ ballet class, swim class and at library day.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I am! 

What to read during their ballet class: 

The Seamstress by Allison Pittman 

This novel takes place at the beginning of the French Revolution of 1788.  It is hard not to get wrapped up in the nail-biting don’t-do-it! moments of Laurette’s storyline while her cousin Renee is having wild adventures in the worrisome days of Marie Antoinette’s court! You can really feel the hunger of the peasants, the ignorance of the wealthy, and the steadfastness of the ordinary villager while reading this novel.  While showing the classism that existed in the old world, the novel also dances around the idea that there is a difference between public life, and private life that oftentimes gets forgotten in this day and age. It’s the perfect thing to read while your child balances on her toes. 

What to read during their swim class:

When We Left Cuba by Chanel Cleeton

In 1960s Florida, Beatriz is adjusting to life in a new country.  Castro’s revolution took everything from her family, and now she has an opportunity to fight back. Beatriz is a wild and exciting woman in an era where women were expected to smile and marry before turning twenty-one. Beatriz is rebellious, as such, she doesn’t always make the best choices, but this leads us into the lesser-known areas of 1960s American, European, and Cuban history. The author is a Vero Beach native, and as you can imagine, the sounds of the rustling palm trees and catty Worth Avenue gossips sound as real as your child being taught the backstroke in the YMCA pool.

What to read during toddler library day: 

Catching the Wind by Melanie Dobson 

From the first minute you read of children singing in the woods in the early days of WW2, you’ll be drawn into this historical story of missing children and promises kept.  Quenby is a journalist normally involved in corruption stories, not missing person reports.  Yet something draws her to the story of two missing children in the woods. The novel will have you turning the pages as fast as you are able in moments.  Your children will be encouraged to hone up on their own reading skills, and at the end of the day, you’ll be thankful that your children are alive here and now instead of there and then. 

So there you have it! These are my three suggestions for great historical novels to read in your spare moments!  Let me know if you’ve read them & what other books you’d read during your children’s extra-curricular activities!