Sarah Johnson

About me

Librarian, HNS book review editor, readers’ advisor, author of Historical Fiction: A Guide to the Genre and Historical Fiction II. I first joined the HNS in 1998 after seeing Richard Lee’s post about the Society on a Usenet group. Shortly thereafter I signed on as a US-based reviews editor and got the word out about the magazine to American readers and publishers. Now, over a dozen years later, I serve as the overall book review editor for the Historical Novels Review. I’ve been reading and collecting historical novels for many years and also review for Booklist, Choice, and Canada’s Globe & Mail. For my full-time job, I work as a reference and electronic resources librarian at Eastern Illinois University, which means I answer research questions, teach workshops, and do a lot of work with electronic journals and e-books. My husband and I share our home in rural Illinois with too many cats and about 10,000 books.

From my website

Historical fiction vs. historical fantasy: Which is it? A guest post by Maggie Anton

Maggie Anton's guest post today is perfect for readers like me who enjoy learning about trends in historical fiction and seeing where subgroups within the genre meet and overlap.  Here she discusses the fluid borders between historical fiction and historical fantasy, and how the novels in her Rav Hisda's Daughter…

They dressed as men and went to war

We've been seeing many new historical novels about brave women who went to war in male disguise. All six of the novels below have publication dates in 2014 or 2015, and I can't think of a single event or benchmark title that got this mini-trend rolling, other than maybe an…

Venturing into teen historical fiction: A guest essay by Deborah Swift

I'm glad to welcome Deborah Swift to my site today for a guest post.  I've positively reviewed three of her earlier novels here: The Lady's Slipper, The Gilded Lily, and A Divided Inheritance, all set in the 17th century.  With her latest release, she stays in the same time frame…

Share this member