New books by HNS members, August 2019

Congrats to the following authors on their new releases! If you’ve written a historical novel or nonfiction work published (or to be published) in May 2019 or after, please send them in to us or tweet them to @readingthepast by Oct. 7: author, title, publisher, release date, and a blurb of one sentence or less. Details will appear in November’s magazine. Submissions may be edited for space.

A Brain. A Heart. The Nerve. (Alternative Book Press, Aug. 2018) by Ann S. Epstein is a fictional biography (1935-1980) of Meinhardt Raabe, who played the Munchkin Coroner in the Hollywood classic The Wizard of Oz.

Eleanor’s Daughter: A Novel of Marie de Champagne by June Hall McCash (Twin Oaks, Jan. 1), set in twelfth-century France and rich in historical detail, medieval pageantry, warfare, and intrigue, tells the compelling story of two women who refused to be pawns in the hands of powerful men.

A medieval epic adventure set in 1204-5 AD, Derry McKeone’s The Stolen Calix (self-published via Amazon, Feb. 15) features an archer forced to take a symbolic drinking vessel from Southern England to Constantinople.

Feisty Sigga’s own struggles to survive are intertwined with Iceland’s fight for independence and the moral dilemmas posed by the Allied occupation of World War II in Sigga of Reykjavik by Solveig Eggerz (Bacon Press, Feb. 21).

In Greg Kater’s Conflict on the Yangtze (Zeus Publications, Mar. 4), during 1946, former army officer, Jamie Munro, and educated half-aborigine, Jack “Jacko” O’Brien, who head the Australian Commonwealth Investigation Service, are asked by Colonel John Cook, a senior commanding officer of MI6, to go to China and assist in the investigation of a drug cartel who are believed responsible for killing one of his operatives along the Yangtze River.

The third novel in her Enemies Series, Mary Ann Trail’s Masking Enemies (self-published, Mar. 11) introduces the reader to an innocent woman and a rascally dropout trying to survive mortal danger and mutual loathing in the Cotswolds, 1803.

Set in 1453, during the last days of Byzantine Constantinople, Peter Sandham’s Porphyry and Ash (Thomson Fleming, Apr. 8) charts the fate of two genuine historical individuals: Anna Notaras, the youngest daughter of the city’s wealthiest family, and John Grant, a Scottish soldier-of-fortune.

In Jennifer Hallock’s Sugar Moon (indie, Apr. 10), the second full novel in the Sugar Sun series, set in the Philippine-American War, a survivor of the attack at Balangiga seeks redemption farming sugar cane in the Philippines, but his past won’t let go.

Oracle’s War, by Cath Mayo and David Hair (Canelo UK, Apr. 29) follows Athena’s Champion as the second book in their Olympus series: Odysseus faces sorcery, assassination and a deadly dynastic feud after a mysterious new oracle forewarns of the destruction of Achaea at the hands of the Trojans.

Wanders Far-An Unlikely Hero’s Journey by David Fitz-Gerald (Outskirts Press, May 11) is a mystical adventure featuring a young messenger, an old shaman, and the legendary unification of the Iroquois in pre-colonial New York, circa AD 1140.

Across the Great Divide: Book 1 The Clouds of War by Michael Ross (Elm Hill, May 14) tells the story of an ordinary family drawn into the Civil War – a nation divided, a family torn apart, a love threatened, a dream of freedom.

In The Final Reckoning (RedDoor, Jun. 27), the third part of Chris Bishop’s The Shadow of the Raven series, with the threat of an imminent Viking attack, Matthew, now a warrior, is sent to fortify and defend the ford at Leatherhead; hopelessly outnumbered, he faces his sternest test as he and a small band of barely trained Saxon warriors strive to hold out long enough for help to arrive or resolve to die trying.

Katia Raina’s debut YA novel Castle of Concrete (New Europe/Young Europe Books, Jun. 11), is set in the last year of collapsing communist Russia and features a shy daughter of a Jewish dissident falling in love with a young man who may be anti-Semitic.

In Severed Knot by Cryssa Bazos (W.M. Jackson Publishing, Jun. 7), set in the aftermath of the English Civil War, Scottish prisoner of war Iain Johnstone is transported to the sugarcane fields of Barbados as an indentured servant and struggles to regain his freedom.

In Pam Lecky’s No Stone Unturned (KDP Amazon, Jun, 28), Book 1 of The Lucy Lawrence Mysteries set in 1886 London, when the secrets of Lucy Lawrence’s late husband spill from the grave, and her life is threatened by the leader of London’s most notorious gang, Lucy must find the strength to rise to the challenge—but who can she trust, and how is she to stay out of the murderous clutches of London’s most dangerous criminal?

Teresa McRae’s Emily Garrison (Teresa McRae Publishing, Jul. 1), book 3 of the Garrison Series, covers the years from Reconstruction to the beginning of Jim Crow.

Downton Abbey down south, set in boll-weevil depressed 1920s Georgia: In The River Nymph by Anne Lovett (Words of Passion, Jul. 21), a sharecropper’s runaway daughter and an ambitious flapper with a camera confront a Valentino with secrets who’ll stop at nothing for riches and revenge—can he keep the girls from success in a man’s world?

Charity’s Choice by Alexine Crawford (The Conrad Press, Sep. 1): While in the 1640s the Levellers campaign for justice and freedom, and King Charles prevaricates, Charity faces a town of strangers, challenging her to make her own choices.

The Silken Rose by Carol McGrath (Accent, Oct. 3) is biographical fiction about Ailenor of Provence, cultured and intelligent, who is only thirteen when she marries Henry III of England; aware of the desperate importance of providing heirs to secure the throne from those who would snatch it away, she is ruthless in her dealings with Henry’s barons.

An update of a collection of 10 short pieces of historic fiction, Jerry Smetzer‘s Cassiopeia’s Quest – A Rewrite (Amazon, Nov. 29) takes the reader on a walkabout through the lens of 10 periods of change in human history as a young female protagonist in each period works on her own journey of challenge, discovery, and imagination.

In Frances Schmidt’s FRED: Building of Dreams (Buffalo Heritage Press, fall 2020), FRED, the building himself, shares the legacy of many of his ethnically and culturally diverse tenants and their families, who arrived in America during the span of 1900-2018.


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