One of the things we love most about historical fiction is being transported to times and places long gone. Let’s be honest, we’d all jump at the chance if the Doctor turned up in our back garden with the Tardis. And books let us do just a bit of time travelling.
We often find ourselves dreaming up the times and places we’d love to visit…
Jennifer Donnelly’s ‘These Shallow Graves’ takes us to New York City in 1890 where the city was growing and growing. Immigrants were pouring in from all over the world, cultures were being mashed together and skyscrapers were shooting up across the city. What a mishmash of old and new!
We’ve been fascinated by Tudor London since we learned about it in school. A London built of wood, where people got around via the Thames because the city was so narrow and crowded and stealing a loaf of bread could have you executed – it’s so far from the city we know and love today!
Jane Austen spent the years between 1801 and 1806 in Bath and a lot of famous landmarks are very similar now to what they would have been then: Bath Abbey, the Royal Crescent, the Circus, the Pump Rooms, and even the Roman Baths, even though you’re no longer allowed in the water (thankfully – it’s gross). The houses she lived in – 4 Sydney Place and 1 The Paragon – are even still there!
If you say you don’t want to visit Ancient Egypt then you must be lying. There’s something strangely appealing about the suffocating heat, seeing the Pyramids at Giza rise up and see chariots racing down dusty streets. Egypt was one of the few ancient civilisations that treated women well, so that’s a bonus too!
We’d probably have to watch through our fingers, but we also think it would be cool to have seen the tournaments go down in the Colosseum in Rome. It would have been in one piece for a start, but can you just imagine the atmosphere?! It would have smelt so bad in there though…
Fancy visiting Victorian NYC? Grab your copy of ‘These Shallow Graves’ right here!
Where and when in history would you like to visit? Let us know at @maximumpopbooks!
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