Top Ten Tuesday – August 16, 2016: Ten Alternate-History Books


August 16, 2016

It’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the wonderful blog at The Broke and the Bookish! This week’s topic was ten books with X setting so I chose: Ten Alt-History Books

alt history books

Alternate History is pretty neat. I love seeing what authors do with actual historical facts, figures, or time periods and adapting them to fit their books, often times including them in a fantasy or sci-fi type setting (hence, the adaptations). I just reviewed THE RITHMATIST by Brandon Sanderson and so this concept easily popped to mind as the topic as this week’s Top Ten Tuesday list!


  • THE RITHMATIST  by Brandon Sanderson | When magic is discovered, history is changed forever, including the entire landscape of North America which is now a collection of many islands.
  • THE CROWN’S GAME by Evelyn Skye | Magic involved in a modified version of Imperial Russia.
  • SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY by Susan Dennard | Zombies take over 1876 Philadelphia!
  • BORN WICKED by Jessica Spotswood | Alternate history Salem Witch Trials
  • MY LADY JANE by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows | Completely fun and frivolous re-write of Lady Jane Grey’s story (but oh, so much fun)
  • GRAVE MERCY by Robin LaFevers | Assassin nuns with a connection to Death play an important role in 15th century France
  • AND I DARKEN by Kiersten White | Gender-swapped Vlad the Impaler (this actually was not a favorite of mine but lots of other people loved it!)


  • A CRIMINAL MAGIC by Lee Kelly | I want to get to this one so badly! Magic meets prohibition
  • THE INVENTOR’S SECRET by Andrea Cremer | Alternate 19th Century America if the Revolutionary War hadn’t happened
  • TIMEKEEPER by Tara Sim | Alternate Victorian era with time magic

Have you read any awesome alternate-history books? Which ones would you recommend??

10 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – August 16, 2016: Ten Alternate-History Books

  1. Rabiah

    I love alternate histories. Especially ones that are steampunk or fantasy 😀 I’ve only read SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY and GRAVE MERCY on this list (loved both of ‘em), and can’t wait to read MY LADY JANE, AND I DARKEN and THE CROWN’S GAME. Great list!!

  2. Stephanie Kaye

    I’m not going to lie, I hated Grave Mercy. I just couldn’t get into it at all. However, this is such a great setting topic and I now have a few more books to add to my TBR! Alternate histories are pretty awesome and I don’t read enough of them! Great list, Brittany! I decided to highlight books set in Chicago/Illinois that I want to read!

  3. Lori

    I love this genre! My Lady Jane was one of my favorite reads this year because it was so much fun! Some of my other favorite alt-history books are Wolf by Wolf, Rebel Mechanics, and Walk on Earth a Stranger!

  4. Morgan @ Gone with the Words

    I love alternate history books too! The what-if’s make them so much fun. I loved My Lady Jane, Born Wicked, Something Strange and Deadly, and And I Darken! The Rithmatist and The Inventor’s Secret both sound super interesting and I still need to read Grave Mercy. I just started Timekeeper and I LOVE it so far!! IT’s a great alternate history for sure. In a similar vein, I love Gail Carriger’s steampunk alternate fantasy books; her YA and adult series are connected and the world is so much fun! Very Victorian but with technology and vampires and werewolves. So much fun.

  5. tiare

    I love alternate history settings! Of the ones on your list I’ve only read Grave Mercy and My Lady Jane, but they were both fantastic. I love seeing authors playing with what-ifs! 🙂

  6. Kasey @ The Story Sanctuary

    Yes! Great topic. The best book I read this year is like this– Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine. LOVED it. Loved the sequel, Paper and Fire, too. Also, I was totally surprised how much I liked The Ring and the Crown by Melissa de la Cruz. (I read one of the Blue Bloods books and didn’t much care for it.)

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