Top Ten Tuesday: August 13 – Top Ten Favourite books with [an alternate history] Setting

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Top Ten Tuesdays is a meme hosted over at The Broke and The Bookish (see here) because lists are fun! This week is the Top Ten Favorite Books With X Setting (ie: futuristic world, set mostly in schools, during World War II, books set in California  etc. etc. So many possibilities!)

What setting to choose?  There are so many fun ones!!  I have decided to go with Alternate History.  Books that take history and reinterpret it or add a fun twist (like magic):

1. The Leviathan  trilogy (The Leviathan / The Behemoth / The Goliath) by Scott Westerfeld –  A steampunk twist on WWI pitting ‘monster’ (well, genetically engineered animals) against machines. Airships! A love story!  It’s great!

The Leviathan Trilogy

2. Soulless  by Gail Carriger.  And the rest of the Parosol Protectorate series! Also Steampunky! With werewolves and vampires!  (I did a review here).  I would also add Etiquette and Espionage to this entry, as it’s by the same author (see here).

 Etiquette and Espionage

3. His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik.  (And Series).  Re-imagining the Napoleonic wars, but with DRAGONS!

His Majesty's Dragon

4. The Gates of Sleep by Mercedes Lackey.  Actually, all of the Elemental Masters series fits here, but this one was perhaps my favourite.  The series touches from early 1900s to sort of WWI-era, with excellent fantasy elements inserted.  Bonus – they are ALSO mostly fairy-tale adaptations!

The Gates of Sleep

5. Sphinx’s Princess / Sphinx’s Queen (see reviews here).  Nefertiti / Ancient Egypt.

Sphinx's princess Sphinx's Queen

6. A Spy in the House (and the rest of The Agency series) by Y.S. Lee.  Takes Victorian-era England and features strong female characters embroiled in espionage!

A Spy in the House

7. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies  by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith.  I do love this adaptation! (and honourable mention to Sense and Sensibility and Seamonsters by Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters – which is somewhat clever but not quite as good.)

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

8.  The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde – This one sort of fits… and I include it because of the alternate “history” of the book Jane Eyre (which is central to the plot).

The Eyre Affair

9. 1984 by George Orwell.  Included because it’s such a literary classic.


10 – In which there is no specific event but there is a hidden or parallel world:

a) Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling.  I couldn’t pass this up – a whole alternative magical world of Wizards, hidden to muggles / regular folk?  Awesome.


b) A Spell for Chameleon – and all the Xanth novels – by Piers Anthony.  A whole different land parallel to Florida?  With PUNS!

A Spell for Chameleon

On the topic, I hear that these are also good (but I haven’t read them myself):

Abraham Lincoln, Vampire hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith

Boneshaker by Cherie Priest

Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay




Filed under Lists

3 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday: August 13 – Top Ten Favourite books with [an alternate history] Setting

  1. Fun topic! I love Y.S. Lee’s series, THE EYRE AFFAIR and, of course, Harry Potter. I chose novels set in the American South for my list. So many fun ways this topic can be interpreted — love it!!

  2. I haven’t read 1984 yet. I really want to though! Great list 🙂

  3. I loved both Harry Potter and 1984. Great choices.

    My TTT.

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