The best historical fiction anthologies

Who am I?

We are the Paper Lantern Writers, an author collective focused on historical fiction of all eras. From Medieval Europe to the Gilded Age (and beyond), in locales around the world, from romantic to tragic and back again, our books will take you on the journeys of a lifetime. There’s a story to be told every where you look and we'd love to be your tour guide. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, and join our Facebook group SHINE.


I wrote...

Unlocked: A Paper Lantern Writers Anthology

By Linda Ulleseit, Paper Lantern Writers, Edie Cay, Ana Brazil, Mari Anne Christie, Rebecca D'Harlingue, Anne M. Beggs, Kathryn Pritchett, C.V. Lee

Book cover of Unlocked: A Paper Lantern Writers Anthology

What is my book about?

In much the same manner as Pandora, each Paper Lantern Writer takes a turn opening an old wooden chest, digging out stories spanning seven centuries. The individuals in these tales—heroes, villains, and in between—are more than people from the past. Whether they are making mayhem, waging war, or quietly holding their families together, their strength and fortitude shines on the page. From the Swinging Seventies to the Middle Ages, these characters gather, keep, and spill the secrets of their souls.

Who knows what treasures will be found when this ancient trunk is finally Unlocked?

The books I picked & why

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A Wild Rose

By Fiona Davis,

Book cover of A Wild Rose

Why this book?

Amazon’s Point in Time series is a unique approach to a collection of stories from seven well-respected historical novelists. Each story is available separately as a $.99 ebook, or on Kindle Unlimited as a free collection. A Wild Rose is one of my favorites because the fabulous Fiona Davis wrote it, and I have to read everything she writes.

A Wild Rose

By Fiona Davis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Wild Rose as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A troubled concert pianist searches for a new inspiration among the hidden back hallways of Carnegie Hall in bestselling author Fiona Davis’s bold short story of artistic ambition in 1950s New York.

World-renowned pianist Gloria Banderas is at the height of her career when a curious ailment forces her to cancel a sold-out performance at Carnegie Hall. The same day, she befriends one of the many free-spirited artists inhabiting the warren of apartments above the theater. With her career and marriage at a standstill, Gloria moves into an empty studio and convalesces among the poets, photographers, and dancers who eke…


Lord John and the Hand of Devils

By Diana Gabaldon,

Book cover of Lord John and the Hand of Devils

Why this book?

Diana Gabaldon is a powerhouse in the historical fiction genre. Her Outlander series is one of my absolute favorites. In between the release of books in the main series, I content myself with stories about Lord John, an important but secondary Outlander character. This book includes three stories about Lord John.

Lord John and the Hand of Devils

By Diana Gabaldon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lord John and the Hand of Devils as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Deftly written, pleasantly concise stories about the ghosts of desire, each with its own discrete merits . . . [Diana] Gabaldon’s strengths are on full display.”—Kirkus Reviews

Diana Gabaldon, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the celebrated Outlander series, delivers three mesmerizing tales of war, intrigue, and espionage that feature one of her most popular characters: Lord John Grey.

In Lord John and the Hellfire Club, Lord John glimpses a stranger in the doorway of a gentleman’s club—and is stirred by a desperate entreaty to meet with him in private. It is an impulse that will lead Lord John…


Stories from Suffragette City

By M.J. Rose (editor), Fiona Davis (editor),

Book cover of Stories from Suffragette City

Why this book?

The stories in this book all take place on the same day in 1915, when over a million women marched in New York for the right to vote. Stories like this appeal to me because so many of the women who worked tirelessly for this achievement are not familiar names. These stories give them a voice. One of my own ancestors was a suffragette. Maybe she was part of this march!

Stories from Suffragette City

By M.J. Rose (editor), Fiona Davis (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Stories from Suffragette City as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Stories From Suffragette City is a collection of short stories from the leading voices in historical fiction that all take place on a single day. The day one million women marched for the right to vote in New York City in 1915. A day filled with a million different stories, and a million different voices longing to be heard. Taken together, these stories from writers at the top of their bestselling game become a chorus, stitching together a portrait of a country looking for a fight, and echo into a resounding force strong enough to break even the most stubborn…


Grand Central: Original Stories of Postwar Love and Reunion

By Melanie Benjamin, Jenna Blum, Amanda Hodgkinson, Pam Jenoff, Sarah Jio, Sarah McCoy, Kristina McMorris, Alyson Richman, Erika Robuck, Karen White

Book cover of Grand Central: Original Stories of Postwar Love and Reunion

Why this book?

This book features stories by different authors who envision the crowds of people passing through Grand Central Station in New York and choose to tell ten stories of people returning from Europe at the end of World War II. It’s a time of upheaval and great change in the world and in their lives. I love when the macrocosm of the world can be distilled down to a single person’s story.

Grand Central: Original Stories of Postwar Love and Reunion

By Melanie Benjamin, Jenna Blum, Amanda Hodgkinson, Pam Jenoff, Sarah Jio, Sarah McCoy, Kristina McMorris, Alyson Richman, Erika Robuck, Karen White

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Grand Central as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Ten bestselling authors inspired by New York City's iconic Grand Central Terminal have created their own stories, set on the same day, just after the end of World War II, in a time of hope, uncertainty, change, and renewal….

A war bride awaits the arrival of her GI husband at the platform…A Holocaust survivor works at the Oyster Bar, where a customer reminds him of his late mother…A Hollywood hopeful anticipates her first screen test and a chance at stardom in the Kissing Room…
 
On any particular day, thousands upon thousands of people pass through Grand Central, through the whispering…


Dark Side of the Loon: Where History Meets Mystery

By Sheyna Galyan (editor), Christina Glendenning (editor), Timya Owen (editor)

Book cover of Dark Side of the Loon: Where History Meets Mystery

Why this book?

These stories are tied to some of Minnesota’s most famous events, back to 1830, and tell stories of fur trappers, pioneers, train robbers, and gangsters. Minnesota is the setting of my upcoming novel. I read novels and stories like this help fix the setting into my mind as I wrote.  

Dark Side of the Loon: Where History Meets Mystery

By Sheyna Galyan (editor), Christina Glendenning (editor), Timya Owen (editor)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dark Side of the Loon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

''Minnesota nice'' casts a long shadow. Dark emotions and even darker thoughts seep from these murky depths, harvested by writers whose stories take us down in flames, up in smoke, and leave us helplessly entranced by the haunting call of the loon.

Foreword by Ellen Hart, award-winning author of the Jane Lawless and Sophie Greenway series, and MWA Grand Master.

Stories by Lori L. Lake, Marlene Chabot, Michael Allan Mallory, Carol Huss, Marcia Adair, Natalie Fowler, Barbara Merritt Deese, A.W. Powers, Cheryl Lewis, Christine Husom, Cheryl Ullyot, Karl W. Jorgenson, Marcie Rendon, Sherry Roberts, Midge Bubany, M.E. Bakos, Greg Dahlager,…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in nobility, New York State, and World War 2?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about nobility, New York State, and World War 2.

Nobility Explore 68 books about nobility
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And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Manhattan Beach, A Special Providence, and A Distant Mirror if you like this list.