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Best of the Non Regency Historicals

In response to my article yesterday which I provocatively titled “We should let the historical genre die”, I received several emails saying how much they, too, loved the historical genre and still wanted to read it but they needed suggestions. We have a great body of readers here at Dear Author so let’s put our heads together and put forth a list of really great Non Regency Historicals.


  • A Kiss to Die For by Claudia Dain
  • Blaze by Susan Johnson
  • Forbidden by Susan Johnson (partly takes place in Montana, New York, and France)
  • Silver Flame by Susan Johnson
  • Brazen by Susan Johnson
  • Pure Sin by Susan Johnson (Absarokee hero)
  • Marry Me by Jo Goodman
  • Never Love a Lawman by Jo Goodman
  • Only in My Arms by Jo Goodman (former nun heroine)
  • Texas Destiny by Lorraine Heath (Western)
  • Silver Lining by Maggie Osborne (Western, Frontier)
  • His Secondhand Wife by Cheryl St. John (Western)
  • Years by LaVyrle Spencer
  • Vows by LaVyrle Spencer
  • Marry Me by Susan Kay Law
  • One Lonely Night by Susan Kay Law
  • The Wives of Bowie Stone by Maggie Osborne (American West)
  • Nobody’s Darling by Teresa Medeiros
  • Fair Is The Rose by Meagan McKinney (1870s Montana, I believe. This is the sequel to Lions and Lace, and I think it’s much, much better. A tortured heroine and an equally tortured hero)

Late Victorian

  • Private Arrangements by Sherry Thomas
  • Delicious by Sherry Thomas
  • Not Quite a Husband by Sherry Thomas
  • Black Silk by Judith Ivory
  • Beyond Sunrise by Candace Proctor (Polynesia/Oceania Victorian)
  • Lady Dangerous by Suzanne Robinson (late Victorian England. Slightly Western in that the hero ran away to America and comes back a gunslinger. Heroine is meddlesome and disguises herself as a frumpy housemaid in his home.)
  • As You Desire by Connie Brockway (late 19th century Egypt)
  • Jennifer Donnelly’s Rose trilogy (late Victorian up through WWI, diverse settings)

US Non Westerns

  • Lions and Lace by Megan McKinney (NY, turn of Century)
  • With One Look by Jennifer Horsman (New Orleans 1818), I vaguely remember the heroine being blind in this book
  • The Charm School – Susan Wiggs (Victorian Boston and South America)
  • The Horsemasters Daughter – Susan Wiggs (late 1800s, North Carolina)
  • The Sleeping Night – Barbara Samuel (WWII, American South)
  • Charade by Laura Lee Gurhke (prior to the American Revolution)
  • Breathless by Laura Lee Gurhke (Gilded Age Atlanta/Georgia)
  • Midnight Confessions by Candace Proctor (Civil War New Orleans w/ a female doctor AND older woman/younger man)
  • Hunter’s Hill by Mary Bishop (New England late 19th C)
  • Wild at Heart by Patricia Gaffney (Gilded Age Chicago)
  • November of the Heart by LaVyrle Spencer (Gilded Age Minnesota resort town)
  • Surrender by Pamela Clare (during the French and Indian wars)
  • Untamed by Pamela Clare (during the French and Indian wars)
  • Defiant by Pamela Clare (during the French and Indian wars)
  • Sweeter Than Wine by Michaela August, which is set in California just after WWI.
  • The Sleeping Night by Barbara Samuel. An interracial historical set in post WW II deep South
  • Morning Song by Karen Robards is set in pre-Civil War era Mississippi.
  • A Candle in the Dark by Megan Chance starts out in New York City in 1849, and travels to the jungles of Panama!
  • Halfway to Heaven by Susan Wiggs (Gilded Age, Washington DC)
  • Runabout by Pamela Morsi (turn of century Americana)
  • Defiant Impostor by Miriam Munger (pre-Revolutionary War American Colonies)
  • The Raider by Jude Deveraux (set in 1766 Colonial New England)
  • Twin of Ice/Twin of Fire by Jude Deveraux (set in 1892 Colorado)
  • Smuggler’s Bride by Darlene Marshall (set in 1840s Florida, just after the Second Seminole War)
  • Pirate’s Price by Darlene Marshall (set in 1820s Florida)
  • Princess of Thieves by Katherine O’Neal (ate 19th century America. One of those sprawling, WTFBBQ type of historicals that went all over the place, but works so well. About two con artists from feuding con artist families and the games they play as they fight and love. Plenty of real people (Bat Masterson, Doc Holliday, etc))
  • Passion’s Ransom by Betina Krahn (Colonial era America. Semi-pirate book in that the heroine is captured by sailors. Krahn writes humorous and hot.)
  • Wishing by Miranda Jarrett (early 18th century New England. Part of her Fairbourne series. Heroine is a fisher(wo)man.)
  • Jade Star by Catherine Coulter (19th century San Francisco. The last in a quartet of reoccurring characters. The hero is a doctor.)

Post Turn of the Century

  • His Very Own Girl by Carrie Lofty (WWII)
  • The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simmons (WWII)


  • The Holding by Claudia Dain
  • The Irish Warrior by Kris Kennedy
  • The Conqueror by Kris Kennedy
  • Defiant by Kris Kennedy
  • Deception by Kris Kennedy
  • By Possession by Madeline Hunter
  • By Design by Madeline Hunter
  • By Arrangement by Madeline Hunter
  • Stealing Heaven by Madeline Hunter
  • The Protector by Madeline Hunter
  • Lord of a Thousand Nights by Madeline Hunter
  • What a Scoundrel Wants by Carrie Lofty
  • A Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught
  • A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel (Medieval Germany)
  • For My Lady’s Heart by Laura Kinsale
  • The Pagan’s Prize by Miriam Munger (Medieval Russia)
  • Wild Angel by Miriam Munger (Medieval Ireland)
  • Wild Roses by Miriam Munger (Medieval Ireland)
  • Red Adam’s Lady by Grace Ingram
  • Roselynde by Roberta Gellis
  • Alinor by Roberta Gellis
  • ?Joanna by Roberta Gellis
  • Gilliane by Roberta Gellis
  • Rhiannon by Roberta Gellis
  • Sybelle by Roberta Gellis
  • Lord of My Heart by Jo Beverley
  • Dark Champion by Jo Beverley
  • The Shattered Rose by Jo Beverley
  • The Lord of Midnight by Jo Beverley
  • Shadows and Lace by Teresa Medeiros (Medieval England. Medeiros in the 90s wrote lots of gritty, emotional, and passionate historicals)

Non US/Non Europe Setting

  •  Butterfly Swords by Jeannie Lin (China)
  • The Dragon and The Pearl by Jeannie Lin (China)
  • My Fair Concubine by Jeannie Lin (China)
  • The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin (China)
  • Flawless by Carrie Lofty (South Africa)
  • Starlight by Carrie Lofty (Glasgow)
  • Duke of Shadows by Meredith Duran (1/2 in India)
  • Shadow and the Star by Laura Kinsale (1/2 in Hawaii)
  • Uncertain Magic by Laura Kinsale (Ireland)
  • The Windflower by Laura London (War of 1812)
  • The Dream Hunter by Laura Kinsale (first half set in Syria)
  • The Falcons of Montabard by Elizabeth Chadwick (Holy Land)
  • Shadows of the Moon by MM Kaye (India?)
  • The Far Pavillions by MM Kaye (India, is written around the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857)
  • Trade Winds by MM Kaye (South Pacific?? May be rapey)
  • Rangoon by Christine Monson (Burma/Thailand)
  • Fires of Winter by Roberta Gellis  (1100s/1200s England. Told in alternating first person POV. Big Misunderstanding, but believable. Plenty of real history (naturally))


  • Skye O’Malley by Bertrice Small (1555-1565, Ireland, London, Algiers) (Trigger: Rape)
  • The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne (French Revolution)
  • Wild Desire by Lori Brighton (British Colonial India)
  • The Reluctant Heiress (originally titled Magic Flutes) by Eva Ibbotson (Austria)
  • A Countess Below Stairs (also published in England as The Secret Countess) by Eva Ibbotson (World War I England)
  • Bliss by Judy Cuevas (aka Judith Ivory) by Turn of the Century France
  • Dance by Judy Cuevas (aka Judith Ivory) by Turn of the Century France
  • Beast by Judith Ivory by Turn of the Century ocean liner and then France
  • The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne (France during the Terror)
  • Simon the Coldheart by Georgette Heyer ( set during Henry V, varies between England and France)
  • Lion’s Bride by Iris Johansen (Crusades- era Europe)
  • The Magnificent Rogue by Iris Johansen (Elizabethan Scotland. Real history here too. Heroine is the illegitimate child of Mary, Queen of Scots (or so she is told) and the hero, difficult, brutish, and tortured, is forced to wed her to keep her safe from those who would use her as a political pawn.)
  • Banners of Silk by Rosalind Laker  (Second Empire France & Victorian England. More historical women’s fiction than romance, but it has a great HEA. Set against the rise of Charles Worth and Napoleon III’s reign and told through the eyes of a French grisette who longs to build her own fashion empire.)
  • To Dream Again by Laura Lee Guhrke (1880s England. A bitter, tortured heroine and a hero who wants to make toys!)
  • The Painted Lady by Lucia Grahame (1890s France and England. So so grateful when an AAR reviewer pulled this out of the ether. First person POV, meaty, and difficult.)
  • Murmur of Rain by Patricia Vaughn (1890s century Paris and Haiti. A gothic-tinged historical romance. The heroine and the setting are the best parts of the book, but it’s something unusual.)

I’m working backwards in the comments, but you could all help me if you did like Samantha and include the recommendation formatted like the post Title by Author (period, short pithy details to get someone to read it)

So I’m not adding Georgian or Edwardian because … I don’t know. It just doesn’t feel different enough for me.  You are free to try to convince me otherwise in the comments.  (Also, I have 50 more comments to add)

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Janine
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:07:14

    I would add:


    Years by LaVyrle Spencer
    Vows by LaVyrle Spencer

    Turn of the century

    Wild at Heart by Patricia Gaffney (Gilded Age Chicago)
    November of the Heart by LaVyrle Spencer (Gilded Age Minnesota resort town)


    For My Lady’s Heart by Laura Kinsale

    Non-US/Non-Europe Setting

    The Dream Hunter by Laura Kinsale (first half set in Syria)
    The Falcons of Montabard by Elizabeth Chadwick (Holy Land)


    The Reluctant Heiress (originally titled Magic Flutes) by Eva Ibbotson (Austria)
    A Countess Below Stairs (also published in England as The Secret Countess) by Eva Ibbotson (World War I England)
    Bliss by Judy Cuevas (aka Judith Ivory) — Turn of the Century France
    Dance by Judy Cuevas (aka Judith Ivory) — Turn of the Century France
    Beast by Judith Ivory — Turn of the Century ocean liner and then France


  2. Karen
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:10:30

    Some additions to the list. For Westerns, Marry Me and One Lonely Night by Susan Kay Law. Both of these are wonderful, emotional reads. I would also include Pamela Morsi, although I’m not sure if she fits in the Western category since her books are typically set in small towns. My favorites are Something Shady and Simple Jess but she’s written many wonderful books. And one additional favorite for post turn of the century: Sweeter Than Wine by Michaela August, which is set in California just after WWI.


  3. Darynda Jones
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:18:42

    Awesome choices! You nailed it with Jeannie Lin. Her books are fantastic!


  4. AlexaB
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:21:15

    Mentioned yesterday, but putting it here:
    The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne (France during the Terror)


  5. mari
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:21:17

    Oooooo oooo *raises hand desperatly*”The Sleeping Night” by Barbara Samuel. An interracial historical set in post WW II deep South. I was very sceptical that a romance set in this time and place between a black man and a white woman could work, complete with a true HEA, but I swear by all that’s good and holy, Samuel makes it work believably. Its amazing what a talented author can accomplish. There is a realistic faith element (Christian, duh) to the characters’ lives, not in a preachy, deus ex machina way, more like its woven into their lives. It only adds to the story. Wish more authors would write stories that allowed their characters a faith life…..

    ANYWAY. It got DIK status at AAR. Its not a light read (as you can imagine) but WOWOWOWOW!!!! Its sooooooooogood!


  6. HankLover
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:23:10

    “Morning Song” by Karen Robards is set in pre-Civil War era Mississippi.

    “A Candle in the Dark” by Megan Chance starts out in New York City in 1849, and travels to the jungles of Panama! Very refreshing and different location.


  7. Meri
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:23:43

    First, a couple of corrections:
    - Pamela Clare’s MacKinnon books are set during the French and Indian wars – definitely not the 1800s. All her historicals take place in the 18th century, for that matter.
    - The setting for Carrie Lofty’s Starlight is Glasgow, not South Africa. The next Christie book will be set in Australia.

    *Other books*
    - At Your Pleasure by Meredith Duran (England, 1715).
    - Judith James’s books, especially Libertine’s Kiss (Restoration England)
    - Another vote for The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne
    - Jennifer Donnelly’s Rose trilogy (late Victorian up through WWI, diverse settings)
    - As You Desire by Connie Brockway (late 19th century Egypt)
    - Lady Gallant by Suzanne Robinson (Tudor England)
    - Most of Marsha Canham’s books, especially the ones about the Dantes (Across a Moonlit Sea, The Iron Rose, and The Following Sea).


  8. May
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:27:35

    Zoe archer’s books in her blades of the rose series- rebel, scoundrel, and rebel are set in 1875 (Canada, Greece, Mongolia respectively)


  9. MelissaB
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:32:20

    Colonial America (or 1800′s Non-England):
    Ride the Fire by Pamela Clare
    Beloved Savage by Sandra Bishop

    Honor’s Splendour, The Secret, Ransom by Julie Garwood
    The Scotsman by Juliana Garnett
    The Lion’s Bride by Iris Johansen
    Defy Not the Heart by Johanna Lindsey
    A Year and a Day by Virginia Henley

    Comanche Moon, Keegan’s Lady by Catherine Anderson
    A Heart So Wild by Johanna Lindsey
    Hunter’s Bride, Joseph’s Bride, Grey Eagle’s Bride by Jessica Wulf

    1800′s Non-England:
    The Charm School by Susan Wiggs
    Innocent in the Sheikh’s Harem, The Governess and the Sheikh by Marguerite Kaye


  10. Lauren Willig
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:33:49

    I’d highly recommend Donna Thorland’s “The Turncoat” (Revolutionary War) and Jo Beverly’s medievals (“The Shattered Rose”, “Lord of my Heart”, etc.). For those looking for non-European, I just had the privilege of reading Jeannie Lin’s upcoming Tang Dynasty-set novel, “The Lotus Palace”, which was wonderful. (It comes out in late August.)

    Doing the tacky author-mentioning-own-book thing, in the non-England category, I’ve got early 19th century India (“The Betrayal of the Blood Lily”), Ireland (“The Deception of the Emerald Ring”) and France (“The Orchid Affair”, “The Garden Intrigue”), and, more recently, 1920s Kenya (“The Ashford Affair”).


  11. Non
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:35:49

    The best historical romance ever (and evidently only $2.99 for the eBook, which I just discovered and is totally the best thing to happen to me this month–how did I not know that?!?): Always to Remember by Lorraine Heath (American Historical).


  12. Janine
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:39:37

    I edited my comment at the top of the thread to include more titles.


  13. Sunita
    May 08, 2013 @ 10:56:49

    All of Tamara Allen’s books (m/m) are set in New York in the late 19thC and early-ish 20thC and are excellent. Three of them are currently free at Amazon. Josh Lanyon (m/m) also has a number of historicals, mostly set in the first half of the 20thC. I reviewed Snowball in Hell here a while ago, but there are other good ones too.

    How is Maggie Osborne not on this list? Or LaVyrle Spencer? ALL of their historicals are well worth reading.

    ETA to add specifics:

    Maggie Osborne (all 19thC US West): Prairie Wife, Foxfire Bride, Silver Lining, The Promise of Jenny Jones, A Stranger’s Wife, The Bride of Willow Creek. Also American Pie (1899 Ellis Island, written under the name of Margaret St. George, reviewed at DA by Jayne).

    LaVyrle Spencer: (19thC and early-wish 20thC): The Fulfillment, The Endearment, Hummingbird, Morning Glory. There are tons more, but that’s a start.

    Tamara Allen: Whistling in the Dark, Downtime, The Only Gold, If It Ain’t Love (all but Downtime are reviewed here at DA). All 1880s and 1920s/30s US, except for Downtime, which is time-travel from present-day to late 18thC London.

    Josh Lanyon: Snowball in Hell (WW2 US), This Rough Magic (1930s San Francisco) are the historical novellas.


  14. Laura Florand
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:01:19

    Meredith Duran’s Duke of Shadows and Laura Kinsale’s Shadow and the Star come to mind, as half in England half elsewhere. (India in Duran’s case and they end up in Hawaii, don’t they, in Shadow and the Star?) Kinsale’s Uncertain Magic is set in Ireland, an interesting use of setting, in fact. Loretta Chase’s Mr. Impossible, in Egypt.

    Are we talking about classics, too? Because if so, Madeleine Brent! Those books went *every*where. Raised by aborigines in Australia, climbing through Nepal…everywhere. I would love to see some more of that type of adventure, to be honest, but with a greater emphasis on the romance at the same time. (More love scenes! You know…)


  15. Laura Florand
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:03:18

    Joanna Bourne! For 1800s non-England. (France.) She does a very good job of capturing the French setting and evoking French characters who seem like real people and not caricatures.


  16. Samantha
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:05:13

    The Charm School – Susan Wiggs (Victorian Boston and South America)
    The Horsemasters Daughter – Susan Wiggs (late 1800s, North Carolina)
    The Forbidden Rose – Joanna Bourne (French Revolution)
    The Sleeping Night – Barbara Samuel (WWII, American South)
    Texas Destiny – Lorraine Heath (Western)
    Silver Lining – Maggie Osborne (Western, Frontier)
    Wild Desire – Lori Brighton (British Colonial India)
    A Bed of Spices – Barbara Samuel (Medieval Germany)
    His Secondhand Wife – Cheryl St. John (Western)


  17. Donna Thorland
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:07:17

    @Lauren Willig:

    Thanks, Lauren! You saved me from doing author-mentioning-own-book.

    I devoured the Ashford Affair in one sitting.

    Has anyone mentioned Meredith Duran’s Duke of Shadows yet?


  18. Jane
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:12:34

    @Sunita – I’m going to need titles, places, etc.


  19. Angelia Sparrow
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:13:27

    The Windflower, Laura London
    Set during the War of 1812, this is everything a pirate novel should be: disguised noblemen, sexy female positive sex, and even a bit of proto-slash.

    Moonstruck Madness by Laurie McBain was good too. She’s a lady on her own trying to make a go of her ancestral manor by masquerading as Bonnie Prince Charlie and robbing other nobles. He’s a scar-faced duke who takes advantage of her amnesia.

    Roxanne (I think that’s the title, it’s been 20+ years) and The Persian Boy can be read as two sides of the same story (Roxanne blames Bagoas for Alexander’s death) and are set in the time of Alexander the Great

    Sorry, I like mine with a lot of adventure and not so heavy on the history.


  20. Laura Florand
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:13:42

    I have to say, when I pick up one of Jeannie Lin’s books, I feel the profoundest sense of, “Oh, thank you, God!” I would read them just for setting, but fortunately the romance is so good, too.


  21. Megan B
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:15:24

    Yay! I’ve been looking for historicals NOT set in regency England and I feel like I’ll be all set for a while. Also, The Duchess War by Courtney Milan takes place in the Victorian Era, in the 1860s, I think. Maybe the 1850s, I can’t remember exactly.


  22. Ruby
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:29:40

    I love this! Is there any way that these lists can permanently added to the website for future reference (maybe under “need a rec!”)? This way I can return to these amazing recommendations again and again whenever I’m regency weary.

    Thank you Thank You!!!


  23. Sunita
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:36:24

    @Jane: I edited my comment with more info.

    Another m/m novella, this time a medieval: The Lion of Kent by Aleksandr Voinov and Kate Cotoner.


  24. cleo
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:41:27

    Desire and Mystique – two medievals by Amanda Quick

    Sweetwater Seduction by Joan Johnston – am western
    Wicked West by Victoria Dahl – bdsm novella set in am west

    Skybound by Aleksander Voinov – wwII Germany – mm
    False Colours and Blessed Isle – two age of sail mm by Alex Beecroft – rape trigger warning for FC


  25. leftcoaster
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:41:42

    What about all of Beverly Jenkins’ historicals? I think they’re mostly set in the US (maybe one is on a ship?) but I don’t know dates.

    I haven’t read any of them, but they’re on my TBR list I just can’t figure out where to start.

    I really love Joanna Bourne, and wish that she was a mega-seller. She is so good at her craft, but I get angry when I look at the covers. She (and we) deserve better.

    I’ve enjoyed Jeannie Lin’s “Butterfly Swords” and looking forward to reading something more recent of hers (I got a little bored with all the sword fighting but that’s just me).


  26. Kim
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:42:24

    Here are some suggestions:

    U.S. Civil War:
    One Wore Blue by Heather Graham
    One Wore Gray by Heather Graham

    Jacobite Rebellion (1745):
    The Pride of Lions by Marsha Canham
    The Blood of Roses by Marsha Canham

    Late Victorian:
    A Lady’s Lesson in Scandal by Meredith Duran
    Ravishing the Heiress by Sherry Thomas
    Tempting the Bride by Sherry Thomas


  27. LauraB
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:44:30

    @Lauren Willig: :) Thanks for saving me the trouble of listing your books. :) While all your books are fabulous, my favorites thus far were: The Betrayal of the Blood Lily and The Deception of the Emerald Ring. I really appreciated the non-traditional “regency” settings of both.

    My recommendation for this list is Judith James’ “Broken Wing,” which is set during the early Napoleonic period but has little to do with the “ton”, and her “Libertine’s Kiss,” which is set during the English Restoration.

    BTW, I must add a “squee” b/c Miss Gwen’s story is out next. Thank you! Will she bring her umbrella?

    Thank you all for developing this list.


  28. Isobel Carr
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:48:20

    What about Georgian? At least a few authors out there write 18thC set books that are distinctly NOT Regency. Off the top of my head:

    Pam Rosenthal’s The Book Seller’s Daughter is 18thC France.
    Jo Beverley’s Malloren series (my all time favorite series) is Georgian.
    Elizabeth Hoyt’s books are all Georgian.
    My books are all Georgian.

    And if you like Romantic era or Early Victorian there’s Delilah Marvelle and Courtney Milan.

    Monica McCarty’s Highland Guard series is Medieval. Her first two series (The MacLeod Trilogy and The Campbell trilogy) were 17thC which is very unusual.

    Margaret Mallory writes Tudor-set books.

    Jade Lee also did a great historical set in China, The Concubine.


  29. SonomaLass
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:49:21

    I love Jo Goodman’s U.S. set historicals, some of which are listed. So many great books here!

    I’d add Laurel McKee’s Daughters of Eire series, for those interested in an Irish setting.


  30. Anu
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:50:43

    +1000 to LaVyrle Spencer’s Morning Glory (American South, WWII). Everything I love about the genre in one book.

    Also her Hummingbird (Western) is delicious.


  31. Kelly
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:51:10

    I’m hyperventilating over here. I want them. I WANT THEM ALL.

    I hate you people.

    I’m going to throw in all my favorite historical inspies – fantastic settings, all non-Brit, and I promise lots of swooning with no sermonizing.

    Elizabeth Camden – Against the Tide (1890s Boston, heroine is linguist/translator for the Navy)

    Deanne Gist:
    - It Happened at the World’s Fair (1896 Chicago – hero is inventor/farmer and heroine is teacher for the deaf)
    - Maid to Match (MCs work for Vanderbilts at Biltmore House in North Carolina)

    Alison Pittman – Stealing Home (1905 Missouri, baseball theme)

    Siri Mitchell:
    - A Heart Most Worthy (Italian immigrant dressmakers in turn-of-the-century Boston)
    - The Messenger (Revolutionary Pennsylvania, Quaker heroine and patriot spy hero)

    Rachelle McCalla – A Royal Marriage (heroine is Charlemagne’s daughter)

    Jody Hedlund – A Noble Groom (1880s Michigan, hero is German noble fleeing execution)

    Libby Sternberg – Kit Austin’s Journey (heroine bluffs her way into wagon train to escape abusive husband )

    Christine Johnson – All Roads Lead Home (1930s, social worker and auto mechanic on road trip)

    Victoria Bylin – The Maverick Preacher (theme is anti-slut-shaming!)

    Melanie Dobson – Love Finds You in Homestead, Iowa (YES, REALLY – set in Amana Colonies)


  32. Marianne McA
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:54:42

    Ignoring the point of the thread completely – but bear with me because the recommendation does come out of yesterday’s discussion – I bought Sherwood Smith’s Regency ‘Danse de la Folie’ after she mentioned yesterday and entirely loved it.
    It’s a curse to say a book is like Heyer – and they never are, of course – but this has a similar sense of fun. (Like Heyer, no sex; no-one is deflowered in an orangery at any point, which made me entirely happy.)

    I can’t imagine you’ll include it on the list as ‘the exception that proves the rule’ but I’m posting anyway because I’m in that post-DIK moment where I want to press copies into other readers hands, just to spread the joy.


  33. cleo
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:55:19

    How could I have forgotten Darlene Marshall? Excellent American historicals set mostly in Florida and at sea on the Atlantic during the War of 1812 / early 1800s. Sea Change and Castaway Dreams are more serious and The Bride and the Buccaneer is more of a romp and they’re all great.

    Indigo by Beverly Jenkins – set in Michigan pre Civil War. Both h/h are involved with the underground railroad. Good place to start w Jenkins backlist.

    Eloisa James Desperate Duchesses series is Georgian England

    Carla Kelly – Coming Home for Christmas – anthology set in colonial California, the Crimean War and the American West, respectively

    Lisa Kleypas – The Hathaways series is Victorian. My fave is Love in the Afternoon. Hero served in the Crimean War


  34. Kelly
    May 08, 2013 @ 11:56:49

    And… ALL of Alexis Harrington’s books! Most are set in late 1800s northwest US – Home by Morning (WW1 era) is my favorite because of the lady doctor heroine.


  35. Jules C.
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:00:08

    Restoration England:
    Amethyst by Lauren Royal
    Emerald by Lauren Royal
    Amber by Lauren Royal

    16th c. Germany:
    The Legacy by T. J. Bennett
    The Promise by TJ Bennett

    Revolutionary America/Georgian England:
    The Wild One by Danelle Harmon (free at smaswords, etc)
    The Beloved One by Danelle Harmon
    I second the recs for the historicals by Pamela Clare
    The Charade by Laura Lee Guhrke

    1810s Spain:
    The Wedding Journey by Carla Kelly

    1860s/1870s America:
    The Bartered Bride by Cheryl Reavis (German immigrant community in North Carolina)
    The Prisoner by Cheryl Reavis (POW prison break set in North Carolina and Virginia)
    The Bride Fair by Cheryl Reavis (post-Civil War North Carolina)
    Midnight Princess by Jo Goodman (post-Civil War NYC)
    The Greatest Love on Earth by Mary Ellen Dennis (never read it but set in 1870s in a traveling circus)
    Connor’s Way by Laura Lee Guhrke
    Her Hesitant Heart by Carla Kelly (1870s American West)

    Early 20th c. America:
    Breathless by Laura Lee Guhrke (1905)

    There are numerous inspy titles that come to mind but I don’t think this is the place for them.

    Edited to add: I see that some of the inspies that came to mind are already on the list. I haven’t read her since I was a teenager so read at your own risk but I remember Linda Chaikin having a wide variety of settings/time periods: 18th c. India, WWI Egypt/North Africa, The Crusades, 17th c. Jamaica and 16th c. France. Anyone else read her lately? I don’t remember how spiritual/religious these novels are.


  36. LG
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:02:47

    @Sunita: I second the Tamara Allen recommendation. Although so far I’ve only read one of hers, The Only Gold, it was wonderful. I’ve got her other stuff sitting in my e-TBR.


  37. Cindy
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:05:54

    Sarah McCarty: Promises Linger
    Promises Keep
    Promises Prevail
    Promises Reveal
    Caine’s Reckoning
    Sam’s Creed
    Tucker’s Claim
    Tracker’s Sin
    Mary Wine: Let Me Love You
    Catherine Kean: Knight’s Temptation
    Knight’s Vengeance
    Knight’s Reward
    Knight’s Persuasion
    Dance of Desire
    My Lady’s Treasure
    Michelle Willingham: Tempted By a Highland Warrior
    Maya Banks: In Bed With a Highland Warrior
    Seduction of Highland Lass
    Never Love a Highlander
    Mary Wine: In the Warrior’s Bed
    Karin Tabke: Master of Torment
    Master of Surrender
    Master of Craving

    Amanda McCabe: The Winter Queen


  38. Molly o'Keefe
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:06:42

    Only His Elizabeth Lowell
    Only Mine Elizabeth Lowell
    Only Yours Elizabeth Lowell
    Only Love Elizabeth Lowell


  39. Phyllis
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:09:00

    How about all of the Amanda Quick’s Arcane books? They’re Victorian England.

    Interestingly (because I’m not at all religious in spite of being raised that way), there are some really good inspirational historicals with intricate characters and good plots. Someone mentioned Deanne Gist already, but many of the others are US Westerns. Keli Gwyn wrote a good one set in post-Gold-Rush California.

    I would like to see more non-England and non-US settings, though.


  40. Susanna Kearsley
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:11:24

    Lots of good titles have already been mentioned (Jeannie Lin’s, Jo Bourne’s, and Lauren Willig’s among them) but being a reader who loves category romances I’d like to add that some of the best non-Regency historicals I’ve read recently have come out of the Harlequin Historicals line.

    Not only do they publish Jeannie’s books, but they’ve also been feeding my personal love of Penninsular War stories (my whole Napoleonic battlefield thing can be traced back to Dinah Dean’s “The Road to Kaluga”, I think), with recent favourites being Carla Kelly’s “Marrying the Royal Marine” and Margaret McPhee’s “The Captain’s Forbidden Miss”.

    Blood and muck and battlefields, good research, men in uniform, and Portugal. For those who share my love of things like that :-)


  41. Faye
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:14:37

    The De Montforte Brothers Series by Danelle Harmon takes place in the late 1770s, mostly in England.

    Untie my Heart, by Judith Ivory (late Victorian, heroine is a reformed con woman who raises sheep).

    Scoundrel’s Kiss, by Carrie Lofty (the follow up to What a Scoundrel Wants; medieval Spain with an opium addicted heroine and knight who’s under a vow of chastity)

    The Nell Sweeney mysteries by P.B. Ryan (with a strong romantic thread running through them and a HEA, late Victorian Massachusetts).


  42. Karenmc
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:18:35

    Susan Wiggs’s Chicago Fire Trilogy (The Hostage, The Mistress, The Firebrand), which also features heroines from a different social class in each book.


  43. azteclady
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:28:25

    Untamed, Forbidden and Enchanted, by Elizabeth Lowell. Early twelfth century, Northern England/Scottish border, not quite historically accurate and with pseudo-druidism, but still good.


  44. Aisha
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:43:12

    @Susanna Kearsley: There are also Susanna Fraser’s books, and her upcoming one has a Black hero.

    Also I think Kate Noble’s most recent release was set largely in Venice.


  45. HankLover
    May 08, 2013 @ 12:54:58

    Now if only these could also be categorized by steam level, lol.

    When I read a romance, I need a passionate connection…at least one good satisfying love scene to make it worth my time. ;-)

    And when I say good, I mean doesn’t shut the door, doesn’t fade to black, doesn’t summarize in a few short paragraphs.


  46. JoanneF
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:04:57

    Linda Lael Miller seems to have settled in to writing only westerns any more, but she did have some from various other locations in the past:
    Australia: Moonfire, Angelfire
    Post-Civil War Pacific Northwest USA: Banner O’Brien, Corbin’s Fancy, Memory’s Embrace, My Darling Melissa
    Gilded Age Pacific Northwest: Wanton Angel
    Lisa Kleypas post-Civil War Boston: Love Come to Me, Gilded Age Boston novella: Surrender


  47. Cheryl
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:04:58

    Laura Lee Gurhke’s “Conor’s Way”. Post-Civil War Louisiana. Features a Southern Baptist heroine and a swearing, drinking, gambling, bareknuckle fighter who survived the Irish famine. Of course, I studied both Irish history and the history of sports in America (with a huge emphasis on the evolution of boxing) during college, so it’s as if this story was written specifically for me.

    Per her website, it won the RITA in 1997 for best long historical romance.


  48. TerryS
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:14:34

    My vote for favorite book of the year in 2012 was a historical, Barbara Samuel’s, The Sleeping Night.
    Other favorite books not yet mentioned:

    Kaki Warner has a nice crop of these – Examples: Pieces of Sky, Open Country, Heartbreak Creek
    Ellen O’Donnell – Examples: Pieces of Gold, Pieces of Silver, Dancing on Coals
    Lorraine Heath – Favorites: Texas Trilogy (Texas Destiny, Texas Glory, Texas Splendor)
    Catherine Anderson – Cherish, Keegan’s Lady

    Robin Schone: The Lady’s Tutor, Awaken My Love

    Non US/Non-European:
    Collen McCullough: The Thorn Birds

    Americana (Turn of the Century ):
    Carla Kelly – My Loving Vigil Keeping
    Pamela Morsi – Simple Jess, Wild Oats, Courting Miss Hattie, Garters

    Early 20th Century:
    Lavyrle Spencer’s Morning Glory (okay, I just saw it already mentioned, but I LOVE this book.)

    Josie Litton – Dream of Me

    Stuart Era:
    Jane Feather – The Accidental Bride

    Amanda Quick – Desire

    Anthology of Different Periods:
    Carla Kelly’s collection of short stories which featured three generations of a family. Time frames included – the Crimean War, Early 19th Century American Historical and American Frontier Western. “Coming Home for Christmas”


  49. Moriah Jovan
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:14:43

    Yanno, I’d be interested in seeing the original publication dates on these titles, too.


  50. HankLover
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:19:29

    Ok, I have another rec.

    And this one is a very recently published book.

    “A Midnight Dance” by Lila DiPasqua, set in 1650 France.


  51. Sherry Thomas
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:48:59

    I can’t allow SHADOW HEART, one of my favorite Kinsales, to go unmentioned. It is both a medieval and set outside the UK.

    And my book NOT QUITE A HUSBAND, mentioned above, is set largely against the Swat Valley Uprising of 1897–current day Pakistan, back then the Northwest Frontier of the British Raj–which qualifies it for a non-UK/non-Europe setting.


  52. Nancy Fraser
    May 08, 2013 @ 13:49:14

    Like a lot of you … I love historical romance AND I most often prefer North American settings. If you’re a lover of the same setting in a mid-1860′s time frame, I’d love to recommend the first in our new series from Entangled Publishing. Book 1 of the McCade Legacy series titled GAMBLING N LOVE is due for release on May 20th. Here is the publisher’s page with order links: Book 2 is scheduled for release in November and Book 3 in the spring of 2014. There will be a total of 8 books in the series.


  53. Mandy
    May 08, 2013 @ 14:34:21

    Your post yesterday reminded me of an historical romance set in India that I read years ago and loved. Zemindar by Valerie Fitzgerald. Unfortunately it’s only available in paperback.


  54. Ann
    May 08, 2013 @ 14:45:30

    Fantastic suggestions! I’d like to add:

    Candice Proctor: All of her historicals are set in diverse locals. September Moon, Whispers of Heaven and Night in Eden are set in 19th century Australia. Bequest is a fantastic western.

    Stephanie Mittman has some fantastic American Historicals. The Courtship being my favorite. Heroine is a lawyer who falls for her husbands brother.

    Just wish these were available as ebooks. lol


  55. Elyssa Patrick
    May 08, 2013 @ 14:50:42

    My cp, Tiffany Clare, writes Victorian-era books (The Surrender of a Lady, The Seduction of His Wife, The Secret Desires of a Governess, Wicked Nights with a Proper Lady, and Midnight Temptations with a Forbidden Lord). Her debut, The Surredner of a Lady, was partially set in a harem and in Turkey and an isle off Turkey, I believe. (She’s going to shoot me for not remembering!)

    And my other cp, Maggie Robinson, has an upcoming series with Berkley releasing, all Edwardian era, with the first being In the Arms of the Heiress.

    I would also recommend Elizabeth Peters’ Crocodile on the Sandbank, along with the other Amelia Peabody series that span from 1890s to WWII, and usually are set in Egypt. I also liked Courting Miss Hattie–forget the author, but it’s a historical Am. Western. And Elizabeth Lowell wrote some great westerns once upon a time, the one that comes to mind is Autumn Lover.


  56. EGS
    May 08, 2013 @ 15:01:31

    Eloise Jarvis McGraw – Mara, Daughter of the Nile (YA, but still fantastic and romantic)

    Tina St. John (pretty much all, although my faves were White Lion’s Lady and Lady of Valor)
    Teresa Medeiros – The Bride and the Beast, Charming the Prince
    Juliet Marillier – Sevenwaters series (not strictly romance, but have strong romantic threads throughout each book)

    18th Century/Georgian
    Elizabeth Hoyt (all)

    Geralyn Dawson – The Bad Luck Wedding Dress & The Bad Luck Wedding Cake
    Teresa Medeiros – Nobody’s Darling

    LaVyrle Spencer – Morning Glory


  57. BamaC
    May 08, 2013 @ 15:13:06


    Bond of Blood by Roberta Gellis. An arranged marriage between a very mature 15 yr old heroine and a young hero with a defect. Unfortunately not in ebook yet, but the Roselynde Chronicles are.

    Western: The Gambler by LaVryle Spencer


  58. wikkidsexycool
    May 08, 2013 @ 15:51:41

    I’d like to add “Page From a Tennessee Journal” by Francine Thomas Howard, available as a hardcover, paperback and ebook on Amazon. It was released in 2010. Here’s the book blurb:

    In Francine Howard’s stunning debut, Page from a Tennessee Journal, rural Tennessee of 1913 remains an unforgiving place for two couples–one black, the other white–who stumble against the rigid boundaries separating their worlds. When white farmer Alexander McNaughton falters into forbidden love with Annalaura Welles he discovers that he has much more to fear than the wrath of her returning gun-toting husband. Alexander’s wife – flinty and pragmatic Eula Mae –wages her own battle against the stoicism demanded of white women of her time and social standing. Former sharecropper John Welles, flush with cash from his year’s sojourn working the poker tables in “the second best colored whorehouse in all of Nashville,” wrestles with his devils as he struggles to assign blame for his wife’s relationship with a white man. The convergence of the lives and choices of these fascinating characters– made from fear, pride, determination, spite, nobility and revenge –leads to a heart-pounding and heartbreaking climax that feels at once original, audacious and inevitable.


  59. M.M. Justus
    May 08, 2013 @ 15:51:49

    Wow, what a list, and I am bookmarking this.

    Whoever said Elizabeth Peters was right on the money — they’re as much romance as they are mystery, and the setting’s almost unique (the only other book I can think of set in Egypt is one of Loretta Chase’s).

    And Pamela Morsi — Courting Miss Hattie, especially, but she makes small towns at the turn of the last century vivid, and her characters are so real.

    Did anyone mention the Elizabeth Lowell “Only” books? Those were great, too. Half western, half-romance.

    And at the risk of tooting my own self-published horn, Repeating History is a historical romance/adventure set mostly in the 1870s in Yellowstone National Park, and True Gold is set during the Klondike Gold Rush.


  60. Caz
    May 08, 2013 @ 16:18:24

    I’d add:

    A Splendid Defiance
    The Marigold Chain
    by Stella Riley – English Civil War/Restoration

    The Parfit Knight
    The Mésalliance
    also by Ms Riley – late 1700s, so Georgian rather than Regency.
    All have been OOP for years but are now available as ebooks.

    Kate Noble’s Let it Be Me is set mostly in Venice in the 1820s and is a wonderful read.

    The India Fan by Victoria Holt is more of a gothic romance, but is set in England, France and India in the 1850s.


  61. msaggie
    May 08, 2013 @ 16:52:10

    Many of my favourites have already been mentioned, but I wanted to also add:

    Heart of the West by Penelope Williamson (American 1800s western)
    The Outsider by Penelope Williamson (American Mid-west 1800s, Amish-like community)
    The Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett (Renaissance Europe, 1500s, this is more of an epic historical)

    I would also vouch for some of my favourite books or favourite authors which have already been mentioned, including Morning Glory, Vows, Years, Fulfillment by LaVyrle Spencer; The Sleeping Night, A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel; For My Lady’s Heart, The Shadow and the Star by Laura Kinsale; Eva Ibbotson’s books, especially The Morning Gift (WWII), The Countess Below Stairs (WWI) and Magic Flutes (I think this was 1920s/1930s) And also yes to Madeleine Brent – The Golden Urchin (it starts out in 1800s Australia with a heroine raised by Aborigines), Merlin’s Keep (1800s India and Himalayas), Moonraker’s Bride (Boxer Rebellion, China)


  62. pamelia
    May 08, 2013 @ 17:44:08

    I just finished reading “Lord of Danger” by Anne Stuart which is a Medieval and was pretty darn good. For some reason I’ve been avoiding Medieval-set historicals lately, but since I liked this one so much I might add “For My Lady’s Heart” to my TBR lineup.
    There are way way way too many new-to-me titles in the suggestions above. This is a VERY dangerous list (for my bank-account)!


  63. Ros
    May 08, 2013 @ 17:52:10

    I love Elizabeth Peters as much as anyone, but the Amelia Peabody books are not romances by any stretch of the definition.


  64. Karenmc
    May 08, 2013 @ 17:56:44

    @Mandy: I have an old copy of Zemindar sitting on the TBR pile.


  65. Jennifer Miller
    May 08, 2013 @ 18:04:58

    I recently finished working on a medieval Irish/Viking romance–Devil’s Angel by Mallery Malone (released on April 9, 2013). I thought it was fantastic (it had it all: epic romance, drama, intrigue, humor, great setting, adventure, mythology, history…), but it seems like people either aren’t looking for it or aren’t finding it.


  66. Evangeline
    May 08, 2013 @ 18:23:39

    I haven’t read through the comments yet, but here are my favorites:

    Lion’s Bride by Iris Johansen – Crusades- era Europe. Oh, I love this book. From the hero, to the setting, to the religious secrets…I re-read this quite often.

    The Magnificent Rogue by Iris Johansen – Elizabethan Scotland. Real history here too. Heroine is the illegitimate child of Mary, Queen of Scots (or so she is told) and the hero, difficult, brutish, and tortured, is forced to wed her to keep her safe from those who would use her as a political pawn.

    All of Robyn Carr’s historical romances. Fabulous and full of history. Medieval & Restoration settings.

    Shadows and Lace by Teresa Medeiros – Medieval England. Medeiros in the 90s wrote lots of gritty, emotional, and passionate historicals, and this is my absolute favorite.

    Princess of Thieves by Katherine O’Neal – late 19th century America. One of those sprawling, WTFBBQ type of historicals that went all over the place, but works so well. About two con artists from feuding con artist families and the games they play as they fight and love. Plenty of real people (Bat Masterson, Doc Holliday, etc) too.

    Fair Is The Rose by Meagan McKinney – 1870s Montana, I believe. This is the sequel to Lions and Lace, and I think it’s much, much better. A tortured heroine and an equally tortured hero.

    Fires of Winter by Roberta Gellis – 1100s/1200s England. Told in alternating first person POV. Big Misunderstanding, but believable. Plenty of real history (naturally).

    Marsha Canham’s Robin Hood trilogy, her Iron Rose series, and her Culloden duo. Nuff said.

    Banners of Silk by Rosalind Laker – Second Empire France & Victorian England. More historical women’s fiction than romance, but it has a great HEA. Set against the rise of Charles Worth and Napoleon III’s reign and told through the eyes of a French grisette who longs to build her own fashion empire.

    To Dream Again by Laura Lee Guhrke – 1880s England. A bitter, tortured heroine and a hero who wants to make toys! I always recommend this to anyone who wants to try LLG.

    Vice by Jane Feather – Georgian England. Bawdy, sexy, and dangerous. The heroine is one of my favorites.

    The Hostage Bride and The Accidental Bride by Jane Feather – Civil War era England. The first two books in her trilogy following three friends who vow to remain close as war tears through 17th century England. I wasn’t as impressed with book 3, but all three together tell a great story.

    Passion’s Ransom by Betina Krahn – Colonial era America. Semi-pirate book in that the heroine is captured by sailors. Krahn writes humorous and hot.

    Behind Closed Doors by Betina Krahn – Elizabethan England. One of the few romances set in this era that fully immerse themselves in the lustiness and prose.

    The Painted Lady by Lucia Grahame – 1890s France and England. So so grateful when an AAR reviewer pulled this out of the ether. First person POV, meaty, and difficult.

    Lady Gallant, Lady Valiant, and Lady Defiant by Suzanne Robinson – Elizabethan England. It isn’t classified as a series, but all three feature reoccurring characters. Lady Gallant is the best.

    Lady Dangerous by Suzanne Robinson – late Victorian England. Slightly Western in that the hero ran away to America and comes back a gunslinger. Heroine is meddlesome and disguises herself as a frumpy housemaid in his home.

    Wishing by Miranda Jarrett – early 18th century New England. Part of her Fairbourne series. Heroine is a fisher(wo)man.

    Jade Star by Catherine Coulter – 19th century San Francisco. The last in a quartet of reoccurring characters. The hero is a doctor.

    Murmur of Rain by Patricia Vaughn – 1890s century Paris and Haiti. A gothic-tinged historical romance. The heroine and the setting are the best parts of the book, but it’s something unusual.

    The Perfect Temptation by Leslie Lafoy – 1860s England. Heroine is governess to Indian prince and the hero must protect them both. Sexy and adult.

    Lydia Joyce’s titles – gothic, difficult, risk-taking, erotic, and full of historical detail.


  67. Evangeline
    May 08, 2013 @ 18:37:04

    @Moriah Jovan: The 1990s, more than likely. I know most of my recs are from then. After I moved away from all of the romances in my library that were published in hardcover, I realized that Bantam published types of the historicals I wanted to read, and I searched the spine of every MMPB at the library and in my used book store for that rooster. I still do!


  68. Elle
    May 08, 2013 @ 18:44:33

    Thank you, ladies. I love this post :)


  69. mary m
    May 08, 2013 @ 18:51:27

    Patricia Veryan wrote a series in the late 1980′s early ’90′s called the Golden Chronicles

    “The Golden Chronicles. The time is 1746, after the Battle of Culloden; the rebel Jacobites are on the run, their heads heavily priced.” Lots of adventure as well as romance.
    Individual Titles in order are:
    Practice to Deceive
    Journey to Enchantment
    The Tyrant
    Love Alters Not
    Cherished Enemy
    Dedicated Villian
    Then she continued the adventures with the Jewelled Men Series. Also set in Georgian England/Scotland/glimpses of France
    Time’s Fool
    Had We Never Loved
    Ask Me No Questions
    A Shadow’s Bliss
    Never Doubt I Love
    Mandarin of Mayfair

    These are really hard to find, so if you run across one (or a whole set if you’re so lucky) at the library or a used bookstore – grab them.


  70. ducky
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:09:05

    Mary Jo Putney – Uncommon Vows

    Elizabeth Peters – Amelia Peabody series. These are mysteries but have a very strong romantic subplot about Amelia’s son and ward.

    Dorothy Dunnett – The Lymond Chronicles. These are historical novels with romantic content in the later parts.

    Gwen Bristow – Jubilee Trail; Calico Palace


  71. Moriah Jovan
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:10:10

    @Evangeline: I may be compelled to do a spreadsheet.


  72. Laura Florand
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:12:16

    @EGS: Mara! Somebody else has read Mara! I loved that book!!

    Now if we are edging into romantic YA, of the old classics, if anyone else has read Sally Watson’s Witch of the Glen, I will be so happy. I really prefer Hornet’s Nest, of hers, but Witch of the Glen has a more articulated romance. Scotland done right.


  73. Sandra
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:15:40

    @Cheryl: Also by Laura Lee Gurhke
    Laura Lee Gurhke — Charade — just prior to the American Revolution
    Laura Lee Gurhke — Breathless — Gilded Age Atlanta/Georgia
    Laura Lee Gurhke — The Seduction Series (The Marriage Bed, She’s No Princess, etc) — William IV post-Regency/pre-Victorian

    Someone also mentioned Candace Proctor (CS Harris)
    Candace Proctor — Midnight Confessions — Civil War New Orleans w/ a female doctor AND older woman/younger man
    Candace Proctor — Beyond Sunrise — Polynesia/Oceania Victorian

    Jo Goodman’s True to the Law just released yesterday. That’s a Western.

    You may have to dig through the UBS’s for them, but there’s a number by Paula Allardyce (and I’m sure Jayne can name more).
    Rebel Lover – post Culloden
    The Vixen’s Revenge — Jacobite
    My Dear Miss Emma — 18th C France
    Gentleman Rogue — Georgian

    One I’ve had for years and pull again every now and then (another one to add to the UBS list)
    Mary Bishop — Hunter’s Hill — New England late 19th C


  74. EGS
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:39:27

    @Laura Florand: I read it in high school (I think) and just loved it. I’ve been meaning to reread it.


  75. Ann Rickard
    May 08, 2013 @ 19:48:48

    I enjoyed The Marrying Game and Night Shall Overtake Us–both set in early 20th century England.


  76. Kari S.
    May 08, 2013 @ 20:54:06

    Coming out of lurker-dom, I have to add M.M. Kaye’s Shadow of the Moon. It wasn’t the blockbuster hit like her book The Far Pavillions, but it’s a much more successful romance. It takes place in India and is written around the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. I adore Alex, the hero. Winter (the heroine) is fine after she finally gets smart about men. Don’t read Kaye’s third historical novel Trade Wind unless you like rapey heroes.

    Thanks to another poster for mentioning Gwen Bristow. I am particularly a fan of Jubilee Trail. I would avoid her Southern trilogy, however. Bristow does have a problem when it comes to her depictions of Native Americans in California (the setting for Calico Palace and Jubilee Trail).


  77. Susan
    May 08, 2013 @ 21:27:36

    @Mandy: Yes! I mentioned this on yesterday’s post. An oldie (1981) but goodie. Set in India in 1857-8 during the Mutiny. (Zemindar)


  78. LaurieF
    May 08, 2013 @ 22:06:42

    Teresa Medeiros – Nobody’s Darling (Western)
    This is such a good read as well as funny.
    At a quick glance I didn’t see it in the comments
    so that’s my 2 cents.
    Agree with so many of the rec’s above!


  79. Cindy
    May 08, 2013 @ 22:29:38

    @Jennifer Miller I’m not certain how you have your book tagged on Amazon but it doesn’t come up under search for medieval or viking romance. I put it on my wishlist, my job is sort of up in the air at the moment (for a lot of reasons). Also if you’re not in the exclusive thing with Amazon, consider Smashwords. I don’t have a Kindle so I do most of my shopping there.


  80. Kaetrin
    May 08, 2013 @ 23:08:07

    Most of my suggestions are already on the list or in the comments.

    I’d second the vote for the MM Kaye books. I read Trade Wind ages ago and I don’t remember any rape – maybe I wouldn’t like it now.

    Shadows of the Moon – MM Kaye – India
    The Far Pavillions – MM Kaye – India
    Trade Winds – MM Kaye – South Pacific??

    Rangoon – Christine Monson – Burma/Thailand

    The China Bride – Mary Jo Putney – China/England
    The Bartered Bride – Mary Jo Putney – East Indies/England

    Truly – Mary Balogh Wales (set 1842)
    Heartless – Mary Balogh – Georgian
    Silent Melody – Mary Balogh – Georgian

    Roselynde – Roberta Gellis
    Alinor – Roberta Gellis
    Joanna – Roberta Gellis
    Gilliane – Roberta Gellis
    Rhiannon – Roberta Gellis
    Sybelle – Roberta Gellis

    Here Be Dragons – Sharon Kay Penman
    The Sunne in Splendour – Sharon Kay Penman
    Falls the Shadow – Sharon Kay Penman
    The Reckoning – Sharon Kay Penman

    *the Sharon Kay Penman books are based on true stories so not all HEA.

    Lord of My Heart – Jo Beverley
    Dark Champion – Jo Beverley
    The Shattered Rose – Jo Beverley
    The Lord of Midnight – Jo Beverley


  81. Karen M
    May 08, 2013 @ 23:55:40

    Beautifully written, quite intense, erotic…. Robin Schone’s The Lover, Gabriel’s Woman, and The Lady’s Tutor. She writes with heart & guts. She has others… (I believe most are Victorian era) Check them out!


  82. Jennifer Miller
    May 09, 2013 @ 00:49:36

    @Cindy: Devil’s Angel wasn’t written by me but by Mallery Malone and it was published by Samhain, not self-published. I’ll double-check the tags–thanks for pointing that out!


  83. Susan
    May 09, 2013 @ 01:00:33

    @Evangeline: I had forgotten about Jane Feather. Her books were/are pretty hit-or-miss with me, but she did vary her time periods. My favorite Feather was Almost a Bride, set primarily in Georgian England, with a dash of the French Revolution thrown in. Far from perfect, it’s still one of those books that has “stuck” with me.

    I’m loving these comments, and have a feeling they’re going to cost me some money! One thing I wish is that more of the older titles were available in digital.


  84. Emily A.
    May 09, 2013 @ 01:27:06

    Georgette Heyer’s
    Simon the Coldheart set during Henry V (I think) (def. not regency also setting varies between England and France)
    Beauvallet (Elizabethan plus a lot of it is in Spain)
    These Old Shades (Georgian)
    The Convient Marriage (Georgian)


  85. Meri
    May 09, 2013 @ 02:10:08

    The Forbidden Rose is a great romance novel, but I don’t think it needs to be listed twice :) France during the Terror is the more accurate description of the two that appear.

    I noted this in a previous post but I see it’s still listed incorrectly: Carrie Lofty’s Starlight is set in Glasgow, which is obviously not in South Africa…

    In addition to the books I listed earlier, there’s also Loretta Chase’s Your Scandalous Ways, with a Venetian setting.


  86. Cindy
    May 09, 2013 @ 07:51:52

    @Jennifer Miller no problem.

    @all authors When I’m shopping on Amazon or Smashwords, I type in the time period I’m searching for, i. e. medieval romance, steampunk etc. If they’re not tagged, they’re not going to come up properly. Just a thought for increasing sales.


  87. Sirius
    May 09, 2013 @ 08:10:21

    @Sunita: All Tamara Allen’s books are awesome. I also enjoy historicals done by Bonnie Dee and Summer Devon. House of Mirrors is non regency.


  88. Darlene Marshall
    May 09, 2013 @ 08:59:12

    Thanks for the mention, @Cleo. If I can add to that, my novel Smuggler’s Bride is set in 1840s Florida, just after the Second Seminole War. It’s a sequel to Pirate’s Price, set in 1820s Florida.


  89. AlexaB
    May 09, 2013 @ 11:53:14

    If it’s okay to list older books, may I pitch for some of my favorite comfort Mary Balogh historicals?

    Consider this a “seconded” for Kaetrin’s suggestion of:
    Truly by Mary Balogh, set in 1842 Wales during the Rebecca Riots

    Heartless by Mary Balogh, set in Georgian England

    And in addition:
    Beyond the Sunrise by Mary Balogh, set mostly in Spain and Portugal during the Peninsular Wars, with a heroine that identifies as Portuguese

    Tangled by Mary Balogh, set in Victorian England after the Crimean War

    And some of my comfort read Jude Deveraux historicals:
    The Raider by Jude Deveraux, set in 1766 Colonial New England

    Twin of Ice/Twin of Fire by Jude Deveraux, set in 1892 Colorado

    The Velvet Series by Jude Deveraux (The Velvet Promise, Highland Velvet, Velvet Song, Velvet Angel), set in early 16th century England and Scotland.


  90. Kathryn
    May 09, 2013 @ 12:16:29

    Back in 2006 Dear Author did a review of one of my favorite medievals Red Adam’s Lady. It should definitely go on the list.


  91. Susan
    May 09, 2013 @ 13:04:57

    @Kathryn: Wow–I had missed that review of Red Adam’s Lady, so thanks for including the link. It’s one of my favorite medievals, too–still own my original copy from the 70′s.


  92. Miriam Minger
    May 09, 2013 @ 14:09:53

    I love historical romance and I loved writing them, so I truly hope the genre isn’t dying! When I wrote my historicals, my goal was always to write something different with familiar locales and settings. I knew Regencies were popular, but its conventions were too confining for me so I wrote two “Regency era” romances: Secrets of Midnight and the sequel My Runaway Heart. Yes, the time period is Regency and there is a duke in one and an earl in another, but that’s where the plot lines took off into high adventure and “something different.” I also liked to write non-traditional settings like Medieval Ireland (Wild Angel and Wild Roses), medieval Russia (The Pagan’s Prize), and pre-Revolutionary War American Colonies (Defiant Impostor). So the challenge and commitment to write outside of the typical historical romance box has been around for some time as evidenced by the wonderful list of suggested books and authors. Historical romance deserves to be READ…and not dead. :-)


  93. Rebecca (Another One)
    May 09, 2013 @ 14:15:42

    Magic Under Glass (2010) & Magic Under Stone (2012) Jaclyn Dolamore (YA alternative history with magic, heroine is an brown skinned girl who in her native country wore bright silk trousers, and at the beginning is a dancing girl in the New World. Heat level: only kisses. Some may have trouble with 16 – 17 year olds as adults, but it was clear this was the times they were in. The second book alternates between 1st person and third by the switch only happens for a few chapters. The HEA only happens by the end of the first book.

    I particluarly how multi-faceted the characters are. There are very few true villans, just people with normal vices like greed, fear, etc. I also like how the main character’s background is an essential part of her character, but not the only part.


  94. Rosie
    May 09, 2013 @ 14:36:26

    Some of my faves I haven’t seen mentioned …
    Halfway to Heaven by Susan Wiggs (Gilded Age, Washington DC)
    Runabout by Pamela Morsi (turn of century Americana)
    The Brides of Bowie Stone by Maggie Osborne (American West)
    McLairens Isle trilogy by Connie Brockway (Georgian, Scotland)


  95. Jane
    May 09, 2013 @ 16:07:36

    @Meri: I’m just going through it slowly. It will take some time for me to keep adding everything.


  96. Keishon
    May 09, 2013 @ 17:27:13

    I love a good historical. Just wanted to add Maggie Osborne’s The Wives of Bowie Stone. I loved that book. The heroine is an alcoholic with a problematic childhood. Sorry, I didn’t go through the comments to see if the author was mentioned. I’m sure she was. I’ll go back and read them later.


  97. Maili
    May 10, 2013 @ 03:31:59

    Books I enjoyed the most are already listed by others. So here are a few that haven’t been mentioned yet:

    Heart of Deception – Taylor Chase (a.k.a. Gayle Feyrer) – Elizabethan London (Heroine is a ruthless underworld lord who, along with her beloved brother, rules Southwark. Hero is a noble, trying to save his family from being executed for treason, who goes undercover and joins Vivian’s thief gang.)
    The Thief’s Mistress – Gayle Feyrer – Medieval Nottingham (unconventional retelling of the Robin Hood legend. It basically threw the Romance Novel Rules Book *and* the usual portrayals of Marion, Robin and Sir Guy out of a window.)
    Lord of The Night – Susan Wiggs – 15th century Venice (hero is a police investigator, investigating a series of murders, and heroine is an artist’s model. Note: hero is in his 40s.)
    Somebody Wonderful – Kate Rothwell – 1880s New York City (Hero is a NYC police officer and heroine is a…erm, Disney Heroine? Mick is the star of this book. Class difference.)
    Somebody to Love – Kate Rothwell – 1880s New York City (Heroine is a cook and hero is a business man. Interracial romance (heroine is half-black, half-white).)
    Someone To Cherish – Kate Rothwell – 1880s New York City (the original title is The Ratcatcher. Says it all, really.)
    Rainbow Season – Lisa Gregory – 1860s Texas (Published in 1979, one of the first to portray the hero as a sensitive, tormented little mite (and in love with plain-jane heroine’s sister), which basically opened a door to a stream of heroes of this type. Unrequited love.)
    The Prince of Cups – Gayle Feyrer – 15th century Italy (her debut. I wasn’t keen on this one, but ideal for anyone who loves political intrigue, melodrama, the Borgias, etc.)
    any title by Dinah Dean – almost all her romances set in Russia during the 1800s or 1810s.


  98. library addict
    May 11, 2013 @ 00:46:52

    I’ll second or third the Amanda Quick medievals listed.

    Alena – Merline Lovelace: Dark Ages after Rome’s invasion of Britain
    Sweet Song of Love – Merline Lovelace: Medieval
    Siren’s Call – Merline Lovelace: ancient Greece
    Lady of the Upper Kingdom – Merline Lovelace: ancient Egypt
    His Lady’s Ransom – Merline Lovelace: Medieval
    Crusader Captive – Merline Lovelace: Jerusalem 1152
    She also wrote several books set in the Louisiana Territory (in what became Oklahoma)


  99. Carly
    May 11, 2013 @ 22:07:11

    Our Little Secrets by Merry Farmer–late 1800s Montana, but not a typical Western
    Fool for Love by Merry Farmer–late 1800s Montana and England
    The Loyal Heart by Merry Farmer–Medieval, different spin on “bad Prince John”
    The Faithful Heart by Merry Farmer–Medieval
    The Courageous Heart by Merry Farmer–Medieval


  100. Rachel Daven Skinner
    May 14, 2013 @ 22:00:49

    I second Pamela Clare’s historicals and Paulina Simons’s The Bronze Horseman (one of my FAV books)

    I’m surprised my favorite has not been mentioned yet: The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon – book 1 is mostly set in 1743 (it starts with a bit of accidental time travel from 1945) and book 7 is up to 1778 (series still ongoing) Book 1 is set in Scotland, book 2 is largely in Paris & Scotland, book 3 is largely in Scotland & the West Indies, and books 4-7 are in America.

    The Road Back by Liz Harris – mostly set in Buddhist part of Ladakh, a country to the west of Tibet, between an English young woman and Ladkhi young man. Liz Harris has another historical coming out this Sept. called A Bargain Struck which is 1887 Wyoming Territory.

    The Scarlet Kimono & The Gilded Fan by Christina Courtenay – first book is English heroine and Japanese hero, set mostly in Japan; second book is their daughter as heroine and an English hero

    Trade Winds & by Christina Courtenay – first book is set partly in Sweden, partly at sea and the Far East, with Swedish heroine and Scottish hero; second book

    The Silver Locket, The Golden Chain, and The Penny Bangle, set in England during WWI, 1931 and WWII respectively. A saga of romances through three generations.

    The Devil’s Dime by Bailey Bristol – 1890s New York, historical romantic suspense

    Lord Hawkesbury’s Players series by C.J. Archer – Elizabethan London, and Shakespeare is a minor character!

    The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – late 1800s England


  101. REVIEW: The Double Cross (The Spanish Brand Series) by Carla Kelly
    Jan 13, 2014 @ 11:02:06

    […] have always proved to be among my favorites and since the readers at DA are looking for something other than the usual settings, reading it for my next book seemed a great […]

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