Past Tense

How Many Heists Could Possibly Take Place on the Titanic?

Hi historical fiction fans!

Who’s ready for sweater weather? I hope you are, if you’re in the United States, at least! A large winter storm is spreading across the States this week, but apparently that’s just going to translate into storms and tornadoes in my neck of the woods. Hurrah! What’s December without a few tornadoes? At least I can still wear cute sweaters as I take shelter inside.

I wish you all better weather, wherever you are, whether that means a snowy December or a sunny one!

And don’t forget to sign up for Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge for 2023! Through a series of 24 tasks / prompts, Read Harder invites readers to expand their worldview through books. Read one book per task, or do some multi-tasking by counting one book for multiple tasks. We’re easygoing! The point of the challenge is to push yourself to expand your horizons. Thank you to Thriftbooks for sponsoring Read Harder 2023.

To find the tasks and subscribe to our newsletter for tips and recommendations, visit Read Harder 2023.

Bookish Goods

Green Bookish Varsity Sweatshirt from Etsy

Bookish Varsity Sweatshirt

Keep warm and bookish with this varsity sweatshirt from Ladyish Creative. $35 and up.

New Releases

Scatterlings Book Cover

Scatterlings by Resoketswe Martha Manenzhe (December 13, 2022)

After the passing of the Immorality Act in 1927 South Africa, a mixed race couple with two young daughters face the horrifying reality that their relationship has been made illegal. Their subsequent choices in the face of the Act will have shattering repercussions for both themselves and their family.

The Paradise of Food Book Cover

The Paradise of Food by Khalid Jawed (December 15, 2022)

This English translation of an Urdu classic follows a middle-class Muslim family through a 50-year period of changes in Indian and Islamic culture. It’s atmospheric and tense and a multiple award winner.

For a more comprehensive list, check out our New Books newsletter!

Riot Recommendations

Do you ever notice a a random trend in books that is so niche it strikes you as unusual? I’ve noticed one recently of historical fiction books that take place on the Titanic and involve heists to some extent. A bit odd and specific, isn’t it? Its kind of perfect for fans of historical fiction, mysteries, and adventure, though.

A Restless Truth Book Cover

A Restless Truth by Freya Marske

In this sequel to A Marvellous Light, the younger sister of baronet Robin Blythe attempts to bring an elderly magician back to Britain to help prevent the dangerous conspiracy overtaking the magical community there. But when she’s murdered in cold blood, Maud must team up with an unlikely group of allies including a scandalous socialite, a surly magician, and a thief in order to steal back the murdered magician’s priceless silver artifacts before their enemies realize just what it is they’ve stolen.

A Million to One Book Cover

A Million to One by Adiba Jaigirdar

Former Rioter and author of the Goodreads Choice nominated Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating, Adiba Jaigirdar, is back with a new book — this time set on the Titanic! It’s described as the Titanic with “an Ocean’s 8 makeover,” following a thief, an artist, an acrobat, and an actress attempting to steal a jewel-encrusted book, the Rubaiyat, before the ship’s journey comes to its fateful end.

Luck of the Titanic Book Cover

Luck of the Titanic by Stacey Lee

A young Chinese-British acrobat sneaks aboard the Titanic to track down her twin brother and convince him to join her in a new act in America. But her brother isn’t interested, she’s pretending to be someone she’s not, and a recent act passed in the United States is barring entry for people of Chinese descent. And that’s not even to mention the fate we all know awaits the Titanic on her maiden voyage. But Valora possesses an auspicious surname — Luck — and perhaps it will help her reach the other side of the Atlantic if luck is in fact on her side.

That’s it for now, folx! Stay subscribed for more stories of yesteryear.

If you want to talk books (historical or otherwise), you can find me @rachelsbrittain on Instagram, Goodreads, Litsy, and occasionally Twitter.

Right now I’m reading The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. What about you?