Image via http://www.hmsg.co.uk/en/H_Rees01
Celia Rees, an English author, is one of my favourite writers. She writes for young adults, but her popularity shows that books aren’t limited by age groups – good books are good books no matter who reads them.
Celia has written various thrillers and horrors but the books that I prefer are the historical fiction books. They are not just historical; each book’s protagonist is a young woman who finds herself in situations not normal for the time. Feminism before feminism. Here is a list of these books:
Witch Child is about a young girl, Mary, who moves to New England from England in 1660. Finding herself embroiled in witch accusations in a Puritan village, she disappears and her story is told from her diary, which is found in a quilt.
Sorceress is the follow up to Witch Child and the story is told between Agnes, a young Native American girl and Mary, as the rest of Mary’s life story is explored.
Pirates! is about a young woman and an escaped Jamaican slave who become pirates. Who wouldn’t want to be 16 and a pirate?
Sovay tells the story of Sovay, a young woman who gets swept up in the French Revolution, highway robbery as well as political intrigue.
Fool’s Girl is a retelling of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, including appearances from Will Shakespeare himself.
Celia Rees doesn’t shy away from hardships and her protagonists have to deal with sexism, ignorance and little or no liberty, as was normal for women of each of these times, as well as fighting, death, peril and hardship. Her books are meticulously researched and enjoyable. Just go read them, all of them. When you’ve done that, read them again.
- Julie Anne Young
Girl Museum, Inc.