FallenKingdomReads’ list of 7 Historical Fiction Novels Set in Medieval Times.
The medieval period, also known as the Middle Ages, is a time in European history that spans roughly from the 5th century to the 15th century. This era is known for its feudalism, castles, knights, and religious fervor. It was a time of great upheaval and transformation, marked by wars, plagues, and religious schisms. Here are seven of the best historical fiction novels set in medieval times:
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
Set in 12th-century England, this novel tells the story of the building of a cathedral in the fictional town of Kingsbridge. The book explores the lives of the builders, the clergy, and the nobility, and it is a rich tapestry of medieval life.
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
This novel is set in an Italian monastery in the 14th century. The story follows a Franciscan friar, William of Baskerville, who is called to the monastery to investigate a series of mysterious deaths. The novel is a brilliant blend of historical fiction, mystery, and philosophy.
Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott
Set in 12th-century England, this novel tells the story of Wilfred of Ivanhoe, a Saxon knight who supports King Richard the Lionheart in his battles against the Normans. The novel is a classic example of the historical romance genre and is still widely read today.
The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
This collection of stories was written in the 14th century and is set on a pilgrimage to Canterbury. The stories are told by a diverse group of pilgrims, ranging from the Knight to the Wife of Bath, and they offer a fascinating glimpse into medieval life.
The Brothers of Gwynedd Quartet by Edith Pargeter
Set in 13th-century Wales, this quartet of novels tells the story of the princes of Gwynedd and their struggle to resist English domination. The novels are filled with battles, political intrigue, and romance.
The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone
This novel is set in Renaissance Italy but focuses on the life of Michelangelo, who lived during the late medieval period. The novel explores the life of the artist and the cultural and political upheaval of the time.
The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell
This novel is set in the 9th century and tells the story of Uhtred, a Saxon who is raised by Danes and must choose between his loyalties to his native land and his adopted family. The novel is a thrilling adventure and a great introduction to the period known as the Dark Ages.
In conclusion, these seven historical fiction novels set in medieval times offer readers a fascinating glimpse into this tumultuous period of history. They are filled with battles, political intrigue, and romance, and they bring to life the customs, beliefs, and struggles of people from centuries past.