Diversity Spotlight Thursday: Historical Fiction | 3 Days, 3 Quotes [Day 1]


Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme that’s hosted by Aimal from Bookshelves & Paperbacks and the idea is that each week you come up with three book for three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed; a diverse book that’s already been released and is in your TBR; and a diverse book that hasn’t been released yet.

This week’s topic is: Historical Fiction

I’ve been stupidly busy for the last week and a half with work, volunteer, and various personal stuff, so to save time, I’ve decided to smoosh two sort-of-related posts into one. I’m also rather behind on comments so I’ll be slowly be catching up on all your recent posts!


At Swim, Two Boys by Jamie O’Neil

At Swim, Two Boys is one of those books that makes you think, “No human could have written this,” and at the same time, “Only a human could have written this.” O’Neil manipulates the English language with the finesse of a god and the pathos of a mortal to produce what is probably the most beautifully-crafted piece of fiction I have ever read. And it’s so wonderfully accessible, because although the story is historical–one that slides a lens over the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland–at its core it’s a tale of the endurance of love, friendship, and youth amidst violence and hatred. And anyone, regardless of sexuality, nationality, age, or gender can relate to that.

Goodreads | Amazon (US) | Book Depository

Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

Sarah Waters is the Queen of lesbian historical fiction, and Fingersmith has been on my TBR for a while now. I did, however, end up watching the Korean movie adaptation, The Handmaiden (아가씨) last year, and it utterly blew me away. Sexuality and open expression of sexuality–of any kind–is still very much a taboo subject in South Korea, so it’s eyebrow-raising (in the best way) to see them produce something so beautifully erotic. If the original story is anything close to this film, then I’m in for a wild ride.

Goodreads | Amazon (US) | Book Depository

The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee

This one might be cheating because the first book in the series was a historical fiction with a dash of fantasy and I have a feeling the sequel will follow that trend, but it looks too good to pass up. Felicity was my favourite character from Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue and I was beyond stoked to hear that she would be getting her own book. The story feature ace rep and a possible (?) F/F pairing, which is exciting.

Goodreads | Amazon (US) | Book Depository

And for the second part of this post, I’ll be doing the 3 Days, 3 Quotes tag! I was tagged by Alyssa from Serendipitous Reads ages ago, so thank you, Alyssa! She writes the some of the most thoughtful reviews so go check her out and shower her with love.

The Rules

1. Thank the person who nominated you
2. Post a quote for 3 consecutive days (1 quote for each day)–I’m totally gonna be bending this rule
3. Nominate three new bloggers each day

Because it’s Pride month, I wanted to share my favourite quote from At Swim, Two Boys:

“Help these boys build a nation their own. Ransack the histories for clues to their past. Plunder the literatures for words they can speak. And should you encounter an ancient tribe whose customs, however dimly, cast light on their hearts; tell them that tale; and you shall name the unspeakable names of your kind, and in that naming, in each such telling, they will falter a step to the light.

For only with pride may a man prosper. With pride, all things follow. Without he have pride he is a shadowy skulk whose season is night.”

This passage drove me to tears the first time I read it. It just speaks so powerfully of the importance, the necessity, of seeing our queerness reflected out in the world–whether through literature or some other medium. Each LGBTQIAP+ story is a call that says, “Your existence is beautiful,” and that’s something we need to be hearing every day, every minute of our lives.

Today I tag:

1. Gerry from The BookNook UK
2. Lily from Sprinkles of Dreams
3. Vera from Unfiltered Tales


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Vera June 14, 2018 - 1:33 pm

I love that quote Kathy! I honestly believe that our diversity should be celebrated. And we should all be PROUD. ❤

Thanks for the tag, I love quotes and am looking forward to taking part in this one for sure. 🙂 ❤

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 15, 2018 - 2:02 am

Aw thanks, Vera! <3 <3 And I know how you love tags. 😛 I'm excited to see your choices!

thebookwormdrinketh June 14, 2018 - 3:18 pm

Yikes! I REALLY need to get on to reading “The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue”! There’s already ANOTHER one coming out?! I know I’ve been saying that I’m going to read that one for a while… But, I didn’t feel like it was THAT long!!

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 15, 2018 - 2:06 am

I know it’s like 500ish pages but they go by suuuuuper quick! And I know! I feel like I was JUST reading the first book yesterday but then I remember that was a whole year ago. Someone needs to put a stop to time. 😛

RedRocketPanda June 14, 2018 - 4:11 pm

Fingersmith yessssssssssssssss. That was my first ever Queer book back when I was a small queer baby.

Alex @ Alex Reads and Blogs June 14, 2018 - 4:46 pm

i am listening to The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue…. I have about 2 hours left and I’m waiting to find time to be left alone with it (go away kids!) because I love it so much and need to zone out and enjoy it. i am so looking forward to Felicity’s POV

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 15, 2018 - 12:36 am

Woot! Glad you’re enjoying it! I heard that the Tom Riddle guy narrates the audiobook? I really need to check it out. Super curious about how he does some of the scenes. 😀

auroralibrialis June 14, 2018 - 5:56 pm

Felicity was my favorite character in Gentleman’s Guide too! I’m so excited to read a whole book about her! Lovely post 😊

waytoofantasy June 14, 2018 - 6:34 pm

I didn’t realize Petticoats had a cover yet. I am so excited for that book.

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 15, 2018 - 12:07 am

I think I like this one more than Gentleman’s Guide. Felicity just looks so perfect. 🙂

The Social Media Tag June 14, 2018 - 7:19 pm

[…] about Flavia’s blog screams professional and is laid out so pleasingly with lovely graphics. Kathy is a new favourite that I have discovered and I literally cannot get over her header […]

Alyssa Grace June 14, 2018 - 7:29 pm

Aw thanks for the shout out! That’s a great quote too, the kind that I can read over and over again and discover something new every time.

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 15, 2018 - 12:29 am

No problem! <3 And I adore that quote so much!

Dani @ Perspective of a Writer June 15, 2018 - 12:22 am

What great picks Kathy! I haven’t heard of this meme but how fun it is!? I love finding new diverse books to read… I do admit I need to read The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue… I’ve heard so much about it and all of it raving! The second book sounds divine too! 😉

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 18, 2018 - 7:33 am

Aw, thank you Dani! <3 I'm the only person I know doing the meme at the moment, so it's not exactly widely known, I think. 😀 And Gentleman's Guide is such a quick and fun story! I'm thinking of picking up the audiobook version (narrated by Tom Riddle guy) in prep for the second book, because I've heard it's pretty amazing.

@lynnsbooks June 15, 2018 - 10:22 am

Sarah Waters is such a beautiful writer, her prose is evocative.
Lynn 😀

3 Days 3 Quotes Tag: Day 1 – Unfiltered Tales June 15, 2018 - 12:56 pm

[…] been tagged by Kathy from Pages Below the Vaulted Sky in the 3 Days 3 Quotes […]

✨The Reading life✨ (@_AnneBlogger) June 15, 2018 - 2:50 pm

I recently read (and reviewed) Ignite the Stars by Maura Milan, and it’s also by an Asian author that features an Asian heroine. It was shockingly good (totally caught me off by surprise), and you should definitely check it out!

Anne @ The Reading Life

Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams June 15, 2018 - 3:07 pm

Ohh I love this, thanks so much for tagging me, Kathy! <3 Diversity is so important, and I'm so happy to see this tag, this really brightened my day. 🙂

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 18, 2018 - 7:27 am

No problem, Lily!! <3 Glad it brought some light to your day!😊

anna June 15, 2018 - 5:03 pm

i know i only read one book by her so far but i LOVE sarah waters!!! she’s ruly blessing us.
also god, at swim, two boys has been on my tbr for YEARS can i finally get my shit together!!

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky June 18, 2018 - 7:28 am

Omg yes you def need to read At Swim, Two Boys!! I had to drown myself in alcohol and chocolate to process my feelings on that book! Join meeeee

anna June 18, 2018 - 7:04 pm


3 Days 3 Quotes Tag: Day 2 – Unfiltered Tales June 16, 2018 - 6:03 am

[…] been tagged by Kathy from Pages Below the Vaulted Sky in the 3 Days 3 Quotes Tag. I’ll keep it short given it’s the weekend. […]

3 Days 3 Quotes Tag: Day 3 – Unfiltered Tales June 17, 2018 - 6:12 am

[…] been tagged by Kathy from Pages Below the Vaulted Sky in the 3 Days 3 Quotes Tag. Final day of the series. Hope you are having a great […]

June 2018 Wrap-Up – Pages Below the Vaulted Sky July 5, 2018 - 6:52 am

[…] ➽ Royalty 👑 ➽ Pirates ☠️ ➽ Historical Fiction […]

The Social Media Tag – Red Rocket Panda September 6, 2018 - 9:10 am

[…] about Flavia’s blog screams professional and is laid out so pleasingly with lovely graphics. Kathy is a new favourite that I have discovered and I literally cannot get over her header […]


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