Historical Fiction

Based on a true person

3 Biographical historical fiction novels

The following 3 novels, are based on a real person's life and a significant historical event or period in history. These books are all fantastic reads and would be great choices to follow up on your biography unit that you have all been working on.

fatty legs by Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton

This novel is based on the life of an Inuit girl named Margaret Pokiak and her experiences in a residential school for native children run by nuns and priests, through the Candaian government. The novel recounts the horrbile treatment that Margaret experiences at the school and how her strength and perseverance help her to go on. This novel has significance to Canada's history in their treatment of some native people. Recently, the government of Canada has issued officail apologies to several native communties for the manner in which many children were treated when they attended government run residential schools like the one described in the novel fatty legs. The novel is cowritten by Margaret herself and her daughter Christy Jordan-Fenton.

Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz

This historical fiction biography recounts the life of Yanek Gruener, a Jewish Boy living in Poland during the holocaust. The novel walks through his life spent in ten different concentration camps, and how he found the will to survive and keep going throughout all of his hardships. This novel is a true testament to strength of character and perseverance. It is unbelieveable to imagine that this novel is actually based on someone's real life.

Words in the Dust by Trent Reedy

This novel is loosely based on an actual girl that the author (soldier Trent Reedy) met while stationed in Afghanistan. The girl has a cleft palate and her family has never been able to afford for her to have the surgery to correct her disfigured face. She is taunted by the other children and lives a very reclusive life. The soldier tells about the hardships faced by many women and children living in Afghanistan and tells the story of Zulaikha and her hardships with grace and dignity. Read the story to find out how this soldier changed Zulaikha's life and how in turn, she also changed his.