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On and On: The Saga

July 3rd, 2017
Carole · Staff Recommendations

Sometimes we just don’t want a book to end. The plights of the characters move us, intrigue us. We become invested in their well-being or their demise. Perhaps we identify with them. Although fictional, seeing how characters manage sadness, loss, love, disaster may help us do the same in our lives. Fiction mirrors real life after all. Reading satisfaction and enjoyment also comes from being transported to a time removed from our present reality and wrought with experiences we will surely never have.

I had the gratification of recommending Jeffrey Archer’s seven volume The Clifton Chronicles to a patron who said even after seven volumes she didn’t want it to end. But end it does.

Here are recommendations for similar historical family sagas:

Evergreen by Belva PlainBelva Plain’s series of five books about the Stern-Werner family: 1- Evergreen 2- Golden Cup 3- Tapestry 4- Harvest 5- Heartwood
City of Dreams by Beverly SwerlingBeverly Swerling’s series of four books about 2 families in Old New York: 1- City of Dreams 2- City of Glory 3- City of God 4- City of Promise
The Bastard by John JakesJohn Jakes’ Kent Family Chronicles, eight books spanning the time from the American Revolution to early 20th century America: 1-The Bastard 2- The Rebels 3-The Seekers 4-The Furies 5- The Titans 6- The Warriors 7- The Lawless 8-The Americans
Into the Wilderness by Sara DonatiSara Donati’s Wilderness series chronicles the Bonner family living in upstate New York beginning in 1792: 1- Into the Wilderness 2- Dawn on a Distant Shore 3- Lake in the Clouds 4- Fire Along the Sky 5- Queen of Swords 6- The Endless Forest
The Game of Kings by Dorothy DunnettDorothy Dunnett’s The Lymond Chronicles is less a family saga and more a study of an individual’s struggles through turbulent sixteenth century Europe: 1- The Game of Kings 2- Queens Play 3- Disorderly Knights 4- Pawn in Frankincense 5- The Ringed Castle 6- Checkmate

Wilbur Smith’s Courtney Family saga begins with the birth of twins Garrick and Sean Courtney in South Africa in 1870: 1- When the Lion Feeds 2- The Sound of Thunder 3- A Sparrow Falls 4- The Burning Shore 5- The Power of the Sword 6- Rage 7- A Time to Die 8- Golden Fox 9- Birds of Prey 10- Monsoon 11- Blue Horizon 12- The Triumph of the Sun 13- Assegai 14- Golden Lion 15- War Cry 16- The Tiger’s Prey, published in 2017

Palace Walk by Naguib MahfouzNajīb Maḥfūẓ’s three part Cairo Trilogy traces three generations of a tyrannical patriarch and his family from 1919 to the end of WWII: 1- Palace Walk 2- Palace of Desire 3- Sugar Street
The Immigrants by Howard FastHoward Fast’s Lavette Family series of six books begins with the French/Italian family’s arrival in New York in the early 20th century. Other immigrant families, Chinese, Irish and Italian are also featured. A personal favorite.:1-The Immigrants 2- Second Generation 3- The Establishment 4- The Legacy 5- The Immigrant’s Daughter 6- An Independent Woman

Descriptions are courtesy of Goodreads and Other helpful sites for series recommendations are:

The Harrison Public Library reference book To Be Continued: An Annotated Guide to Sequels by Merle L. Jacob and Hope Apple covers series of all genres published before 1995.

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