3 Must-Read Biographical Fiction Books

Biographical fiction books are based on true-life stories or actual events that occurred in the past. The author of a biographical fiction novel conducts plenty of research to collect facts from the time period they want to write about.

Today, we will look at some great works in the biographical fiction genre, which are a must-read for people who enjoy diving into the world of biographical fiction.

Philip Roth by Blake Bailey

The renowned biography of Philip Roth was written by Blake Bailey and became an immediate New York Times bestseller. Philip Roth himself appointed Blake Bailey and gave him free rein to write his story.

The author spent years conversing with people in Roth’s personal life and talking to Roth himself in an effort to collect accurate information about Roth. The book allows the reader to delve into Roth’s life’s journey from humble beginnings in a lower-middle-class Jewish family to becoming a great writer and achieving massive literary fame.

The biography reads like a fiction story and delves into Roth’s personal life and highlights his two-decade-long relationship with actress Claire Bloom as well his friendships with William Styron, Saul Bellow, and John Updike.

Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier

Johannes Vermeer was an extraordinary painter who lived in the Netherlands and is known as the epitome of the Dutch Golden Age. His paintings played with light and shadow and portrayed scenes of a simple domestic life.

The novel Girl with a Pearl Earring is based on the painter’s portrait of an anonymous girl with the same name. The story revolves around a young girl who is hired as a servant in Vermeer’s household during the 17th century and her subsequent relationship with her master, which takes different shapes, including a maid, an assistant, a lover, and a model.

While the Dutch painter’s life can only be gleaned from a few legal documents, the author spins the tale of his story and relationship with the subject of his famous painting with masterful ease that engages the reader till the last page.

Another Chance by Joseph Woodward

Another Chance is part of a trilogy written by Joseph Woodward that focuses on the life of Ernest Woodward, who was born in England and relocated to Ohio when he was 17. The story is based in the 20th century when London was prospering, and Ernest Woodward left the capital behind to come to America and start a new life.

The plot of the story contains elements of romance and adventure, where the author highlights the fascinating journey of the family patriarch and describes the adventurous path he traversed.

If you’d like to read this book, you can download a PDF copy here. For more biographical fiction novels by Joseph Woodward, visit my collection of books or reach out to me here.

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Welcome to my musings! I’m an author who loves to write novels and short stories that you can read on-the-go. When I’m not holed up writing, you can find me in my garden or at my piano.