Biographical fiction about Frances Latham, daughter of Charles I's royal falconer in the 17th century, who defies her family's and society's expectations. The novel moves from the English countryside to London to Ireland and concludes at last in colonial America. Fireship Press, which specializes in nautical and historical fiction and nonfiction (Sep '12, $19.95, trade pb, 395pp).
The story of the lost Khmer empire and the construction of the mountain-temple of Angkor Wat in what today is Cambodia, as seen through the eyes of a remarkable heroine, a woman named Sray. River Books, a Bangkok-based press focusing on Thai arts and culture (Jan '13, $14.95, trade pb, 500pp).
This adventurous sequel to The Scarlet Kimono, set in 1641 Japan, follows a young Japanese woman forced to flee to England aboard a ship owned by the Dutch East India Company in order to save her life. Choc Lit, a UK press for women's romantic fiction (Feb '13, £7.99, trade pb, 400pp).
In the late 18th century, a woman finds adventure, danger, and romance as she journeys through the wilderness to rescue her kidnapped cousin. Bell Bridge Books, which centers on but isn't limited to Southern fiction (Sept '12, $18.95, trade pb, 329pp).
In this fictional autobiography, 18th-century painter and printmaker William Hogarth tells of his life and the age in which he lived. Overlook Press, an independent general interest publisher (Jan. '13, $26.95, hb, 272pp).
Literary fiction about a Japanese teenager who finds herself in the wrong place at the very wrong time - the firebombing of Tokyo in 1945 - and how she and others, including some Americans, come to terms with the aftermath. Norton, an independent US press (Mar '13, $26.95, hb, 384pp).
In this imaginative retelling of the Rapunzel fairy tale and one of its first authors, set in France and Venice in the 16th and 17th centuries, three women's stories intertwine. Previously published by Random House Australia (see my interview with the author from last May). Allison & Busby, a "small publisher of big books" (Feb '13, £12.99, hb, 496pp).
A historical mystery set in a distant era, 18th Dynasty Egypt, in which Akhnaten's ascent to the throne stirs up palace intrigue. Poisoned Pen Press, which focuses on mysteries (Feb '13, $14.95 pb, $24.95 hb, 250pp).
A jester-for-hire gets caught up in the fierce rivalry between warring families in early 13th-century Florence when he's ordered to carry out a prank. Fireship Press (Oct '12, $19.95, trade pb, 311pp).
Literary fiction on the changing fortunes of a tiny border town in 1930s Mexico after a local doctor claims to have found a cure for impotence - and promotes it far and wide via an enormous radio tower. Steerforth, a publisher of quality fiction and nonfiction (Jan '13, $14.99, trade pb, 432pp). Previously published by House of Anansi in Canada.