In honor of both observances, both official and not, here's a gallery of 10 new and forthcoming historical novels by female authors, and focusing (at least partly) on women's stories, which are (or will be) published by small presses. It was fun finding books that fit all three categories. No doubt there are more!
Chessman, best known for her art-inspired novel Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper, looks back on Degas' 1872 visit to New Orleans through the viewpoint of his Creole cousin Estelle (Tell), who has lost her sight. Outpost19, March 2017.
Craig's second novel intertwines the personal and political in a work about mid-20th-century Burmese history that focuses on her own family; her mother was a former Miss Burma, and there's plenty more to her story. Grove, May 2017.
A young Roman woman, exiled to distant Britannia after bearing Emperor Nero's daughter, tries to adjust to her new situation in a land torn between the Roman rulers and rebellious Celtic tribespeople. Hadley Rille, February 2017.
Troubled 20th-century artist Pamela Bianco was a child prodigy and the daughter of Margery Williams, most famous for her children's book The Velveteen Rabbit. The intertwined stories of these two complicated women are revealed in Huber's debut novel. She Writes Press, July 2017.
This novel in the form of a fictional memoir, by Irish-Iraqi author Hughes, takes as its subject the influential Nurbanu Sultan, Queen Mother of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century. Delphinium, August 2017.
In 1960s Ecuador, a young woman undertakes a deception to discover the identity of her long-lost mother, who she knows is one of four sisters, all of whose names begin with the letter A. Skyhorse, July 2017.
This second in the Da Vinci's Disciples series (after Portrait of a Conspiracy; see my interview with the author) continues the story of six women of Renaissance Florence who dare to create art at a time when it was illegal for women to do so. Diversion, April 2017.
This autobiographical novel set in 1950s Sweden and the United States is a coming-of-age story about a young woman who navigates difficult emotional territory (her parents' shaky marriage) with the help of literature. Other Press, June 2017.
Shimotakahara's multi-period novel examines the lasting aftereffects of the Japanese internment in North America through her story about a daughter who learns about the painful past that her mother had refused to acknowledge. Dundurn, May 2017.
First in a new mystery series, The Wages of Sin features a female medical student in Victorian Edinburgh who turns sleuth after recognizing the female corpse on a dissection table. Pegasus, March 2017.