A Book Based On A True Story | Bookish Blog Hops

Throughout the entire month of March, I’ll be touring the blogosphere and chatting about a variety of book related topics along with other members of the Bookish Blog Hops group. As you can tell from the title of this blog post, today I’m featuring A Book Based On A True Story that I have read and highly recommend. Some of my fellow Bookish Blog Hoppers are also featured in this post, and they also shared some thoughts about a book based on a true story of their choosing. If you have a book based on a true story that you would like to recommend, or have thoughts on any of the books mentioned here, be sure to comment below!

A Book Based On A True Story

  • In The Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez

Julia Alvarez has published over 20 books, including works of poetry, children’s books, and fiction. This particular novel is based on the lives and assassinations of Patria, Minerva, and Maria Teresa Mirabel in the Dominican Republic under the then dictator Trujillo. Julia Alvarez begins the story in 1994 and around November 25th, the month and day when the sisters were killed (1960). We are shown the [fictional] point of view of the surviving sister, Dedé, who has been asked by a journalist who “is originally from [the Dominican] but has lived many years in the States” to interview her and bring the story of the sisters and the dictatorship to the US.

Over the course of this 300+ page novel, Julia Alvarez sweeps her reader through the timeline and events leading up to the sisters’ deaths, which includes political and social commentary, familial growth and change, despair and grief, and a legacy that says as much about the strength and resilience of Las Mariposas (The Butterflies) and womankind as it does about “the human cost of political oppression” (quoted from the summary).

Further Reading: The Designation of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

More Books Based On True Stories…

The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed below belong to the bloggers who submitted them, and do not necessarily reflect my views, thoughts, and opinions. 


  • The Day the World Came to Town by Jim DeFede

One of my favorite books I’ve read recently based on a true story is The Day the World Came to Town by Jim DeFede. This book is based on the events that happened on September 11, when air space over America was shut down and hundreds of planes were diverted to Gander, Newfoundland, Canada.
The story is touching and inspiring. The juxtaposition of one of the worst examples of humanity alongside one of the best examples is truly beautiful! The people of Gander and the surrounding towns embraced the thousands that were stranded there and treated them as guests and friends.


  • Hidden Pearl by JE Laufer

I recently read Hidden Pearl by JE Laufer which is an unforgettable true story about a “hidden child” and her family during WW2. It was the most desperate of times when people were facing many dangers on a daily basis. This story is about courage, hope and resilience. Perfect for YA or Adult.
I loved this book and highly recommend it, especially if you’ve enjoyed reading books like The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. It’s one of those books that gets under your skin, and makes you think. I read it around Memorial Day, and would encourage reading it for people interested in World Wars, history, etc…

Stormi | Bewitched Reader Book Blog

  • Child of the Forest by Jack Grossman

Last year I read Child of the Forest by Jack Grossman. A signed copy of this book was gifted to me by a friend who thought I’d enjoy it. I am very happy to say they were correct. Child of the Forest is based on the true story of an amazingly strong woman, Charlene Perlmutter Schiff, who managed to survive the Holocaust by hiding in the forest for two years as a young pre-teen. This is a powerful story and doesn’t shy away from the difficult or emotional parts of Charlene’s story.

Leslie Conzatti | The Upstream Writer

  • Hugo by Pamela Poole

I couldn’t think of a book I’d recently read based on a true story, exactly–but based on a true event? I recently read a book that was centered around Hurricane Hugo and it’s devastation of the South Carolina coast in 1989. It’s called Hugo by Pamela Poole, and it’s the second book in a series that centers on two families that kind of get joined together by marriage, and they just go through the struggles of life together–such as the hurricane. I really think those scenes in particular were some of the best scenes in the whole book, but the rest of the book does a good job of carrying that “small town charm” with it! The series is called the Painter Place Saga and I would really recommend it, for those who like a quick, easy beach read that has all the saccharine drama of a Hallmark Channel movie. You can read my review I posted on my blog here: >Hugo<

Laura Doherty | Tales of a Natural Spoonie

  • Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

I heard about Cheryl Strayed after watching the film Wild starring Reese Witherspoon and since then I have been meaning to read the book that the film was based upon. Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail is Cheryl’s story of what led her to hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State. The film of Cheryl’s story was absolutely fantastic but the book was actually pretty crap. The author comes across as a self absorbed unprepared eejit. The number of people who supposedly found her irresistable on a trek that is largely unpopulated was ridiculous. I seriously wanted to love this book as the film is great, yet sadly I didn’t. I think this is one case where the film adaption focussed on the positive aspects of the book without all of the self-indulgent crap.

Robin | Robin Loves Reading

  • Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

I have two books in mind for this post. The first is a memoir of sorts by Trevor Noah. His book, Born a Crime, is based on his life while growing up in South Africa. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother. Had he been discovered the crime was five years in prison. HIs mother hid him for years in order to protect him. While the book was very serious, there were light moments and the read was quite fluid. I loved this book and I am glad that I read it. I learned so much about Apartheid and I feel that knowing about that time in history is important.

Another book I read which is pure fiction but rang true to me is An American Marriage by Tayari Jones. I decided to mention this book here because of the impact it made on me about how many African Americans suffer just because of the color of our skin. The main character is this book was falsely imprisoned, and we know by the news that this happens all too frequently. I read this book before Born a Crime and after reading Trevor Noah’s book my mind kept putting the two males in each book together because of the atrocities they experienced. Reading books such as these has made me realize that from time-to-time I need to reach beyond reading fiction.

Are any of these books on your TBR or Already Read list? Share your thoughts about them and check out all of the topics featured in this season’s Blog Hop here. Happy reading!

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