What makes a great political fiction book?
A great political fiction book is a lot like an idealistic friend who will stand up for you through thick and thin. If you know someone who fights the system or if you enjoy a good debate and sticking to your guns, political fiction is probably going to be one of your favourite genres.
These books have both a story and a message and authors of political fiction definitely have another agenda besides just the act of selling books.
5 things to look for when choosing a political fiction book
- Choose a book with a story that focuses on an issue that’s important to you. In addition to providing you with entertainment, it could also help confirm your point of view or provide a new way to approach a subject of concern when debating the matter.
- Take the opportunity to learn about some of the topics that are important to other people by picking a book about something less familiar. You might even be able to find a new cause to champion this way.
- Look for a story written from the perspective of someone who already holds an opinion on a subject that is the opposite of yours. If you’re a Tory read a book with a Labour slant, or if you’re an American and a staunch Democrat, learn how a Republican sees things.
- Look for a book that has a gripping storyline and interesting characters in addition to a well-presented message. Political fiction should be entertaining just like any other kind of fiction.
- Find out about what topics concerned people in the past. There are works of political fiction written many decades ago that present social commentary and opinions about subjects such as slavery, the plight of impoverished immigrants and political corruption.
5 great political fiction books
- Candide is a classic example of political satire. It was written by the French philosopher Voltaire, and published in 1759. The book was considered extremely controversial at the time and was subject to frequent banning.
- In her 1852 book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin Harriet Beecher Stowe used fiction to express her strong anti-slavery position. The popular story is widely regarding as helping the spread of the abolitionist movement in the United States during the years leading up to the Civil War.
- In The Jungle (published in 1906), Upton Sinclair who had a journalism background, used fiction to spread the word about the terrible daily conditions endured by poor urban immigrants in the U.S. during the early 20th century.
- In Animal Farm (published in 1945), George Orwell used animals to tell the story of the Russian Revolution and express his distaste of Stalinism in the USSR. Orwell wrote the book during the latter years of World War II and it also arose, in part, from his dismay over Britain’s generally positive regard for Stalin as a member of the Allied Powers.
- The Quiet American (published 1955) written by British author Graham Green simultaneously tackles the early days of the Vietnam War, international relations and romance.