I’ve finished a few books lately that I can recommend.
If you like history – Winter in Madrid by C.J. Sansom – it’s a bit of a spy story, a bit of WWII story, and a lot about character. It takes place in Madrid after the Spanish Civil War when Spain is recovering and considering whether they should join in on Germany’s side. The British are trying to keep them out, and the story focuses on 3 old school friends who have taken different paths, but are now thrown together and it changes everything. (Sansom writes fantastic mysteries that take place during the reign of Henry VIII)
If you like history with a touch of time travel – Blackout by Connie Willis. This book has time travel as an established thing, and historians working out of Oxford go back in time to study different things. In this one, 3 different people go back to WWII England, where they live among those they are studying, and as time goes on, things are seemingly not quite right. Some of it got a bit dull for me, but I enjoyed the whole idea and it left a bit of a cliffhanger so I’ve grabbed the next one to see what happens.
Conquistadora by Esmeralda Santiago covers a bit of Puerto Rico history, with a story of a woman who wants to live up to her ancestors legends, and gives up a lot and goes through a lot to realize a dream of a plantation. The story takes place from about 1840-1870, starts in Spain but mostly takes place in Puerto Rico. All kinds of problems arise, and it’s a tough decision to decide if Ana is a likable woman, but she is an interesting character.