The Ten Best History Books of 2017

From presidential biographies to a look at the long rise of fake news, these picks will surely interest history buffs


Historians have never been more popular. With the seemingly unceasing news cycle, readers of all political persuasions have been seeking out context for better understanding what's going on in the world. With the throwing around of the label "fake news" to the Women's March to the protests of police brutality conducted by NFL players, historical parallels offer a grounding in how the past informs the present.

Many of this year’s history picks seek to offer that much-needed background. But that still leaves room for titles that tell us new stories about otherwise tired categories such as World War II and those that regale untold stories from America’s heartland. Lovers of history will appreciate these books’ treasure troves of fascinating information and original takes on subjects known and forgotten.

About Natalie Escobar
Natalie Escobar

Natalie Escobar is an editorial intern with Smithsonian Magazine. She is a senior at Northwestern University, where she majors in journalism and Latino Studies, and a 2017-18 ProPublica Emerging Reporter covering education.

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