Submitted by pemberton on

Realistic fiction is one of the most popular genres because the stories resemble real life with believable situations and experiences. If you’re a fan of popular middle grade fiction, you might be aware of the I Survived… series by Lauren Tarshis. The books in this series are in the historical fiction category because the stories are based on historical events, but could also be considered realistic fiction because they are told through the eyes of fictional characters.

There are many books written with a fictional perspective using a real event in history as the setting for the story. But the list of books highlighted below are not only inspired by real people, they are sometimes written about the author’s own experience, or that of someone close to them, with only a few changes to make the story fictional.

On this list, you’ll find any librarian’s favorite true story, The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate. This story is inspired by a real captive gorilla known as Ivan who spent 27 years living in a shopping mall! Applegate turns this story into fiction by telling it from Ivan’s perspective. The inspiration for the story was discussed in an NPR interview with the author in 2013. Making it to the big screen as a movie on Disney+ last year, Ivan’s story was discussed again in an interview with the NY Times.

If you’d like to recommend a favorite book inspired by a true story, let us know on social media!