I've always been a believer that fiction can represent history in a much more true-to-life way than what's learned from textbooks, but I've only recently turned to the kind of historical fiction that explores the "what-if's" of real people who are only peripherally mentioned in the official record. The mistresses of important historical figures, for example.

Because of the clandestine nature of these women's relationship to history, their stories are half-formed at best. Each novel on this list works to fill in those gaps—via historical fact and a whole lot of imagination. Full of drama, passion, deception and fact-filled tidbits, these tales make it oh-so-satisfying to experience life as the mistress—if only for the time it takes to get to the end of the audiobook. Enjoy! (I won't tell if you don't tell.) —Tricia, Audible Editor