What if Europeans never came to America? What if Germany won World War II? What if there were magicians during the Napoleonic War? Or zombies during the U.S. Civil War? These are the kinds of tantalizing questions that alternate history books explore. Set in our world, but not quite, these books give us a way to look at our past—and sometimes our present—with fresh eyes.
The book and book series listed below are just a few examples of the many creative explorations of history that are out there. Some are set in the real world, but in a version where a past event turned out differently. And some introduce a fantasy element and consider how history would be different if those fantasies were real. But all of them hinge on the question, “What if…?”