If you like real, factual history in your fiction, The Candlemass Road has it. Taking place in the late 1500s, the book captures approximately two days of life in the lawless border lands between England and Scotland.
Though only 156 pages, I still found the book slow reading because the author, wanting to represent the time as accurately as possible, wrote it in the language used at that time. The story is mostly told by the narrator, an educated priest -- so most of the book is easily readable, though stilted in terms of how we use English today. But I sometimes got bogged down in the colloquial dialogue:
"Tarry on me, ye bastard, and ye'll roast on your own fire! Come oot, and your clowns with ye! Hobbie -- see's a brand frae the fire yonder, and we'll light the bastard afoot wi' his own thatch!"
Still, it was an enjoyable book and an unexpected history lesson.
Exciting story of 16th century Scotland. Selected as a "Common Reader" edition (a wonderful online bookstore that no longer exists)