I'm trying to find the correct English word to describe a body of literature that is fiction in essence, but all background like places, circumstances, organizations, etc. is actually borrowed from the real world. Generally, we broadly categorize the work into fiction (such as Harry Potter, LOTR, etc.) and non-fiction (self-help and financial books, psychology, history, etc).
However, bordering between the two, there are fictional books that have a background in the real world. Below are two examples:
- Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code: Brown's fiction generally involve a rich background of art, architecture, history, etc.. of the REAL world and claimed as actual facts in the book itself. In this novel, Brown describes in vivid details, a religious organization called Opus Dei and a secret society called priory of sion that actually exists since the time of Da Vinci.
- John Grisham's The Testament: Grisham is another author who writes pure fiction, but the background is filled with intricate details about the US legal system and FBI in the real world.
Since they are not pure fiction, what is the right term to define these novels? Semi-fiction or part-fiction seems logical, but I don't see them used anywhere. The much popularized term science fiction is good, but doesn't come handy in this situation.