I often hear the argument about Historical Fiction only to realize that it is often confused with a particularly embarrassing form of writing is called Historical Romance: Bodice Rippers for the most part. So to start with a reasonable definition: Historical Romance is Genre Fiction whereas Historical Fiction is Literary Fiction. Got that? But what is the difference between Genre Fiction and Literary Fiction? We need an impartial Martian to come to earth and help us understand this differentiation … the literary commentators and critics are all over the place with their firm pronouncements.
(By the way: never trust what a commentator, critic, or pundit says … think for yourself!).