My favorite books about a character fighting against perceived wrongs

Why am I passionate about this?

At first blush, all of these books are independent of a specific genre; a saga, a fantasy, a political drama, a spy novel, a crime thriller. But they all have one comment element—the little guy against the world. David versus Goliath, as it were. When I progressed from writing about personal interests to writing novels, I knew I wanted to follow the same style in my thriller stories. I've been fortunate to have a life of adventure that allows me to create worlds of high tension that my protagionist must overcome to achieve success. I dare say my first book would fit with my recommendations, as will my second novel which is currently in development.


I wrote...

A Shattered Calm

By Bruce F.B. Hall,

Book cover of A Shattered Calm

What is my book about?

When love steers Nate Vickers down a dangerous path, he quickly learns the error of his ways. As an ill-conceived heist goes sideways, and he's violently parted from the woman with whom he’d hoped to share his newfound wealth. Nate is forced to run for his life, take on a new identity, and carve out an existence for himself.

Finally settling down on a sailboat in a small seaside town in British Columbia and doing everything he can to make amends for his past misdeeds, he thinks he’s found peace. But new beginnings are never easy, especially for someone being sought by a violent gang, the mob whose money the gang lost, and the police who consider him a “person of interest” in both the robbery and a recent murder.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The Pillars of the Earth

Bruce F.B. Hall Why did I love this book?

The Pillars of the Earth is one of the finest examples of a period piece saga that I have ever read. It is captivating, intriguing, and will appeal to anyone who loves historical fiction at its finest. The characters are believable. You feel like you are dealing with their issues alongside them. I learned a lot about the early church-driven communities of feudal England and how the church interplayed with the politics of the day as seen through the eyes of Philip, as he fights against church and state to bring the dream of the largest Gothic church to fruition. Highly recommend this book.

By Ken Follett,

Why should I read it?

16 authors picked The Pillars of the Earth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 New York Times Bestseller

Oprah's Book Club Selection

The "extraordinary . . . monumental masterpiece" (Booklist) that changed the course of Ken Follett's already phenomenal career-and begins where its prequel, The Evening and the Morning, ended.

"Follett risks all and comes out a clear winner," extolled Publishers Weekly on the release of The Pillars of the Earth. A departure for the bestselling thriller writer, the historical epic stunned readers and critics alike with its ambitious scope and gripping humanity. Today, it stands as a testament to Follett's unassailable command of the written word and to his universal appeal.

The…


Book cover of Ready Player One

Bruce F.B. Hall Why did I love this book?

There are few books that will entice me to read the entire book in a day. Ready Player One did. It is a captivating fantasy book that pits the player in a virtual world set in 2045 against an evil corporation bent on domination. The characters are vivid and the action is nonstop. It was a great thrill ride that left me questioning whether the electronic world we now live in is truly an advancement of our society.

By Ernest Cline,

Why should I read it?

14 authors picked Ready Player One as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE DIRECTED BY STEVEN SPIELBERG

It's the year 2044, and the real world has become an ugly place. We're out of oil. We've wrecked the climate. Famine, poverty, and disease are widespread.

Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes this depressing reality by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia where you can be anything you want to be, where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets. And like most of humanity, Wade is obsessed by the ultimate lottery ticket that…


Book cover of Atlas Shrugged

Bruce F.B. Hall Why did I love this book?

It isn’t often that a book written a long time ago would be one of my recommendations. Atlas Shrugged is a compelling story of what our world could become if political forces collide along the way. In Rand's piece she pits Capitalism against Socialism through the eyes of Railroad executive Dagny Taggart and Steel Magnet, Hank Rearden. It is an extraordinary piece of literature that will leave you questioning if it was written as a warning of where our current-day societies are headed. A long read, but well worth your time.

By Ayn Rand,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Atlas Shrugged as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Published in 1957, Atlas Shrugged was Ayn Rand's greatest achievement and last work of fiction. In this novel she dramatizes her unique philosophy through an intellectual mystery story that integrates ethics, metaphysics, epistemology, politics, economics, and sex. Set in a near-future U.S.A. whose economy is collapsing as a result of the mysterious disappearance of leading innovators and industrialists, this novel presents an astounding panorama of human life-from the productive genius who becomes a worthless playboy...to the great steel industrialist who does not know that he is working for his own destruction...to the philosopher who becomes a pirate...to the woman who…


Book cover of The Heist

Bruce F.B. Hall Why did I love this book?

The Heist is one in a series of spy novels written by the prolific author, Daniel Silva, featuring the legendary spy Gabriel Allon. Usually, spy novels bore me to tears, but I have now read every book Silva has written. He is the best in his genre and I was captivated by his characters who are thoroughly developed as you work through the series. All of Silva’s books focus on crimes against the Jewish state and the Heist tells the tale of a stolen Carvaggio masterpiece and  Allon’s attempt to retrieve it from a historic criminal element. I couldn’t put it down.

By Daniel Silva,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Heist as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Allon is the 21st century Bond' Daily Mail

Gabriel Allon, master art restorer and assassin, returns in a spellbinding new thriller from No.1 bestselling author Daniel Silva. For all fans of Robert Ludlum.

Gabriel Allon - art restorer and legendary spy - is in Venice when he receives an urgent call from the Italian police. The art dealer Justin Isherwood has stumbled upon a chilling murder scene, and is being held as a suspect.

The dead man is a fallen spy with a secret - a trafficker in stolen artwork, sold to a mysterious collector. To save his friend, Gabriel…


Book cover of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Bruce F.B. Hall Why did I love this book?

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is one of the great psychological crime thrillers. Larsson’s ability to draw us into the macraba world of violence against women while captivating us with colorful characters is a testament to his writing abilities. It is a dark subject that can leave you drained if it were not for the deducing abilities of Michael Bloomquist and Lisbeth Salander who combine their intellect to try to end the reign of terror of a psychopath. This is one of the novels that moved me into the thriller genre in my books.

By Stieg Larsson,

Why should I read it?

23 authors picked The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Forty years ago, Harriet Vanger disappeared from a family gathering on the island owned and inhabited by the powerful Vanger clan. Her body was never found, yet her uncle is convinced it was murder - and that the killer is a member of his own tightly-knit but dysfunctional family.

He employs disgraced financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist and the tattooed, truculent computer hacker Lisbeth Salander to investigate. When the pair link Harriet's disappearance to a number of grotesque murders from forty years ago, they begin to unravel a dark and appalling family history.

But the Vangers are a secretive clan, and…


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Evil Alice and the Borzoi

By DK Coutant,

Book cover of Evil Alice and the Borzoi

DK Coutant Author Of Evil Alice and the Borzoi

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Professor Cross Cultural Psychologist Dog Lover Traveler Reader

DK's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Cleo Cooper, a cross-cultural psychology professor, is living the dream on the Big Island of Hawaii. With ocean-dipping weekends, she enjoys her dog, her job, and her boyfriend Ben - until the day she’s on a research vessel and a dead body is caught in the dragline.

The police determine it is murder and set their sights on a gentle former student, Kai. It doesn’t take much urging from Kai’s auntie for Cleo to investigate. But Ben grows distant, and Cleo’s dog grows ill. A couple of accidental deaths later, and someone makes an attempt on her life.

What happened to Cleo’s life in paradise? Can she discover the true killer? Can she stop the killer before the killer stops her?

Evil Alice and the Borzoi

By DK Coutant,

What is this book about?

Paradise is shaken when the body of a young woman is dragged onto a university research vessel during a class outing in Hilo Bay. Cleo Cooper is shaken when she finds her favorite student is on the hook for the murder. Danger lurks on land and sea as Cleo and her friends are enticed to search for the true killer. In between paddling, swimming, and arguing with her boyfriend, Cleo discovers all is not what it seems on the Big Island of Hawaii. But will she figure out the truth before she becomes the next victim?


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