100 books like Arundel

By Kenneth Roberts,

Here are 100 books that Arundel fans have personally recommended if you like Arundel. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Winds Of War

J. Lawrence Graham Author Of Charlotte's War

From my list on understanding the roots of war and peace.

Who am I?

I spent the 1970s as an officer in the U.S. Navy UDT/SEAL Teams, giving me insight into the military aspects of peacebuilding. I have spent the last forty years researching and teaching international marketing and negotiations at USC and UC Irvine, after receiving a Berkeley PhD. I was also the director of the UC Irvine Center for Citizen Peacebuilding for ten years. I have published four books on international negotiations and all my ten books in print are on the topic of peace in families, neighborhoods, commerce, and international relations.

J.'s book list on understanding the roots of war and peace

J. Lawrence Graham Why did J. love this book?

The Winds of War is a powerful and intimate story about WWII.

It follows one fictional family through the buildup to the most devastating war in human history. The cultural and political details are most impressive. The writing itself is captivating. I have used it as a model for my own book.

Wouk’s work demonstrates the impact of war on families and establishes the importance of advocating for peaceful resolutions to global disputes.

By Herman Wouk,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Winds Of War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Herman Wouk's sweeping epic of World War II, which begins with THE WINDS OF WAR and continues in WAR AND REMEMBRANCE, stands as the crowning achievement of one of America's most celebrated storytellers.

Like no other books about the war, Wouk's spellbinding narrative captures the tide of global events - the drama, the romance, the heroism and the tragedy of World War II - as it immerses us in the lives of a single American family drawn into the very centre of the maelstrom.

"First-rate storytelling." - New York Times

"Compelling . . . A panoramic, engrossing story." - Atlantic…


Book cover of I, Claudius

Fiona Forsyth Author Of Rome's End

From my list on political shenanigans in ancient Rome.

Who am I?

Ever since I stumbled through the “Early Roman Empire” paper in Finals using I, Claudius by Robert Graves, I have held a deep admiration of those authors who can portray the complex world of Rome with such authority. I went on to teach the Greeks and Romans for 25 years, so I have grown to love these characters—Caesar is a philandering schemer, Augustus has ice for blood, Livia is a skilled practitioner of poisons… How can one resist such entertaining people who operate in a system where the upper classes must compete through bribery, intrigue and occasional revolutions? 

Fiona's book list on political shenanigans in ancient Rome

Fiona Forsyth Why did Fiona love this book?

This is the masterclass in the portrayal of the first hundred years or so of the Roman Empire. Graves was a considerable scholar in his own right, providing the translation for the Penguin edition of Suetonius’ “Twelve Caesars”. He was also a poet and novelist, and his picture of the naïve Claudius making his unwitting way to power is probably on most people’s list of all-time great historical novels. What I particularly found striking was just how much work went into running the Roman empire, and one almost has sympathy for Augustus as he tries to mould Roman rule into something that is efficient and fair. The BBC adaptation, in my opinion, did a good job: Sian Phillips as Livia is a complete joy.

By Robert Graves,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked I, Claudius as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A work of historical fiction which recreates the life and times of Emperor Claudius, who lived from 10 BC to AD 41, a time when poisoning, blasphemy, treachery, incest and unnatural vice were commonplace. From the author of CLAUDIUS THE GOD AND HIS WIFE MESSALINA.


Book cover of Caleb's Crossing

Amy Belding Brown Author Of Flight of the Sparrow: A Novel of Early America

From my list on New England’s forgotten conflict.

Who am I?

I write historical fiction set in New England and based on the lives of real people. My New England roots go back to the 1630s when my English ancestors first came to the region so I’m steeped in its traditions and literature. I love doing the research for my books, especially when my characters lead me in new directions. I spent ten years digging into the conflict between the Puritans and the indigenous Natives and in the process discovered a largely forgotten story that has long-lasting implications for our day.

Amy's book list on New England’s forgotten conflict

Amy Belding Brown Why did Amy love this book?

When Caleb’s Crossing came out I couldn’t wait to read it. Not only was it written by one of my favorite authors, it was inspired by a true story and set in the same place and time period as the novel I was working on. Brooks’ depiction of the love between a Puritan minister’s daughter and the son of a Wampanoag leader is fraught with tension as two very different cultures collide. The novel brings to life the forces driving the conflict through the characters of Bethia and Caleb as they struggle to navigate a perilous time and the looming prospect of war.

By Geraldine Brooks,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Caleb's Crossing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A bestselling tale of passion and belief, magic and adventure from the author of The Secret Chord and of March, winner of the Pulitzer Prize.

Bethia Mayfield is a restless and curious young woman growing up in Martha's vineyard in the 1660s amid a small band of pioneering English Puritans. At age twelve, she meets Caleb, the young son of a chieftain, and the two forge a secret bond that draws each into the alien world of the other. Bethia's father is a Calvinist minister who seeks to convert the native Wampanoag, and Caleb becomes a prize in the contest…


Book cover of Wolf Hall

Charlotte Gray Author Of Passionate Mothers, Powerful Sons: The Lives of Jennie Jerome Churchill and Sara Delano Roosevelt

From my list on history books by women.

Who am I?

I recall my younger self looking at the reading lists on Oxford University history courses, and asking, “Where are all the women?” I have always wanted to know what it was like to be there, in any century up to the present. How did families form and pass on their values, what did people wear and eat, when (and if) children learned to read, and what were people’s daily routines? Political, military, and economic history is important, but I have flourished in the social history trenches. I discovered women writers and historians have more acute antennae for the details I wanted, even when writing about wars and dynasties.

Charlotte's book list on history books by women

Charlotte Gray Why did Charlotte love this book?

Yes, I know this is a novel, but Mantel’s historical research is impeccable and no one has done more to bring to light the shadowy, intrigue-filled court of Henry VIII. Mantel explores the intersection of political power and personal ambition as she traces the career of Thomas Cromwell, a rags-to-riches courtier.

I could almost taste the food, smell the decay, and touch the damp walls of the buildings. She took me deep into the consciousness of the unlikeable yet sympathetic and lonely main character, as he serves his monarch and defeats his enemies.

The drama is gripping.

By Hilary Mantel,

Why should I read it?

19 authors picked Wolf Hall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Man Booker Prize Shortlisted for the the Orange Prize Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award

`Dizzyingly, dazzlingly good' Daily Mail

'Our most brilliant English writer' Guardian

England, the 1520s. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is his chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. Into this atmosphere of distrust and need comes Thomas Cromwell, first as Wolsey's clerk, and later his successor.

Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with…


Book cover of The Great Meadow

Max Byrd Author Of The Sixth Conspirator

From my list on American history that have become forgotten.

Who am I?

Schoolteacher turned writer. With the encouragement of my old college friend, the great Michael Crichton I began writing detective novels—paperback originals at first, then a hardback thriller called Target of Opportunity, which was a detective novel but included a long section of historical background about the Resistance in southern France. From there I moved to biographical fiction: novels about Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant. Then straight historical fiction, often with a Parisian background, because I’ve lived and worked in that marvelous city and can’t get enough of it.

Max's book list on American history that have become forgotten

Max Byrd Why did Max love this book?

The appealing heroine Diony Hall moves with her new husband into the Kentucky wilderness. A beautiful variation on the archetypal plot, “Someone Goes on a Journey,” written in gorgeous prose and featuring many perfectly rendered actual characters such as Thomas Jefferson and Daniel Boone. The story shows determined human nature struggling against hostile nature, the earliest of the great American themes.

By Elizabeth Madox Roberts, M. E. Bradford,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Set at the time of the western migration from Piedmont Virginia to her native Kentucky, Ms. RobertsAIs novel recounts the heroism of the Kentucky pioneer. Roberts was that rare thing, a true artist...She was one of the indispensables.O-Robert Penn Warren. Southern Classics Series.


Book cover of The Bad Lands

Max Byrd Author Of The Sixth Conspirator

From my list on American history that have become forgotten.

Who am I?

Schoolteacher turned writer. With the encouragement of my old college friend, the great Michael Crichton I began writing detective novels—paperback originals at first, then a hardback thriller called Target of Opportunity, which was a detective novel but included a long section of historical background about the Resistance in southern France. From there I moved to biographical fiction: novels about Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant. Then straight historical fiction, often with a Parisian background, because I’ve lived and worked in that marvelous city and can’t get enough of it.

Max's book list on American history that have become forgotten

Max Byrd Why did Max love this book?

Here is the other archetypal plot, the reverse of the first: “A Stranger Comes to Town.” In this case, a protagonist who seems an unlikely but brilliantly persuasive amalgam of Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Adams—a bookish Easterner—arrives in the Dakota Territory in 1883 to make a new life for himself after the death of his wife. The new life will feature lynchings, cattle drives, saloons, brothels, and an even harsher wilderness than Diony Hall found in Kentucky. The author’s cinematic Warlock is a western masterpiece. This forgotten title is every bit as good.

By Oakley Hall,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It's 1883 in Johnson County, in the old Dakota Territory a rugged, wide-open landscape of rolling, red earth, prairie, and cattle as far as the eye can see. But the land is closing, the "Beef Bonanza" is ending, and the free-range cattlemen are stuck watching a way of life disappear in a blaze of drought and gunfire. An action-packed western from one of the masters of the genre, Oakley Hall's The Bad Lands blends round-ups and rustlers, whorehouses and land grabs, shoot-outs and the threat of hangings in a tale of the war between the cowboys and the cattle barons.…


Book cover of The Trees

Venetia Hobson Lewis Author Of Changing Woman: A Novel of the Camp Grant Massacre

From my list on the old west with in-depth characters.

Who am I?

I’m an amalgam of all of my varied interests and varied employments from actress and singer to corporate paralegal at a movie studio. Since my teenage years, I’ve loved to research. That joy leads into writing factually-accurate historical fiction set in the West. Delving into the private lives of both the fictional and the real people gives the reader a better understanding of the characters’ designated paths leading to the events upon which my novel is based. My recommendations for the best books set in the West with in-depth characters have qualities I’ve employed in my novel. Some of these books also delve into characters from differing races, reflecting most towns in the Old West.

Venetia's book list on the old west with in-depth characters

Venetia Hobson Lewis Why did Venetia love this book?

The West used to begin in Ohio. Some of my ancestors moved there around 1816. Their experiences must have been very similar to those of the Lucketts family depicted in The Trees by the masterful writer, Conrad Richter.

The trees so closely grown and tall, one could not see through them or over them. They had to be toppled. Children got lost in the trees while playing; some never made it back to their homes. Lost forever.

The rich narrative, reminiscent of pioneers’ old diaries the novelist read prior to writing, fills the reader’s ear with character, honesty, pathos, and heart. Richter won the Pulitzer Prize for The Town, the third novel in his Heartland Trilogy. But the trilogy’s first book, The Trees, is my favorite.

By Conrad Richter,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Trees as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“They moved along in the bobbing, springy gait of a family that followed the woods as some families follow the sea.” In that first sentence Conrad Richter sets the mood of this magnificent epic of the American wilderness. Toward the close of the eighteenth century the land west of the Alleghenies and north of the Ohio river was an unbroken sea of trees. Beneath them the forest trails were dark, silent, and lonely, brightened only by a few lost beams of sunlight. Here the Lucketts, a wild, woodsfaring family, lived their roaming life, pushing ever westward as the frontier advanced…


Book cover of To Have and to Hold

Max Byrd Author Of The Sixth Conspirator

From my list on American history that have become forgotten.

Who am I?

Schoolteacher turned writer. With the encouragement of my old college friend, the great Michael Crichton I began writing detective novels—paperback originals at first, then a hardback thriller called Target of Opportunity, which was a detective novel but included a long section of historical background about the Resistance in southern France. From there I moved to biographical fiction: novels about Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant. Then straight historical fiction, often with a Parisian background, because I’ve lived and worked in that marvelous city and can’t get enough of it.

Max's book list on American history that have become forgotten

Max Byrd Why did Max love this book?

Colonial Jamestown, an English soldier turned American explorer, a bought wife who is in fact an escaping ward of King James I—a brutal pursuer, pirates, shipwrecks, Pocahontas’s brother, an Indian attack on Jamestown, poison! The plot is overloaded with incidents, but the details of colonial life are fascinating and Johnston’s perfect mastery of colonial English make this a thrilling adventure, a number one best-seller in 1900. For years it was a standard on school reading lists and was twice made into a film. Hard to find, but worth the effort.

By Mary Johnston,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked To Have and to Hold as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A dauntless hero will do whatever it takes to win the heart of his bride in Mary Johnston’s bestselling historical adventure set in colonial Jamestown

Captain Percy is the embodiment of bravery. At the suggestion of a friend, he boards a ship to America to stake his claim in the New World—and perhaps even meet the woman of his dreams. Meanwhile, eligible women are setting sail to the very same place on “bride ships” in order to find husbands and forge new lives. Jocelyn Leigh is one such lady. She fled Europe in order to escape an unwanted suitor, but…


Book cover of Secret History of the American Revolution: An Account of the Conspiracies of Benedict Arnold and Numerous Others Drawn from the Secret Service Paper

C. D. Baker Author Of The List

From my list on the American Revolution.

Who am I?

Maybe I have a passion for this era because I live outside of Philadelphia, or maybe because so many of my ancestors served in Washington’s militia while others refused to serve. Either way, the connection to the times are personal. Having researched the tensions of my Mennonite past during the Revolution, I found myself intrigued by broader challenges of conscience for the Pennsylvania colonists more generally. Discovering the role it played in British occupied Philadelphia was particularly fascinating. My interest is in the untold story, and what I stumbled upon for this book was downright exciting!

C. D.'s book list on the American Revolution

C. D. Baker Why did C. D. love this book?

So much of history happens undercover. Few realize that the American Revolution would have failed were it not for the courage of forgotten spies, as well as mysterious, inexplicable behind-the-scenes surprises. In this book, we find specific ‘secrets’ unveiled that made a difference in the fight for independence. Well-researched, it’s an entertaining and informative read. Expect to blink your eyes and smile, and discover the soul of the patriots. 

Book cover of Valiant Ambition

Alexis Coe Author Of You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington

From my list on George Washington.

Who am I?

Alexis Coe is a presidential historian and the New York Times bestselling author of You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington, which was also Audible’s best history book of 2020 and Barnes and Nobel's nonfiction Book of the Month. She was a producer and appeared in Doris Kearns Goodwin's Washington series on the History Channel.

Alexis' book list on George Washington

Alexis Coe Why did Alexis love this book?

Nathaniel Philbrick produces what we call “Dad History,” but despite that, I find this book on George Washington and Benedict Arnold’s relationship to be the most exciting out there. You’ll be surprised at how much they had in common, but their differences matter most.

By Nathaniel Philbrick,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A New York Times Bestseller
Winner of the George Washington Prize

A surprising account of the middle years of the American Revolution and the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold, from the New York Times bestselling author of In The Heart of the Sea, Mayflower, and In the Hurricane's Eye.

"May be one of the greatest what-if books of the age-a volume that turns one of America's best-known narratives on its head."-Boston Globe

"Clear and insightful, [Valiant Ambition] consolidates Philbrick's reputation as one of America's foremost practitioners of narrative nonfiction."-Wall Street Journal

In the second book of his…


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