100 books like Bambi

By Felix Salten, Richard Cowdrey (illustrator),

Here are 100 books that Bambi fans have personally recommended if you like Bambi. 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 Once and Future King

David L. Robbins Author Of War of the Rats

From my list on love and war and describing both battlefields.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve penned (so far) seventeen novels, most set during some historical conflict or other, all of them revolving around intense personal relationships (loyalty, love, betrayal, those sorts of profound truths). I tend to read the sorts of books I wish to write. I also teach creative writing at a university (VCU); I tell my students that if they want to really know what a character is made of, shoot at them or have them fall in love. In my own work, I do both.

David's book list on love and war and describing both battlefields

David L. Robbins Why did David love this book?

Maybe this is cheating, but it’s still a book set during a war, albeit a fantastical one.

But come on: Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin, Nimue, Pellinore, Gawain, Mordred, the Round Table–I may never have read a more powerful scene (or seen such, in the play) as when Arthur cheers for Lancelot to ride and save Guinevere from a fire which Arthur himself set!

Moving, with great, classic prose typical of the time and White’s contemporaries C.S. Lewis and Tolkien. 

By T. H. White,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked The Once and Future King as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Voyager Classics - timeless masterworks of science fiction and fantasy.

A beautiful clothbound edition of The Once and Future King, White's masterful retelling of the Arthurian legend.

T.H. White's masterful retelling of the Arthurian legend is an abiding classic. Here all five volumes that make up the story are published together in a single volume, as White himself always wished.

Here is King Arthur and his shining Camelot, beasts who talk and men who fly; knights, wizardry and war. It is the book of all things lost and wonderful and sad; the masterpiece of fantasy by which all others are…


Book cover of The Forgotten Beasts of Eld

Deby Fredericks Author Of Minstrels of Skaythe

From my list on 20th century fantasy centering on powerful women.

Why am I passionate about this?

The books I recommend here have inspired me and shaped my work. You see, I have always been a writer, but for a long time I viewed it as just a hobby. I did a lot of fan writing (Pern, especially) that allowed me to follow my heart and just have fun writing. My current work questions some of the underlying assumptions in fantasy. Must every problem be solved at the point of a sword? Does magical power always corrupt? And is it truly possible for evildoers to be redeemed? I hope you'll visit my land of Skaythe and find it as magical as Estcarp, Earthsea, and Eld Mountain!

Deby's book list on 20th century fantasy centering on powerful women

Deby Fredericks Why did Deby love this book?

How should I describe the voice of Patricia McKillip? Her words are meticulously chosen to show an opulent and fantastical world. I have sometimes tried to imitate her, but I just can't keep it up for long.  

In this stand-alone novel, the witch Sybel lives alone on Eld Mountain. She has inherited or captured and tamed a handful of incredible, magical beasts. These are all the company she needs, until she is asked to care for a king's lost heir. Soon she is no longer able to remain aloof from the world. 

In subsequent readings, I've been struck by Sybel's frustration that people won't leave her out of their drama. They think she owes them her time and attention. Can't we all relate to that?

By Patricia A. McKillip,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Forgotten Beasts of Eld as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12.

What is this book about?

World Fantasy Award-Winner
Newly available in print and e-book editions

"Rich and regal."
―The New York Times

Young Sybel, the heiress of powerful wizards, needs the company of no-one outside her gates. In her exquisite stone mansion, she is attended by exotic, magical beasts: Riddle-master Cyrin the boar; the treasure-starved dragon Gyld; Gules the Lyon, tawny master of the Southern Deserts; Ter, the fiercely vengeful falcon; Moriah, feline Lady of the Night. Sybel only lacks the exquisite and mysterious Liralen, which continues to elude her most powerful enchantments.

But when a soldier bearing an infant arrives, Sybel discovers that the…


Book cover of Frankenstein

Aaron Dennis Author Of Beyond the End of the World: Lokians 1

From my list on sci-fi books with a good dose of science.

Why am I passionate about this?

Who am I to be an expert? I'm not. I know what I like and why, and I also know what I dislike. I have no idea what you like or dislike, and I don't presume to know more than anyone else. I do not have a passion for sci-fi; I have a predilection for it. I've been writing creatively all my life. Sci fi is not all I read or write either. At the end of the day, I only need to know that I've given life my best shot.

Aaron's book list on sci-fi books with a good dose of science

Aaron Dennis Why did Aaron love this book?

I don't know if creating a monster from the remains of the dead qualifies as sci-fi, but I'm adding Mary Shelley's 1818 title anyway. This was one I got to read in middle school; we had a list of books we could read, but it was mandatory to read at least 5 for the year. Other than just a handful of books I've read that were written by female authors, this is the only one that can qualify as sci-fi.

Shelley has a very eloquent yet provocative voice. I think it would be near impossible to liken her tone, pace, choice of words, etc., to any other novelist of our time. At any rate, the fact that this is last on the list by no means suggests that it is not one of my favorites. It just worked out that way.

You've probably seen the movie, but it relied much…

By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley,

Why should I read it?

41 authors picked Frankenstein as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the BBC's '100 Novels That Shaped Our World'

'That rare story to pass from literature into myth' The New York Times

Mary Shelley's chilling Gothic tale was conceived when she was only eighteen, living with her lover Percy Shelley on Lake Geneva. The story of Victor Frankenstein who, obsessed with creating life itself, plunders graveyards for the material to fashion a new being, but whose botched creature sets out to destroy his maker, would become the world's most famous work of horror fiction, and remains a devastating exploration of the limits of human creativity. Based on the third…


Book cover of The Prince and the Pauper

Jade Varden Author Of Justice

From my list on switching places in all time periods.

Why am I passionate about this?

Books about switching places and mistaken identity have always interested me. Sometimes, it takes a comedic turn where the hero bumbles through misadventures. Sometimes, there's something sinister at play at the hero must fight to get their own lives back. Whether funny or scary or romantic or thrilling, it’s always a wild ride. The fun of it, and the frightening part, is that the reader must guess what's happening along with the hero. You have to figure out who is who and what is what, so there's always a mystery. 

Jade's book list on switching places in all time periods

Jade Varden Why did Jade love this book?

Mark Twain's The Prince and the Pauper is super well-known, even if you don't know that you know it. This switching places story has been adapted and re-done a hundred different ways. The plot has been featured in multiple TV show episodes, some faithful film adaptations, and children's cartoons. It may be the most well-known story of switching places ever written. Mark Twain is considered to be one of the greatest American authors. He wrote books in the same era as Charles Dickens, Edgar Allen Poe, Mary Shelley, and many of the greats of classic literature. 

This book and its plot still hold up pretty well. It's built on themes of class distinction and rich versus poor that are still relevant and still uncomfortable to discuss to this day. It's full of Twain's characteristic humor and it's a generally fairly easy read, mostly because you've seen the plot enough times…

By Mark Twain,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Prince and the Pauper as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Prince and the Pauper is a classic adventure of mistaken identity set in Tudor London and told with Mark Twain's trademark humour and concern for social justice.

Part of the Macmillan Collector's Library; a series of stunning, clothbound, pocket sized classics with gold foiled edges and ribbon markers. These beautiful books make perfect gifts or a treat for any book lover. This edition has an afterword by author and journalist Nicolette Jones.

Penniless Tom Canty wonders what it would be like to be a prince. Heir to the throne Edward Tudor dreams of a life outside the royal palace…


Book cover of Black Beauty

M.J. Evans Author Of The Stallion and His Peculiar Boy

From my list on horses that teens will love.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a life-long equestrian. I believe I was born with manure in my blood! I have always loved horses. I bought my own horse with my own money when I was thirteen and had to work to support him myself. I continue to own and ride horses more than fifty years later! I love competing in Dressage and riding the trails in the beautiful Colorado mountains. My interest in researching and writing historical horse stories grew out of my love of both horses and history.

M.J.'s book list on horses that teens will love

M.J. Evans Why did M.J. love this book?

Some books stay with you for a lifetime. Such is the case with Black Beauty for me.

This historical fiction novel (although it wasn’t “Historical” when it was written!”) is considered a classic because of its staying power and message. Anna Sewell’s work inspired the creation of the ASPCA because of the depictions of animal cruelty in the book.

Now, half a century later, it has inspired me to not only write historical fiction horse stories but I also chose to write in first person from the horse’s point of view the way Black Beauty is written.

By Anna Sewell, Kristen Guest (editor),

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Black Beauty as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Continuously in print and translated into multiple languages since it was first published, Anna Sewell's Black Beauty is a classic work of children's literature and an important text in the fields of Victorian studies and animal studies. Writing to ""induce kindness, sympathy and an understanding treatment"", Sewell realistically documents the working conditions of Black Beauty, who moves down the social scale from a rural carriage horse to a delivery horse in London. Sewell makes visible and tangible the experience of animals who were often treated as if they were machines. Though she died shortly after it was published, Sewell's book…


Book cover of The Unicorn Sonata

James Stoddard Author Of The Back of the Beyond

From my list on fantasy with talking animals for adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved fantasy novels, which is why I write them, though I tend more toward epic fantasy. My father had a great love of nature. It wasn’t unusual for him to stop in the middle of building a fence or walking across a pasture in order to examine a bug or watch a hawk in flight. He taught me the value of animals and the wonder of the world we live in. Because of it, I’m especially drawn to stories where the animals act and think like animals really might, so I can imagine their unique perspectives. Every species is unique, a miracle that they exist at all.

James' book list on fantasy with talking animals for adults

James Stoddard Why did James love this book?

Peter Beagle is best known for his fantasy novel, The Last Unicorn, but other than featuring unicorns, this book is unrelated. It’s a beautiful story about thirteen-year-old Josephina Rivera. Her parents don’t have time for her, so she hangs out at a music store, where she is drawn to the music played by a mysterious young boy. This soon leads her across a magical border into a land peopled by unicorns, fauns, and other magical creatures. But the story is about more than mythic animals; it’s a poignant, inspiring tale about life, sacrifice, and the love between a girl and her grandmother. Don’t expect a children’s book. Though kids might like it, one has to have lived a while to fully appreciate it. 

By Peter S. Beagle,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A tomboy misfit and born musician, thirteen-year-old Josephine "Joey" Rivera encounters a mysterious young man named Indigo who changes her life, playing ghostly, haunting music that she follows down an ordinary street into the magical world of Shei'rah.


Book cover of Hiero's Journey

James Stoddard Author Of The Back of the Beyond

From my list on fantasy with talking animals for adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved fantasy novels, which is why I write them, though I tend more toward epic fantasy. My father had a great love of nature. It wasn’t unusual for him to stop in the middle of building a fence or walking across a pasture in order to examine a bug or watch a hawk in flight. He taught me the value of animals and the wonder of the world we live in. Because of it, I’m especially drawn to stories where the animals act and think like animals really might, so I can imagine their unique perspectives. Every species is unique, a miracle that they exist at all.

James' book list on fantasy with talking animals for adults

James Stoddard Why did James love this book?

Technically, though it has a fantasy feel, this is a post-apocalyptic science fiction story concerning Per Hiero Desteen, a sort of Knight’s Templar dedicated to recovering the knowledge lost after a nuclear holocaust. Hiero fights antilife telepaths and mutated monsters in a journey to discover a lost, ancient secret in time to save humanity from destruction. Fun stuff, but the charm of the book lies in his telepathic mount, Klootz, a bull morse (think of a giant moose), and Gorm, a telepathic bear who joins him on his mission. Long after you’ve forgotten the battles, the charm of the animals remains.

By Sterling E. Lanier,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hiero's Journey as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Per Hiero Desteen was a priest, a telepath -- and a highly trained killer. Together with his great riding moose and the young bear who was his friend, he was on an extraordinary mission. For this was five thousand years after the holocaust known as The Death. Now the evil Brotherhood of the Unclean was waging all-out war against the few remnants of normal humanity, determined to wipe out all traces of its emerging civilization. Hiero's task was to bring back a lost secret of the ancients that might save the humans. But his path lay through the very heart…


Book cover of The Chronicles of Narnia

Blake Renworth Author Of The Exiled Seven

From my list on where the narrator speaks directly to the reader.

Why am I passionate about this?

After reading The Princess Bride, I fell in love with William Goldman’s style of narration, with his frequent interjections, clarifications, and asides. The feel I got from the author speaking directly to me transformed simple third-person narration into engaging storytelling. From then on, I sought out books using this style and have built a small library in all genres deploying this unique voice. I’ve found it most common (and most effectively deployed) in fantasy, but there are also numerous examples elsewhere in the literary world.

Blake's book list on where the narrator speaks directly to the reader

Blake Renworth Why did Blake love this book?

One of the most popular children’s book series of the twentieth century, all of the books in the series feature the author speaking directly to the reader, detailing past events, reminding the reader of personality traits of the characters, and providing the reader with background details about the world the reader finds themselves in.

More so than the other books on the list, it’s clear the voice is that of C.S. Lewis though, rather than a seemingly separate narrator.

By C. S. Lewis, Pauline Baynes (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Chronicles of Narnia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Don’t miss one of America’s top 100 most-loved novels, selected by PBS’s The Great American Read.

Experience all seven tales of C. S. Lewis's classic fantasy series, The Chronicles of Narnia, in one impressive paperback volume!

Epic battles between good and evil, fantastic creatures, betrayals, heroic deeds, and friendships won and lost all come together in this unforgettable world, which has been enchanting readers of all ages for over sixty years.

This edition presents the seven books—The Magician's Nephew; The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe; The Horse and His Boy; Prince Caspian; The Voyage of the Dawn Treader; The…


Book cover of A Street Dog Named Pup

Linda Newbery Author Of This Book Is Cruelty Free: Animals and Us

From my list on animals and us.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm mainly known as an author of fiction for young readers, but animal awareness is an important part of my life and I decided to write about it.  I’ve been vegetarian for many years, and vegan for the last four: I decided long ago that no animal was going to die so that I could eat it. From early childhood, I loved animal stories, and as I grew older it baffled me that we care for our pets while thinking of other creatures as food. I spend a lot of my time campaigning for animals – for better treatment of farm animals, against bloodsports like fox-hunting and shooting, and for better awareness of the natural world and how we must look after it. 

Linda's book list on animals and us

Linda Newbery Why did Linda love this book?

Many people, including me, are describing this as a modern classic, a Black Beauty for dogs, and for our age. When he’s cruelly dumped on a London street and left to fend for himself, Pup, a German Shepherd cross, teams up with other homeless dogs and learns survival skills, confronting many dangers. Through the various dogs in this group and their stories, Gill Lewis raises various issues about dog-owning and breeding: abandonment, puppy-farming, and the deliberate selective breeding of flat-faced dogs that leads to breathing problems. Pup even gets reluctantly involved in the horrors of organised dog-fighting. It’s practically guaranteed to keep you hooked.  

By Gill Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Street Dog Named Pup as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Pup and his boy are inseparable. But both their worlds change forever when Pup is cruelly taken away and abandoned in Dead Dog Alley.
With nowhere else to turn, Pup joins a pack of misfit Street Dogs, who help him learn to fight for survival on the streets.
Pup holds on to the hope of one day being reunited with his boy. But as that hope shrinks with every passing day, Pup begins to wonder if their bond is irreversibly broken...
A thrilling and heart-warming novel by award-winning author Gill Lewis, celebrating the unique bond between humans and animals, and…


Book cover of The Song that Sings Us

Linda Newbery Author Of This Book Is Cruelty Free: Animals and Us

From my list on animals and us.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm mainly known as an author of fiction for young readers, but animal awareness is an important part of my life and I decided to write about it.  I’ve been vegetarian for many years, and vegan for the last four: I decided long ago that no animal was going to die so that I could eat it. From early childhood, I loved animal stories, and as I grew older it baffled me that we care for our pets while thinking of other creatures as food. I spend a lot of my time campaigning for animals – for better treatment of farm animals, against bloodsports like fox-hunting and shooting, and for better awareness of the natural world and how we must look after it. 

Linda's book list on animals and us

Linda Newbery Why did Linda love this book?

This is an epic adventure story with a strong environmental theme, set in an alternative world. A harsh government, the Automators, trains citizens to think of the whole natural world – animals, plants, everything – as theirs to use and exploit. Set against them is a group of specially gifted people, the Listeners, who can tune in to animal minds and share their thoughts. But this ability is a dangerous one, as anyone found to be a Listener can be imprisoned and brainwashed. Harlon, Ash, Zeno, and their mother are part of a resistance group called Green Thorn, which tunes into an unseen network that connects all living things. This is an exciting story that’s also moving and poetic – and the story will continue!

By Nicola Davies,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

When animals talk, it's time humans listened: Harlon has been raised to protect her younger siblings, twins Ash and Xeno, and their outlawed power of communicating with animals. But when the sinister Automators attack their mountain home they must flee for their lives. Xeno is kidnapped and Harlon and Ash are separated. In a thrilling and dangerous adventure they must all journey alone through the ice fields, forests and oceans of Rumyc to try to rescue each other and fulfil a mysterious promise about a lost island made to their mother. A stunning environmental epic with cover and chapter illustrations…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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