100 books like Calypso

By David Sedaris,

Here are 100 books that Calypso fans have personally recommended if you like Calypso. 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 Pride and Prejudice

Katie K. May Author Of You're on Fire, It's Fine: Effective Strategies for Parenting Teens with Self-Destructive Behaviors

From my list on healing family dynamics and generational trauma.

Why am I passionate about this?

My journey from a teen struggling with self-harm, drug use, and overwhelming emotions to a DBT-Linehan Board of Certification Clinician™ and director of Creative Healing, Teen Support Centers, uniquely positions me to understand the deep emotional challenges teens face. Having navigated my own tumultuous youth and now parenting a "Fire Feeler" teen, I use my personal and professional insights to guide thousands of teens and their parents. I am passionately committed to creating environments where teens are supported while the entire family learns skills to improve and work together.

Katie's book list on healing family dynamics and generational trauma

Katie K. May Why did Katie love this book?

I adore this book for its incisive portrayal of familial expectations clashing with personal desires. The way Austen unfolds the Bennet sisters' stories against societal norms speaks to me about the courage it takes to pursue true happiness, regardless of the pressures that surround us.

What really resonated with me was Elizabeth Bennet’s necessity to maintain a facade while internally struggling with her true wants and needs within the constraints of her family.

By Jane Austen,

Why should I read it?

32 authors picked Pride and Prejudice as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

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

Jane Austen's best-loved novel is an unforgettable story about the inaccuracy of first impressions, the power of reason, and above all the strange dynamics of human relationships and emotions.

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 is illustrated by Hugh Thomson and features an afterword by author and critic, Henry Hitchings.

A tour de force of wit and sparkling dialogue, Pride and…


Book cover of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

Ann O’Loughlin Author Of Escape to the Irish Village

From my list on strong women and female friendship.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am fascinated by the extraordinary things ordinary people do, particularly women. Women show such strength; they juggle so many things every day, and they can draw on huge reserves of power in a crisis. Time and time again, I see how when women pull together, they can conquer anything. A woman on her own can do many things, but when we band together, nothing can stop us. So often, others concentrate on the negative aspects of a group of women together, but I have seen the power of female friendship and how we can reach the stars when we hold each other up. 

Ann's book list on strong women and female friendship

Ann O’Loughlin Why did Ann love this book?

I love the way this novel brought us behind the scenes in Hollywood. Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life, and the story falls into the lap of reporter Monique.

I read this book during a time of all sorts of revelations about Hollywood’s casting couch. The novel perfectly encapsulates the glamour of film and the tragedy of life, and I also felt a strong woman’s will to keep going.

Interestingly, it moved across two timelines, Evelyn's and Monique’s, but this did not slow the book down. There were also beautiful, poignant moments. I savoured dipping into a world I knew very little about, and I so enjoyed it. 

By Taylor Jenkins Reid,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"If you're looking for a book to take on holiday this summer, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo has got all the glitz and glamour to make it a perfect beach read." -Bustle

From the New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones & the Six-an entrancing and "wildly addictive journey of a reclusive Hollywood starlet" (PopSugar) as she reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the loves she lost, and the long-held secrets the public could never imagine.

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready…


Book cover of Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson

Mark Steven Porro Author Of A Cup of Tea on the Commode: My Multi-Tasking Adventures of Caring for Mom. And How I Survived to Tell the Tale

From my list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances.

Why am I passionate about this?

Family history has always fascinated me. I didn’t want mine to be buried with my loved ones. So, out of curiosity, I asked relatives lots of questions. If unsatisfied, I sought answers elsewhere. I traveled as far as Celle San Vito, Italy, where my grandfather was born, to solve a one-hundred-year-old mystery, and I filmed it for others to enjoy. I’ve memorialized momentous family events in poems, handmade greeting cards, memory books, screenplays, a documentary, and now, in my memoir A Cup of Tea on the Commode. The books on my list are about “family.” I’ve been moved by each, and I hope they move you as well.

Mark's book list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances

Mark Steven Porro Why did Mark love this book?

Like many people, I first discovered Morrie on Nightline with Ted Koppel. Like many, I fell in love with his charm, courage, and determination to continue doing what was in his bones, teaching us what’s truly important in life.

Mitch Albom, his former student, shares many of Morrie’s lessons and his gift of uplifting others while facing his own death. I laughed, cried, and thanked Mitch and Morrie for sharing this gift with me.

By Mitch Albom,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked Tuesdays with Morrie as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE GLOBAL PHENOMENON THAT HAS TOUCHED THE HEARTS OF OVER 9 MILLION READERS

'Mitch Albom sees the magical in the ordinary' Cecelia Ahern
__________

Maybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher or a colleague? Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, and gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it? For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago.

Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and the insights faded. Wouldn't you like to…


Weird Foods of Portugal: Adventures of an Expat

By Wendy Lee Hermance,

Book cover of Weird Foods of Portugal: Adventures of an Expat

Wendy Lee Hermance Author Of Weird Foods of Portugal: Adventures of an Expat

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Wendy Lee Hermance was heard on National Public Radio (NPR) stations with her Missouri Folklore series in the 1980s. She earned a journalism degree from Stephens College, served as Editor and Features Writer for Midwestern and Southern university and regional publications, then settled into writing real estate contracts. In 2012 she attended University of Sydney, earning a master’s degree by research thesis. Her books include Where I’m Going with this Poem, a memoir in poetry and prose. Weird Foods of Portugal: Adventures of an Expat marks her return to feature writing as collections of narrative non-fiction stories.

Wendy's book list on why Portugal is weird

What is my book about?

Weird Foods of Portugal describes the author's first years trying to make sense of a strange new place and a home there for herself.

Witty, dreamlike, and at times jarring, the book sizzles with social commentary looking back at America and beautiful, finely drawn descriptions of Portugal and its people. Part dark-humor cautionary tale, part travel adventure, ultimately, Hermance's book of narrative non-fiction serves as affirmation for any who wish to make a similar move themselves.

Weird Foods of Portugal: Adventures of an Expat

By Wendy Lee Hermance,

What is this book about?

"Wendy Lee Hermance describes Portugal´s colorful people and places - including taxi drivers and animals - with a poet´s empathy and dark humor. Part travel adventure, part cautionary tale, Weird Foods of Portugal is at it´s heart, affirmation for all who consider making such a move themselves."


Book cover of All Over But the Shoutin'

Mark Steven Porro Author Of A Cup of Tea on the Commode: My Multi-Tasking Adventures of Caring for Mom. And How I Survived to Tell the Tale

From my list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances.

Why am I passionate about this?

Family history has always fascinated me. I didn’t want mine to be buried with my loved ones. So, out of curiosity, I asked relatives lots of questions. If unsatisfied, I sought answers elsewhere. I traveled as far as Celle San Vito, Italy, where my grandfather was born, to solve a one-hundred-year-old mystery, and I filmed it for others to enjoy. I’ve memorialized momentous family events in poems, handmade greeting cards, memory books, screenplays, a documentary, and now, in my memoir A Cup of Tea on the Commode. The books on my list are about “family.” I’ve been moved by each, and I hope they move you as well.

Mark's book list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances

Mark Steven Porro Why did Mark love this book?

A Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter for the New York Times, Rick Bragg’s writing is poetry.

He grew up dirt poor in Alabama. I grew up in a middle-class suburb in New Jersey. He and I have little in common but our love for our mothers. This story touched me on many levels. All mothers sacrifice to some extent in raising their children, but Rick’s mother went above and beyond while facing dire circumstances to provide for hers.

It made me appreciate my mother even more. And though I hadn’t discovered this book prior to my story, it reconfirmed my commitment to my mother. 

By Rick Bragg,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked All Over But the Shoutin' as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • From the Pulitzer Prize–winner and bestselling author, "a grand memoir.... Bragg tells about the South with such power and bone-naked love ... he will make you cry" (Atlanta Journal-Constitution).

This haunting, harrowing, gloriously moving recollection of a life on the American margin is the story of Rick Bragg, who grew up dirt-poor in northeastern Alabama, seemingly destined for either the cotton mills or the penitentiary, and instead became a Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter for The New York Times. It is also the story of Bragg's father, a hard-drinking man with a murderous temper and the habit of running…


Book cover of Heartburn

Sheri Langer Author Of Love-Lines

From my list on novels about romance, rejection, and betrayal that pair well with tubs of ice cream.

Why am I passionate about this?

My parents split up when I was six. I escaped from my sadness by reading stories about love and relationships and exploring how others went about the business of living and coping. I married young for security and to have a big family of my own. I succeeded. I have four amazing kids, but after years of wedded chaos, I too was divorced. As a single mom, I set out in search of my own identity and went back to novels to help me find myself. Though I’ve since been fortunate to find my happily ever after, I still enjoy characters that feel like friends who offer warmth, hope, and comfort. 

Sheri's book list on novels about romance, rejection, and betrayal that pair well with tubs of ice cream

Sheri Langer Why did Sheri love this book?

Cookbook author Rachel Samstat is seven months pregnant and finds out her husband is having an affair. Scorched to the gut, she suffers six weeks of intensive, understandable heartburn. 

It shouldn’t be funny, but it’s so snarky that I couldn’t help but laugh deeply and often. Therein lies the beauty of Nora Ephron’s writing—life is layered, and inside every aspect of woe and worry is also a kernel of hope, maybe even joy, where humor is given space to reside. 

I found myself cheering Rachel on, hoping she would wade through the emotional muck of her crumbling marriage on her terms. She may be worn out, but she’s not down. I miss Nora Ephron.

Flavor Pick: Rocky Road

By Nora Ephron,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

If I had to do it over again, I would have made a different kind of pie. The pie I threw at Mark made a terrific mess, but a blueberry pie would have been even better, since it would have permanently ruined his new blazer, the one he bought with Thelma ... I picked up the pie, thanked God for linoleum floor, and threw it'
Rachel Samstat is smart, successful, married to a high-flying Washington journalist... and devastated. She has discovered that her husband is having an affair with Thelma Rice, 'a fairly tall person with a neck as long…


Book cover of Book Lovers

Jason B. Dutton Author Of How To Dance

From my list on choosing joy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have cerebral palsy, but the list of things that I absolutely can’t do is surprisingly short: I can climb a flight of steps or walk the length of a football field, for example, but those tasks are going to take a lot more time and energy for me than they would an able-bodied person. We all choose where to invest in life, but cerebral palsy makes that process much more deliberate, and I’ve been fascinated by it for a long time. I’m always on the hunt for stories that demonstrate that our choices shape our life, not our limitations, and I’m determined to choose joy.

Jason's book list on choosing joy

Jason B. Dutton Why did Jason love this book?

I loved this book because it’s the only novel I’ve ever read during which I’ve said to myself, “I know these two are going to have a happy ending (the book is a romance, and the genre demands it), but I have absolutely no idea how they’re going to get there.”

I love Emily Henry’s prose, and the way it propels the story; I love the idea that the book is centered around the kind of woman who always gets left behind in Hallmark movies. And I love that the book is unapologetic when it asserts that the kind of life that brings you joy is not necessarily the life everyone else wants for themselves or for you.

By Emily Henry,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked Book Lovers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“One of my favorite authors.”—Colleen Hoover

An insightful, delightful, instant #1 New York Times bestseller from the author of Beach Read and People We Meet on Vacation.

Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2022 by Oprah Daily ∙ Today ∙ Parade ∙ Marie Claire ∙ Bustle ∙ PopSugar ∙ Katie Couric Media ∙ Book Bub ∙ SheReads ∙ Medium ∙ The Washington Post ∙ and more!

One summer. Two rivals. A plot twist they didn't see coming...

Nora Stephens' life is books—she’s read them all—and she is not that type of heroine. Not the plucky one, not the laidback dream…


Book cover of Mike Nichols: A Life

Annie Korzen Author Of The Book of Annie: Humor, Heart, and Chutzpah from an Accidental Influencer

From my list on laughter and tears.

Why am I passionate about this?

These books are all by or about comic geniuses. I have always expressed myself through humor. I never felt I was pretty, so making people laugh was another way of seducing people. I started out by doing improvisational theater on the streets of New York, went on to have a recurring role on Seinfeld, and performed my solo shows on three continents. One of my greatest thrills has been to share the stage with other storytellers while touring with The Moth. When I used my storytelling skills on TikTok, I was amazed at the response. Eleven million Likes is a lot of love. I hope I deserve it.

Annie's book list on laughter and tears

Annie Korzen Why did Annie love this book?

I love showbiz biographies full of the inside dope on glamorous, brilliant people, because I’ve always wanted to be one of those glamorous, brilliant people. 

Mike Nichols knew everyone important in the arts, ate at the most fabulous restaurants, traveled to the most luxurious locations, and owned several grand homes. And I am pleased to report that he was frequently anxious and depressed. 

I find it very reassuring to learn that someone who has everything I’ve ever dreamed of is no happier than I am. I know that sounds a little mean, but I never claimed to be perfect.

By Mark Harris,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Mike Nichols as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A National Book Critics Circle finalist • One of People's top 10 books of 2021 •An instant New York Times bestseller • Named a best book of the year by NPR and Time

A magnificent biography of one of the most protean creative forces in American entertainment history, a life of dazzling highs and vertiginous plunges—some of the worst largely unknown until now—by the acclaimed author of Pictures at a Revolution and Five Came Back

Mike Nichols burst onto the scene as a wunderkind: while still in his twenties, he was half of a hit improv duo with Elaine May…


Book cover of Born to Run

Jim Wilson Author Of Tuned In: Memoirs of a Piano Man: Behind the Scenes with Music Legends and Finding the Artist Within

From my list on memoirs that deal with overcoming adversity to inspiring results.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a piano technician who’s had the incredible fortune of getting to know and work for just about all my childhood heroes. I’m also a recording artist who’s produced several recordings that have made it into the Billboard Top 20, had two PBS specials, and whose music has been streamed over 75 million times around the globe. At the beginning of the pandemic, I began putting pen to paper to share some of the extraordinary experiences I’ve had with music icons and how being in that jet stream helped me tune in to my mission as an artist. 

Jim's book list on memoirs that deal with overcoming adversity to inspiring results

Jim Wilson Why did Jim love this book?

Right off the bat, I was gripped by Bruce’s vulnerability. In the opening pages, he intimately shares his early struggle with “impostor syndrome.” His willingness to reveal his humanity encouraged me as an author to dig deeper and “leave blood on the page.”

Bruce relates in great detail his countless early struggles in trying to get his music heard. I was deeply inspired by his candor and his “never take no for an answer” attitude. In the panoply of books about overcoming adversity to achieve a dream, this book is a stand-out.

By Bruce Springsteen,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Born to Run as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Writing about yourself is a funny business...But in a project like this, the writer has made one promise, to show the reader his mind. In these pages, I've tried to do this." -Bruce Springsteen, from the pages of Born to Run

In 2009, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed at the Super Bowl's halftime show. The experience was so exhilarating that Bruce decided to write about it. That's how this extraordinary autobiography began.

Over the past seven years, Bruce Springsteen has privately devoted himself to writing the story of his life, bringing to these pages the same honesty,…


Book cover of In Love: A Memoir of Love and Loss

Mark Steven Porro Author Of A Cup of Tea on the Commode: My Multi-Tasking Adventures of Caring for Mom. And How I Survived to Tell the Tale

From my list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances.

Why am I passionate about this?

Family history has always fascinated me. I didn’t want mine to be buried with my loved ones. So, out of curiosity, I asked relatives lots of questions. If unsatisfied, I sought answers elsewhere. I traveled as far as Celle San Vito, Italy, where my grandfather was born, to solve a one-hundred-year-old mystery, and I filmed it for others to enjoy. I’ve memorialized momentous family events in poems, handmade greeting cards, memory books, screenplays, a documentary, and now, in my memoir A Cup of Tea on the Commode. The books on my list are about “family.” I’ve been moved by each, and I hope they move you as well.

Mark's book list on books that do not flinch when dealing with difficult circumstances

Mark Steven Porro Why did Mark love this book?

Amy’s story is filled with many welcome laughs to break up the many dramatic moments. And I thank her for that.

It’s a beautiful yet tragic love story. After a terminal diagnosis, her husband chose to leave this world with dignity. Amy supports his decision, knowing she’ll spend the rest of her days alone. It raises many questions. “What would I do in this situation?” Could I make the same sacrifice? Could I support my spouse if she chose the same?

I love that we are with them every step of the way. In our country, why can’t we decide how and when to leave this world when faced with a terminal diagnosis? We do this with our pets. I don’t know why we can’t do this for our loved ones instead of draining them of their dignity and the family of their finances. 

By Amy Bloom,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked In Love as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New York Times Bestseller

A poignant love letter to Bloom's husband and a passionate outpouring of grief, In Love reaffirms the power and value of human relationships.

In January 2020, Amy Bloom travelled with her husband Brian to Switzerland, where he was helped by Dignitas to end his life while Amy sat with him and held his hand. Brian was terminally ill and for the last year of his life Amy had struggled to find a way to support his wish to take control of his death, to not submerge 'into the darkness of an expiring existence'.

Written with piercing…


Book cover of Let's Pretend This Never Happened

Annie Korzen Author Of The Book of Annie: Humor, Heart, and Chutzpah from an Accidental Influencer

From my list on laughter and tears.

Why am I passionate about this?

These books are all by or about comic geniuses. I have always expressed myself through humor. I never felt I was pretty, so making people laugh was another way of seducing people. I started out by doing improvisational theater on the streets of New York, went on to have a recurring role on Seinfeld, and performed my solo shows on three continents. One of my greatest thrills has been to share the stage with other storytellers while touring with The Moth. When I used my storytelling skills on TikTok, I was amazed at the response. Eleven million Likes is a lot of love. I hope I deserve it.

Annie's book list on laughter and tears

Annie Korzen Why did Annie love this book?

I first discovered this writer through her blog, The Bloggess. I admired her frank, weird, obscene imagination then and I still do, now that she’s become a best-selling author. 

Her childhood in rural Texas could not be more different than mine in the urban Bronx, but she still feels like a kindred spirit. I love the way she navigates through childhood, marriage, pregnancy, and work while not allowing her physical and psychological issues to limit her in any way. 

One of those issues is being phobic, and that’s something I can relate to. You name it, I’m afraid of it!

By Jenny Lawson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Let's Pretend This Never Happened as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Even when I was funny, I wasn't this funny'
Augusten Burroughs, author of Running With Scissors

Have you ever embarrassed yourself so badly you thought you'd never get over it?

Have you ever wished your family could be just like everyone else's?

Have you ever been followed to school by your father's herd of turkeys, mistaken a marriage proposal for an attempted murder or got your arm stuck inside a cow? OK, maybe that's just Jenny Lawson . . .

The bestselling memoir from one of America's most outlandishly hilarious writers.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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