100 books like Cliff Diver

By Carmen Amato,

Here are 100 books that Cliff Diver fans have personally recommended if you like Cliff Diver. 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 Blood on the Tracks

E.R. Yatscoff Author Of Fire Dream

From my list on gutsy crime thrillers and exotic adventure reads.

Why am I passionate about this?

My travels have been quite adventurous, purposely or by accident. I’ve visited 32 countries, 5 of them Communist. I look below the surface. I love the jungle and even Mexican police. My young reader novels have elements of crime. I knew and know a lot of tough guys and use elements of them in my characters. Crime weaved through much of my 32-year firefighting career. Firefighter crime thrillers are rare. Firefighters do come in contact with crime: bomb threats, meth labs, child abuse, arson of all sorts, murder, assaults, drownings, and as they say ‘much, much more’. I’m glad to be retired.

E.R.'s book list on gutsy crime thrillers and exotic adventure reads

E.R. Yatscoff Why did E.R. love this book?

Okay, so you’ve read cop stories, PI tales, and lawyer crime fiction. How about a railroad detective? Yeah, they are for real.

Special Agent Sydney Rose Parnell and her trusty dog have an intimate knowledge of the railroad and who uses it. Not often is she called in for murder but when she does she bites off more than she can chew. She occasionally has a bit of romance with someone so it fills out that end of things.

She is vulnerable yet tough. I never knew railroad police went so deep into investigations. Gotta read her tales.

By Barbara Nickless,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Blood on the Tracks as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An Amazon Charts bestseller.

A young woman is found brutally murdered, and the main suspect is the victim's fiance, a hideously scarred Iraq War vet known as the Burned Man. But railroad police Special Agent Sydney Rose Parnell, brought in by the Denver Major Crimes unit to help investigate, can't shake the feeling that larger forces are behind this apparent crime of passion.

In the depths of an icy winter, Parnell and her K9 partner, Clyde-both haunted by their time in Iraq-descend into the underground world of a savage gang of rail riders. There, they uncover a wide-reaching conspiracy and…


Book cover of Pompeii

Flora Johnston Author Of The Paris Peacemakers

From my list on historical fiction books with a new take on a famous event.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m fascinated by stories from the past. I worked for many years in museums and heritage, telling Scotland’s stories through exhibitions and nonfiction publications, but I was always drawn to the question best answered through historical fiction – what did that feel like? Well-researched historical fiction can take us right into the lives of people who lived through the dramatic events we read about in academic books. I found that each of the novels on my list transported me to a different time and place, and I hope you enjoy them, too.

Flora's book list on historical fiction books with a new take on a famous event

Flora Johnston Why did Flora love this book?

I picked up this book from the shelf of a holiday cottage and was hooked immediately. I love books which interweave personal human stories with big events.

The ordinary loves and lives of the people of Pompeii are unfolding as the mountain above them begins to behave strangely. Of course, we, the readers, know the disaster that is about to occur, which only adds to the suspense. Unputdownable.

By Robert Harris,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'A pulse-rate-speeding masterpiece' Sunday Times

'A stunning novel . . . the subtlety and power of its construction holds our attention to the end' The Times

During a sweltering week in late August, as Rome's richest citizens relax in their villas around Pompeii and Herculaneum, there are ominous warnings that something is going wrong. Wells and springs are failing, a man has disappeared, and now the greatest aqueduct in the world - the mighty Aqua Augusta - has suddenly ceased to flow . . .

Through the eyes of four characters - a young engineer, an adolescent girl, a corrupt…


Book cover of The Small Boat of Great Sorrows

E.R. Yatscoff Author Of Teeth of the Cocodrilo

From my list on crime plunging you into new places away from the norm.

Why am I passionate about this?

I spent over 30 years as a fire rescue officer, and my investigative experience in arsons and fires of all types had me working with police at times. Firefighters come in contact with a lot of crimes. Crime scene protection is important before cops and detectives arrive. I’m curious by nature, and I like cops. They have so many rules. Firefighters aren’t like that. When we arrive, there is little time to follow rules. I have a firefighter crime series published, but I chose Teeth of the Cocodrilo in the theme of exotic crime. I'm the only firefighter in Canada who has written firefighter crime novels.

E.R.'s book list on crime plunging you into new places away from the norm

E.R. Yatscoff Why did E.R. love this book?

Another crime book that takes you places you never thought you’d venture into. Fesperman creates a sympathetic protagonist Vlado Petric. Vlado, a former homicide detective in Sarajevo, lives in exile but is recruited to return to the place of horrors that have haunted his life. His assignment: help capture an aging Nazi collaborator who has become a war profiteer, surrounded by a sympathetic population who will protect him with their lives. The story is dark and filled with suspense and dread. The Balkans were and are a very dangerous place. As a writer Fesperman creates suspense and fear in a very different place with very different people.

By Dan Fesperman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Vlado Petric, former detective in war-torn Sarajevo, has left his beloved homeland to join his wife and daughter in Germany, where he scratches a meagre living among the dust of former conflicts on the building sites of the new Berlin.
Returning home one evening, he finds an enigmatic American investigator waiting for him in the small apartment he now shares with his wife and daughter. The investigator, Calvin Pine, works for the International War Crimes Tribunal, and he tells Petric that they want him to go to The Hague. It doesn't take Petric long to accept, especially when Pine tells…


Book cover of Hard Revolution

E.R. Yatscoff Author Of Teeth of the Cocodrilo

From my list on crime plunging you into new places away from the norm.

Why am I passionate about this?

I spent over 30 years as a fire rescue officer, and my investigative experience in arsons and fires of all types had me working with police at times. Firefighters come in contact with a lot of crimes. Crime scene protection is important before cops and detectives arrive. I’m curious by nature, and I like cops. They have so many rules. Firefighters aren’t like that. When we arrive, there is little time to follow rules. I have a firefighter crime series published, but I chose Teeth of the Cocodrilo in the theme of exotic crime. I'm the only firefighter in Canada who has written firefighter crime novels.

E.R.'s book list on crime plunging you into new places away from the norm

E.R. Yatscoff Why did E.R. love this book?

Pelecanos creates a helluva crime story set in Washington, DC. Not so different of a place, right? Ah, but there is the backdrop of the Martin Luther King riots in 1968 and the cops are overwhelmed. Derek Strange is a Black rookie cop and with a white detective Frank Vaughan goes on a manhunt for his brother’s killer. The combination of the two is a great dynamic. Derek’s pretty sure he knows who the drug dealer is who killed his brother and won’t be put off by the riots. Trying to find the killer in the chaos is gripping. A lot of grit in here and tension. This is one story you

By George Pelecanos,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In this epic showdown from "one of the best crime novelists alive" (Dennis Lehane), police officer Derek Strange hunts his brother's killer through a city erupting with rage.


Book cover of The Mexicans: A Personal Portrait of a People

Odie Hawkins Author Of Shackles Across Time

From my list on understanding the human condition.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a great African-American writer because I have not spent eons in jail (taught writing classes there), never been shot by the police (yet), and I have a number of interesting books for sale ranging from Urban, Erotic, Science-Fiction, Fiction and Pan-African Occult. My books have been used in writing classes in colleges, universities, and prisons. I was one of the panelists for Professor Justin Gifford's presentation at the Modern Language Association Conference at the Hilton, LA Live. Also, I participated in a California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) event, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the “Watts Rebellion”. I have agreed to let this university archive my works.

Odie's book list on understanding the human condition

Odie Hawkins Why did Odie love this book?

I think that we should all make an effort to understand people who are not from our cultural stew; people who seem different, but wind up being like us; once we get to know them.

Patrick Oster is not a sociologist, a psychologist, or an ugly American. He could be Joe Blow from down the block who decides to go to Mexico, to get to know the Mexican people. He does not make an effort to know all the people, he simply makes friends with those who are friendly, and leaves the others alone; just the way he would do in America.

I feel that this book is a wonderful example of what can come from an honest exploration and a warm writing style.

By Patrick Oster,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Mexicans is a multifaceted portrait of the complex, increasingly turbulent neighbor to our south. It is the story of a country in crisis -- poverty, class tensions, political corruption -- as told through stories of individuals.
From Augustín, an honest cop, we learn that many in the Mexican police force use torture as their number-one-crime-solving technique; from Julio Scherer Garcia, a leading newspaper editor, we learn how kidnapping and intimidating phone calls stifle a free press; we hear from a homosexual teacher wary of bigotry in a land of machismo; and many others.
Moving from Mexico City discos to…


Book cover of The Dope: The Real History of the Mexican Drug Trade

Edward Shawcross Author Of The Last Emperor of Mexico: The Dramatic Story of the Habsburg Archduke Who Created a Kingdom in the New World

From my list on the astonishing history of Mexico.

Why am I passionate about this?

A French emperor, nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, Napoleon III who dreamed of an empire in Latin America and invaded Mexico; an Austrian aristocrat, the Habsburg Ferdinand Maximilian, ruling Mexico as a monarchy; Benito Juárez, who was born into an impoverished Mexican village but later became president, defying and defeating these European emperors. These are the extraordinary characters and events that led me to fall in love with Mexico’s history, and write my book, The Last Emperor of Mexico.

Edward's book list on the astonishing history of Mexico

Edward Shawcross Why did Edward love this book?

For many outside Mexico, the country is synonymous with the war on drugs. There is, of course, much more to Mexico than the view ossified in popular TV dramas like Netflix’s Narcos; however, organised crime has wrought horrifying levels of violence, and shaped the country in many ways. Making sense of all this is Benjamin T Smith’s book on the history of the drug trade. Combining the writing style of James Ellroy with in-depth research that puts most historians to shame, the book is, without doubt, the best English-language work ever produced on the topic.

By Benjamin T. Smith,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Mexican drug trade has inspired prejudiced narratives of a war between north and south, white and brown; between noble cops and vicious kingpins, corrupt politicians and powerful cartels. In this first comprehensive history of the trade, historian Benjamin T. Smith tells the real story of how and why this one-peaceful industry turned violent. He uncovers its origins and explains how this illicit business essentially built modern Mexico, affecting everything from agriculture to medicine to economics-and the country's all-important relationship with the United States.

Drawing on unprecedented archival research; leaked DEA, Mexican law enforcement, and cartel documents; and dozens of…


Book cover of Casa No Name

Joanna Maclennan Author Of The Foraged Home

From my list on inspiring creating your own unique home or space.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am mainly known as an Interiors Photographer and although accidentally falling into photographing Interiors, it has become a passion, always interested in the story these places tell and alongside my husband we have built our own home creating a unique space using recuperated materials. As part of my work, I am always looking for interesting and inspirational books and places. It is how I train my eye, drawn to the unusual. I am as happy photographing a chateau in Provence as I am in a small and remote cabin in Norway. 

Joanna's book list on inspiring creating your own unique home or space

Joanna Maclennan Why did Joanna love this book?

I was given this as a present and what a wonderful present it was. Deborah Turbeville is a wonderful photographer whose work I admire. Her fashion photography was innovative, imaginative and so creative.

This book, a visual diary of her house and time in Mexico is filled with her signature blurred images, from black and white portraits to colourful interiors. It goes against everything we learn in Interiors but it’s magical, evocative, and gothic.

By Deborah Turbeville,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Casa No Name as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the tradition of Kahlo and Allende, Turbeville’s brilliantly stylish portrait of her Mexican house evokes both her vivid imagination and the mystique of Mexico. High-ceilinged rooms surround a central courtyard that is lined with faded frescoes of biblical scenes. The glimmer and shafts of diffused light that stream into the courtyards and curtained rooms add to the romantic atmosphere—one feels as though they have entered into a quintessential Turbeville photograph. Turbeville has captured the spiritual nature of Mexican culture by incorporating into candlelit interiors such traditional religious artifacts as colorful painted tin retablos, hand-carved saints, wooden tableau boxes, and…


Book cover of Not the End: Life Isn't Over Until It Is Over

Mónica Ramírez Chimal Author Of Make life Yours!: Based on real facts

From my list on live life fully.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a person like you who has lived difficult situations, has had losses, made mistakes, and deals with bad days wondering about my existence and purpose in life. I have a gift, and it's writing; I began sending reflective messages to the people at my office and that’s when I noticed that people loved them. Years later, after reading several books and accumulating more experience, I realized that there are several experiences that are common to all, but few questioned. Therefore, I decided to share my insight and thoughts in my second book, hoping to help people be a better version of themselves and live their lives to their fullest.

Mónica's book list on live life fully

Mónica Ramírez Chimal Why did Mónica love this book?

This book first caught my attention for the title—it’s a common Mexican phrase we use at the end of a fairytale story.

When I began reading it, I loved that the author used different color fonts so we can identify which character is talking. I found it very entertaining and fun.

When I read it, I was living in pain, longing to have a partner. This book helped me to see that nothing can be rushed; everything happens when it must happen. I learned that I could use fear to my favor and live life as I want, because the rest will come. Life is always on our side. And from time to time, I still read again the key parts that helped me when I was in pain.

By Odin Dupeyron,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Not the End as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Not The End was first released in 2001 and since that first edition has been read and reread, given, lent and recommended by readers of all ages, of all genders, of different religions, preferences and countries. It has passed from hand to hand and from mouth to mouth, changed publisher, cover, color and presentation. Less than two years after its publication, it became a national bestseller in Mexico and has deeply touched the hearts and lives of thousands of people.

Now eleven years later, Not The End celebrates its twenty-ninth edition in Mexico and the first one in it´s translation…


Book cover of The Death of Artemio Cruz

Alejandro Quintana Ph.D. Author Of Pancho Villa: A Biography

From my list on biographies of the Mexican Revolution.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in Mexico listening to my father´s stories about the Mexican revolution. His storytelling abilities drew me in as he described his childhood memories and those of his father, who lived through the revolution. That's why I became a historian writing about the Mexican Revolution with a preference for biographies. As the Latin Americanist historian at St. John's University in New York City, I've written two books: Maximino Avila Camacho and the One Party State, Pancho Villa: A Biography, and edited A Brief History of Mexico by Lynn V. Foster. I hope you enjoy the list of books on significant personalities that shaped the first major social revolution of the twentieth century.

Alejandro's book list on biographies of the Mexican Revolution

Alejandro Quintana Ph.D. Why did Alejandro love this book?

This book is one of my all-time favorites. The Death of Artemio Cruz is a historical novel by one of the most acclaimed literary figures of the Spanish language, Carlos Fuentes. It is a captivating narrative of intertwined memories experienced by Cruz while on his deathbed; this novel is a harsh condemnation of the post-revolutionary political class. It shows the path of idealist revolutionaries becoming corrupt politicians once in power. While a work of fiction, the book describes real corrupt and abusive attitudes and straight-out crimes committed by numerous revolutionary leaders turned politicians. There were many Artemio Cruz among the revolution leaders, which helps explain why the revolution failed to achieve real social change. 

By Carlos Fuentes, Alfred MacAdam (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

As the novel opens, Artemio Cruz, the all-powerful newspaper magnate and land baron, lies confined to his bed and, in dreamlike flashes, recalls the pivotal episodes of his life. Carlos Fuentes manipulates the ensuing kaleidoscope of images with dazzling inventiveness, layering memory upon memory, from Cruz's heroic campaigns during the Mexican Revolution, through his relentless climb from poverty to wealth, to his uneasy death. Perhaps Fuentes's masterpiece, The Death of Artemio Cruz is a haunting voyage into the soul of modern Mexico.


Book cover of Indian Women of Early Mexico

Susan Kellogg Author Of Weaving the Past: A History of Latin America's Indigenous Women from the Prehispanic Period to the Present

From my list on the history of Native women in Latin America.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up in a sheltered environment on Long Island, NY, I had little sense of a larger world, except for seeing images of the Vietnam War. Going to college in the early 70s and becoming an anthropology major, the world began to open up, yet I hadn't experienced life outside the U.S. until my mid-20s as a graduate student living in Mexico to do dissertation research. That experience and travels to Guatemala, Peru, Cuba, and Costa Rica helped me to see how diverse Latin America is, and how real poverty and suffering are as well. Coming into my own as a historian, teacher, and writer, my fascination with women’s voices, experiences, and activism only grew.

Susan's book list on the history of Native women in Latin America

Susan Kellogg Why did Susan love this book?

Like Silverblatt’s book on native women in prehispanic and colonial Peru, this edited volume on early Mexico was and remains a gamer changer in bringing to light women’s work, including ways women accumulated and distributed wealth, their varieties of social and political identities they held, and their power and influence.

With chapters by experts in Aztec/Nahua women’s, social, and cultural history, the chapters represent a variety of approaches and methodologies to women’s and gender history even in areas where the documentation on women is sparser than in central Mesoamerica, especially for northern Mexico and Maya women further south.

By Susan Schroeder, Stephanie Wood, Robert Haskett

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Indian Women of Early Mexico as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


This volume counters the stereotype that Indian women are without history. Neither silent nor invisible, women of early Mexico were active participants in society and critically influenced the direction history would take. This collection of essays by leading scholars in Mexican ethnohistory, edited by Susan Schroeder, Stephanie Wood, and Robert Haskett, examines the life experiences of Indian women in preconquest and colonial Mexico.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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