65 books like Dawn of the Dead

By George A. Romero,

Here are 65 books that Dawn of the Dead fans have personally recommended if you like Dawn of the Dead. 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 World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

Beau Johnston Author Of Sleep with One Eye Open

From my list on casual (or non) readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I despise long-winded books with an electoral roll of characters or characters with unnecessarily complex names. Reading should be a pleasure, not a chore. High school does its best to suck the joy out of reading with its “what did the author mean here?” nonsense. If the reader has to guess what the author means, the author failed to tell their story. Symbolism and hidden meanings are a joke. I won’t read pretentious books that people only read so they can say they’ve read them. One of the reasons I started writing was to reach people who ended up as non-readers because high school ruined reading for them.

Beau's book list on casual (or non) readers

Beau Johnston Why did Beau love this book?

This book is a fantastic collection of short stories about the Zombie Apocalypse. Some of the stories broach the subject of corruption, which enabled a local epidemic to spread globally.

I first read this book in 2006 with an “imagine if…..” frame of mind, but I watched world events unfold in 2020 from the perspective of “life imitating art.” I loved the author’s conversational style of storytelling and the believable characters he described. There are no hardcore action heroes, just regular people.

By Max Brooks,

Why should I read it?

21 authors picked World War Z as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It began with rumours from China about another pandemic. Then the cases started to multiply and what had looked like the stirrings of a criminal underclass, even the beginning of a revolution, soon revealed itself to be much, much worse.

Faced with a future of mindless man-eating horror, humanity was forced to accept the logic of world government and face events that tested our sanity and our sense of reality. Based on extensive interviews with survivors and key players in the ten-year fight against the horde, World War Z brings the finest traditions of journalism to bear on what is…


Book cover of Skulduggery Pleasant

Beau Johnston Author Of Sleep with One Eye Open

From my list on casual (or non) readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I despise long-winded books with an electoral roll of characters or characters with unnecessarily complex names. Reading should be a pleasure, not a chore. High school does its best to suck the joy out of reading with its “what did the author mean here?” nonsense. If the reader has to guess what the author means, the author failed to tell their story. Symbolism and hidden meanings are a joke. I won’t read pretentious books that people only read so they can say they’ve read them. One of the reasons I started writing was to reach people who ended up as non-readers because high school ruined reading for them.

Beau's book list on casual (or non) readers

Beau Johnston Why did Beau love this book?

Originally, I was looking for a book series to get my 12-year-old (non-reader) nephew interested in reading. The cover art is great, and the description, “a smart-ass skeleton detective and a secret magic world, in the shadows of the real world,” piqued my interest. Yes, an actual walking, talking skeleton.

I first purchased a copy for myself so I would know if it was appropriate for him. I enjoyed reading it so much that I went out the next day and bought him the first four books in the series. They became the first books he voluntarily read. I love the depictions of magic (and magical creatures) in the real world and the constant battle to keep regular humans ignorant of the events that take place virtually right in front of them. 

By Derek Landy,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Skulduggery Pleasant as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

She's twelve. He's dead. But together they're going to save the world. Hopefully.

The iconic first book in the bestselling Skulduggery Pleasant series.

Stephanie's uncle Gordon is a writer of horror fiction. But when he dies and leaves her his estate, Stephanie learns that while he may have written horror, it certainly wasn't fiction.

Pursued by evil forces, Stephanie finds help from an unusual source - the wisecracking skeleton of a dead sorcerer...


Book cover of Death World

Beau Johnston Author Of Sleep with One Eye Open

From my list on casual (or non) readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I despise long-winded books with an electoral roll of characters or characters with unnecessarily complex names. Reading should be a pleasure, not a chore. High school does its best to suck the joy out of reading with its “what did the author mean here?” nonsense. If the reader has to guess what the author means, the author failed to tell their story. Symbolism and hidden meanings are a joke. I won’t read pretentious books that people only read so they can say they’ve read them. One of the reasons I started writing was to reach people who ended up as non-readers because high school ruined reading for them.

Beau's book list on casual (or non) readers

Beau Johnston Why did Beau love this book?

The story is set in the Warhammer 40’000 universe, but anyone can read it without feeling lost. I love the way the author subverts the reader’s expectation from a story of “military squad Vs. monster” to “military squad Vs. everything-on-the-planet.”

A fantastic blend of (John Carpenter’s) The Thing and Predator. An enjoyable and easy-to-read tale of claustrophobic, slow-burning tension and Hollywood 80s action hero. I loved the ever-increasing sense of paranoia they endure by gradually discovering that absolutely everything wants to kill them.

By Steve Lyons,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A squad of Catachan Jungle Fighters is sent to the deathworld of Rogar III in response to an ork incursion. But, as well as dealing with the orks, they must do battle the planet itself ¿ not to the mention the mysterious figures that stalk them across the deadly terrain.


Book cover of One Heart One Spade

Cat Connor Author Of [Whiskey Tango Foxtrot]

From my list on to relive the 70’s if you’re surrounded by spies.

Why am I passionate about this?

Crime and espionage are a lifelong fascination for me. I used to think my dad was a spy when I was young because he didn’t talk about work. Turned out he didn’t think I’d be interested in his day as a Quantity Surveyor, my Grandad was a LEO so talking about work wasn’t really a thing. Or they were both spies. Over the years I have made some good friends in the espionage community and various policing agencies and they’re kind enough to share their expertise with me. I’m a big fan of fast-moving stories with intricate plots and action and hopefully they'll draw you in as well. I hope you enjoy the books.

Cat's book list on to relive the 70’s if you’re surrounded by spies

Cat Connor Why did Cat love this book?

This book is set in the late 70’s/early 80’s in Wellington. Even the cover is a familiar image to me (my father was involved in the construction/ finishing of the building depicted).

I will say that the dialogue was hard to get used to because it is very clipped but the story set in a city that I knew at that time was great. It centres around a police officer which is something else that’s familiar to me.

I did struggle a bit with the dialogue because it was difficult to tell who was speaking if there weren’t attributes but I couldn’t put it down because I really wanted to know what happened to Felicity Daniels. Setting wise this book is a trip down memory lane and I loved the journey.

Book cover of Into the Tide

Stella Holt Author Of Battle of Hearts

From my list on romance with siblings, strong women, & sweet heroes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been reading romance since I was a teenager; historical, modern, fantasy, you name it, I devoured it. Give me all the books with epic love stories, will they or won’t they, and happily ever afters. Although I didn’t tell anyone besides my mom about my writing for years, I can’t remember a time when I wasn't crafting my own love stories. In my books, I like to keep my readers guessing and challenge assumptions about people and what love can accomplish. The best romance stories include heartbreak and misunderstandings along the way, but that makes the endings that much sweeter. Happy Reading XO

Stella's book list on romance with siblings, strong women, & sweet heroes

Stella Holt Why did Stella love this book?

I am a sucker for a brother’s best friend romance, maybe because I have an older brother and I was always crushing on one of his friends.

A forbidden romance with a good guy gives us that added element of… will they get caught. If you’re like me, you can’t wait for that scene when our Hero and Heroine do get caught and hold your breath while we read how everyone reacts! Enjoy this one.

By Laura Pavlov,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Into the Tide as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**AN AMAZON TOP 20 BESTSELLER**


She's my best friend's little sister. Completely off-limits. But every man has his breaking point.


Lila James is my best friend's little sister and I've always looked out for her.

She's five years younger than me, and when she left for college, she was just a kid.

But now she's home for the summer-and she's definitely not a kid anymore.

She's beautiful and smart and everything I didn't know I needed.

Dark eyes. Long wavy hair. And legs that are meant to be wrapped around me.

I'm the guy who likes to have a good…


Book cover of Ishkabibble Unafraid

Aviva Gittle Author Of Kitten & Butterfly

From my list on kid’s picture books about unusual friendships.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am pathologically allergic to “message” books. As the former host of The Gittle List contest for self-published authors, I’ve read hundreds of children’s books. Many were “tell, not show” books. Stories with phrases like “we all should respect each other’s differences” rather than showing characters respecting each other’s differences. My recommended books are, at least in part, about diversity. Like my own book series, they demonstrate diversity through unusual friendships. Showing how characters work out their differences by learning about each other and finding ways to get along. A good story can change hearts and minds when characters carry the message–not beat readers over the head with it.

Aviva's book list on kid’s picture books about unusual friendships

Aviva Gittle Why did Aviva love this book?

Have you ever listened to a song that was just okay? But after hearing it several times, it grew on you? This is a book that I originally gave a 4-star review. But then I read it a few times more. Then I read it aloud. I just updated the review to 5 stars.

It’s a fun rhyming story about the assumptions we make about others—often based on bad information. Kids will enjoy a very humorous story about a monster who fears “hue-mans” who befriends a boy who fears monsters. Adults will have discovered a book about diversity with awesome illustrations that can be read on demand repeatedly without going insane.

By Cindi Handley Goodeaux, Jack Foster (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Ishkabibble is a monster afraid of the sound in his closet. When he meets a human afraid of monsters, is there really anything to be afraid of after all? Ishkabibble is a fun rhyming story about overcoming fears and making new friends.


Book cover of Forget Me Not

E.A. Neeves Author Of After You Vanished

From my list on slowburn mysteries for young adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

Most people know the slowburn romance. A spark flickers at deliberate pace until finally passion ignites. But what about the slowburn mystery? As a reader and a writer, I’m drawn to mysteries that twine as a well-drawn character, usually an amateur sleuth, gets pulled into investigating some eerie event. These mysteries begin with a straightforward query, and as the sleuth digs, the mystery grows. The pace leaves room for well-developed subplots—often, in my favorites, a slowburn romance, too. I love a book where I can settle into the world while the story gathers steam. And in the end, when that slow flame finally blazes… Oh, it’s so worth the wait. 

E.A.'s book list on slowburn mysteries for young adults

E.A. Neeves Why did E.A. love this book?

The main mystery in this book is not a mystery to the reader. It’s a mystery to the main character, Stevie. I love this twist.

I don’t think I’ve ever read another book where the protagonist is trying to uncover their own past, and the reader knows what answers she’ll find if she succeeds. (Though there are a few surprises that the reader isn’t privy to until Stevie unearths them.) The heart of this story is its romance, which is beautiful, heartwarming, and heartbreaking all at once.

I loved everything about this book, honestly. I read it in two days, and the only reason I didn’t read it in one sitting is because I have a small child and that precludes sequestering yourself in a room to finish a book. 

By Alyson Derrick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Forget Me Not as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

This tender solo debut by Alyson Derrick, co-author of New York Times bestseller She Gets the Girl, is perfect for fans of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Five Feet Apart.

What would you do if you forgot the love of your life existed?

Stevie and Nora had a love. A secret, epic, once-in-a-lifetime kind of love. They also had a plan: to leave their small, ultra-conservative town and families behind after graduation and move to California, where they could finally stop hiding that love.

But then Stevie has a terrible fall and the last two years of her…


Book cover of Flawless

Stella Holt Author Of Battle of Hearts

From my list on romance with siblings, strong women, & sweet heroes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been reading romance since I was a teenager; historical, modern, fantasy, you name it, I devoured it. Give me all the books with epic love stories, will they or won’t they, and happily ever afters. Although I didn’t tell anyone besides my mom about my writing for years, I can’t remember a time when I wasn't crafting my own love stories. In my books, I like to keep my readers guessing and challenge assumptions about people and what love can accomplish. The best romance stories include heartbreak and misunderstandings along the way, but that makes the endings that much sweeter. Happy Reading XO

Stella's book list on romance with siblings, strong women, & sweet heroes

Stella Holt Why did Stella love this book?

Okay, I absolutely love a forbidden romance, will they get caught, and how will they react!? I am not saying I did, but I’m not saying I haven’t had a relationship with someone in a position of power.

I will tell you these books are always juicy and keep me turning the pages. Flawless adds a little extra heat because they are enemies and start off thoroughly disliking each other, oh how we love to see that smolder!

By Elsie Silver,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The rules were simple: keep his hands off his agent's daughter and stay out of trouble.

But now he's stuck with her. There's only one bed. And well, rules are made to be broken.

Rhett Eaton is the face of professional bull riding. The golden boy. Or at least he was until it all blew up in his face after a public brawl. Now his agent says he has to clean up his image, and sticks Rhett with his ball-busting daughter for the rest of the season as "full-time supervision."

But Rhett doesn't need a goddamn babysitter―especially one with skin-tight…


Book cover of Lessons in Love

Samantha SoRelle Author Of The Gentleman's Gentleman

From my list on gay historical romances you haven’t read yet.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been writing queer historical romances/murder mysteries since the third grade when I accidentally wrote a pretty homoerotic Sherlock Holmes fanfiction despite being too young to know what any of those words meant. I’m now both a writer and reader of the genre and while I’m delighted that so many other people love gay historical romance as much as I do, I feel like I always see the same few books recommended. I wanted to share some of my lesser-known favorites so that they can get the love they richly deserve and so that there are more people who can geek-out about them with me!

Samantha's book list on gay historical romances you haven’t read yet

Samantha SoRelle Why did Samantha love this book?

I love finding a great new book, and then realizing it’s only the first in the series of many, many more!

A cross between queer romance and Golden Age detective fiction, I love being drawn into the charming English university setting with each novel and curling up to find out how the two professors are going to solve a cozy murder while falling even deeper in love.

Will there be punting on the Cam? Shakespeare puns? Edwardian-era tailoring? Yes, yes, and yes!

By Charlie Cochrane,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lessons in Love as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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