39 books like Fatal Sequence

By Kevin J. Tracey,

Here are 39 books that Fatal Sequence fans have personally recommended if you like Fatal Sequence. 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 Cutting for Stone

Carl F. Nathan Author Of An Arrow's ARC: Journey of a Physician-Scientist

From my list on a life in science or medicine.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up, I experienced “otherness.” My family was hard up amidst affluence. Typecast as Jewish, where that was a rarity, we were met with suspicion and unease. Being a woman held my mother back from her preferred profession. Racism was rampant; my growing appreciation of it and efforts to intervene added to “otherness.”  My childhood was shadowed by illness, including my mother’s cancer. These influences drew me to medicine and science. Both are a way to overcome “otherness” and to protect one’s family, even as my sense of family expanded. Medicine forges extraordinary bonds between doctor and patient. Science brings people together from diverse backgrounds to share goals. These connections make meaningful stories. 

Carl's book list on a life in science or medicine

Carl F. Nathan Why did Carl love this book?

This riveting novel by an infectious disease physician demonstrates how something as seemingly stereotypic as a medical career can be profoundly shaped by circumstance, accident, location, and political events, as well as by family and personality.

The practice of surgery—be it closing a wound or removing a lesion—can be both of those things for the emotions of the person performing it. There is an analogous message for other fields of medicine—practice and practitioner become interrelated at a deeply personal level.

By Abraham Verghese,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked Cutting for Stone as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

My brother, Shiva, and I came into the world in the late afternoon of the twentieth of September in the year of grace 1954. We took our first breaths in the thick air of Addis Ababa, capital city of Ethiopia. Bound by birth, we were driven apart by bitter betrayal. No surgeon can heal the would that divides two brothers. Where silk and steel fail, story must succeed. To begin at the beginning...


Book cover of The Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher

Lloyd Sederer Author Of Caught in the Crosshairs of American Healthcare

From my list on books to read if you want to write the best of non-fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a psychiatrist and public health doctor, non-fiction writer, and lay and medical editor. For over 12 years, I have taught non-fiction writing for a general audience at Columbia medical and public health schools to physicians, neuroscientists, epidemiologists, psychologists, and other professionals. I have published 14 books and over 500 written articles and videos. I love to write and help others write...well.

Lloyd's book list on books to read if you want to write the best of non-fiction

Lloyd Sederer Why did Lloyd love this book?

I loved this book because it demonstrates we can write about any subject we have a passion for: bowling, the bassoon, the Canary Islands, UFOs, opium, truffles, cats and dogs, evil and good, or cells!

Thomas starts his book by marveling about cells. Vivid imagination, not labor, carries him to subjects like insects, music, language, computers, and medicine. After all, they are interconnected, like we are. 

Which means I need only start with one subject* that stirs my wonder or worry and holds meaning for me. I don’t need to hunt for something to write about, it is right in front of my eyes. 

*BTW, the author of my book choice #1, Bill Zinsser, covered war, theatre, baseball, music, nonfiction writing, and memoirs. Note to self: One subject will do.

By Lewis Thomas,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Lives of a Cell as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Elegant, suggestive, and clarifying, Lewis Thomas's profoundly humane vision explores the world around us and examines the complex interdependence of all things.  Extending beyond the usual limitations of biological science and into a vast and wondrous world of hidden relationships, this provocative book explores in personal, poetic essays to topics such as computers, germs, language, music, death, insects, and medicine.  Lewis Thomas writes, "Once you have become permanently startled, as I am, by the realization that we are a social species, you tend to keep an eye out for the pieces of evidence that this is, by and large, good…


Book cover of Finding the Mother Tree: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest

Caro Feely Author Of Cultivating Change: Regenerating Land and Love in the Age of Climate Crisis

From my list on biodiversity, plants and natural magic.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a published author specializing in nature, travel, and wine writing, and I have been an organic farmer for nearly two decades on an award-winning estate in France. I’ve written four books about the transformation of our organic farm. In my latest, Cultivating Change, I explore how biodiversity helps us address climate change and how important it is to the health of the land. It is also a human story; like the books below, stories are key to bringing these subjects to life. My list is women authors, not because I set out to do that, but because these books are beautiful, intuitive, and deep, like the women who wrote them.

Caro's book list on biodiversity, plants and natural magic

Caro Feely Why did Caro love this book?

Dr. Suzanne Simard is also a professor of Forest Ecology, but like Robin Wall Kimmerer (above), she has created a readable and personal book about her subject. Her research, undertaken over decades, set out to prove that trees communicate and cooperate and that they help each other, both within a species and between different species.

Her gripping story includes how she overcame a Male Chauvinist work environment and proved that a weed-killed monoculture was far from the most optimal way to manage forests. Her book is a reminder of how little we know of the incredibly complex biosphere we are privileged to be part of.

By Suzanne Simard,

Why should I read it?

14 authors picked Finding the Mother Tree as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • From the world's leading forest ecologist who forever changed how people view trees and their connections to one another and to other living things in the forest—a moving, deeply personal journey of discovery

“Finding the Mother Tree reminds us that the world is a web of stories, connecting us to one another. [The book] carries the stories of trees, fungi, soil and bears--and of a human being listening in on the conversation. The interplay of personal narrative, scientific insights and the amazing revelations about the life of the forest make a compelling story.”—Robin Wall…


Book cover of An Immense World: How Animal Senses Reveal the Hidden Realms Around Us

Carl F. Nathan Author Of An Arrow's ARC: Journey of a Physician-Scientist

From my list on a life in science or medicine.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up, I experienced “otherness.” My family was hard up amidst affluence. Typecast as Jewish, where that was a rarity, we were met with suspicion and unease. Being a woman held my mother back from her preferred profession. Racism was rampant; my growing appreciation of it and efforts to intervene added to “otherness.”  My childhood was shadowed by illness, including my mother’s cancer. These influences drew me to medicine and science. Both are a way to overcome “otherness” and to protect one’s family, even as my sense of family expanded. Medicine forges extraordinary bonds between doctor and patient. Science brings people together from diverse backgrounds to share goals. These connections make meaningful stories. 

Carl's book list on a life in science or medicine

Carl F. Nathan Why did Carl love this book?

Yong is not a scientist himself, but he is an extraordinary writer who steps into the world view of one scientist after another to capture their passion for discovery and their amazement at what they learn and to share that with us, simply and clearly. He does all this with an ear for prose that delights with its ring as well as its content.

One of the messages running through this hard-to-put-down book is how differently and precisely various species adapt to their niche to sense what matters to them most. A key subtext is how much we lose by changing environments faster than species adapt.

By Ed Yong,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked An Immense World as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Wonderful, mind-broadening... a journey to alternative realities as extraordinary as any you'll find in science fiction' The Times, Book of the Week

'Magnificent' Guardian

Enter a new dimension - the world as it is truly perceived by other animals.

The Earth teems with sights and textures, sounds and vibrations, smells and tastes, electric and magnetic fields. But every animal is enclosed within its own unique sensory bubble, perceiving only a tiny sliver of an immense world. This book welcomes us into previously unfathomable dimensions - the world as it is truly perceived by other animals.

We encounter beetles that are…


Book cover of What My Bones Know: A Memoir of Healing from Complex Trauma

Mariel Buqué Author Of Break the Cycle: A Guide to Healing Intergenerational Trauma

From my list on cycle breakers who broke the cycle of trauma.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a trauma psychologist and intergenerational trauma expert who’s listened to countless client stories of generational pain and healing. I also write a weekly newsletter, called Break the Cycle, where I offer coping skills to cycle breakers and have the opportunity to read about the multitude of ways in which they are breaking away from trauma and creating legacies of abundance. It is in these stories, I believe, that we're able to see all the possibilities of how we may heal. I hope you enjoy these multilayered stories as much as I did! 

Mariel's book list on cycle breakers who broke the cycle of trauma

Mariel Buqué Why did Mariel love this book?

Our bodies tell stories of remnants of the past and in this memoir, Stephanie Foo proved to us that the body will indeed keep traces of unmetabolized pain that runs through our families.

This book reflects the spirit of intergenerational trauma, but also of intergenerational healing and the ways in which cycle breakers, and particularly those who are immigrants, have to build from the ashes of burned-down dreams and broken hearts. It is a reflection of how generational resilience comes to life, even in the darkest of moments.

By Stephanie Foo,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked What My Bones Know as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A searing memoir of reckoning and healing by acclaimed journalist Stephanie Foo, investigating the little-understood science behind complex PTSD and how it has shaped her life

“Achingly exquisite . . . providing real hope for those who long to heal.”—Lori Gottlieb, New York Times bestselling author of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone

ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: The Washington Post, Cosmopolitan, NPR, Mashable, She Reads, Publishers Weekly

By age thirty, Stephanie Foo was successful on paper: She had her dream job as an award-winning radio producer at This American Life and…


Book cover of The Corrections

Janice Weizman Author Of Our Little Histories

From my list on family dramas in a multi-generational perspective.

Why am I passionate about this?

For me, writing fiction is a way of tackling issues of fate and identity through storytelling. I believe we’re each the result of an intersection between personality and history and I’m interested in the way our time and place impacts us and creates a backdrop for our lives. My first novel, The Wayward Moon, is historical fiction set in the 9th-century Middle East. My second novel follows a Jewish family back six generations to Belarus. But no matter what period I’m writing about, the most important thing is always to tell a good story.

Janice's book list on family dramas in a multi-generational perspective

Janice Weizman Why did Janice love this book?

Franzen is at his best when depicting character, and The Corrections goes deep, creating a family drama that is rooted in detailed psychological portraits of his subjects.

In doing so, he meticulously builds their worlds, motivations, and fears, creating nuanced portrayals that not only reveal individual personality, but also the texture and color of life in America in the late 20th century.

Yet the true theme of the book is family dynamics: what does it mean when your mother insists that you come home for Christmas, and what does it mean when you don’t really want to go?

By Jonathan Franzen,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

#1 NEW YORK TIMES Bestseller
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER

“A spellbinding novel” (People) from the New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Franzen, the author of Crossroads, The Corrections is a comic, tragic epic of worlds colliding: an old-fashioned world of civic virtue and sexual inhibitions, a new world of home surveillance, hands-off parenting, do-it-yourself mental health care, and globalized greed.

After almost fifty years as a wife and mother, Enid Lambert is ready to have some fun. Unfortunately, her husband, Alfred, is losing his sanity to Parkinson’s disease, and their children have long since flown the family nest to the…


Book cover of Nobody Nowhere: The Remarkable Autobiography of an Autistic Girl

Sarah Hendrickx Author Of Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum: Understanding Life Experiences from Early Childhood to Old Age

From my list on autistic women.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an autistic female myself and have worked in the field of autism for 20 years. I’ve written several books on the subject of autism, have an MA in Autism and delivered many hundreds of conference presentations (several of which can be found on Youtube). Frankly, I know my stuff as I live and breathe the world of autistic women. I have an autistic daughter, all of my female friends are autistic and I have diagnosed hundreds of females as autistic.

Sarah's book list on autistic women

Sarah Hendrickx Why did Sarah love this book?

An extraordinary book written by an extraordinary woman.

Donna’s autobiography shares her often difficult childhood story and her ‘discovery’ that she was autistic at a time when diagnosis for women was uncommon. Her tale is harrowing at times, yet inspiring and so fascinating to learn of her life. A real classic of a book written by an autistic woman.

By Donna Williams,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Nobody Nowhere as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Donna Williams was a child with more labels than a jam-jar: deaf, wild disturbed, stupid insane... She lived within herself, her own world her foreground, ours a background she only visited. Isolated from her self and from the outside world, Donna was, in her words, a Nobody Nowhere. She swung violently between these two worlds, battling to join our world and, simultaneously, to keep it out. Abandoned from all connection to the self within her, she lived as a ghost with a body, a patchwork of the images which bombarded her. Intact but detached from the seemingly incomprehensible world around…


Book cover of A Face for Picasso: Coming of Age with Crouzon Syndrome

Zara Stone Author Of Killer Looks: The Forgotten History of Plastic Surgery in Prisons

From my list on how pretty privilege has infiltrated America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated by the way people respond to physical beauty since childhood—my teachers heaped praise on the pretty kids, reserving hard words for the less genetically blessed. This experience drove me to explore the pervasive ways in which unconscious beauty bias perpetuates injustice, and how it intersects with racism and privilege. Prison plastic surgery might sound like a punchline but for many, it was a lifeline. UK-born, I now live in San Francisco and have a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, New York. My work has been published by The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Wired, and Fast Company, among others.

Zara's book list on how pretty privilege has infiltrated America

Zara Stone Why did Zara love this book?

This first-person account of what it’s like to grow up visibly different is beautifully written, and manages to be both heartrending and uplifting at the same time. Henley does a stellar job of keeping the reader invested in her struggles, and her musings on how pervasive the idea of arbitrary physical traits and one’s value as an individual is, makes for an uncomfortable but necessary read. A must-read for anyone who’s ever felt like they don’t fit in.

By Ariel Henley,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked A Face for Picasso as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Raw and unflinching . . . A must-read!" --Marieke Nijkamp, #1 New York Times-bestselling author of This Is Where It Ends

"[It] cuts to the heart of our bogus ideas of beauty." -Scott Westerfeld, #1 New York Times-bestselling author of Uglies

I am ugly. There's a mathematical equation to prove it.

At only eight months old, identical twin sisters Ariel and Zan were diagnosed with Crouzon syndrome -- a rare condition where the bones in the head fuse prematurely. They were the first twins known to survive it.

Growing up, Ariel and her sister endured numerous appearance-altering procedures. Surgeons would…


Book cover of The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Barbara Nickless Author Of Blood on the Tracks

From my list on what it is like to go to war and come home.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm an award-winning and bestselling author who teaches creative writing to veterans as part of a collaboration between the Department of Defense and the National Endowment for the Arts. I’m also an Air Force brat who grew up around military folk. After traumatic events gave me personal experience with post-traumatic stress disorder, I better understood why veterans don’t talk about their time in war. The books on this list are some of my favorites for capturing the terror of battle and the difficulty of reintegrating into a society that gives little thought to the human cost of war. 

Barbara's book list on what it is like to go to war and come home

Barbara Nickless Why did Barbara love this book?

For Morris, war was a siren call, “exalting” work that allowed him to “challenge death.” But once redeployed to the safety of America, he realized that months and years of waiting for the next bomb to explode had taught his body to react to potential threats in the environment that his mind rightfully ignored. A sack of trash at the side of the road. A car backfiring. A restless crowd. For the combat veteran, these everyday triggers can generate a crippling flashback or a spiraling panic, the body shooting up flares of alarm before the mind has time to recognize that in America, a bag of trash is just trash. The Evil Hours is a brilliant, evocative, and often poetic portrayal of one man’s quest to leave the war behind.

By David J. Morris,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

“An essential book” on PTSD, an all-too-common condition in both military veterans and civilians (The New York Times Book Review).
 
Post-traumatic stress disorder afflicts as many as 30 percent of those who have experienced twenty-first-century combat—but it is not confined to soldiers. Countless ordinary Americans also suffer from PTSD, following incidences of abuse, crime, natural disasters, accidents, or other trauma—yet in many cases their symptoms are still shrouded in mystery, secrecy, and shame.
 
This “compulsively readable” study takes an in-depth look at the subject (Los Angeles Times). Written by a war correspondent and former Marine with firsthand experience of this…


Book cover of My Sister's Keeper

Staci Troilo Author Of Type and Cross

From my list on dysfunctional family drama to make you feel better.

Why am I passionate about this?

Misery loves company, right? While I never wish ill on someone, I find comfort in knowing I’m not the only one going through a loss, slight, or rejection. Family dysfunction novels remind me that the petty problems I get caught up in are nothing compared to what they could be. Sure, fiction frequently elevates these troubles from drama to melodrama, but I still experience relief—even though it may only be in the smallest way—focusing on someone else’s struggles. Sometimes I even find a solution to my own paltry issues. Who wouldn’t want that? And what writer wouldn’t want to help readers in that way?

Staci's book list on dysfunctional family drama to make you feel better

Staci Troilo Why did Staci love this book?

The sickness or death of a child is a particularly sharp arrow to the average person’s heart.

But I think anyone who’s suffered the loss of a child, seen their child’s life in jeopardy, or is close to someone who’s been through one of those situations is even more sensitive to the topic. My heart and soul were battered from word one, but I had to read this book.

How far would a parent go to save her child? This story explored the question from many angles in a poignant way and left me in tears. I dare people to read it and not ask themselves the same questions.

By Jodi Picoult,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked My Sister's Keeper as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sara and Brian Fitzgerald's life with their young son and their two-year-old daughter, Kate, is forever altered when they learn that Kate has leukemia. The parents' only hope is to conceive another child, specifically intended to save Kate's life. For some, such genetic engineering would raise both moral and ethical questions; for the Fitzgeralds, Sara in particular, there is no choice but to do whatever it takes to keep Kate alive. And what it takes is Anna. Kate (Sofia Vassilieva) and Anna (Abigail Breslin) share a bond closer than most sisters: though Kate is older, she relies on her little…


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