100 books like Fifteen Minutes to Live

By Phoef Sutton,

Here are 100 books that Fifteen Minutes to Live fans have personally recommended if you like Fifteen Minutes to Live. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Before I Fall

Jodi Perkins Author Of Chasing Echoes

From my list on where time is out to get you.

Why am I passionate about this?

During my fifth year teaching 7th grade, I found myself repeating the same lessons as prior years, participating in the same club events, marching in the same parades, etc. My students would inevitably reach the end of the school year and move on, while I was forever frozen in 7th grade. Herein my fascination with time loops was born. Over a decade later, I’m now happily teaching high school English while moonlighting as a writer of stories featuring temporal anomalies and time travel. I hope to spread my wings into dystopians and fractured fairy tales in the future, but until then…I may or may not have 22 clocks in my house.

Jodi's book list on where time is out to get you

Jodi Perkins Why did Jodi love this book?

Before I Fall is Mean Girls meets Groundhog Day, with the popular and pretty protagonist, Sam, forced to relive February 12th (her beloved “Cupid’s Day”) over and over. In the beginning, I had no love for Sam and was appalled by her and her friend’s nasty behavior, but Sam’s character growth throughout the novel is inspirational. The time-turning in the novel is handled flawlessly with repeated events never growing dull, and each new loop offering another layer to Sam’s redemption. Admittedly the book didn’t end the way I wanted (I’m a fan of fairy tale endings, even if unrealistic), but watching Sam evolve from a shallow mean girl to a beautiful soul was a moving experience and made the book worth the read.

By Lauren Oliver,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Before I Fall 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?

A bestselling summer read as heartbreaking as The Lovely Bones and as gripping as Jenny Downham's Before I Die.

**Now a major Netflix movie starring Zoey Deutch, Halston Sage, Logan Miller, Kian Lawley*

'Gossip Girl meets Groundhog Day' Grazia

'Tender, funny and raw' Marie Claire

'A clever, funny, insightful and utterly addictive novel' Daily Mail

'Compelling and poignant, a truly memorable read' Closer

They say 'live every day as if it's your last' - but you never actually think it's going to be. At least I didn't.
The thing is, you don't get to know when it happens. You don't…


Book cover of Replay

Larry A. Brown Author Of Temporal Gambit

From my list on time travel resulting in alternate realities.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have read SF, starting with the classic Jules Verne, since I was a young teenager. Soon I discovered Bradbury, Asimov, Clarke, Ellison, Zelazny, Dick, all of whom lit up my mind with wondrous and sometimes dangerous visions of possible futures. During the COVID shutdown period, when our university went to online instruction, my wife convinced me to try my hand at writing in my favorite genre. Previously I had written a textbook, How Films Tell Stories (listed here at Shepherd), but never any fiction, so I wrote Temporal Gambit, a time-travel adventure combined with themes of first contact, artificial intelligence, and alternate history. I then followed it with a sequel. I hope you enjoy. 

Larry's book list on time travel resulting in alternate realities

Larry A. Brown Why did Larry love this book?

If you could go back and change something about your life, would you?

The hero of this story inadvertently finds himself returning to his past time and again, each instance trying to follow a different path to success or happiness. But just as he finds what he thought he wanted, the cycle begins again. 

By Ken Grimwood,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Replay 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?

At forty-three Jeff Winston is tired of his low-paid, unrewarding job, tired of the long silences at the breakfast table with his wife, saddened by the thought of no children to comfort his old age. But he hopes for better things, for happiness, maybe tomorrow ...

But a sudden, fatal heart attack puts paid to that. Until Jeff wakes up in his eighteen-year-old body, all his memories of the next twenty-five years intact. If he applies those memories, he can be rich in this new chance at life and can become one of the most powerful men in America.

Until…


Book cover of One Second After

Jodi Perkins Author Of Chasing Echoes

From my list on where time is out to get you.

Why am I passionate about this?

During my fifth year teaching 7th grade, I found myself repeating the same lessons as prior years, participating in the same club events, marching in the same parades, etc. My students would inevitably reach the end of the school year and move on, while I was forever frozen in 7th grade. Herein my fascination with time loops was born. Over a decade later, I’m now happily teaching high school English while moonlighting as a writer of stories featuring temporal anomalies and time travel. I hope to spread my wings into dystopians and fractured fairy tales in the future, but until then…I may or may not have 22 clocks in my house.

Jodi's book list on where time is out to get you

Jodi Perkins Why did Jodi love this book?

In One Second After, everything about our comfortable, familiar world is turned upside-down in the blink of an eye. In his novel, Forstchen examines how reliant we are on our infrastructure and how quickly we degenerate once that network is broken. The book, while not a great feat of literature, is fast-paced and enjoyable. Despite a few one-dimensional characters, gender stereotypes, and occasional flat dialogue, I loved the invaluable information about EMPs (a topic I never knew I wanted to know more about) and appreciated the novel’s harsh, unflinching vision of how fragile our society is. The idea that everything you know and love can change in one measly second is a powerful lesson that should be pondered not just through the lens of EMPs, but in general life.

By William R. Forstchen,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked One Second After as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A post-apocalyptic thriller of the after effects in the United States after a terrifying terrorist attack using electromagnetic pulse weapons.

New York Times best selling author William R. Forstchen now brings us a story which can be all too terrifyingly real...a story in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war, in one second, a war that will send America back to the Dark Ages...A war based upon a weapon, an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP). A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies.

Months before…


Book cover of UnHappenings

Larry A. Brown Author Of Temporal Gambit

From my list on time travel resulting in alternate realities.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have read SF, starting with the classic Jules Verne, since I was a young teenager. Soon I discovered Bradbury, Asimov, Clarke, Ellison, Zelazny, Dick, all of whom lit up my mind with wondrous and sometimes dangerous visions of possible futures. During the COVID shutdown period, when our university went to online instruction, my wife convinced me to try my hand at writing in my favorite genre. Previously I had written a textbook, How Films Tell Stories (listed here at Shepherd), but never any fiction, so I wrote Temporal Gambit, a time-travel adventure combined with themes of first contact, artificial intelligence, and alternate history. I then followed it with a sequel. I hope you enjoy. 

Larry's book list on time travel resulting in alternate realities

Larry A. Brown Why did Larry love this book?

One of the best SF novels I’ve read in the last 25 years.

The story takes you on a journey through multiple, shifting realities as different time travelers compete to change history to their advantage without wiping out everything and everyone they know and love.

Unlike so many books these days, this one never drags or bores with unnecessary background details but keeps moving from one catastrophic change to another. Highly recommended. 

By Edward Aubry,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

When Nigel Walden is fourteen, the UNHAPPENINGS begin. His first girlfriend disappears the day after their first kiss with no indication she ever existed. This retroactive change is the first of many only he seems to notice.

Several years later, when Nigel is visited by two people from his future, he hopes they can explain why the past keeps rewriting itself around him. But the enigmatic young guide shares very little, and the haggard, incoherent, elderly version of himself is even less reliable. His search for answers takes him fifty-two years forward in time, where he finds himself stranded and…


Book cover of Lost and Bound

Elle Arroyo Author Of The Nine: Zane

From my list on dark fantasy enemies to lovers mm romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an author and avid reader of romance, especially those full of conflict in a world heavy with magic, shifters, vampires, and others. My dad was a great storyteller and sparked my interest in the paranormal. When I was a kid, he’d tell me stories about growing up in the mountains of Puerto Rico. The evil that lived there. My imagination took it from there. I wish I would’ve written down those stories. I can’t get him to talk about them anymore. It might be the reason why The Nine: Zane had started out as a contemporary romance story until Zane took over with all his paranormal drama. 

Elle's book list on dark fantasy enemies to lovers mm romance

Elle Arroyo Why did Elle love this book?

This is book six of the Mismatched Mates series.

It’s part of a shifter series with bound mates, forced proximity, enemies to lovers. Two shifters jailed and experimented on join forces to escape their prison. One of them must be willing to sacrifice his life to do it. I love this one!

The MC was once viewed as the bad guy in his pack. Meant to be food, he’s tossed into the cell with an alpha shifter whose been changed into something else. They are forced to mate to escape and what follows is a series of alpha male influence and blooming love. Though neither of them believes they deserve their HEA.  

By Eliot Grayson,

Why should I read it?

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


Book cover of Twelve Days

Liz Flaherty Author Of A Soft Place to Fall

From my list on romance and women’s fiction on marriages resurrected.

Why am I passionate about this?

My passion for this theme comes from my own long marriage and my passion for it. Having heard the phrase “I wouldn’t put up with that” so many times, it’s a relief to me to read that yes, many people do. Instead of giving up on something as important to them as a life partnership, they don’t give up until all hope is gone. Marriage resurrected is all about hope.

Liz's book list on romance and women’s fiction on marriages resurrected

Liz Flaherty Why did Liz love this book?

I love this story, although my heart was breaking the whole time I read it.

Sam and Rachel’s dream of a houseful of kids is going to come true, at least for 12 days, although it’s already too late to salvage their marriage. Too much has happened…or hasn’t.

Rachel and Sam have already faced more loss and disappointment than they can bear, but it’s amazing what the heart can handle when it needs to, albeit with lots of cracks and scar tissue.

And it’s Christmas, after all… 

By Teresa Hill,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The timeless holiday love story from the USA Today bestselling author


Book cover of Spring Fancy

Victoria Chatham Author Of His Unexpected Muse

From my list on endings with happy everafters for any era.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born in Clifton, in the city of Bristol, England. Clifton is known for its elegant Georgian and Regency architecture. Growing up in these surroundings gave me an impression of what life might have been like for the people who lived there, the families upstairs and servants belowstairs. In front of a few houses on some streets, there are still stone blocks at the curb, worn smooth from countless feet entering and exiting their carriages. I have used Clifton as a setting in some of the books I have written, hoping to make those scenes more realistic and bring history alive for my readers. 

Victoria's book list on endings with happy everafters for any era

Victoria Chatham Why did Victoria love this book?

While this is not a Regency romance, it is the best contemporary romance I have ever read and is another one I come back to time and again because it is so well written. The characters are well drawn, there is snappy dialogue, several twists, high sexual tension, and who could resist a heroine who blinks with one eye? 

By Lavyrle Spencer,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

From New York Times bestselling author LaVyrle Spencer comes a novel that perfectly captures the tender and delicate beginnings of love in bloom.

Confident and practical, Winn never imagined anything-or anyone-could overturn her perfect world and perfect wedding plans. But in a single passing moment, her heart told her otherwise.

Joseph knew Winn's love was promised to another man, that he must hide his heartfelt passions. But he also knew that the heart doesn't lie: This was that love of a lifetime.

They met at a spring wedding, only months before Winn's own. Were they carried away by the intoxicating…


Book cover of Her Lover's Face

Estelle Pettersen Author Of Rainbow Desire

From my list on romance with a thrilling plot.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a big fan of romance books with thrilling plots. It’s partly how I remember the stories years later. When I wrote Flowers for Kate in the Rainbow Desire anthology, it started as a pure romance, but I added a supernatural thrill. One reader admitted checking over her shoulder in case a spectral being was there while reading the story. I love writing stories with twists and turns, and surprising readers. Maybe it comes from my childhood days of being a Scooby-Doo fan—I loved the thrill of guessing the mysteries behind each character and the villain being unmasked. I’m an ex-journalist who has published romance stories from erotic to sweet.

Estelle's book list on romance with a thrilling plot

Estelle Pettersen Why did Estelle love this book?

This book is surrounded by a shroud of mystery from the start. Laryssa Mitchell reclaims her life after the death of her abusive husband. She starts taking back what was lost – her independence and her old job. But she finds herself in a living nightmare when she meets her new boss. Who is the man standing in front of her with her dead husband’s face? Alexander Richards is the spitting image of Laryssa’s ex, but instead of darkness, she finds light in this caring man in the midst of danger. The passion is hot and there are plenty of thrills in this novel.

By Patricia Elliott,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Laryssa Mitchell is one of the lucky ones. The death of her abusive husband finally allows her to live again on her own terms, making her own choices. Her first official decision is to take back what was lost – her independence and her old job. But she soon finds herself in a living nightmare when she meets her new boss. If her husband is rotting in hell, then who is the man standing in front of her with a dead man’s face?Alexander Richards doesn’t expect to catch an unconscious woman in his arms on his first day of work,…


Book cover of Betrayal

Isabel Jolie Author Of Better to See You

From my list on gripping romantic suspense loaded with heart.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an avid romance reader, I read all romance subgenres, but hold a deep appreciation for romantic suspense. By its nature, romantic suspense novels require multiple plot lines, and a host of characters must come to life, both villains and heroes. The story may be dark, but the light always perseveres. Of the fourteen romance novels I’ve published, nine are romantic suspense. A practical person by nature, I spent decades in the business world before venturing into creative writing. I have an MBA from New York University and a BA in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Isabel's book list on gripping romantic suspense loaded with heart

Isabel Jolie Why did Isabel love this book?

I started reading this book on the first night of a beach vacation.

By the end of the week, I devoured all five books in the series. Yep, it’s that good. The story is an intricate tale filled with elegant prose.

Thrilling, mysterious, sexy, dark, and ominous, it is not about infidelity, as the title might suggest, but rather corrupt wealth within a wealthy southern family.

Romantic suspense weaves the line between love and danger, and Romig is a master weaver.

By Aleatha Romig, Lisa Aurello (editor),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

One week. No future. No past. No more.Alexandria Collins has one week to live carefree—no ghosts of her past or pressures of her future haunting her. Reinventing herself as "Charli," she is knocked off her feet by a sexy, mysterious man who brings her pleasure like she never imagined. With her heart at stake, she forgets that decisions made in the dark of night reappear in the bright light of day. "Some of my tastes are unique. They aren’t for everyone. I understand that.” Lennox "Nox" Demetri is wealthy, confident, and decisive--he knows what he wants. From the first time…


Book cover of Picture Us in the Light

Catherine Con Morse Author Of The Notes

From my list on coming of age Asian authors love a good cry.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up, I hardly ever saw books written by people who looked like me, about people who looked like me. When I did, the Asians were often side characters, typecast as nerds (and not in a good way). I didn’t get to see Asians being “cool” kids, and I definitely didn’t see them as love interests. When I went to a performing arts boarding school, it was the first time I wasn’t the only Asian student in my class, and it was life-changing. I think if I had had these books when I was a kid, it would’ve been easier to be confident about who I was.

Catherine's book list on coming of age Asian authors love a good cry

Catherine Con Morse Why did Catherine love this book?

I fell for this book because of its lyrical sentences, multiple narratives uncovering long-buried secrets, and exploration of the tensions and traumas of family, friendship, romantic love, and the immigrant experience. The people in this novel are all memorable and well-developed—even the adults, which can sometimes be hard to come by in YA books.

I was swept up in the world of the high-pressure Cupertino suburbs, and I love that nearly all the characters were Asian American. It also didn’t hurt that it’s narrated by a talented and troubled teen artist.

By Kelly Loy Gilbert,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Picture Us in the Light 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?

"Picture me madly in love with this moving, tender, unapologetically honest book."—Becky Albertalli, #1 best-selling author of Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Danny Cheng has always known his parents have secrets. But when he discovers a taped-up box in his father's closet filled with old letters and a file on a powerful Bay Area family, he realizes there's much more to his family's past than he ever imagined.

Danny has been an artist for as long as he can remember and it seems his path is set, with a scholarship to RISD and his family's blessing to pursue the…


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