100 books like Inkheart

By Cornelia Funke, Anthea Bell (translator),

Here are 100 books that Inkheart fans have personally recommended if you like Inkheart. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of East

Alexandria Miracola Author Of Penelope Grace and the Winter Carousel

From my list on fantasy to reignite your sense of wonder.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been captivated by wonder for four years now, but it’s my family’s experience of grief that convinced me that wonder is essential. On a dark December day, my grandpa, John, passed away. There was an emptiness that would not go away, until God broke through the darkness that was suffocating our hearts and home. I was reminded that wonder is a gift from a loving, intentional Father and a sword that cuts through the lies that tell us faith is pointless, childish, and weak. I hope that my own story, as well as the others I’ve shared here, helps reignite your own desire to fight for wonder.

Alexandria's book list on fantasy to reignite your sense of wonder

Alexandria Miracola Why did Alexandria love this book?

This is a retelling of the classic fairy tale, and it’s a world that I love to disappear into year after year. East challenged me to see beyond the surface of my circumstances and gave a glimpse of the treasure that was only waiting for me to have the eyes to see it. It’s the book that convinced me that the reality of grief wasn’t the end of my family’s story.

By Edith Pattou,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked East as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Full of fear and excitement, Rose, a young woman, journeys to a distant castle on the back of a great white bear, only to find that her journey has just begun, in a retelling of the classic tale, "East of the Sun and West of the Moon." Jr. Lib Guild. An ALA Notable Book & Top Ten Best Books for Young Readers. Reprint.


Book cover of A Discovery of Witches

Caren Simpson McVicker Author Of Henderson House

From my list on believing in magic again.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a debut novelist at the age of fifty-seven, I’ve spent most of my life as a reader, not an author. My love of reading began with The Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and flourished when I discovered the genre of fantasy with The Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin. Is it any wonder I giggle with delight when I stumble upon a book that makes me believe in magic again? When an author weaves the supernatural into their story in a natural way, my expectations shift, and my heart opens to the power of the unknown to teach me something new and take me somewhere extraordinary.

Caren's book list on believing in magic again

Caren Simpson McVicker Why did Caren love this book?

I love books about books, so I was thrilled when Oxford's Bodleian Library and a bewitched alchemical manuscript turned up as the linchpin of this enchanting love story between a vampire and a reluctant witch.

While this story was made into a television series, do yourself a favor and read the entire trilogy. Harkness creates a compelling framework of history and heroics, love and loss, and friendship and betrayal for her underworld creatures to inhabit. And these are not your typical creatures of the night, but accomplished scholars, physicians, and scientists.

This book is one of those rare novels I wish I could read again for the first time and fall under its magical and mesmerizing spell anew.

By Deborah Harkness,

Why should I read it?

17 authors picked A Discovery of Witches as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this tale of passion and obsession, Diana Bishop, a young scholar and a descendant of witches, discovers a long-lost and enchanted alchemical manuscript, Ashmole 782, deep in Oxford's Bodleian Library. Its reappearance summons a fantastical underworld, which she navigates with her leading man, vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont.


Book cover of The Eyes of the Dragon

Jo Danilo Author Of The Blackwood Crusade

From my list on modern fairy tales to make you believe in magic.

Why am I passionate about this?

My mum tells me I used to sit with a book of fairytales open on my lap, aged three, and ‘read’ them out loud. Of course, I wasn’t reading them because I couldn’t read yet; I had memorised them all, word for word. Later, having consumed all the traditional tales and still with a hunger for more, I began reading modern fairytales. They opened up a whole new world; a world of light and darkness where anything at all is possible and unusual characters and events cascade from the pages. And then I realised I could actually write my own…

Jo's book list on modern fairy tales to make you believe in magic

Jo Danilo Why did Jo love this book?

“Did they all live happily ever after? They did not. No one ever does, in spite of what the stories may say.” This is a book I have read over and over again, and I never tire of it. Unlike the horror books he is well known for, this one was written by Stephen King for his daughter, and it is rooted firmly in a fairy-tale world, featuring a brave prince, his not-so-brave brother, a hunted dragon, and a truly nasty magician. However, King has injected this tale with his own, unique flair for interesting characters and truly gut-churning scenarios, and the story is all the better for it. 

By Stephen King,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In the kingdom of Delain, a young prince must struggle against powerful forces to gain his rightful inheritance.


Book cover of The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure

Benjamin Patterson Author Of The Shadow of His Hand

From my list on old school fantasy books that pit good against evil.

Why am I passionate about this?

After devouring fantasy novels in my late teens and early twenties, I eventually hit a dead end. Where had all the good old-school fantasy gone? I wanted dashing heroes, compelling love stories, and epic battles between good and evil, but I could not seem to find it anymore–at least not as regularly as I wanted to. Eventually I set about writing my own stories, the kind of stories I always wanted to read. When I’m writing, I always go back to books on this list to rekindle my fire and remind me what good fantasy should be.

Benjamin's book list on old school fantasy books that pit good against evil

Benjamin Patterson Why did Benjamin love this book?

It’s not just an awesome movie, it’s a book, and it’s got everything I want in a fantasy epic: Pirates, princesses, sword fights, and giants. It’s old-school fantasy at its best.

If you’ve seen the movie, be prepared for some stark differences, but do not lose heart. It’s still a fantastic read where good overcomes evil and true love wins. 

By William Goldman,

Why should I read it?

18 authors picked The Princess Bride 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?

William Goldman’s beloved story of Buttercup, Westley, and their fellow adventurers.

This tale of true love, high adventure, pirates, princesses, giants, miracles, fencing, and a frightening assortment of wild beasts was unforgettably depicted in the 1987 film directed by Rob Reiner and starring Fred Savage, Robin Wright, and others. But, rich in character and satire, the novel boasts even more layers of ingenious storytelling. Set in 1941 and framed cleverly as an “abridged” retelling of a centuries-old tale set in the fabled country of Florin, home to “Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest…


Book cover of Autobiography of Red: A Novel in Verse

Joseph Fasano Author Of The Magic Words: Simple Poetry Prompts That Unlock the Creativity in Everyone

From my list on greatest book-length poems of the past 50 years.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a poet and a novelist, I'm fascinated by the places where these two genres meet, undo each other, and create something new again. That sounds a lot like what love can do, and whenever I read a long poem that achieves a unique aesthetic unity, I feel the writer has found a new way to love the world, to love the reader. And, as usual, both the world and the reader are challenged by that love—to grow.

Joseph's book list on greatest book-length poems of the past 50 years

Joseph Fasano Why did Joseph love this book?

 On the spectrum that ranges from narrative fragmentation to narrative linearity, this verse novel triumphs in its capacity to compel the reader both to turn the page and linger over every fine phrase.

A remarkably contemporary retelling of ancient myth, Autobiography of Red reminds us that the ancient stories are the new ones. As the poet Linda Gregg once wrote, “The singers change, the music goes on.” This is a must-read for all students of poetry and lovers of literary experimentation.

By Anne Carson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In this extraordinary epic poem, Anne Carson bridges the gap between classicism and the modern, poetry and prose, with a volcanic journey into the soul of a winged red monster named Geryon.

There is a strong mixture of whimsy and sadness in Geryon's story. He is tormented as a boy by his brother, escapes to a parallel world of photography, and falls in love with Herakles - a golden young man who leaves Geryon at the peak of infatuation. Geryon retreats ever further into the world created by his camera, until that glass house is suddenly and irrevocably shattered by…


Book cover of Mangaman

J.M. Frey Author Of The Untold Tale

From my list on meta-fiction about books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an actor as well as a writer. I’ve spent more hours than can be counted dissecting stories and characters in order to better understand and transmit them to an audience. While standing on a stage, an actor is never unaware that they are performing for others. We may lose ourselves in a moment, in a character, in emotion, but the applause and the gasps, and the laughter always bring us back. As a writer, I spend a lot of time tapping into that feeling of ignoring-while-being-totally-aware of the fourth wall. I love books that wink at readers the way actors can at audiences.

J.M.'s book list on meta-fiction about books

J.M. Frey Why did J.M. love this book?

I wrote my undergrad thesis on the migration of visual tropes from traditional Japanese theatre (Noh, Bunraku, and Kabuki) into modern art forms (Manga, Anime, Supakabuki/Anime Musicals), which was a rigorous exercise because I couldn’t just compare the tropes—I had to spend hours explaining them to my advisor. It was a fascinating (sometimes exasperating) lesson in learning to read one visual vocabulary, only to have to explain it to someone else in terms that they understood using another.

This blurred-xerox-translation-of-a-translation exercise is the central theme of Mangaman, where a Shojou-esque protagonist falls from a fantastical manga world into a comic. Visual conventions clash, where he walks the wrong way across panels, and where his speed lines accidentally stab people in the school hallway.

By Barry Lyga, Colleen Doran (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mangaman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

East meets West in this innovative and very smart graphic novel by Barry Lyga, illustrated by Colleen Doran.Sci-fi adventure meets love story—and East meets West—in Mangaman, an original
graphic novel for teens.
Ryoko, a manga character from a manga world, falls through the Rip into the “real” world—the western world—and tries to survive as the ultimate outsider at a typical American high school.
When Ryoko falls in love with Marissa Montaigne, the most beautiful girl in the school, his eyes turn to hearts and comic tension tightens as his way of being drawn and expressing himself clashes with this different…


Book cover of Bookweird

J.M. Frey Author Of The Untold Tale

From my list on meta-fiction about books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an actor as well as a writer. I’ve spent more hours than can be counted dissecting stories and characters in order to better understand and transmit them to an audience. While standing on a stage, an actor is never unaware that they are performing for others. We may lose ourselves in a moment, in a character, in emotion, but the applause and the gasps, and the laughter always bring us back. As a writer, I spend a lot of time tapping into that feeling of ignoring-while-being-totally-aware of the fourth wall. I love books that wink at readers the way actors can at audiences.

J.M.'s book list on meta-fiction about books

J.M. Frey Why did J.M. love this book?

A gentler, kinder version of Inkheart and The Untold Tale, this novel is still thrilling. I love the idea of consuming a book as literally as we do figuratively. In this one, our protagonist absentmindedly eats a page out of his favourite bedtime story and wakes up inside it. He has to hop from story to story to get home, crossing through his sister’s horse books and many an adventure before making it safe to his own bed. I think it’s totally charming.

By Paul Glennon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bookweird as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Norman Jespers-Vilnius is just an average eleven-year-old kid–until he absentmindedly nibbles on the edge of a page and wakes up inside his favourite book, the Undergrowth Series. Norman finds himself smack in the middle of an epic battle of animal kingdoms, where he forms a close friendship with young Malcolm, a future king. After joining Malcolm’s fight he winds up back in his own bed, dirty and in torn pyjamas. But his adventures have only just started. It soon becomes clear that Norman has been caught by a mystifying force called “Bookweird”– Norman finds himself inside books his family is…


Book cover of Stranger Than Fiction

J.M. Frey Author Of The Untold Tale

From my list on meta-fiction about books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an actor as well as a writer. I’ve spent more hours than can be counted dissecting stories and characters in order to better understand and transmit them to an audience. While standing on a stage, an actor is never unaware that they are performing for others. We may lose ourselves in a moment, in a character, in emotion, but the applause and the gasps, and the laughter always bring us back. As a writer, I spend a lot of time tapping into that feeling of ignoring-while-being-totally-aware of the fourth wall. I love books that wink at readers the way actors can at audiences.

J.M.'s book list on meta-fiction about books

J.M. Frey Why did J.M. love this book?

Though not a book, the film starring Will Ferrell and Emma Thompson borrowed heavily from "Niebla" by Miguel de Unamuno, a Spanish novel about a character who becomes aware he is being narrated by a writer and goes to visit the writer. This film lives rent-free in my heart because the style of self-awareness that Ferrell’s character experiences in this film is close to the way I conceived of the meta-awareness of the characters Forsyth and Kintyre in The Untold Tale. I love the idea of someone learning they are being puppeteered and breaking free of the expected, the prescribed, and the narrative laid out for them. Maybe that’s why I like the film The Truman Show so much, too.

By Zach Helm,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In this strange and delightful tale, an IRS agent namedHarold Crick suddenly finds himself the subject of a narrationonly he can hear—narration that soon affects everythingfrom his work to his love life to his death. Starring WillFerrell, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah,and Emma Thompson, Stranger Than Fiction is a heartfelt film,perhaps a comedy, perhaps a tragedy, about love and literatureand death and taxes.


Book cover of The Goose Girl

Elizabeth Lowham Author Of Beauty Reborn

From my list on giving new life to old fairy tales.

Why am I passionate about this?

My debut novel is a Beauty and the Beast retelling because I’ve been obsessed with fairy tales all my life, and I’m thrilled to share some of my favorite retellings with you! When I was a child, my grandma gave me an illustrated collection of fairy tales. She had grown up reading stories from Hans Christian Andersen and the Grimm brothers, and she wanted to share that with me. It was an interest I gladly adopted. I love seeing my favorite fairy tales told with new twists and elements that bring the stories to life all over again and let me fall in love with them one more time.

Elizabeth's book list on giving new life to old fairy tales

Elizabeth Lowham Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Sometimes you read a book that lingers with you for years—this is that book.

The Goose Girl is an enchanting, beautifully poetic read that captures the essence of everything that makes fairy tales magical. It’s a bit longer than most fairy tale retellings, but it makes the pages count, and it develops sweet relationships between the characters.

This is also the start of a series, with later books covering the side characters and giving them their own chances to shine. 10/10.

By Shannon Hale,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The Goose Girl as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 13, 14, 15, and 16.

What is this book about?

In this beloved first book in the Books of Bayern, from New York Times bestselling author Shannon Hale, Princess Ani must become a goose girl before she can become queen.

Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree, spends the first years of her life listening to her aunt's stories and learning the language of the birds, especially the swans. As she grows up, Ani develops the skills of animal speech, but she never feels quite comfortable speaking with people.

So when Ani's mother sends her away to be married in a foreign land, she finds herself at the mercy of…


Book cover of Twilight

Vicki-Ann Bush Author Of Alex McKenna and the Geranium Deaths

From my list on paranormal books for talking with the dead.

Why am I passionate about this?

Since I was very young, I’ve had experiences with the paranormal. Whether it be a soft graze along my cheek or a spirit standing in front of me, I’ve always been drawn to things behind the veil. Joining the world of the living with the dead comes natural for me, and reading the genres of paranormal and fantasy is like a cup of hot tea on a chilly winter afternoon.

Vicki-Ann's book list on paranormal books for talking with the dead

Vicki-Ann Bush Why did Vicki-Ann love this book?

I fell in love with the characters. Even the ones I didn’t necessarily like, I wanted to read more about.

More importantly, for me, this book came out at a time when I was having difficulties in my own relationship. The idea of being apart from the one person I thought would be forever shattered me. Reading Bella’s emotions for Edward and the crushing heartbreak she felt, was like reading about my feelings on the pages of the book.

Of course there’s vampires and I love all things vampire.

By Stephenie Meyer,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Twilight as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 13, 14, 15, and 16.

What is this book about?

When 17 year old Isabella Swan moves to Forks, Washington to live with her father she expects that her new life will be as dull as the town.

But in spite of her awkward manner and low expectations, she finds that her new classmates are drawn to this pale, dark-haired new girl in town. But not, it seems, the Cullen family. These five adopted brothers and sisters obviously prefer their own company and will make no exception for Bella.

Bella is convinced that Edward Cullen in particular hates her, but she feels a strange attraction to him, although his hostility…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Italy, magic-supernatural, and fairy tales?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Italy, magic-supernatural, and fairy tales.

Italy Explore 378 books about Italy
Magic-Supernatural Explore 601 books about magic-supernatural
Fairy Tales Explore 290 books about fairy tales