98 books like Kidnapped

By Robert Louis Stevenson,

Here are 98 books that Kidnapped fans have personally recommended if you like Kidnapped. 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 The Steel Bonnets: The Story of the Anglo-Scottish Border Reivers

Andrew Greig Author Of Rose Nicolson: Memoir of William Fowler of Edinburgh

From my list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born in rural Bannockburn in Scotland, two fields from the site of the famous Battle (a rare victory over England) of 1314. From the start, the Past has always been very present to me. I have written 22 books: novels, non-fiction memoir, and poetry. In differing ways they all explore aspects of Scotland and being Scottish – our landscape, geology, history, culture, and psyche. I was brought up in East Fife, near St Andrews, and live in Edinburgh and Orkney; my mother was English, as is my wife, novelist Lesley Glaister. Which is by way of saying I am interested in writing the joys, aches, and complexities of being human, in the universal and the local, in our present and the Past that shapes it.

Andrew's book list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands

Andrew Greig Why did Andrew love this book?

By the author of the wonderfully wicked Flashman novels, this is simply the best book I know on the Reivers (Rustlers) of the Scottish-English Borderlands C14-16th. I referred to it often when constructing Rose Nicolson and Fair Helen. As with Flashman, it depicts resourceful, desperate men and women, trying to survive and prosper amid the shambles of History – in this case, the ungovernable Borderlands. Finely researched, vivid and balanced, Fraser brings to life the extraordinary people of Borders myth and history. Imagine a Wild West that lasted some 300 years of horse and cattle rustling, kidnap and ransom, protection rackets (the words gang and blackmail - black meal or black rent - come from the reivers exploits), with some great narrative poetry and jokes grim or hilarious. A Borderer himself, Fraser gets the romance and the less romantic necessities that governed these intensely-lived, skillful, precarious lives.

By George MacDonald Fraser,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Title: The Steel Bonnets( The Story of the Anglo-Scottish Border Reivers) <>Binding: Paperback <>Author: GeorgeMacDonaldFraser <>Publisher: SkyhorsePublishing


Book cover of Witch Wood

Ursula Buchan Author Of Beyond the Thirty-Nine Steps: A Life of John Buchan

From my list on Scottish historical fiction from the 20th century.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an award-winning author and journalist, specialising in social history and gardening. I have an M.A. in Modern History from Cambridge University and a Diploma of Horticulture from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. I have written for many British newspapers and magazines, most notably The Spectator, The Observer, The Independent, The Sunday Telegraph, The Daily Telegraphand The Garden.

Ursula's book list on Scottish historical fiction from the 20th century

Ursula Buchan Why did Ursula love this book?

Witch Wood tells the story of a high-minded, ardent and scholarly young Presbyterian minister, David Sempill, who is called to a benighted Tweeddale parish in 1645 at the time of the War of Three Kingdoms, and how his desire to root out covert witchcraft amongst some of his most ‘devout’ parishioners at a time of civil war and plague leads to tragedy and exile. The Marquis of Montrose, on whose biography John Buchan was working at the same time, has a walk-on part in the story. John Buchan considered this his best work of fiction, and I agree.

By John Buchan, John Buchan,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Buchan's favourite of all his novels, Witch Wood deals with the hypocrisy that can lie beneath god-fearing respectability.

The book is set in the terrifying times of the first half of the seventeenth century when the Church of Scotland unleashed a wave of cruelty and intolerance. Minister Sempill witnesses devil worship in the 'Witch Wood' and is persecuted. It comes with an introduction by Allan Massie.


Book cover of The Debatable Land: The Lost World Between Scotland and England

Andrew Greig Author Of Rose Nicolson: Memoir of William Fowler of Edinburgh

From my list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born in rural Bannockburn in Scotland, two fields from the site of the famous Battle (a rare victory over England) of 1314. From the start, the Past has always been very present to me. I have written 22 books: novels, non-fiction memoir, and poetry. In differing ways they all explore aspects of Scotland and being Scottish – our landscape, geology, history, culture, and psyche. I was brought up in East Fife, near St Andrews, and live in Edinburgh and Orkney; my mother was English, as is my wife, novelist Lesley Glaister. Which is by way of saying I am interested in writing the joys, aches, and complexities of being human, in the universal and the local, in our present and the Past that shapes it.

Andrew's book list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands

Andrew Greig Why did Andrew love this book?

 I love this as something quite different – essentially a close encounter with the Border by bicycle. He knows his history, writes well, and brings it all down to ground level, and conveys the lasting atmosphere (lovely, bleak, ruinous, enduring) of these Debatable Lands. A fine piece of historical travel writing by a deeply knowledgeable and astute writer. Makes you want to go and experience for yourself – if you do, take this book in your pannier (preferably waterproof).

By Graham Robb,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An oft-overlooked region lies at the heart of British national history: the Debatable Land. The oldest detectable territorial division in Great Britain, the Debatable Land once served as a buffer between England and Scotland. It was once the bloodiest region in the country, fought over by Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, and James V. After most of its population was slaughtered or deported, it became the last part of Great Britain to be brought under the control of the state. Today, its boundaries have vanished from the map and are matters of myth and generational memories. In The Debatable Land, historian…


Book cover of John Knox

Andrew Greig Author Of Rose Nicolson: Memoir of William Fowler of Edinburgh

From my list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born in rural Bannockburn in Scotland, two fields from the site of the famous Battle (a rare victory over England) of 1314. From the start, the Past has always been very present to me. I have written 22 books: novels, non-fiction memoir, and poetry. In differing ways they all explore aspects of Scotland and being Scottish – our landscape, geology, history, culture, and psyche. I was brought up in East Fife, near St Andrews, and live in Edinburgh and Orkney; my mother was English, as is my wife, novelist Lesley Glaister. Which is by way of saying I am interested in writing the joys, aches, and complexities of being human, in the universal and the local, in our present and the Past that shapes it.

Andrew's book list on the wild side of the Scotland-England borderlands

Andrew Greig Why did Andrew love this book?

So it is not a novel, but might as well be for its twists, turns, and transformations. Edinburgh in 1572 was a small town of some 3,000 families, so my real-life narrator William Fowler would know and meet one of its most notable citizens, Preacher John Knox of Haddington, along with his young and socially aristocratic second wife (the latter attribute was more a matter of gossip and criticism than the thirty-seven years age gap), and witnessed him being helped up into the pulpit at St Giles to give his congregation a last good talking to. This is the most recent (drawing on a major new cache of letters), and highly readable, life of the man who pushed Scotland towards a Presbyterian Calvinist form of Protestantism – crucially distinct from that evolving in England under the Auld Hag aka Elizabeth I. He is revealed as a much more complex and…

By Jane Dawson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The definitive biography of John Knox, a leader of the Protestant Reformation in sixteenth-century Scotland

"Never before has there been such a thoroughly and sympathetically critical treatment of the 16th-century Scottish reformer's thought and times. . . . A joy to read and a book to value."-Sean Michael Lucas, Gospel Coalition

Based in large part on previously unavailable sources, including the recently discovered papers of John Knox's close friend and colleague Christopher Goodman, this biography challenges the traditionally held stereotype of the founder of the Presbyterian denomination as a strident and misogynist religious reformer whose influence rarely extended beyond Scotland.…


Book cover of The Oregon Trail

Kevin Kiely Author Of A Horse Called El Dorado

From my list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true.

Why am I passionate about this?

This is very simple as to why there is passionate engagement with the themes listed within each of the five titles chosen. It's about engagement with the story which immediately comes from strongly identifying with the characters and events. The ‘identity factor’ is vital in drawing the reader in, and it's the mystery when writing a story or book which doesn’t begin with a prescribed plan. The mystery is really what creates the story and its characters, wanting to see what happens on the next page. With the reader, after having read a few pages, feeling the compulsion to read on, fully committed, emotionally involved, intrigued, and passionately caught up in the story.

Kevin's book list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true

Kevin Kiely Why did Kevin love this book?

I began to read this book in childhood because it was in our house (sent as a present from an Aunt living in America) and it intrigued me by the title and the illustrations of buffalos, coyotes, bears, the landscape, rivers, canyons, and the covered wagons in a circle with people and their belongings, bedding down by campfires under the starry skies […] The episodes easily captured my attention. Parkman is documenting the first settlers crossing the Mid-West Plains towards the Rockies. This is really ‘a page turner’ and classic of travelogue adventure, even though I had never heard the genre term ‘travelogue’ on first reading. It also reads like a fantasy and provides the reader who has never been to the United States with a longing to go there. Books are parallel to life and in this case for me, I did reach the Origen Trail, walked some of…

By Francis Parkman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Keen observations and a graphic style characterize the author's remarkable record of a vanishing frontier. Detailed accounts of the hardships experienced while traveling across mountains and prairies; vibrant portraits of emigrants and Western wildlife; and vivid descriptions of Indian life and culture. A classic of American frontier literature.


Book cover of The Shadow of the Wind

Mark Stibbe Author Of A Book in Time

From my list on the magic of books, bookshops, and libraries.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was a boy, my adoptive father – a star pupil and friend of C.S. Lewis – heard I’d started reading the Sherlock Holmes stories. He bought every Sherlock Holmes book he could find. I remember lifting one to my nose and smelling the pages. I fell in love with books that day. I went on to earn a senior scholarship in English Literature at Cambridge University, and a PhD in storytelling. Since then, I have written over 50 books of my own and ghostwritten over 30 titles. I now host The Christian Storyteller Channel on YouTube, and I run BookLab, dedicated to helping emerging authors. My whole life is books.

Mark's book list on the magic of books, bookshops, and libraries

Mark Stibbe Why did Mark love this book?

I love the idea that books have souls, and I adore this quotation from Zafon’s classic novel: “Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it.”

I was thrilled to find this novel after I’d written my book because it shows that there are others who sense the soulful quality of old books. I also love it because it is written by a Spanish novelist, and it is in the Spanish-speaking world that we find the true literary origins of my most-loved genre of writing – magical realism.

By Carlos Ruiz Zafón, Lucia Graves (translator),

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Shadow of the Wind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New York Times bestseller

"The Shadow of the Wind is ultimately a love letter to literature, intended for readers as passionate about storytelling as its young hero." -Entertainment Weekly (Editor's Choice)

"One gorgeous read." -Stephen King

Barcelona, 1945: A city slowly heals in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War, and Daniel, an antiquarian book dealer's son who mourns the loss of his mother, finds solace in a mysterious book entitled The Shadow of the Wind, by one Julian Carax. But when he sets out to find the author's other works, he makes a shocking discovery: someone has been…


Book cover of Barnaby Rudge

Catherine Czerkawska Author Of The Last Lancer: A Story of Loss and Survival in Poland and Ukraine

From my list on bringing european history vividly to life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated by social history since childhood, although I didn’t know that was what it was called, back then. When I did a postgraduate Masters in Folk Life Studies, it helped to confirm my love of books that, in skilfully fictionalising historical events, allow us to see them through the eyes of people most closely affected by them: ordinary people leading their lives throughout difficult and dangerous times or finding themselves in extraordinary relationships. It’s what I try to do in my own work, fiction and non-fiction alike. My book recommendations here are the kind of books I wish I had written.

Catherine's book list on bringing european history vividly to life

Catherine Czerkawska Why did Catherine love this book?

I’m a huge fan of Dickens but this was a serendipitous Covid discovery.

In 1841, Dickens set his tale at the time of the 1780 Gordon Riots. I hadn’t realised how virulently anti-Catholic they were, nor how violent, the most destructive in the history of London. Barnaby himself, a vulnerable ‘innocent’, is sympathetically drawn. Above all the descriptions of the riots are so real that I found myself wondering if Dickens had spoken to somebody who had witnessed them in his youth – which would have been perfectly possible.

This is as vivid a depiction of what it feels like to be caught up in violent insurrection as you’re likely to find anywhere. You’ll also find out the origin of the ‘Dolly Varden hat’ along the way.

By Charles Dickens,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'One of Dickens's most neglected, but most rewarding, novels' Peter Ackroyd

Set against the backdrop of the Gordon Riots of 1780, Barnaby Rudge is a story of mystery and suspense which begins with an unsolved double murder and goes on to involve conspiracy, blackmail, abduction and retribution. Through the course of the novel fathers and sons become opposed, apprentices plot against their masters and anti-Catholic mobs rampage through the streets. With its dramatic descriptions of public violence and private horror, its strange secrets and ghostly doublings, Barnaby Rudge is a powerful, disturbing blend of historical realism and Gothic melodrama.

Edited…


Book cover of The Moonstone

David Cairns Author Of The Case of the Wandering Corpse

From my list on 19th century murder, mystery and mayhem.

Why am I passionate about this?

History has always been a captivating adventure for me, a stage to rekindle the echoes of times long past. My journey began amid musty archives in Hobart, where I stumbled upon a handwritten prison record about my wife's feisty ancestor, transported in the 1830s. There and then, I resolved to breathe life into the fading embers of her existence, and after extensive research, I wrote my first novel, a tapestry of historical events intertwined with the resurrection of long-forgotten souls. Since then, I've applied lessons from masters like Conan Doyle to create exciting, atmospheric stories that turn us all into time travelers on an exhilarating voyage.

David's book list on 19th century murder, mystery and mayhem

David Cairns Why did David love this book?

Some have called this the first of the Victorian detective genre. It is a classic, timeless masterpiece that is full of mystery and intrigue.

A valuable diamond, the moonstone, is stolen, and the story involves a complex web of deception and suspense with twists and turns until the final chapter reveals all. Collins’s innovative writing style, told through different narrators, adds depth to the story and keeps the pages turning. 

It is a novel that still, today captures the imagination and drips with atmosphere. Also, I was honoured in one review to have my writing style compared favourably with Collins, so definitely a book to add to my list with the added benefit of having the period atmosphere and plot complexity that captivates me!

By Wilkie Collins,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Who, in the name of wonder, had taken the Moonstone out of Miss Rachel's drawer?

A celebrated Indian yellow diamond is first stolen from India, then vanishes from a Yorkshire country house. Who took it? And where is it now? A dramatist as well as a novelist, Wilkie Collins gives to each of his narratorsa household servant, a detective, a lawyer, a cloth-eared Evangelical, a dying medical manvibrant identities as they separately tell the part of the story that concerns themselves.

One of the great triumphs of nineteenth-century sensation fiction, The Moonstone tells of a mystery that for page after…


Book cover of The Ship That Flew

Kevin Kiely Author Of A Horse Called El Dorado

From my list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true.

Why am I passionate about this?

This is very simple as to why there is passionate engagement with the themes listed within each of the five titles chosen. It's about engagement with the story which immediately comes from strongly identifying with the characters and events. The ‘identity factor’ is vital in drawing the reader in, and it's the mystery when writing a story or book which doesn’t begin with a prescribed plan. The mystery is really what creates the story and its characters, wanting to see what happens on the next page. With the reader, after having read a few pages, feeling the compulsion to read on, fully committed, emotionally involved, intrigued, and passionately caught up in the story.

Kevin's book list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true

Kevin Kiely Why did Kevin love this book?

Peter is on his way home from school and discovers a crooked laneway. Soon he looks through the bay window of a junk shop and is ‘drawn’ towards one item inside: a little ship. There is a strange conversation between Peter and the owner of the shop who says, "All the money in the world wouldn’t have bought this ship once [...]. It would cost all the money you have in the world and a bit over!" The man in the shop sells it to Peter.

Along the beach on the way home the ship turns into a real ship with sails. The book is not only about the many adventures with his brothers and sisters involving time travel to many lands but has an overarching plot that one day Peter will have to return the ship where he bought it. Only then will he discover about the ship and…

By Hilda Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Ship That Flew 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?

When Peter sees the model ship in the shop window, he wants it more than anything else on Earth. But this is no ordinary model. The ship takes Peter and the other children on magical flights, wherever they ask to go. Time after time the magic ship takes them on different exciting adventures, to different countries, and to different times. And why should magic ever end?


Book cover of The Adventures of Henry Penn

Kevin Kiely Author Of A Horse Called El Dorado

From my list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true.

Why am I passionate about this?

This is very simple as to why there is passionate engagement with the themes listed within each of the five titles chosen. It's about engagement with the story which immediately comes from strongly identifying with the characters and events. The ‘identity factor’ is vital in drawing the reader in, and it's the mystery when writing a story or book which doesn’t begin with a prescribed plan. The mystery is really what creates the story and its characters, wanting to see what happens on the next page. With the reader, after having read a few pages, feeling the compulsion to read on, fully committed, emotionally involved, intrigued, and passionately caught up in the story.

Kevin's book list on surviving danger and seeing your dream come true

Kevin Kiely Why did Kevin love this book?

In being faithful to the ‘first’ books I ever read The Ship That Flew and The Adventures of Henry Penn. Henry Penn is a Penguin and daydreamer. He wants to be a poet. Some of the story involves his creative life writing/reciting from his ‘secret’ little book the “Lays of Ancient Penland.” The close of the story recounts an episode after the Kipper War when there is a celebration concert and Henry performs his first poem!

The town’s people (Penguins) dominate the story. The Kipper War (is a funny episode) against the Pirates to recover the stolen hoard of fish belonging to the Penguins. Important in all of the books chosen are the illustrations, for instance, the illustration of Henry in school at the back of the class ‘caught’ by the teacher staring out the high windows.

By Isobel St Vincent,

Why should I read it?

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


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Scotland, kidnapping, and presidential biography?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Scotland, kidnapping, and presidential biography.

Scotland Explore 309 books about Scotland
Kidnapping Explore 111 books about kidnapping
Presidential Biography Explore 19 books about presidential biography