100 books like Prussian Blue

By Philip Kerr,

Here are 100 books that Prussian Blue fans have personally recommended if you like Prussian Blue. 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 The Bourne Identity

Frank Zafiro Author Of The Last Horseman

From my list on action with thrills that could really happen.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was a cop for twenty years. And while I always saw True Crime as a busman’s holiday, I loved crime fiction all along. Eventually my own writing took me there, as well. I love how crime fiction, much like good science fiction, explores the nature of human behavior in a way that isn’t as prevalent in other genres. As a result, I’ve read widely in the field, always gravitating toward the darker and grittier entries. The lone wolf protagonists who either live by a code or undergo a fascinating change within the book or series has also been my focus.

Frank's book list on action with thrills that could really happen

Frank Zafiro Why did Frank love this book?

Thanks to Hollywood adaptations and sometimes a greedy publisher, a great series can diminish as time passes. But that doesn’t change how cool the original was.

I love the setup of a man waking on a sailing vessel with no memory, only to discover his identity as super espionage agent. The mystery of the scenario and the intrigue as Bourne unravels his own personhood was so well done in this first book (and the first film was an excellent adaptation), and it is worth revisiting.

By Robert Ludlum,

Why should I read it?

13 authors picked The Bourne Identity as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Jason Bourne is back in the forthcoming major motion picture starring Matt Damon and Alicia Vikander. Go back to where it all began for Bourne in his first adventure - The Bourne Identity

He was dragged from the sea, his body riddled with bullets. There are a few clues: a frame of microfilm surgically implanted beneath the skin of his hip; evidence that plastic surgery has altered his face; strange things he says in his delirium, which could be code words. And a number on the film negative that leads to a bank account in Zurich, four million dollars, and…


Book cover of The Outsider

Eric Van Lustbader Author Of The Quantum Solution

From my list on perfect examples of great thriller writing.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been writing since I learned how to write, first poems, then short stories. I spent a decade in the rock music business, writing about and becoming friends with Elton John, John Lennon, Bryan Ferry, among others. But I grew up reading thrillers and wanting to write novels but seemed hesitant to start. One day, I ran into an old high school friend who was writing westerns for Avon Books. I thought if he can, so can I. So I did. I majored in Sociology in college, so the intricacies of individuals within society always fascinated me. After reading The Outsider, I realized I really wanted to write about the people outside of society.

Eric's book list on perfect examples of great thriller writing

Eric Van Lustbader Why did Eric love this book?

I discovered Wilson’s seminal book when I was in college.

It would not be an exaggeration to say that The Outsider changed my life. Before I read it I had no idea who I was or where I belonged. I was not a joiner. I wasn’t affected by peer pressure. As a consequence I felt alone and at sea.

At once, I recognized myself in The Outsider.

Wilson could have been writing about me. Suddenly, I understood who I was, why I reacted to certain things the way I did, and what my place in the world was and would be. There is no more desolate feeling of being alone and misunderstood in the world.

Wilson’s book gave me a sense of belonging. Who could ask for anything more?

By Colin Wilson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The classic study of alienation, creativity and the modern mind
'Excitingly written, with a sense of revelation' GUARDIAN

THE OUTSIDER was an instant literary sensation when it was first published in 1956, thrusting its youthful author into the front rank of contemporary writers and thinkers. Wilson rationalised the psychological dislocation so characteristic of Western creative thinking into a coherent theory of alienation, and defined those affected by it as a type: the outsider. Through the works and lives of various artists, including Kafka, Camus, Hemingway, Hesse, Lawrence, Van Gogh, Shaw, Nietzsche and Dostoevsky, Wilson explored the psyche of the outsider,…


Book cover of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

Eric Coulson Author Of The Chrysalis Option

From my list on espionage and intrigue in Great Britain.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been in love with London and the UK since I started reading British thrillers over 40 years ago. When I finally had the chance to live in London as a US diplomat, I was able to see so many of those places that had filled my imagination for years. I have my JD from Southern Illinois University. I have worked for the US Army and the US State Department. I now support my wife Karen, who is a US Diplomat.

Eric's book list on espionage and intrigue in Great Britain

Eric Coulson Why did Eric love this book?

I love the sense of intimacy in this book.

The characters are flawed and detailed against the backdrop of London and Great Britain. It is a classic of the genre and really takes you back to the pre-internet and pre-fall of the USSR. It really captures what it was like to live in those times.

By John le Carré,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of A Legacy of Spies.

The man he knew as "Control" is dead, and the young Turks who forced him out now run the Circus. But George Smiley isn't quite ready for retirement-especially when a pretty, would-be defector surfaces with a shocking accusation: a Soviet mole has penetrated the highest level of British Intelligence. Relying only on his wits and a small, loyal cadre, Smiley recognizes the hand of Karla-his Moscow Centre nemesis-and sets a trap to catch the traitor.

The Oscar-nominated feature film adaptation of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is directed by…


Marriage and Fatherhood in the Nazi SS

By Amy Carney,

Book cover of Marriage and Fatherhood in the Nazi SS

Amy Carney Author Of Marriage and Fatherhood in the Nazi SS

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Historian Professor Curl up with a good book reader Traveler – Berlin is my happy place!

Amy's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

When I was writing this book, several of my friends jokingly called it the Nazi baby book, with one insisting it would make a great title. Nazi Babies – admittedly, that is a catchy title, but that’s not exactly what my book is about. SS babies would be slightly more on topic, but it would be more accurate to say that I wrote a book about SS men as husbands and fathers.

From 1931 to 1945, leaders of the SS, a paramilitary group under the Nazi party, sought to transform their organization into a racially-elite family community that would serve…

Marriage and Fatherhood in the Nazi SS

By Amy Carney,

What is this book about?

From 1931 to 1945, leaders of the SS, a paramilitary group under the Nazi party, sought to transform their organization into a racially-elite family community that would serve as the Third Reich's new aristocracy. They utilized the science of eugenics to convince SS men to marry suitable wives and have many children.

Marriage and Fatherhood in the Nazi SS by Amy Carney is the first work to significantly assess the role of SS men as husbands and fathers during the Third Reich. The family community, and the place of men in this community, started with one simple order issued by…


Book cover of The Ninth Directive

Eric Van Lustbader Author Of The Quantum Solution

From my list on perfect examples of great thriller writing.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been writing since I learned how to write, first poems, then short stories. I spent a decade in the rock music business, writing about and becoming friends with Elton John, John Lennon, Bryan Ferry, among others. But I grew up reading thrillers and wanting to write novels but seemed hesitant to start. One day, I ran into an old high school friend who was writing westerns for Avon Books. I thought if he can, so can I. So I did. I majored in Sociology in college, so the intricacies of individuals within society always fascinated me. After reading The Outsider, I realized I really wanted to write about the people outside of society.

Eric's book list on perfect examples of great thriller writing

Eric Van Lustbader Why did Eric love this book?

Along with Le Carre Adam Hall was my magical touchstone to understanding what being an exceptional thriller writer meant.

This book, the second in a long distinguished series, continued the crises dealt with by the British spy named Quiller. Hall had an idiosyncratic way of writing that taught me that style was as important as plot in a thriller – perhaps even more. For me, style is what grabs my attention as a reader.

Today, style is what draws me along, both as a reader and as a writer of thrillers. Style is the thread on which is built both plot and characters. It is also imperative when setting scenes in faraway places.

By Adam Hall,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Quiller, known only by his codename, is the British government's #1 intelligence agent. Darkly exotic Bangkok is center stage for a master assassin's plan. The target: a visitor so important he is only called "The Person". As the clock ticks away in the final hours, Quiller becomes the bait to stop the killer.


Book cover of March Violets

Neil Spark Author Of Karl's War

From my list on Germany between the world wars.

Why am I passionate about this?

The World At War, the first and arguably best documentary about the Second World War, was on television when I was 14. It fuelled my interest in history, especially about the reasons for the rise of the Nazis. History has many lessons to teach–if we are willing to listen–and one of the great teachers is Germany between the wars. It was a time of extremes: economic crises, social unrest, much of which was caused by the Nazis, and a flourishing bohemian, liberal culture. This febrile environment in which characters struggle with their personal conflict makes for great story-telling potential.

Neil's book list on Germany between the world wars

Neil Spark Why did Neil love this book?

I love Kerr’s fastidious attention to detail, which makes me feel I am watching the action he depicts. Set in Berlin during the 1936 Olympic Games, March Violets is the first in the Bernie Gunther thriller series.

Gunther is a former policeman, now a private eye, who has been hired to find out who was responsible for two murders. The world has bruised Gunther, who is a sarcastic but witty and likable hero. From this novel, I learned a lot about Berlin and the period. 

By Philip Kerr,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked March Violets as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Discover the first crime novel in the late Philip Kerr's Bernie Gunther series - Berlin Noir - set in Hitler's Germany during the 1930s . . .

Winter, 1936. A man and his wife shot dead in their bed, their home burned. The woman's father, a millionaire industrialist, wants justice - and the priceless diamonds that disappeared along with his daughter's life. He turns to Bernhard Gunther, a private eye and former cop.

As Bernie follows the trail into the very heart of Nazi Germany, he's forced to confront a horrifying conspiracy. A trail that ends in the hell that…


Book cover of The Nine Tailors

L.C. Blackwell Author Of Ready Aim MURDER: A Peter Dumas Mystery, Book 2

From my list on mysteries to take you places you’d like to visit.

Why am I passionate about this?

Puzzles intrigued me since I was a three-year-old. Puzzle pieces that fit into pre-sized spaces. Then, disassembling and reassembling small 3-D animal shapes. Crosswords were next. Finally, Nancy Drew entered my life. I was addicted. Sherlock and Agatha became my mentors. But I loved to paint as well, so art was my first major at Michigan State University. Changed it to advertising in my senior year. Shortly after, Leo Burnett hired me to write print and radio media for Buster Brown shoes. Television was next. I solved many advertising puzzles at Foote, Cone & Belding, but after retiring, mystery re-entered my life when I wrote my first book.

L.C.'s book list on mysteries to take you places you’d like to visit

L.C. Blackwell Why did L.C. love this book?

I highly recommend every mystery Sayers has written. She’s my kind of author — articulate, inspiring, a writer who writes about her surroundings with a realism that allows a reader to enter and learn more: In this book, death by the ringing of church bells in a small English village.

She’s complex but delivers layers of life and death with profound simplicity and understanding. The daughter of a minister, an advertising copywriter, a poet, she graduated from Oxford and used her life experiences to color every page she wrote.

I love her spunk and the exciting way she has written. But mostly, I love her monocled amateur sleuth, Lord Peter Whimsey who exploded on her typewriter in her first mystery.

By Dorothy L. Sayers,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Nine Tailors as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When his sexton finds a corpse in the wrong grave, the rector of Fenchurch
St Paul asks Lord Peter Wimsey to find out who the dead man was and how
he came to be there.

The lore of bell-ringing and a brilliantly-evoked village in the remote fens of
East Anglia are the unforgettable background to a story of an old unsolved crime
and its violent unravelling twenty years later.

'I admire her novels ... she has great fertility of invention, ingenuity and a wonderful
eye for detail' Ruth Rendell

(P)2015 Hodder & Stoughton


Book cover of The Word is Murder

Jessica Sherry Author Of Sea-Devil

From my list on mystery featuring everyday heroes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love a good mystery. Quirky, amateur sleuths using their wits and grit to solve tough cases while juggling regular lives like real people deliver a double-thrill—one for justice and another for the everyday oddball taking the win (like me, when I publish a book). This inspired my Delilah Duffy series and this list.

Jessica's book list on mystery featuring everyday heroes

Jessica Sherry Why did Jessica love this book?

Another writer-hero, Anthony Horowitz writes as himself in this page-turning whodunit. Well-known for his television work on Midsomer Murders, Poirot, and Foyle’s War, Horowitz knows how to craft a mystery. When ex-cop turned private investigator Nathaniel Hawthorne approaches Horowitz about ghostwriting a book about his cases, Horowitz isn’t interested. Annoying and eccentric, Hawthorne isn’t someone Horowitz wants to be around, let alone write about. But when a famous actor’s wealthy mother is murdered six hours after planning her own funeral, Horowitz gets pulled into the investigation anyway. Though very much a Sherlock Holmes and Watson relationship, Hawthorne and Horowitz are more adversarial, making them an entertaining team. You want them to be friends, but then again, you don’t. The word isn’t just murder, but funny, engaging, and endearing, too.  

By Anthony Horowitz,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'EASILY THE GREATEST OF OUR CRIME WRITERS' Sunday Times

Chosen as one of Crime Time's books of the year! If you enjoyed BBC's Sherlock, you'll LOVE The Word is Murder.
_________________

Buried secrets, murder and a trail of bloody clues lie at the heart of Anthony Horowitz's page-turning new detective series.

SHE PLANNED HER OWN FUNERAL. BUT DID SHE ARRANGE HER OWN MURDER?

A woman is strangled six hours after organising her own funeral.

Did she know she was going to die? Did she recognise her killer?

Daniel Hawthorne, a recalcitrant detective with secrets of his own, is on the…


Book cover of Red Harvest

David Kruh Author Of Inseparable: An Alcatraz Escape Adventure

From my list on the 1920s with healthy skepticism of American values.

Why am I passionate about this?

I studied history in college and, after a few misspent years in broadcasting, worked in marketing and public relations for several companies. In my free time I wrote articles and books on historical events and people. A dozen years ago, on a trip to San Francisco and Alcatraz, I conceived of an idea for a novel. True to my background, it was based on a real historical event – the 1962 escape of three men in a raft from the prison. It wasn't until my mid-sixties when I felt ready to step out of my non-fiction comfort zone and write my first novel. Can't wait to start the next one.

David's book list on the 1920s with healthy skepticism of American values

David Kruh Why did David love this book?

It would be obscene to read this on a Kindle. This early Dashiell Hammett novel has to be read in paperback, the older a copy you can find, the better.

It has everything a great pulp novel should have; murder, crooked cops, gangs, and a rumpled too-honest-for-his-own-good hero. What I love about this book is how Hammett uses his own experience working for the Pinkerton Detective Agency (who were basically hired thugs) and a real historical event (a labor dispute in Montana that resulted in several deaths) to weave a solid crime novel.

By Dashiell Hammett,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Detective-story master Dashiell Hammett gives us yet another unforgettable read in Red Harvest: When the last honest citizen of Poisonville was murdered, the Continental Op stayed on to punish the guilty--even if that meant taking on an entire town. Red Harvest is more than a superb crime novel: it is a classic exploration of corruption and violence in the American grain.


Book cover of A Beautiful Blue Death

Grace Burrowes Author Of A Gentleman Fallen on Hard Times

From my list on mysteries with gorgeous prose and delightful sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

History has always interested me, in part because it helps explain how we got where we are. I have a bachelor of music in music history, which is where I first became aware of how small things—the invention of the quill pen—can ripple into huge consequences. Tack onto that an inclination toward political science and law, plus a family full of bench scientists, and it’s easy to see how stories set in the past that focus on whodunit, how, and why fascinate me. Both reading and writing against that tapestry educates me, entertains me, and gives me a glimpse of our capacity to transcend all difficulties for the sake of truth and justice.

Grace's book list on mysteries with gorgeous prose and delightful sleuths

Grace Burrowes Why did Grace love this book?

A Beautiful Blue Death begins the publication order of this marvelous Victorian series, though some later-written prequels bring the list of titles to fifteen.

Lenox is remarkable for his affable nature—no enormous childhood trauma, addictions, or unresolved grief defining him; he’s not oppressed by his society. He stands in contrast to the complicated, dynamic, and politically fraught world he investigates.

Finch’s prose is both plummy and punchy, his voice well crafted for the period, and his plots delightfully rife with Victorian arcana and eccentricities. Comfort reading never had quite this much style, elegance, and verve!

By Charles Finch,

Why should I read it?

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


Book cover of Heretics

Stephen Fredman Author Of A Menorah for Athena: Charles Reznikoff and the Jewish Dilemmas of Objectivist Poetry

From my list on blending Jewish history with a personal quest.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an enthusiastic and eclectic reader, one of my great joys is recommending books to others. I was able to indulge this joy consistently while teaching at a university, introducing students to authors and books and topics they otherwise might never have encountered. I find this same excitement in my own writing, searching for ways to reveal to others the magnificent wealth I find in modern poetry and in the brilliant concepts of poetic thinking.

Stephen's book list on blending Jewish history with a personal quest

Stephen Fredman Why did Stephen love this book?

The Cuban mystery writer Leonardo Padura offers an amazing presentation of Jewish history and the art of painting as they collide in modern Havana.

He weaves together three stories: the attempted escape from Hitler by Jews aboard a ship that is turned back from the Havana harbor in 1939; the aborted career of an imaginary Jewish disciple of Rembrandt, who defies the biblical prohibition against creating human likenesses; and a contemporary attempt by a Cuban Jew to track down his exterminated family’s Rembrandt masterpiece.

I love how the vastly different worlds of modern Havana and 17th-century Amsterdam embark on a conversation that reveals so much about Jewish history and art.

By Leonardo Padura, Anna Kushner (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Padura’s Heretics spans and defies literary categories . . . ingenious." ―Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air

A sweeping novel of art theft, anti-Semitism, contemporary Cuba, and crime from a renowned Cuban author, Heretics is Leonardo Padura's greatest detective work yet.

In 1939, the Saint Louis sails from Hamburg into Havana’s port with hundreds of Jewish refugees seeking asylum from the Nazi regime. From the docks, nine-year-old Daniel Kaminsky watches as the passengers, including his mother, father, and sister, become embroiled in a fiasco of Cuban corruption. But the Kaminskys have a treasure that they hope will save them: a small Rembrandt…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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