58 books like Random Passage

By Bernice Morgan,

Here are 58 books that Random Passage fans have personally recommended if you like Random Passage. 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 Light Between Oceans

Kendra Broekhuis Author Of Between You and Us

From my list on impossible choices that will rip your heart out.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been a stay-at-home mom and author for the past decade, and during that time, I went through the stillbirth of my second baby. Grief taught me a lot about compassion, including the importance of being able to see the nuance of difficult subject matters. I learned it’s easy to theorize what to do in a situation until you're in that situation. For that reason, I love books in all sorts of genres that are layered with characters’ past griefs, impossible scenarios, and tensions regarding the choices they make. I picked five of my favorite books with a heart-ripping plot that sparks interesting discussion and leaves readers pondering, "What would I have done?"

Kendra's book list on impossible choices that will rip your heart out

Kendra Broekhuis Why did Kendra love this book?

This is one of those books that can set off a fire of controversy because of the choices made by its characters, and I love that about it.

The main couple’s marriage lies on a foundation of grief that includes war, extreme isolation, and multiple pregnancy losses. The story dives into the way grief shapes us, as well as the morality of how much we should let our grief shape our choices.

I loved the characters, the moving plot, and the moral conundrum of this book.

By M.L. Stedman,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The Light Between Oceans as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The years-long New York Times bestseller and Goodreads Best Historical Novel that is “irresistible…seductive…with a high concept plot that keeps you riveted from the first page” (O, The Oprah Magazine)—soon to be a major motion picture from Spielberg’s Dreamworks starring Michael Fassbender, Rachel Weisz, and Alicia Vikander, and directed by Derek Cianfrance.

After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young,…


Book cover of The Poisonwood Bible

Kevin Chen Author Of Ghost Town

From my list on family saga books that unravel dark secrets.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have 7 sisters and 1 brother. I was the 9th child in my family. To get a son who would carry on the family heritage, my parents tried 7 times without any success. After 7 unwanted daughters, my brother finally arrived. Then they had me as the second boy in the family. The plot twist was: I am gay. I turned out to be the 8th unwanted daughter because of my sexuality. Coming from this small-town big family full of superstitions and secrets, I am naturally drawn to dramatic family stories with many dark and psychological twists.

Kevin's book list on family saga books that unravel dark secrets

Kevin Chen Why did Kevin love this book?

At first, I was scared by the thickness of the book. More than 600 pages? I didn’t think I would have the patience and time to finish it. My book club chose the book as a reading challenge for everyone. A challenge indeed. But a colorful one.

I remember carrying the book with me everywhere I went. As I finally reached the last page of this riveting family saga set in Africa, I felt older and wiser. Wow, I actually finished the thick novel. It was a great achievement.

I was never bored or tired. I did not want the story to end. It could have been 6000 pages and I still would have thrown myself into this epic story.

By Barbara Kingsolver,

Why should I read it?

18 authors picked The Poisonwood Bible as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**NOW INCLUDING THE FIRST CHAPTER OF DEMON COPPERHEAD: THE NEW BARBARA KINGSOLVER NOVEL**

**DEMON COPPERHEAD IS AVAILABLE NOW FOR PRE-ORDER**

An international bestseller and a modern classic, this suspenseful epic of one family's tragic undoing and their remarkable reconstruction has been read, adored and shared by millions around the world.

'Breathtaking.' Sunday Times
'Exquisite.' The Times
'Beautiful.' Independent
'Powerful.' New York Times

This story is told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959.

They carry with them everything they believe they will…


Book cover of Ahab's Wife: Or, The Star-Gazer: A Novel

Beth Powning Author Of The Sea Captain's Wife

From my list on women in dangerous situations and past times.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in a quiet farming valley in Connecticut, but I moved to a wilderness farm in the maritime provinces of Canada, surrounded by spruce forests and close to the Bay of Fundy. My favourite places are those where there is more sky, seemingly, than land; more birds than people; more wind-blown fields than houses. My favourite books take us to landscapes where people must come to terms with environments whose extreme circumstances are challenges in and of themselves.

Beth's book list on women in dangerous situations and past times

Beth Powning Why did Beth love this book?

This book inspired my own writing with its detailed rendering of 19th century life. It has all of my favourite things: lighthouses, ships, horses, buggies, wharves, and whales. “Captain Ahab was neither my first husband or my last.” How can you resist this first sentence? The novel’s massive lighthouse, and the child who has lived there all her life, inform some deep part of my world view.

By Sena Jeter Naslund,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

From the opening line--"Captain Ahab was neither my first husband nor my last"--you will know that you are in the hands of a masterful storyteller and in the company of a fascinating woman hero. Inspired by a brief passage in Melville's Moby-Dick, where Captain Ahab speaks passionately of his young wife on Nantucket, Una Spenser's moving tale "is very much Naslund's own and can be enjoyed independently of its source." (Newsday)

The daughter of a tyrannical father, Una leaves the violent Kentucky frontier for the peace of a New England lighthouse island, where she simultaneously falls in love with two…


Book cover of The Outlander

Kim Taylor Blakemore Author Of The Good Time Girls

From my list on fierce women in the American West.

Why am I passionate about this?

The United States Old West is a legend, a myth, a land of contradictions. I grew up and have never left this vast land of scorching deserts, soaring peaks, misty coasts, and redwoods that touch the heavens. I grew up on the myths – Tombstone, Billy the Kid, Calamity Jane, Pearl Hart. What I love most are the stories of the women of the West, who survive with grit, wiles, and no small amount of courage. I love finding the lesser known women through novels and research and seeing their lives bloom before my eyes. Cowgirls, sufragettes, doctors, ex-slaves, Cheyenne, Arapahoe, cattle rustlers, homesteaders, dancehall girls.

Kim's book list on fierce women in the American West

Kim Taylor Blakemore Why did Kim love this book?

The Outlander is a gripping historical fiction novel set in the Canadian Rockies.

The story follows Mary Boulton, a young woman on the run from her dangerous husband. As Mary navigates the rugged wilderness, she encounters a cast of memorable characters and faces numerous trials.

I loved its evocative and atmospheric writing, transporting me to the untamed Rocky Mountains in the early 20th century. Adamson's portrayal of Mary as a strong and resourceful protagonist captivated me. The land is brutal and beautiful at one, as are the characters she encounters.

The Outlander is a compelling tale of survival, filled with suspense, surprising twists and turns, and a captivating exploration of the human spirit. I could not put this down.

By Gil Adamson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

On a moonlit night in 1903, a mysterious young woman flees alone across the Canadian wilderness, one quick step ahead of her pursuers. Mary Boulton is nineteen years old, half mad, and widowed - by her own hand. Tearing through the forest with dogs howling in the distance, she is desperate, her nerves burning, and she is certain of one thing only - that her every move is being traced. Two red-headed brothers, rifles across their backs, lurch close behind her: monstrous figures, identical in every way, with the predatory look of hyenas. She has murdered their brother, and their…


Book cover of Five Little Indians

E.M. Spencer Author Of Freedom Reins

From my list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Canadian who enjoys travelling and reading historical fiction from around the world. Having had the privilege of living in a variety of areas in Canada from coast to coast since childhood, I can recall listening to the stories of past generations and exploring the locations where some of these events took place. With a passion for Canada’s beauty and the history of its people, I like to research, explore, and incorporate these passions into my own stories.

E.M.'s book list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females

E.M. Spencer Why did E.M. love this book?

This is a story of children torn from their homes and forced to live in the horrific conditions of residential schools. Imprisoned and away from the love and protection of families and communities, many were abused for years by people whose words may have preached God’s love but whose actions demonstrated darker intentions. A few children managed to escape while many others were carelessly released to the unforgiving streets of east Vancouver where some managed to navigate their way through life while others succumbed to the demons that haunted them.

Having personally seen the impact this has had on people in my community, including family members, I feel that the characters may be fiction, but the story is a very real example of a shameful time in Canadian history where the effects continue through generations.

By Michelle Good,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

WINNER: Canada Reads 2022

WINNER: Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction

WINNER: Amazon First Novel Award

WINNER: Kobo Emerging Author Prize 

Finalist: Scotiabank Giller Prize

Finalist: Atwood Gibson Writers Trust Prize

Finalist: BC & Yukon Book Prize

Shortlist: Indigenous Voices Awards

National Bestseller; A Globe and Mail Top 100 Book of the Year; A CBC Best Book of the Year; An Apple Best Book of the Year; A Kobo Best Book of the Year; An Indigo Best Book of the Year

Taken from their families when they are very small and sent to a remote, church-run residential school, Kenny, Lucy,…


Book cover of Song of Batoche

E.M. Spencer Author Of Freedom Reins

From my list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Canadian who enjoys travelling and reading historical fiction from around the world. Having had the privilege of living in a variety of areas in Canada from coast to coast since childhood, I can recall listening to the stories of past generations and exploring the locations where some of these events took place. With a passion for Canada’s beauty and the history of its people, I like to research, explore, and incorporate these passions into my own stories.

E.M.'s book list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females

E.M. Spencer Why did E.M. love this book?

Since discovering details of my personal genealogy, and learning that I am Metis, I have become more interested in learning about the history of the Metis people of Canada. During my research, I came upon this book which I found to be an enjoyable mix of fiction and history based around the battle between the Metis people of the prairies and the Canadian government. I particularly enjoyed how the author showed the strengths and weaknesses of real historical figures, Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont, through the eyes of strong female characters.

Many French Canadians are the descendants of the King's Daughters (Filles du Roi) of this era. Many also are the descendants of mixed French and Algonquian marriages. Wikipedia…The Métis (/meɪˈtiː(s)/; French: [metis]) are Indigenous peoples in the three Prairie Provinces (Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta), as well as parts of Ontario, British Columbia, the Northwest Territories, and the Northern United States.

By Maia Caron,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Fiction. Native American Studies. Louis Riel arrives at Batoche in 1884 to help the Métis fight for their lands and discovers that the rebellious outsider Josette Lavoie is a granddaughter of the famous chief Big Bear, whom he needs as an ally. But Josette learns of Riel's hidden agenda — to establish a separate state with his new church at its head — and refuses to help him. Only when the great Gabriel Dumont promises her that he will not let Riel fail does she agree to join the cause. In this raw wilderness on the brink of change, the…


Book cover of Chasing Freedom

E.M. Spencer Author Of Freedom Reins

From my list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Canadian who enjoys travelling and reading historical fiction from around the world. Having had the privilege of living in a variety of areas in Canada from coast to coast since childhood, I can recall listening to the stories of past generations and exploring the locations where some of these events took place. With a passion for Canada’s beauty and the history of its people, I like to research, explore, and incorporate these passions into my own stories.

E.M.'s book list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females

E.M. Spencer Why did E.M. love this book?

After the American Civil War, the British promised freedom and land to the slaves in the British Colonies in exchange for their loyalty. Sadly, their new home turned out to be anything but a place of refuge when they found just as much hate and cruelty on this side of the border. Can Sarah and her family persevere and truly find freedom against the odds? The book is an easy read and an interesting lesson on this part of Canadian history.

By Gloria Ann Wesley,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Young Adult Historical Fiction

A story of the struggle of Black Loyalists and their arrival in Nova Scotia.

NEW: Teaching Guide Available Here

Shortlisted for The Ann Connor Brimer Award for Children’s Literature.

The American Revolutionary War is being waged, and the fate of slaves in the colonies is on the line. Sarah Redmond, a slave on a South Carolina plantation, watches with a heavy heart as her father steals away in the dead of the night to join the British army, enticed by promises of freedom, land and provisions for his whole family. But before her father can return,…


Book cover of Bride of New France

E.M. Spencer Author Of Freedom Reins

From my list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Canadian who enjoys travelling and reading historical fiction from around the world. Having had the privilege of living in a variety of areas in Canada from coast to coast since childhood, I can recall listening to the stories of past generations and exploring the locations where some of these events took place. With a passion for Canada’s beauty and the history of its people, I like to research, explore, and incorporate these passions into my own stories.

E.M.'s book list on Canadian historical fiction with strong females

E.M. Spencer Why did E.M. love this book?

During the colonial period, women from Europe were shipped to Canada to marry military men, explorers, and fur traders. This story is about the Filles du Roi, sent by King Louis XIV of France, to populate the new colony.

In reading this story, I was given a taste of what life must have been like for these women who left a more modern society to marry a complete stranger and live in the rough, cold wilderness of 1660s Canada. They had to be strong if they were to adapt and survive, which many did not.

By Suzanne DesRochers,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Transporting readers from cosmopolitan seventeenth-century Paris to the Canadian frontier, this vibrant debut tells of the struggle to survive in a brutal time and place. Laure Beausejour has been taken from her destitute family and raised in an infamous orphanage to be trained as a lace maker. Striking and willful, she dreams of becoming a seamstress and catching the eye of a nobleman. But after complaining about her living conditions, she is sent to Canada as a fille du roi, expected to marry a French farmer there. Laure is shocked by the primitive state of the colony and the mingling…


Book cover of A Treason of Thorns

Lindsey Lamh Author Of A Voracious Grief

From my list on a lurking horror preying on relatable protagonists.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading Frankenstein, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and other “scary stories” in high school ignited a hunger for suspense. In writing my own gothic horror novel, I explored the why’s and how’s a bit, and discovered that the thing I love about lurking, terrifying danger in books is that it bares a character’s soul more rapidly, and more believably, than almost any other plot device. When we face a fate worse than death, we confront our deepest motivators and challenge bedrock beliefs. I hope you’ll enjoy the books on this list as much as I do! I feel like their particular uniqueness is hard to find.

Lindsey's book list on a lurking horror preying on relatable protagonists

Lindsey Lamh Why did Lindsey love this book?

One of the most unique stories I’ve ever read, A Treason of Thorns is about an alternate England where magic permeates the land, held in check by several great houses, all of which are possessed by eldricht spirits.

One of these great houses has been promised a Keeper, one who will give her life to serve it, her body slowly poisoned by its power. Violet isn’t afraid of her precious Burleigh House. At least, not until she falls in love and must choose, for the first time, whether she really can put the house first. In the meantime, Burleigh is falling to pieces and the King is bent on its destruction.

A truly thrilling, fast-paced story of risk and daring on the part of a iron-willed young woman who has everything to lose. 

By Laura E Weymouth,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Treason of Thorns 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?

An enchancting, lyrical novel from the acclaimed
author of A Light Between Worlds!
'Weymouth's prose is lush and evocative, filled with palpable
descriptions and compelling mystery' KIRKUS

'With lush prose and an eye for atmospheric detail, Weymouth
adeptly spins a tale in which thge heroine is torn between passion
and purpose, destruction and duty.' PUBLISHERS
WEEKLY

When her father is convicted of high treason, Violet Sterling
is exiled. Seven years later she has a chance to return to her beloved
Burleigh House and to Wyn, the boy she left behind. But Burleigh
- one of the six great magical houses…


Book cover of The Bird Artist

Solveig Eggerz Author Of Seal Woman

From my list on where characters don’t mingle much and talk funny.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have written all my life. This includes freelance writing as well as reporter jobs at small, weekly newspapers in the DC/VA area. I have also taught writing (creative and technical writing) to students as diverse as jail inmates, residents of homeless shelters, military officers at the Pentagon, CIA employees, and firefighters at Ronald Reagan National Airport. Both of my published novels are works of historical fiction set in my native Iceland: Seal Woman and Sigga of Reykjavik. These novels cover the time 1908 to 1955, a period when Iceland was a little-known island. I have always been drawn to novels about isolated, cold-weather places where unusual characters and mannerisms flourish. 

Solveig's book list on where characters don’t mingle much and talk funny

Solveig Eggerz Why did Solveig love this book?

The author presents a setting so stark, so isolated, so deprived of diverse demographic and cultural experiences that the reader experiences the characters as not so much shaped by the setting but as emerging from it. Communications among the residents of the tiny fishing village off the Newfoundland coast, Witless Bay, are spare and quirky and often misunderstood. An aggressive young female character, Margaret, elbows her way through it, and a passive male artist, Fabian, drifts into actions he regrets, yet the two fulfill one another. In paragraph one, Fabian confesses to murder, but this story is about psychological survival not murder. It asks the question, how do eccentric characters, pushed together and doomed to struggle for existence in a remote, weather-beaten setting, near a turbulent ocean, survive? The role of coffee in their survival rings true as Howard Norman’s protagonist states, “I had drunk coffee since I was five…

By Howard Norman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The story of Fabian Vas, who lives in Witless Bay, Newfoundland and who earns his living as a bird artist. However, it also emerges that he has murdered the lighthouse keeper, Botho August.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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