88 books like Retribution Falls

By Chris Wooding,

Here are 88 books that Retribution Falls fans have personally recommended if you like Retribution Falls. 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 Library at Mount Char

Tim Pratt Author Of Heirs of Grace

From my list on fantasy with women heroines.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been reading fantasy for 42 years and writing it for 40, and because I was raised by badass women, I've always enjoyed tales of clever, kickass, indomitable heroines. I've written a bunch of them (a dozen books in an urban fantasy series about a sorcerer named Marla Mason; four books in the Axiom space opera series about ship captain Callie Machedo and her love interest, time refugee xenobiologist Elena Oh; contemporary fantasy/romance Heirs of Grace, about an art student who discovers a magical inheritance, and more). I'm also a longtime book reviewer, editor at SF/fantasy trade magazine Locus, and frequent award juror (Bradbury Prize, Philip K. Dick Award, and more), so... I think about SF/fantasy books a lot. 


Tim's book list on fantasy with women heroines

Tim Pratt Why did Tim love this book?

The Library at Mount Char is an astonishing puzzle-box of a novel, and one of the strangest and finest fantasies I've ever read.

Main character Carolyn was raised in a bizarre family of adopted siblings, taught magic by their enigmatic "father," and forced to live in isolation... but when their father dies, their world changes forever (and so does everyone else's). I actually re-read this novel immediately after finishing it the first time, because I wanted to experience it again while knowing how everything turned out, and it was even better.

By Scott Hawkins,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Library at Mount Char as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Wholly original . . . the work of the newest major talent in fantasy.”—The Wall Street Journal

“Freakishly compelling . . . through heart-thumping acts of violence and laugh-out-loud moments, this book practically dares you to keep reading.”—Atlanta Magazine

A missing God.
A library with the secrets to the universe. 
A woman too busy to notice her heart slipping away.
 
Carolyn's not so different from the other people around her. She likes guacamole and cigarettes and steak. She knows how to use a phone. Clothes are a bit tricky, but everyone says nice things about her outfit with the Christmas…


Book cover of Tapping the Dream Tree

A.M. Geever Author Of Love in an Undead Age

From my list on science fiction, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write action-packed post-apocalyptic and dystopian adventures—with a dash of romance. An avid reader of science fiction and fantasy from an early age, the only job I ever wanted—besides being a writer—was to be a Star Fleet Officer. I owe my love of all things zombie to my older brothers, whose influence in books, music, and film continues to this day, although my tolerance for puns and movies that are "so bad they're good" is a whole lot lower than theirs. The idea of becoming a zombie because my car runs out of gas gets me to the gas station when I'd rather not bother.

A.M.'s book list on science fiction, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic

A.M. Geever Why did A.M. love this book?

Charles de Lint is one of my favorite authors, and this book of short stories is set in Newford, his fictional city. It’s a fully-formed universe where there's always more to discover. You can read any of his books at any time; there’s no order they must be read in. I guarantee that the more you learn of his worlds—and especially Newford—the more you’ll want. I read Pixel Pixies (my favorite short story of all time) to my mom and dad when my mom was dying of cancer. I could barely read the last paragraph for wanting to cry; not because the story is sad, but because it's so beautiful, so hopeful, so abso-freaking-lutely wonderful. I still get teary-eyed thinking about that evening of reading that story to my mom and dad.

That’s what de Lint does. He transports you not only to a world, but indelibly marks the feelings…

By Charles de Lint,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Tapping the Dream Tree as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

World Fantasy Award-winning author of The Onion Girl

The city of Newford could be any contemporary North American city...except that magic lurks in its music, in its art, in the shadows of its grittiest streets, where mythic beings walk disguised. And its people are like you and me, each looking for a bit of magic to shape their lives and transform their fate.

Here are a bluesman hiding from the devil; a Buffalo Man at the edge of death; a murderous ghost looking for revenge; a wolf man on his first blind date; and many more. We're reunited with Jilly,…


Book cover of Undead Ultra

Baileigh Higgins Author Of Last Another Day

From my list on Zombie Apocalypse featuring strong heroines.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have long been a fan of zombie apocalypse scenarios. The first movie I watched was the classic Dawn of the Dead remake. Shocked and fascinated, I wanted more, devouring anything I could find on the topic. It wasn’t long before I stumbled across my first zombie apocalypse book, and I was hooked. It became an obsession for a while, and I spent my free time reading one zombie book after another. Finally, I reached a point where I wanted to write my own story and version of the apocalypse, and I did. Fast-forward several years, and I’m now a full-time author with numerous completed series, most of them zombie. 

Baileigh's book list on Zombie Apocalypse featuring strong heroines

Baileigh Higgins Why did Baileigh love this book?

This book was a surprise to me in many ways. While I love Zombie Apocalypse books, they can become a bit samey after a while, and that’s why I’m always on the lookout for something fresh and unique. Boy, did I get that in spades with this book!

Not only was I introduced to the fascinating world of long-distance running, but I also loved the characters, especially the main character, Kate. She’s both strong and vulnerable. A woman who would fight to the death for her loved ones but cry in secret for her lost husband.

I became so engrossed in this story that I even contemplated taking up long-distance running, a feat of epic proportions, considering I’ve never run anywhere in my life. 

By Camille Picott,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A deadly outbreak. A long-distance runner.

Can one woman outrun the zombie apocalypse?

Kate’s love for running turned into a coping mechanism after her husband died. But when a lethal zombie virus breaks out, it becomes her only means of survival.

As the infection spreads like wildfire, Kate receives a desperate call from her son, Carter. Trapped in a dorm room with no way out, it falls on Kate to rescue him.

But cars have become a liability in the apocalypse—and standing between Kate and Carter are 200 miles of impassable, zombie-infested roadways.

Kate already lost her husband. Determined not…


Book cover of Tinker

A.M. Geever Author Of Love in an Undead Age

From my list on science fiction, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write action-packed post-apocalyptic and dystopian adventures—with a dash of romance. An avid reader of science fiction and fantasy from an early age, the only job I ever wanted—besides being a writer—was to be a Star Fleet Officer. I owe my love of all things zombie to my older brothers, whose influence in books, music, and film continues to this day, although my tolerance for puns and movies that are "so bad they're good" is a whole lot lower than theirs. The idea of becoming a zombie because my car runs out of gas gets me to the gas station when I'd rather not bother.

A.M.'s book list on science fiction, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic

A.M. Geever Why did A.M. love this book?

Tinker is an inventive, imaginative, and fun fantasy story. The eponymous main character—a girl genius who works at a scrap yard—is unconventional and incredibly sympathetic; I rooted for her from the start. The intersection of magic, elves, parallel worlds, the setting of the disrupted, and dying on the vine rust-belt city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (my hometown—yay!) is exceptionally well done. This story is original from start to finish. Spencer's writing is crisp, engaging, and there’s no filler. Every word in this book moves the story forward. If you like fantasy, read Tinker (and the entire Elfhome series). Don’t be put off by (in my humble opinion) the incredibly terrible cover.

My copy—a dog eared and read several times over paperback—has a much better one. The pages in between are what counts, and the story is amazing!

By Wen Spencer,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Inventor, girl genius Tinker lives in a near-future Pittsburgh which now exists mostly in the land of the elves. She runs her salvage business, pays her taxes, and tries to keep the local ambient level of magic down with gadgets of her own design. When a


Book cover of Frenchman's Creek

Bronwyn Scott Author Of Cinderella at the Duke's Ball

From my list on Regency Romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have loved the Regency for decades. I cut my teeth on it as a young reader, and it’s been exciting to see the genre expand to include all types of stories from manner-driven drawing room dramas that highlight the nuances of the era to seductive, sexy stories that simply take place during those years, to stories that draw heavily on the events of the era to design unique and exciting historical plots. The diversity within the genre reflects the diversity of life and experience during the Regency. I have tried to capture a little of each across the 70+ books I’ve written for Harlequin, Mills, and Boon and in my own reading.

Bronwyn's book list on Regency Romance

Bronwyn Scott Why did Bronwyn love this book?

Alright, this one isn’t a Regency, and it’s not technically a romance, but it is a love story. It’s set during the Restoration period, so it’s much earlier, but it showcases how a love story can also be an adventure story and a journey of self-discovery.

The heroine, Lady Dona St. Columb, retreats to her estate in Cornwall only to find that a pirate is using her cove as a secret hideaway and her house as his own retreat. They set out on a madcap adventure and fall in love until her husband arrives and attempts to capture her lover, forcing Dona to choose between the life she has and the life she wants.

This is one of my favorite stories because the themes in it are timeless—who among us has not grappled with the same dilemma in the 21st century? I think that makes a book strong—regardless of time…

By Daphne du Maurier,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Frenchman's Creek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the author of Rebecca comes the story of a woman who craves love, freedom, and adventure-but it might cost her everything.
"Highly personalized adventure, ultra-romantic mood, and skillful storytelling." -New York Times
A lost classic from master of gothic romance and author of Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier, Frenchman's Creek is an electrifying tale of love and scandal on the high seas.
Jaded by the numbing politeness of London in the late 1600s, Lady Dona St. Columb revolts against high society. She rides into the countryside, guided only by her restlessness and her longing to escape.
But when chance leads…


Book cover of Scandalous Desires

Sophie Barnes Author Of Mr. Dale and the Divorcée

From my list on historical romance by contemporary authors.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been writing historical romance novels and novellas for over ten years now and have read extensively from this genre during that time. I’m currently working on my 42nd book where a governess in her mid-thirties finds love with her wealthy boss. Writing romance may seem easy, but it actually requires a lot of research and poses the challenge of being dependent on the gradual emotional development of two protagonists whose journeys intertwine. As a former editor of mine once put it, there are a lot of gears in motion, all of which have to work smoothly together. The stories I’ve chosen to mention are excellent examples of this. I hope you’ll enjoy each one.

Sophie's book list on historical romance by contemporary authors

Sophie Barnes Why did Sophie love this book?

This was the first historical romance I read where the hero’s an anti-hero bad boy on the wrong side of the law. It’s one of those books where it almost seems impossible for him to end up with the heroine at the end. But Elizabeth Hoyt excels at writing gritty love stories where the reader and heroine alike fall in love with the biggest scoundrel. Having read this story and seeing how Mickey O’Connor’s character was tackled helped me create Carlton Guthrie, a notorious crime lord, years later when I began writing The Forgotten Duke.

By Elizabeth Hoyt,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

CAN A PIRATE LEARN . . .

River pirate "Charming" Mickey O'Connor has lifted himself from the depths of the slums to be the king of St. Giles. Anything he wants he gets-with one exception. Silence Hollingbrook has been haunting his dreams ever since she spent a single night in his bed.

THAT THE ONLY TRUE TREASURE . . .

Once Silence was willing to sacrifice anything to save the man she loved. Now a widow, she's finally found peace when Charming Mickey comes storming back into her life with an offer she can't refuse. But this time she won't…


Book cover of Under the Black Flag: The Romance and the Reality of Life Among the Pirates

Wendy K. Perriman Author Of Fire on Dark Water

From my list on the real Pirates of the Caribbean.

Why am I passionate about this?

My fascination with pirates began as a student in Bristol (UK) – the legendary hometown of Edward Teach a.k.a. Blackbeard. Later, I visited the Pirates of Nassau Museum in the Bahamas and was amazed to learn there had been women buccaneers too. I wanted to discover more about these daring females and find out what might have enticed them to brave a tenuous life on the account. As fate would have it, I now live in North Carolina near the Outer Banks where Blackbeard met his fate. These experiences inspired me to write a different kind of adventure story about the real pirates of the Caribbean featuring a strong, resilient, swashbuckling female.

Wendy's book list on the real Pirates of the Caribbean

Wendy K. Perriman Why did Wendy love this book?

David Cordingly’s book is useful for its accurate and lively attempt to separate pirate facts from public fiction. He sifts through childhood tales of wooden legs and parrots to highlight the harsh realities experienced by most of these violent rogues. The tortures he describes serve to remind the reader that these were desperate times full of volatile career criminals. And the women were often as dangerous as their male counterparts! While considering Anne Bonny and Mary Read, he questions “Were there other women pirates?” and “How was it possible for a woman to pass herself off as a man in the cramped and primitive conditions on board an eighteenth-century ship?” These prompts helped me to focus on the issues my own female protagonist would have to overcome during her nautical adventures. I recommend this book because it is informative, thought-provoking, and entertaining.

By David Cordingly,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Under the Black Flag as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book sets out to discover the truth behind the stereotypical image of the pirate. Examining the rich literary and cultural legacy of piratical icons from Blackbeard to Captain Hook, the author compares the legends with their historical counterparts and comes up with some surprising conclusions. In a wider overview of the piracy myth, he explores its enduring and extraordinary appeal and assesses the reality behind the romance, answering in the process questions such as: why did men become pirates; were there any women pirates; how much money did they make from their plundering and looting; what effect did their…


Book cover of Captain Kidd and the War Against the Pirates

Eric Jay Dolin Author Of Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America's Most Notorious Pirates

From my list on piracy and pirates.

Why am I passionate about this?

The origin story for Black Flags, Blue Waters begins with my kids. After I finished my last book, Brilliant Beacons: A History of the American Lighthouse, I began searching for a new book topic. I asked Lily and Harry, who were then in their teens, what I should write about. When I raised the possibility of pirates, their eyes lit up, both of them saying, “That’s it, you have to write about pirates.” Lily even threw out two possible titles for the book: “Swords, Sails, and Swashbucklers;” and “Argh”— or, perhaps more emphatically, “Arrrgh”— which, I had to tell Lily, much to her chagrin, is a word that probably was never uttered by a Golden Age pirate, and is more likely a creation of movies in which pirates dispense arghs with relish. My children’s strong support is, of course, not the only reason I wrote Black Flags, Blue Waters -- if my publisher hadn't been as enthusiastic about the idea as I was, the book might never have been written. But the fact that my kids were early adopters of the pirate idea, was definitely encouraging.

Eric's book list on piracy and pirates

Eric Jay Dolin Why did Eric love this book?

Captain William Kidd is one of the most fascinating characters in modern history. Ritchie, an academic historian by training, produced a highly readable book that places Kidd within his era, describing in often fascinating detail the events and people of the time and how they affected Kidd’s life and the course of piracy. This is a book that focuses on the late 1600s and very early 1700s, and, therefore, does not cover the 1710s and 1720s, when the real pirates of the Caribbean terrorized the Atlantic. After reading the book, you can decide if Kidd was a pirate or just a misunderstood privateer who got railroaded by the English government.

By Robert C. Ritchie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Captain Kidd and the War Against the Pirates as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The legends that die hardest are those of the romantic outlaw, and those of swashbuckling pirates are surely among the most durable. Swift ships, snug inns, treasures buried by torchlight, palm-fringed beaches, fabulous riches, and, most of all, freedom from the mean life of the laboring man are the stuff of this tradition reinforced by many a novel and film.

It is disconcerting to think of such dashing scoundrels as slaves to economic forces, but so they were-as Robert Ritchie demonstrates in this lively history of piracy. He focuses on the shadowy figure of William Kidd, whose career in the…


Book cover of The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down

Laura Nelson Author Of The Water Tiger

From my list on pirates (fact and fiction).

Why am I passionate about this?

My interest in pirates began after attending the Real Pirates exhibit in Denver, Colorado, in 2011. All I can say now is that while I walked through the exhibit, I felt as though the pirates were personally speaking to me, asking me to tell the world their stories. I wrote several non-fiction articles about some of the men who sailed with Sam Bellamy on the Whydah Galley, the vessel featured in the exhibit. The writing and research were fun and fulfilling. In the last few years, I moved into fiction because I like reading fantasy myself and I wanted to explore the freedom of writing without having to document everything I wrote about.

Laura's book list on pirates (fact and fiction)

Laura Nelson Why did Laura love this book?

This was one of the first books I read as part of my research about pirates during the Golden Age of Piracy.

It has a bibliography and footnotes, but it reads more like an adventure novel. You can read it for research, entertainment, or both. Everything in this book really happened. It’s one of the best starting points for someone to learn about piracy in the early 1700s.

By Colin Woodard,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Republic of Pirates as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An entrancing tale of piracy colored with gold, treachery and double-dealing (Portland Press Herald), Pulitzer Prize-finalist Colin Woodward's The Republic of Pirates is the historical biography of the exploits of infamous Caribbean buccaneers.

In the early eighteenth century, the Pirate Republic was home to some of the great pirate captains, including Edward "Blackbeard" Teach, "Black Sam" Bellamy, and Charles Vane. Along with their fellow pirates — former sailors, indentured servants, and runaway slaves — this "Flying Gang" established a crude but distinctive democracy in the Bahamas, carving out their own zone of freedom in which servants were free, blacks could…


Book cover of Pirates on the Chesapeake: Being a True History of Pirates, Picaroons, and Raiders on Chesapeake Bay, 1610-1807

Eric Jay Dolin Author Of Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America's Most Notorious Pirates

From my list on piracy and pirates.

Why am I passionate about this?

The origin story for Black Flags, Blue Waters begins with my kids. After I finished my last book, Brilliant Beacons: A History of the American Lighthouse, I began searching for a new book topic. I asked Lily and Harry, who were then in their teens, what I should write about. When I raised the possibility of pirates, their eyes lit up, both of them saying, “That’s it, you have to write about pirates.” Lily even threw out two possible titles for the book: “Swords, Sails, and Swashbucklers;” and “Argh”— or, perhaps more emphatically, “Arrrgh”— which, I had to tell Lily, much to her chagrin, is a word that probably was never uttered by a Golden Age pirate, and is more likely a creation of movies in which pirates dispense arghs with relish. My children’s strong support is, of course, not the only reason I wrote Black Flags, Blue Waters -- if my publisher hadn't been as enthusiastic about the idea as I was, the book might never have been written. But the fact that my kids were early adopters of the pirate idea, was definitely encouraging.

Eric's book list on piracy and pirates

Eric Jay Dolin Why did Eric love this book?

While this book focuses on piracy in the Chesapeake Bay region, its coverage is much broader than that. Shomette highlights many of the most important themes running through the history of piracy, and he does an excellent job giving the reader the broader context of what was happening in society at large and how that influenced and was influenced by piracy. Shomette’s extensive reliance on primary sources and his use of quotes by the historical figures he profiles, greatly enlivens the text and gives it the stamp of authenticity. And since this book drills down deep into the pirate history of one region, there are many stories here that will be new to those who have only read much broader histories on piracy.

By Donald G. Shomette,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pirates on the Chesapeake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A dazzling array of swashbuckling pirates, picaroons, and sea rovers are pitted against the often feckless representatives of an outpost government authority in the Chesapeake Bay region. It is an exciting and dramatic two hundred-year history that begins grimly with the "starving time" in the Virginia colony in 1609, and ends with the peaceful resolution of the Othello affair with the French in 1807. In between lies a full panoply of violent and bizarre buccaneering incidents that one is hard pressed to imagine from the vantage point of the twenty-first century. Documented by impressive research in articles of the Netherlands,…


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