90 books like Revel

By Carla Coles,

Here are 90 books that Revel fans have personally recommended if you like Revel. 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 Rilke on Love and Other Difficulties: Translations and Considerations

Barbara L.B. Storey Author Of Finding Our Way

From my list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush.

Who am I?

When writing my book, it seemed only natural for me to bring poetry into the love story I’d created. I fell in love with poetry in high school, and it has always felt like a more powerful, compact, and intense way of expressing deep emotions. And it’s so much more complex than hearts and flowers, hence my title for this list! I wanted to use a poem that summed up the intensity of a physical encounter between new lovers. And Rilke was perfect for that. The other books are favourites, books I’ve had for years, and they’ve been good background for my writing in general.

Barbara's book list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush

Barbara L.B. Storey Why did Barbara love this book?

Rilke has been my favourite poet since I was in my 20s—the depth of emotion and the lack of sentiment is what attracts me to his work. In his mind, love is a very serious thing, as the title suggests. No hearts and roses—just the truth about human emotions. I use one of the poems (“The Seven Phallic Poems, IV”) in this book in my book—Jon reads it to Becca at a very intimate moment. I believe Rilke’s work in this book was my introduction to erotic poetry.

By Rainer Maria Rilke, John J.L. Mood (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rilke on Love and Other Difficulties as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Here is a mini-anthology of poetry and prose for both aficionados and those readers discovering Rainer Maria Rilke for the first time. John J. L. Mood has assembled a collection of Rilke's strongest work, presenting commentary along with the selections. Mood links into an essay passages from letters that show Rilke's profound understanding of men and women and his ardent spirituality, rooted in the senses.

Combining passion and sensitivity, the poems on love presented here are often not only sensual but sexual as well. Others pursue perennial themes in his work-death and life, growth and transformation. The book concludes with…


Book cover of Rumi: The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing

Christina Strigas Author Of Love & Vodka

From my list on poetry that speak to the soul.

Who am I?

I’ve written five poetry books and I am presently working on my sixth. My poems are also confessional and narrative styles. I have also written two novels and enjoy writing fiction and poetry. I hope you enjoy the books on this list as much as I have. They have saved my life on many occasions. 

Christina's book list on poetry that speak to the soul

Christina Strigas Why did Christina love this book?

Rumi is one of those writers that transcends time and space. He is more of a spiritual writer and when he writes about love and longing, you can feel the words plant a seed inside your soul. If someone asked me which poetry book they should begin reading without any knowledge of poetry, Rumi would be a start. The simplicity of his words taught me that you don’t need to use a thesaurus to express yourself. His simple words and poems about soul mates carry his work over centuries. This poetry book tells you how lovers don’t finally meet somewhere, they’re in each other all along. These famous quotes of Rumi’s will be instilled in you again and again. Easy book to read and carry with you anywhere. It taught me to find my spirituality and soul and let it flow like a river with words as waves. It taught…

By Coleman Barks,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Now in paperback, this is the definitive collection of America's bestselling poet Rumi's finest poems of love and lovers. In Coleman Barks' delightful and wise renderings, these poems will open your heart and soul to the lover inside and out. 'There are lovers content with longing. I'm not one of them.' Rumi is best known for his poems expressing the ecstasies and mysteries of love of all kinds - erotic, divine, friendship -and Coleman Barks collects here the best of those poems, ranging from the 'wholeness' one experiences with a true lover, to the grief of a lover's loss, and…


Book cover of The Penguin Book of the Sonnet: 500 Years of a Classic Tradition in English

Barbara L.B. Storey Author Of Finding Our Way

From my list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush.

Who am I?

When writing my book, it seemed only natural for me to bring poetry into the love story I’d created. I fell in love with poetry in high school, and it has always felt like a more powerful, compact, and intense way of expressing deep emotions. And it’s so much more complex than hearts and flowers, hence my title for this list! I wanted to use a poem that summed up the intensity of a physical encounter between new lovers. And Rilke was perfect for that. The other books are favourites, books I’ve had for years, and they’ve been good background for my writing in general.

Barbara's book list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush

Barbara L.B. Storey Why did Barbara love this book?

I have always had old-fashioned tastes when it comes to poetry, and sonnets in particular are a form I have been attracted to. This anthology has the best sonnets from Chaucer to contemporary poets, a real education in the form, and one of my favourites here is by e.e. cummings, titled “I like my body when it is with your body.”

By Phillis Levin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Penguin Book of the Sonnet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the oldest literary forms of the post-classical world, the sonnet has engaged nearly every well-known poet writing in a Western language. This collection reveals how each writer - from William Wordsworth to Wilfred Owen - met the challenge of transforming an inherited pattern and convention. The result is like a living conversation between past and present. In a fascinating and extensive introduction, Levin traces the origins of the sonnet back to Italy, and follows its development from the Elizabethan era to the Romantic and Victorian, later discussing its popularity among the poets of the Harlem Renaissance and the…


Book cover of Collected Poems, 1930-1993

Barbara L.B. Storey Author Of Finding Our Way

From my list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush.

Who am I?

When writing my book, it seemed only natural for me to bring poetry into the love story I’d created. I fell in love with poetry in high school, and it has always felt like a more powerful, compact, and intense way of expressing deep emotions. And it’s so much more complex than hearts and flowers, hence my title for this list! I wanted to use a poem that summed up the intensity of a physical encounter between new lovers. And Rilke was perfect for that. The other books are favourites, books I’ve had for years, and they’ve been good background for my writing in general.

Barbara's book list on love poetry that aren't all hearts, flowers, and mush

Barbara L.B. Storey Why did Barbara love this book?

After Rilke, May Sarton is my favourite poet. I love her because her work is about the meanings of everyday things. She sees life through the eyes of an introvert, which I identify with completely, and she is able to bring out aspects of simple things that others miss. Her thoughts on love range from people in love“Lovers at the Zoo”to the intense grief at the loss of a pet “Death and the Turtle.”

By May Sarton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Collected Poems, 1930-1993 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Lucid, ardent, and contemplative, May Sarton is one of America's best-loved writers. This comprehensive collection - the first in twenty years - celebrates six decades of bold imagination and fifteen books of poetry, the creative output of a lifetime. Arranged chronologically, these poems reveal the full breadth of Sarton's creative vision. Themes include the search for an inward order, her passions, the natural world, self-knowledge, and, in her latest poems, the trials of old age. Moving through Sarton's work, we see her at ease in both traditional forms and free verse, finding inspiration in snow over a dark sea, a…


Book cover of The Language of Flowers: A Fully Illustrated Compendium of Meaning, Literature, and Lore for the Modern Romantic

Erica Hannickel Author Of Orchid Muse: A History of Obsession in Fifteen Flowers

From my list on orchid history and culture.

Who am I?

I wrote Orchid Muse: A History of Obsession in Fifteen Flowers. I’m a historian, a master gardener, and I’ve grown a few hundred orchids for over half my life. I love collecting stories of orchids because, well, they’re fascinating, and they offer a deeper connection to the pastime I love best.

Erica's book list on orchid history and culture

Erica Hannickel Why did Erica love this book?

This book stands out from the pack of flower symbolism and history. Instead of a slew of garbage collected from hither and yon on the internet, Begay deeply researched every flower and came to decisive yet elegant histories and meanings for every plant—the chapter on orchids is great. The book is useful for any reader, historian, or gardener who wants to infuse their garden and home with meaning, and the illustrations are whimsical and beautiful.

By Odessa Begay,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

With gorgeous full-color illustrations, ornate decorative elements, lettering in metallic ink, and engaging text, The Language of Flowers: A Fully Illustrated Compendium of Meaning, Literature, and Lore for the Modern Romantic is a treasure for flower lovers. A sumptuous, contemporary anthology of 50 of the world's most storied and popular flowers, each of its entries offers insight to the meaning associated with the flower, and is a fascinating mix of foklore, classic mythology, literature, botanical information and popular culture.

Following an introduction that provides a short history of the language of flowers, a fad which reached its peak during the…


Book cover of Moving Words About a Flower

Carol Fisher Saller Author Of The Bridge Dancers

From my list on nature providing strength and healing.

Who am I?

I’m not an expert in gardening, forestry, or herbal medicine. But like everyone else, I have a growing awareness that our planet Earth is entirely dependent on thriving forests and insects and even weeds. We owe it to our children and future generations to learn about and protect our precious resources. Although I live in the big city of Chicago and have a tiny backyard, last year I turned my little grass lawn into prairie! I have creeping charlie, dandelions, creeping phlox, sedge grass, wild violets, white clover, and who knows what else. (Luckily, my neighbors are on board.) I’ve already seen honeybees and hummingbirds. It’s not much, but it’s something I can do.

Carol's book list on nature providing strength and healing

Carol Fisher Saller Why did Carol love this book?

This joyful book about the life cycle of a dandelion will have you on the edge of your seat!

I’m not kidding – suspense and humor pervade the tale, which takes our dandelion from an unlikely sprouting in a city sidewalk to adventures and tragedy in the countryside (being trampled by a moose!), to the ecstasy and triumph of a final scattering of its millions of little seeds.

What child hasn’t blown on the fluffy ball of dandelion seeds? Understanding where the seeds come from and where they’re going is a life lesson worth learning about this special indigenous plant too often dismissed as a “weed.”

Barbara Chotiner’s chaotic and evocative illustrations will bear up under many repeated readings.

By K.C. Hayes, Barbara Chotiner (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Moving Words About a Flower as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

Words tumble, leap, and fly in this clever shape poem about a resilient dandelion.

The inspiring story of a dandelion that survives against all odds, ingeniously told through shape poems (also called "concrete poems") full of visual surprises. When it rains, letters fall from the sky; and when seeds scatter, words FLY!

Each playful page will have readers looking twice. The back of the book includes more information about the life cycle of the humble, incredible dandelion.

NSTA-CBC's 2023 Outstanding Science Trade Books List 2023 Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts List by the CLA (Children’s Literature Assembly)


Book cover of Sidewalk Flowers

Lauren Stringer Author Of Yellow Time

From my list on the magic of being outside in the natural world.

Who am I?

I began as a picture book illustrator and gradually started writing my own stories, but I still love illustrating other people’s stories. From their manuscripts, I learn to look at the world in new and unexpected ways. As a visual artist, I learned from a young age to pay attention and really look at the world around me. When I have days full of errands and chores and forget to look and be present, the day becomes gray and boring. All of these books in words and pictures offer nature and the act of paying attention and celebrating as transformation and connection.

Lauren's book list on the magic of being outside in the natural world

Lauren Stringer Why did Lauren love this book?

This picture book with no words and minimal color follows the path of a distracted father and attentive child through a city. Every time I open this book I am reminded to keep my eyes open and pay attention; gather beauty where you find it and share it with others. The illustrator is a master of stories within stories and by the end, I promise, you will want to step outside and pick flowers, even from cracks in the sidewalk.

By Jonarno Lawson, Sydney Smith (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Sidewalk Flowers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Governor General's Literary Award for Children's Illustrated Book

A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book of the Year

In this wordless picture book, a little girl collects wildflowers while her distracted father pays her little attention. Each flower becomes a gift, and whether the gift is noticed or ignored, both giver and recipient are transformed by their encounter.

“Written” by award-winning poet JonArno Lawson and brought to life by illustrator Sydney Smith, Sidewalk Flowers is an ode to the importance of small things, small people and small gestures.


Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in…


Book cover of Rou and the Great Race

Winsome Bingham Author Of Soul Food Sunday

From my list on children being unapologetic.

Who am I?

I write fiction and nonfiction. I tell the truth, but on occasion, I twist the truth to create entertaining stories to feed your soul like soul food Sunday. I write for kids: for the teeny tots and rebel rousers. Stories both short and long with characters brave, bold, and strong. Settings that transport you to a world so captivating, you don’t want to leave. My stories are like quilts, threaded with themes of love, hope, family, and food. They provide comfort, keeping you hopeful through times of despair. I handle your heart, mind, and soul with care. I love seeing children have agency on the page. I love that they do them, and they are unapologetic about what they do. 

Winsome's book list on children being unapologetic

Winsome Bingham Why did Winsome love this book?

This book is the first of its kind. It is a dystopian picture book. Flowers are almost non-existent. It’s a rarity. So, every year, there is an annual race. Rou wants to win, but not for her. She wants the flowers for her grandmother. I love that she put someone before her. This book is gorgeously illustrated and the message of what you would do to please the ones you love is abundantly clear. I love this book.

By Pam Fong,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rou and the Great Race 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?

Rou and the Great Race: In a time when a flower is so rare that it is the grand prize of an annual race, Rou’s only wish is to win for her grandma, who is haunted by memories of when flowers were once abundant. But sometimes the real prize is not what’s offered by others, but what we make for ourselves.


Book cover of A Guide to Enjoying Wildflowers

Teri Dunn Chace Author Of Seeing Flowers: Discover the Hidden Life of Flowers

From my list on flowers.

Who am I?

Hiking in the flower-covered hillsides of Central California as a nature-loving kid, I couldn’t help but wonder about my companions. One of my first purchases (with babysitting money!) was a wildflower guide. I’ve moved around the country many times and every time I’ve had to start over, make new plant acquaintances and discoveries—always an orienting process. Of course, I’ve also studied plants formally, in college and in my career, and (honestly, best of all) via mentors and independent study. All this has shown me that flowers are more than just beautiful! They’re amazingly diverse, and full of fascinating behaviors and quirks. In fact, they are essential parts of the complex habitats we share.

Teri's book list on flowers

Teri Dunn Chace Why did Teri love this book?

I get emotional every time I consult this book, which in my heart is a classic, never equaled in the world of flower guides before or since its publication back in 1985. Short chapters profile dozens of familiar meadow, forest, and roadside plants, from beloved wildflowers to those we consider weeds. In a confiding, chatty tone, we are introduced to each plant’s history and folklore, uses, habitat, and wild and garden relatives. Then, best of all, with “what you can observe,” the authors take a deeper dive. I learned how daisy-family flowers prevent inbreeding, how milkweed blooms kidnap their pollinators, and how emerging skunk cabbage plants generate enough heat to melt snow in their vicinity.

By Donald, Lillian Stokes Stokes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Guide to Enjoying Wildflowers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Describes the history, plant lore, uses, anatomy, and stages of growth of fifty common wild flowers from asters and bluets to violets and yarrow


Book cover of The Language of Flowers

Jessica Roux Author Of Floriography: An Illustrated Guide to the Victorian Language of Flowers

From my list on illustrated florals.

Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by nature, even from a young age. My parents would set up easels for my sister and me to paint outdoors, and I haven’t stopped drawing since. I tend to focus on flora and fauna, making illustrations with subdued colors and intricate details. I love to create illustrations for books, and occasionally, I’ll write them, too. Often reflective of history, mythology, and folklore, my work captures an old-world feeling and a love of nature. In my spare time, you can find me in my garden or out walking my dog, Molly.

Jessica's book list on illustrated florals

Jessica Roux Why did Jessica love this book?

Dena Seiferling’s The Language of Flowers tells the story of Beatrice the bumblebee learning the language of flowers through the meadows she roams. As a fan of subdued colors, Seiferling’s illustration style drew me in, with soft lines and hidden faces within all of the featured blooms. The last two pages are an illustrated list of floral meanings, fantastic for children wanting to learn more about floriography, of which I am (very obviously) a fan!

By Dena Seiferling,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Language of Flowers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

An adopted bumblebee learns the language of flowers from her floral family in this enchanting picture book, inspired by floriography, that celebrates one of nature's most important relationships.

Deep within a magical meadow, some lonely flowers receive a very special gift: a baby bumblebee in need. The flowers name her Beatrice, they care for her and help her find her wings. And as she grows older, Beatrice learns the language of her floral family — messages of kindness and appreciation that she delivers between them. With each sweet word, the flowers bloom until the meadow becomes so big that Beatrice…


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