100 books like Sold on a Monday

By Kristina McMorris,

Here are 100 books that Sold on a Monday fans have personally recommended if you like Sold on a Monday. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

Kimberly Nixon Author Of Rock Bottom, Tennessee

From my list on books based on a true story.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have a passion for the family story, and I have been blessed with a plethora of them. My mother grew up in Appalachia during the Great Depression and faced shame because her mother left the family to commit a felony. Her accounts of a childhood without and sleeping in an abandoned log cabin have been seared into my soul. My father, one of fourteen children during the Great Depression, worked on neighboring farms from the age of seven. History has two parts, the facts and details, but the telling of the story wrangles the purpose and sacrifice of those involved.

Kimberly's book list on books based on a true story

Kimberly Nixon Why did Kimberly love this book?

I sat on my mother’s lap as a child to hear stories of her childhood in Appalachia—no running water or electricity, and the shame brought on by her mother’s escape from that hard life. The setting and the characterizations in Book Woman of Troublesome Creek brought back some of the memories of my mother’s stories.

I came to love the character’s adaptation to the harsh environment, their want for a better life, and the difference one person’s influence can make in a community. The spirit of survival, even with the hardest of circumstances, forced me to cherish this story. It was as if my mother had written this book or perhaps read it to me.

By Kim Michele Richardson,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The bestselling historical fiction from Kim Michele Richardson, this is a novel following Cussy Mary, a packhorse librarian and her quest to bring books to the Appalachian community she loves, perfect for readers of Lee Smith and Lisa Wingate. The perfect addition to your next book club!
The hardscrabble folks of Troublesome Creek have to scrap for everything-everything except books, that is. Thanks to Roosevelt's Kentucky Pack Horse Library Project, Troublesome's got its very own traveling librarian, Cussy Mary Carter.
Cussy's not only…

Book cover of The Grapes of Wrath

Nick Brown Author Of The Siege: Agent of Rome 1

From my list on books that take you to another world.

Why am I passionate about this?

Before I was a writer, I was a reader.  My mother was a primary school teacher, so I was encouraged to read from my earliest years. I wanted to be not only entertained but transported to another place, time, or world. When I finally decided to write my first novel, I settled on historical fiction, but I have since written both science fiction and fantasy. I always endeavour to emulate my literary heroes and create engaging characters, compelling plots, and an interesting, unusual, convincing world.

Nick's book list on books that take you to another world

Nick Brown Why did Nick love this book?

Though set less than a century ago, the world of Steinbeck’s novel is so very different from our own. This masterpiece follows the Joad family as they head west to California, escaping the hardship and poverty of the Oklahoma Dust Bowl.

Depression-era America is described with such detail and emotion that the reader feels almost like a companion of the Joads, each of whom are rendered with precision and depth. In other hands, this might have been a grim, gloomy tale, but Steinback evokes themes of loyalty, kindness, and pride with peerless power and skill.  

By John Steinbeck,

Why should I read it?

17 authors picked The Grapes of Wrath as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'I've done my damndest to rip a reader's nerves to rags, I don't want him satisfied.'

Shocking and controversial when it was first published, The Grapes of Wrath is Steinbeck's Pultizer Prize-winning epic of the Joad family, forced to travel west from Dust Bowl era Oklahoma in search of the promised land of California. Their story is one of false hopes, thwarted desires and powerlessness, yet out of their struggle Steinbeck created a drama that is both intensely human and majestic in its scale and moral vision.

Book cover of The Fault in Our Stars

Bhavik Sarkhedi Author Of The Unproposed Guy

From my list on romantic teen reads for those who are single.

Why am I passionate about this?

Ever since I penned my first romantic tale Will You Walk A Mile?, I've been enamored with the complexities of young love. For me, writing isn't just a profession; it's akin to breathing. I live to write and write for a living, with a special fondness for narratives that explore the highs and lows of teen romance and human emotion. I have been that ‘teen guy’ next door. That same teenage wonder for love stories that first sparked my passion for writing has stayed with me, maturing into a deeper understanding.  to curate a list of teen novels that will tug at your heartstrings.

Bhavik's book list on romantic teen reads for those who are single

Bhavik Sarkhedi Why did Bhavik love this book?

Honestly, this book crushed me, but in the most beautiful way possible.

It taught me that love can be found in the most unexpected places, even when faced with life's harshest realities. This narrative made me appreciate the small but significant moments in life, a lesson I try to convey in my own writing.

By John Green,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Fault in Our Stars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

The beloved, #1 global bestseller by John Green, author of The Anthropocene Reviewed and Turtles All the Way Down

"John Green is one of the best writers alive." -E. Lockhart, #1 bestselling author of We Were Liars

"The greatest romance story of this decade." -Entertainment Weekly

#1 New York Times Bestseller * #1 Wall Street Journal Bestseller * #1 USA Today Bestseller * #1 International Bestseller

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters…

Book cover of The Speckled Beauty: A Dog and His People

Rona Maynard Author Of Starter Dog: My Path to Joy, Belonging and Loving This World

From my list on the power of loving a dog.

Why am I passionate about this?

For most of my life no one guessed I could fall for a dog, much less write a book about one. I associated dogs with drool on the floor and fur all over everything. One of those “just a dog” people, I thought the marriage bed should be strictly for humans. It crossed my mind that an eager dog would keep me from working into the night at the office where I ran Chatelaine, Canada’s premier magazine for women, but I chose a treadmill at the Y over rambles with a dog. At 65 I discovered my inner dog person. A ragged-eared mutt is now my joy and my muse.

Rona's book list on the power of loving a dog

Rona Maynard Why did Rona love this book?

When Rick Bragg shuffles home to his mother’s place in rural Alabama, spent from chemotherapy, depression, and years of hard living, he figures it’ll take a sweet old dog to lick the crankiness out of him.

There’s nothing sweet about the stray who shows up at the side of the road, “seventy-six pounds of wet hair and bad decisions.” In a willful Australian shepherd with a ruined eye and a lust for carrion, Bragg recognizes himself—his wounds, his tenacity, his devotion to family. Speck “would rather die than be clean” but he stands by his people when they need him, and Bragg is his number one human.

I loved the humor, pathos, and Southern character that elevate this story of redemption by a dog over more predictable versions.

By Rick Bragg,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • From the best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of All Over but the Shoutin', the warmhearted and hilarious story of how his life was transformed by his love for a poorly behaved, half-blind stray dog.

Speck is not a good boy. He is a terrible boy, a defiant, self-destructive, often malodorous boy, a grave robber and screen door moocher who spends his days playing chicken with the Fed Ex man, picking fights with thousand-pound livestock, and rolling in donkey manure, and his nights howling at the moon. He has been that way since the moment he…

Book cover of Prodigal Summer

D.J. Green Author Of No More Empty Spaces

From my list on fiction books where science plays a main character.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an avid reader of fiction and kind of a nerd, too, so I love books with science in them. I’m a scientist myself, now retired from a career in environmental and engineering geology. I am fascinated by the Earth and the geologic processes that shape it, from the seemingly mundane (like erosion) to the remarkable (like earthquakes, landslides, and volcanic eruptions). As a writer, I try to translate that wonder for non-scientist readers, all wrapped up in a compelling story. Each book on this list sure does that, weaving science into the fabric of a gripping narrative. I hope you’ll love them as much as I do.

D.J.'s book list on fiction books where science plays a main character

D.J. Green Why did D.J. love this book?

This is my favorite of Kingsolver’s books. I fell in love with so many of the characters, even some of the crustier sort. I also fell in love with the Appalachian mountains and valleys where they worked, studied, and sometimes struggled.

This is a poignant book about families and landscapes, and how we must find our own place in each.

By Barbara Kingsolver,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Prodigal Summer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It is summer in the Appalachian mountains and love, desire and attraction are in the air. Nature, too, it seems, is not immune. From her outpost in an isolated mountain cabin, Deanna Wolfe, a reclusive wildlife biologist, watches a den of coyotes that have recently migrated into the region. She is caught off guard by a young hunter who invades her most private spaces and interrupts her self-assured, solitary life. On a farm several miles down the mountain, Lusa Maluf Landowski, a bookish city girl turned farmer's wife, finds herself marooned in a strange place where she must declare or…

Book cover of In the Valley

Leah Weiss Author Of All the Little Hopes

From my list on southern books that transport us.

Why am I passionate about this?

I didn’t get the itch to write till my late fifties then I wrote about Mama’s humble life on a tobacco farm. I was a novice who leaned on critique groups to learn literary rules. Short story contests helped me segue into fiction. I sold a few of those early stories and wrote a practice novel that didn’t sell but I understood the best storytelling transports us to a time and place that feels so authentic your senses respond. That place for me is the South and I wanted to write books that took you there. I was seventy when my debut Appalachian novel, If the Creek Don’t Rise, was released and became a bestseller. 

Leah's book list on southern books that transport us

Leah Weiss Why did Leah love this book?

In the Valley by Ron Rash is a haunting collection of ten short stories told as lean and efficient as the author’s other works. Filled with surprise twists, I could hardly close the book at bedtime, so delicious were the varied plots. I particularly loved the stories that expanded our understanding of his captivating character, Serena, that was made into a movie in 2014. 

By Ron Rash,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Valley 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, award-winning writer of Serena

"One of the great American authors at work today" (The New York Times) gives us a short story collection of haunting allegories about the times we live in—from the perils of capitalism to the extraordinary acts of decency and heroism that exist within them—and the return of the villainess who propelled Rash’s famed Serena to national acclaim.

Ron Rash has long been a revered presence in the landscape of American letters. A virtuosic novelist, poet, and story writer, he evokes the beauty and brutality of the land, the relentless tension…

Book cover of Where the Forest Meets the Stars

J. Martain Author Of Forgetting the Lost

From my list on uncanny children.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an uncanny child myself, I always gravitated toward reading about the strange—whether in historical accounts or fiction—and as a passably normal adult, I often write from the perspective of “the other.” I never intentionally mix science fiction and paranormal elements into my work…they just happen to be my characters’ truths! So much of what we humans know about our world is filtered through our collective reality, and I love following the connecting threads and plucking at the flaws. 

J.'s book list on uncanny children

J. Martain Why did J. love this book?

Vanderah’s novel is an outlier on my list, because it’s actually a beautiful tale of found family—but that makes it a poignant counter to the others. 

Has Ursa, the uncanny child, merely assumed her “otherness” as a protective guise? Even by the end of the book, I found myself wondering whether the neatly wrapped up (and satisfying) story would have ended differently had the child been the narrator.  

More literary fiction than speculative, I recommend this novel for the lingering “what-ifs” that brought me back for a second read.

By Glendy Vanderah,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Where the Forest Meets the Stars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An Amazon Charts, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post bestseller, and a Goodreads Choice Award finalist.

In this gorgeously stunning debut, a mysterious child teaches two strangers how to love and trust again.

After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot…

Book cover of What Alice Forgot

Stephanie Newman Author Of Barbarians at the PTA

From my list on mom culture.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a practicing clinical psychologist, teacher of psychotherapy theory and technique, and author (Barbarians at the PTA, Madmen on the Couch, Money Talks) who writes about the psychopathology of daily life for various online and print publications, I am a participant in/observer of mom culture. I love a juicy mother-child story. 

Stephanie's book list on mom culture

Stephanie Newman Why did Stephanie love this book?

While Moriarity is known for Big Little Lies and more recent works, this earlier novel pulls no punches in telling the story of Alice, a perpetually dissatisfied and grumbling suburban mom who lives a comfortable and privileged life but feels chronically annoyed by the daily grind of parenting, household, volunteering, and keeping up with the competition.

Readers will recognize her descent into a rabbit hole fuelled by the stresses of competitive parenting. The jokes are sharp, characters relatable and the payoff of psychological growth makes for a worthwhile read. 

By Liane Moriarty,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked What Alice Forgot as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the bestselling author behind the addictive, award-winning HBO sensation BIG LITTLE LIES comes the compelling and thought-provoking story of love, life and memory

'Gripping, thought-provoking and funny' MARIE CLAIRE

How can ten years of your life just disappear?

Alice is twenty-nine.

She adores sleep, chocolate, and her ramshackle new house.

She's newly engaged to the wonderful Nick, and is pregnant with her first baby. But there's just one problem.

That was ten years ago . . .

Alice slipped in her step-aerobics class, hit her head and lost a decade.

Now she's a grown-up, bossy mother of three…

Book cover of Comfort & Joy

Kristen James Author Of More Than Memories

From my list on romantic dramas with unique storylines.

Why am I passionate about this?

I really enjoy coming up with fresh, unique storylines. I have to applaud books that have a new approach and surprise us—it’s not easy for authors to do! The perfect story, to me, is romantic drama and family life all entwined. Family is everything, whether it’s the family we’re born into, one created by marriage, or one by random circumstances. I enjoy reading and writing romance in the context of family drama because it’s the core of who we are. The best stories have romance and also tell about a family coming together. 

Kristen's book list on romantic dramas with unique storylines

Kristen James Why did Kristen love this book?

I spotted this novel in the supermarket and bought it for the pretty cover some years ago, and it introduced me to Kristin Hannah. I like getting into a story without really knowing the plot, and this was surprised the heck out of me! This sweet Christmas story is about rebuilding family and finding happiness and joy again. Joy leaves her life behind and finds herself deep in the rain forest in Washington, where she meets a sad little boy who lost his mother. The dad doesn’t know what to do. All three of them are hurting, and it’s magical when they start to heal together. It’s such a good, sweet story, and it’s still on my bookshelf.

By Kristin Hannah,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Kristin Hannah is beloved by readers around the world for her unique blend of powerful emotion and exquisite storytelling. In Comfort & Joy, she offers a modern-day fairy tale—the story of a woman who gets a miraculous chance at happiness.

Joy Candellaro once loved Christmas more than any other time of the year. Now, as the holiday approaches, she is at a crossroads in her life; recently divorced and alone, she can’t summon the old enthusiasm for celebrating. So without telling anyone, she buys a ticket and boards a plane bound for the beautiful Pacific…

Book cover of The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl

Susan Whiting Kemp Author Of The Climate Machine

From my list on disasters where society fails suddenly.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve written or edited thousands of science and engineering proposals, blog posts, and reports, and in the past decade, disaster resilience has become a major subject of these documents. I’ve come to realize that while it’s possible to be ready for disasters, few people truly are. In the books I’m recommending, something vital to life has been stolen and the disasters are so overpowering that mere survival is a nearly impossible goal. This forces the characters into unusual and heroic action. Their choices are sometimes surprising and always compelling, and I loved sharing their journeys.   

Susan's book list on disasters where society fails suddenly

Susan Whiting Kemp Why did Susan love this book?

This nonfiction book is jam-packed with astonishing facts and captivating personalities from the time of the Dust Bowl.

The disasters were many and varied during the 1930s on America’s Great Plains. “The weather might display seven different moods in a year, and six of them were life-threatening. Droughts, blizzards, grass fires, hailstorms, flash floods, and tornadoes…”

Not to mention the dust storms: “thick like coarse animal hair…with an edge like steel wool.” At least two monster “black dusters” traveled 2,000 miles (3,220 kilometers), taking topsoil from the midwest all the way to Washington DC.

The impact on society was terrible, but brought about great change in the country’s approach to conservation. This book is excellent for writers. Having read it helped me write more truthfully (I hope) about disasters in my fiction.

By Timothy Egan,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Worst Hard Time as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

In a tour de force of historical reportage, Timothy Egan’s National Book Award–winning story rescues an iconic chapter of American history from the shadows.

The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Timothy Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones. Brilliantly capturing the terrifying drama of catastrophe, he does equal justice to the human characters…

5 book lists we think you will like!

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