100 books like Spare

By Prince Harry,

Here are 100 books that Spare fans have personally recommended if you like Spare. 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 Choice: Embrace the Possible

Jessica Willis Fisher Author Of Unspeakable: Surviving My Childhood and Finding My Voice

From my list on courage to tell my survivor story.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am through and through a storytelling creature and fell in love with books as a child. I first aspired to be a librarian, then an author. Life took me in other directions, and when I found songwriting as a teen, I figured it would be the closest I would ever come to my original dreams. It was not until I escaped from my abusive family as a young adult and dove headfirst into therapy that I realized my story was far darker than I had ever let myself admit. I am now a singer-songwriter and memoirist who believes that sharing our stories with one another will change the world. 

Jessica's book list on courage to tell my survivor story

Jessica Willis Fisher Why did Jessica love this book?

This incredible memoir, a truly singular book about an astonishing life, changed my view of the human capacity to survive and thrive. Early on, we see young Edith’s determination of spirit as a teenager imprisoned in Auschwitz. She makes it through to the end of the war, then struggles to build a life beyond the devastation of her unspeakable experience.

She eventually became a renowned psychologist and PTSD therapist. In particular, I greatly appreciated the unique double benefit of witnessing a harrowing account of survival followed by the survivor’s later professional and expert examination of said account–stirring, epic, and endlessly wise. 

By Edith Eva Eger,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

THE AWARD-WINNING SUNDAY TIMES AND NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Even in hell, hope can flower

'I'll be forever changed by her story' - Oprah Winfrey

'Extraordinary ... will stick with you long after you read it' - Bill Gates

'One of those rare and eternal stories you don't want to end' - Desmond Tutu

'A masterpiece of holocaust literature. Her memoir, like her life, is extraordinary, harrowing and inspiring in equal measure' - The Times Literary Supplement

'I can't imagine a more important message for modern times. Eger's book is a triumph' - The New York Times

In 1944, sixteen-year-old…


Book cover of Love People, Use Things: Because the Opposite Never Works

Karen Cassiday Author Of The No Worries Guide to Raising Your Anxious Child: A Handbook to Help You and Your Anxious Child Thrive

From my list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've always been fascinated with how people overcome terrible circumstances ever since my childhood when my parents took me through the Tower of London and told me people survived the horrible torture devices on display. I got into reading biographies of war heroes, concentration camp survivors, and athletes who survived torture, betrayal, illness, and cruelty only to become people I admire. I became a clinical psychologist because I love inspiring others to discover their own greatness during life’s worst moments. I’ve had to learn how to find love, hope, and meaning when trauma, disability, death, and broken promises have ground me down to a bloody pulp.

Karen's book list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to

Karen Cassiday Why did Karen love this book?

Love People Use Things: Because the Opposite Never Works, by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus is refreshingly honest account of two men who discover that chasing after the “good life” is a guaranteed soul killer. 

They use good humor, witty insight, and compelling personal examples to challenge the culture of consumerism, and social media envy. 

This book is a valuable guidebook out of overspending, retail therapy, and cluttering your mind and life with things that get in the way of living according to your values and deepest need for healthy relationships.

By Joshua Fields Millburn, Ryan Nicodemus,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Love People, Use Things as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER**

"The Minimalists show you how to disconnect from our conditioned material state and reconnect to our true essence: love people and use things. This is not a book about how to live with less, but about how to live more deeply and more fully."
―Jay Shetty, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Think Like a Monk

AS SEEN ON THE NETFLIX DOCUMENTARIES MINIMALISM & LESS IS NOW

How might your life be better with less?

Imagine a life with less: less stuff, less clutter, less stress and debt and discontent―a life with fewer…


Book cover of No Cure for Being Human: (And Other Truths I Need to Hear)

Jennifer Cramer-Miller Author Of Incurable Optimist: Living with Illness and Chronic Hope

From my list on inspiring you to hug your life and savor every second.

Why am I passionate about this?

Hello, I am Jennifer Cramer-Miller—an author, speaker, and joy seeker. Thirty-some years ago, at 22, I had a cozy apartment with my best friend and a promising PR position. Then I was diagnosed with an incurable autoimmune kidney disease, and suddenly, doctors discussed my “quality of life.” At a very young age, life’s uncertainty fueled my will to survive. And I’ve learned that life is a mix of beauty and bummers. So as long as we’re alive, we should appreciate all of it. That’s why I’m drawn to books that illuminate what it means to be a human managing uncertainty, holding onto hope, and finding joy. 

Jennifer's book list on inspiring you to hug your life and savor every second

Jennifer Cramer-Miller Why did Jennifer love this book?

There’s something special about Kate Bowler. At 35, diagnosed with cancer, she started questioning our culture of positivity that emphasizes can-do achievement.

Her insights are beautiful, and her buoyant humor is icing on the cake. I feel like we’re soul sisters, my friend Kate and me (we’ve never met). Her words resonate with my belief that life is a mix of beauty and bummers, and sometimes there is even beauty within the bummers. I believe we should show up for life and appreciate all of it. So, I’m drawn to Kate Bowler’s account of how her hard-won uncertainty has shifted her perspective.

By Kate Bowler,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked No Cure for Being Human as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The bestselling author of Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I’ve Loved) asks, how do you move forward with a life you didn’t choose?

“Kate Bowler is the only one we can trust to tell us the truth.”—Glennon Doyle, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Untamed

It’s hard to give up on the feeling that the life you really want is just out of reach. A beach body by summer. A trip to Disneyland around the corner. A promotion on the horizon. Everyone wants to believe that they are headed toward…


Book cover of The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot

Karen Cassiday Author Of The No Worries Guide to Raising Your Anxious Child: A Handbook to Help You and Your Anxious Child Thrive

From my list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've always been fascinated with how people overcome terrible circumstances ever since my childhood when my parents took me through the Tower of London and told me people survived the horrible torture devices on display. I got into reading biographies of war heroes, concentration camp survivors, and athletes who survived torture, betrayal, illness, and cruelty only to become people I admire. I became a clinical psychologist because I love inspiring others to discover their own greatness during life’s worst moments. I’ve had to learn how to find love, hope, and meaning when trauma, disability, death, and broken promises have ground me down to a bloody pulp.

Karen's book list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to

Karen Cassiday Why did Karen love this book?

This book tells the story of a teenage girl with terminal cancer who befriends a hospital chaplain and an elderly woman during her last year of life. 

She asks the big questions of life and finds friendship and meaning during existential and physical struggle. You cannot help but fall in love with the characters and share their efforts to find self, meaning, and hope during great struggle.

By Marianne Cronin,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**LONGLISTED FOR THE AUTHOR'S CLUB FIRST NOVEL AWARD**

'Emotional, involving, witty and sad. Everyone is going to love Lenni and Margot'
JILL MANSELL

'Lenni and Margot are two of the most wonderful, warm, witty and wise heroines I've ever met. Beautiful and glorious' CLARE POOLEY, author of The Authenticity Project

Fiercely alive, disarmingly funny and brimming with tenderness, THE ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF LENNI AND MARGOT unwraps the extraordinary gift of life, and revels in our infinite capacity for friendship and love when we need them most.
_______________________________________

Life is short.

No-one knows that better than seventeen-year-old Lenni. But as…


Book cover of The Life and Campaigns of the Black Prince: From Contemporary Letters, Diaries and Chronicles, Including Chandos Herald's Life of the Black Prince

Colin Duncan Taylor Author Of Lauragais: Steeped in History, Soaked in Blood

From my list on France through foreign eyes.

Why am I passionate about this?

Colin Duncan Taylor is the author of Lauragais: Steeped in History, Soaked in Blood, and Menu from the Midi: A Gastronomic Journey through the South of France. He has been a French resident for 20 years, and through his books he shares his passion for the region’s culture, gastronomy, history, and language.

Colin's book list on France through foreign eyes

Colin Duncan Taylor Why did Colin love this book?

Richard Barber gathers together and translates letters written by, among others, the Black Prince and his steward, and the work of two contemporary chroniclers. Between them, these sources constitute an extraordinary collection of first-hand accounts of military campaigns in 14th-century France, including the battles of Crécy and Poitiers, and the 1355 expedition when the Black Prince rode through the area where I live – the Lauragais, between Toulouse and Carcassonne – and ordered his army to destroy and loot most of the towns along its route.

Sometimes verging on propaganda aimed at convincing those back in England that the war was worth fighting, and at others full of anecdotes from military life such as the time the Black Prince’s men were passing through an area so dry, they had to give their horses wine instead of water, this book paints a vivid picture of daily life in a…

By Richard Barber,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Life and Campaigns of the Black Prince as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Edward of Woodstock, eldest son of Edward III, known as the Black Prince, is one of those heroes of history books so impressive as to seem slightly unreal. At sixteen he played a leading part in the fighting at Crecy; at twenty-six he captured the king of France at Poitiers; and eleven years later he restored Pedro of Castile to histhrone at the battle of Najera. His exploits were chronicled by Jean Froissart, but Froissart was writing three or four decades after the events he describes. There are other sources much closer to events, and it is on these that…


Book cover of The Black Prince

Mary Ellen Johnson Author Of The Lion and the Leopard

From my list on why the 14th century mirrors our ideals.

Why am I passionate about this?

In junior high, I happened across a picture of an armor-plated knight being raised by a winch to sit astride his destrier. What a ridiculous time period, I thought. After raiding every related book in the school library,  I changed my opinion from “ridiculous” to “fascinating.” Particularly when deciding that periods such as the fourteenth century, with its plagues, wars, political upheavals, and climate change were pretty much a distorted mirror of our own. Throughout my life as wife, mother, novelist, and social justice advocate, I’ve held medieval England close to my heart. I remain forever grateful I’ve been able to explore it both in my writing and in several treks across the pond.  

Mary's book list on why the 14th century mirrors our ideals

Mary Ellen Johnson Why did Mary love this book?

Each time I visit Canterbury Cathedral, I pay homage to my favorite knight, Edward of Woodstock, who epitomizes the fourteenth-century version of the knight nonpareil. Being an autodidact rather than a scholar, I am particularly grateful that Black Prince is both meticulously researched and easy to read. I particularly admire Prince Edward because of his courage on and off the battlefield, especially when enduring the mysterious illness that ultimately killed him. Edward the Black Prince embraced all the turns of fortune’s wheel with grace, courage, and dignity. Love this man and love this book!

By Michael Jones,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

As a child he was given his own suit of armor; at the age of sixteen, he helped defeat the French at Crécy. At Poitiers, in 1356, his victory over King John II of France forced the French into a humiliating surrender that marked the zenith of England’s dominance in the Hundred Years War. As lord of Aquitaine, he ruled a vast swathe of territory across the west and southwest of France, holding a magnificent court at Bordeaux that mesmerized the brave but unruly Gascon nobility and drew them like moths to the flame of his cause. He was Edward…


Book cover of The Lost Prince: The Life & Death of Henry Stuart

Susan Doran Author Of From Tudor to Stuart: The Regime Change from Elizabeth I to James I

From my list on the reigns of James VI of Scotland and I of England.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Professor of early-modern British History at the University of Oxford and a Senior Research Fellow at Jesus College, Oxford, who was a specialist in the Tudor period, especially the life and reign of Elizabeth I. However, while doing research over the past six years, I became excited by the politics, religion, and culture of the Jacobean period. James I’s reign had been a topic I taught in a week to undergraduates, but I realised that I didn’t do justice to this rich and important period. Not only is it fascinating in its own right, but James’s reign had a huge impact on a long stretch of British and world history.

Susan's book list on the reigns of James VI of Scotland and I of England

Susan Doran Why did Susan love this book?

I love exhibition catalogues. They are usually lavishly illustrated with expert explanations of the visuals. I can dip into them at will, especially when I’m too tired for a major investment of time in reading.

This one is particularly fine as its production values are high and the explanations lengthy. Prince Henry, the son of James VI and I, who died suddenly in November 1610 at the age of eighteen, was, like his mother, Queen Anna, a patron of music, paintings, masques, architecture, and gardens. These interests are amply revealed in the fascinating pictures and text of this wonderful catalogue. 

By Catharine MacLeod,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This exploration of Henry's life and image, and the extraordinary reaction to his death, transforms our understanding of this exceptional prince and the time in which he lived. In November 1612, shortly before his nineteenth birthday, Henry, the eldest son of James I and Anne of Denmark, died of typhoid fever after a short illness. The nation was struck by grief at the loss of this most promising prince who, it was believed, would become a king to transform Britain. Unlike his father, Henry was seen as militaristic, ardently Protestant and fiercely moral; he was also a precocious patron of…


Book cover of Red, White & Royal Blue

Nancy Herkness Author Of Royal Caleva: Gabriel

From my list on modern-day royalty.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the author of twenty romance books, but I started as a reader. I have read thousands of romance novels in my life, which I humbly submit makes me something of an authority. In fact, I started writing romance novels because I wanted to offer readers the elements that I loved about my favorite books: sympathetic, fully-realized characters, sharp dialogue, deep emotion, and good writing. I have focused on modern-day royals because I am writing a series featuring a royal family. I have been reading extensively to see what other authors are doing in that subgenre…and because it’s fun to don an imaginary tiara!

Nancy's book list on modern-day royalty

Nancy Herkness Why did Nancy love this book?

American snark meets cutting British wit: I loved the texts/emails/calls between Alex, the American president’s son, and Henry, the British prince. The contrast between the two characters was riveting: the brash, ambitious young politico versus the cultured, smooth, royal prince with decades of tradition bred into his bones. Let’s face it: power is seductive, and these two enemies-to-lovers move in the highest-powered circles on Earth.

What gives this love story extra depth is the struggle of these highly visible men to deal with being gay/bisexual both in private and on the public stage. Prince Henry’s pain at having to suppress his true sexuality almost broke my heart. Thank goodness it’s a romance, so they find a way to be happy together in the end! 

By Casey McQuiston,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked Red, White & Royal Blue as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

* Instant NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY bestseller *
* GOODREADS CHOICE AWARD WINNER for BEST DEBUT and BEST ROMANCE of 2019 *
* BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR* for VOGUE, NPR, VANITY FAIR, and more! *

What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?

When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius--his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when…


Book cover of Richard III and the Princes in the Tower

Derek Birks Author Of Feud

From my list on the Wars of the Roses from a historian and author.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write historical fiction some of which is set during the Wars of the Roses - a period that has always fascinated me. My two series, Rebels and Brothers & the Craft of Kings span the whole topic. But underlying the fiction there is a wealth of knowledge because I have studied or taught about this period for the best part of fifty years. I have also produced in recent years over forty podcasts on the subject which have been very well received by listeners – including students currently wrestling with the sometimes labyrinthine complexities of the topic. 

Derek's book list on the Wars of the Roses from a historian and author

Derek Birks Why did Derek love this book?

There are so many books about these two boys that one could be forgiven for not reading any of them. But, if you are going to read one make it this one. Pollard knows what he is talking about because he has a background of authoritative historical study second to none. What you’ll find in this book is as near as anyone is going to get to a balanced account. Forget all the dark myths and whitewashes of Richard III and just read this book.

By A.J. Pollard,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Richard III and the Princes in the Tower as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Richard III has divided opinion for over 500 years. Traditionally, he has been perceived as a villain, a bloody tyrant and the monstrous murderer of his innocent nephews. To others he was and remains a wronged victim who did his best for kingdom and family, a noble prince and enlightened statesman tragically slain. This work explores the story of Richard III and the tales that have been woven around the historic events, and discusses his life and reign and the disappearance of the princes in the tower. It also assesses the original sources upon which much of the "history" is…


Book cover of By Force Alone

RJ Hore Author Of The Dark Lady

From my list on fantasy with a touch of darkness in its soul.

Why am I passionate about this?

An avid reader, and a spec-fiction/fantasy reviewer for CM Canada online, I’ve wanted to tell stories for as long as I can remember. I write “pantser-style” and let the characters run loose, looking at their motivation to steer the tale, often starting with little more than an idea and, if lucky, a character or two. My love of history led me to writing mediaeval or historical fantasy, as my first group of published novels attest, but to avoid stagnation added science fiction and a fantasy detective series of novellas. To date have fourteen novels and three anthologies of my novellas published and have appeared on panels at several cons.

RJ's book list on fantasy with a touch of darkness in its soul

RJ Hore Why did RJ love this book?

A brutal re-telling of the King Arthur legend, this novel reimagines the familiar story, retaining the feeling of weird magic, while pulling no punches about the characters. Arthur is a thug, Guinevere is no better, Merlin is a frustrated sprite beset by his female counterparts, and Britain is best described as a “clogged sewer that Rome abandoned just as soon as it could.”

The first of a five-book planned series to tell the story of the Matter of Britain, this is a ruthless and dark take that grabbed me from the beginning. I’ve always loved history, even a warped version like this. It left me eager for more and set me tracking down what else this author had written. I was not disappointed.

By Lavie Tidhar,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

There is a legend...

Britannia, AD 535

The Romans have gone. While their libraries smoulder, roads decay and cities crumble, men with swords pick over civilisation's carcass, slaughtering and being slaughtered in turn.

This is the story of just such a man. Like the others, he had a sword. He slew until slain. Unlike the others, we remember him. We remember King Arthur.

This is the story of a land neither green nor pleasant. An eldritch isle of deep forest and dark fell haunted by swaithes, boggarts and tod-lowries, Robin-Goodfellows and Jenny Greenteeths, and predators of rarer appetite yet.

This…


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