100 books like The Bookish Life of Nina Hill

By Abbi Waxman,

Here are 100 books that The Bookish Life of Nina Hill fans have personally recommended if you like The Bookish Life of Nina Hill. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Little Paris Bookshop

Janet Hubbard Author Of Champagne

From my list on modern day France containing food and wine.

Who am I?

I went to Paris the first time when I was nineteen. I was sitting in a cheap restaurant when a man entered carrying a burlap sack filled with escargots, and put some on my plate (all very unsanitary) for me to taste. Delicious! I was in France in the 1970s when Robert Parker was discovering French wine. (We didn’t meet then, but did after my series was published many years later.)  Subsequent stays in Paris and other areas of France (Champagne, Bordeaux, Burgundy) afforded me a food and wine sensibility that over decades has permeated my lifestyle, my friendships—and my writing.

Janet's book list on modern day France containing food and wine

Janet Hubbard Why did Janet love this book?

This is a novel that I read in one day, warming to the grieving protagonists who have found each other, and particularly struck by their first meal together—fish poached in cream and white wine, new potatoes roasted in garlic and rosemary, pears and cheese, and with a beautiful French wine to accompany it. In my mind romance can’t exist without meals prepared from scratch and wine to go with it. The other secret ingredient in the novel is books, and the combination of food and wine, a romance, and a love of books gives this book a permanent place in my library. In fact, I am rereading it.

By Nina George,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The international bestseller, translated from the German by Simon Pare.

On a beautifully restored barge on the Seine, Jean Perdu runs a bookshop; or rather a 'literary apothecary', for this bookseller possesses a rare gift for sensing which books will soothe the troubled souls of his customers.

The only person he is unable to cure, it seems, is himself. He has nursed a broken heart ever since the night, twenty-one years ago, when the love of his life fled Paris, leaving behind a handwritten letter that he has never dared read. His memories and his love have been gathering dust…


Book cover of Story Trumps Structure: How to Write Unforgettable Fiction by Breaking the Rules

Phaedra Patrick Author Of The Messy Lives of Book People

From my list on the power of books and reading.

Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by books since a young age. Not just reading the stories but also how they’re written, the cover design, literary agents, and the publishing industry in general. I’ve written five novels (four of which are USA Today bestsellers) and my work has been translated into twenty-five languages worldwide. My second novel, Rise & Shine, Benedict Stone, was made into a Hallmark movie in 2021. I still get excited about generating ideas for characters to take on unusual and joyous journeys of discovery. I’m a huge fan of reading books about the craft of writing, and I especially love novels about bookshops and libraries.

Phaedra's book list on the power of books and reading

Phaedra Patrick Why did Phaedra love this book?

Story Trumps Fiction is a non-fiction book that encourages you to tear up the rule book when it comes to plotting and planning a novel. I’m a plotter at heart, but this book offers some thought-provoking arguments for writing organically, to craft exciting and surprising plots. It’s written by an award-winning novelist, so he’s ideally placed to offer great advice on how to make a story more powerful, emotional, and gripping. I recommend it for both novice writers and more experienced ones, too.

By Steven James,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Don't limit your fiction - LIBERATE IT

All too often, following the "rules" of writing can constrict rather than inspire you. With Story Trumps Structure, you can shed those rules - about three-act structure, rising action, outlining, and more - to craft your most powerful, emotional, and gripping stories.

Award-winning novelist Steven James explains how to trust the narrative process to make your story believable, compelling, and engaging, and debunks the common myths that hold writers back from creating their best work.

   • Ditch your outline and learn to write organically.
   • Set up promises for readers - and deliver…


Book cover of Beach Read

Elle Rivers Author Of Contractual Obligations

From my list on romance books with main characters that hook you from page one.

Who am I?

My name is Elle Rivers, and I’ve been a romance reader and writer for over ten years. I started reading when I was in high school because I was a lonely kid who loved watching people fall in love. I love the romance genre because it always has a happy ending, and reading about characters overcoming their struggles reminds me that I can also face any hard moments in life. I try to write the same kinds of characters in my books. They’re all a piece of me, and I am so excited that others can read them, too. 

Elle's book list on romance books with main characters that hook you from page one

Elle Rivers Why did Elle love this book?

This book follows a writer named January, who goes to her father’s beach house that he shared with his mistress after his passing.

I love it when a character's backstory has a unique twist to it, and I could feel January’s pain and confusion as she navigated her father’s complicated past. We get to see January grow as a person and also have a romance with the writer next door.

Love stories with complex character growth are my bread and butter, and this was the novel that started it all for me. 

By Emily Henry,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Beach Read as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

FROM THE #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF PEOPLE WE MEET ON VACATION AND BOOK LOVERS!

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They’re polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they're living in neighboring…


Book cover of Diary Of A Bookseller

Phaedra Patrick Author Of The Messy Lives of Book People

From my list on the power of books and reading.

Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by books since a young age. Not just reading the stories but also how they’re written, the cover design, literary agents, and the publishing industry in general. I’ve written five novels (four of which are USA Today bestsellers) and my work has been translated into twenty-five languages worldwide. My second novel, Rise & Shine, Benedict Stone, was made into a Hallmark movie in 2021. I still get excited about generating ideas for characters to take on unusual and joyous journeys of discovery. I’m a huge fan of reading books about the craft of writing, and I especially love novels about bookshops and libraries.

Phaedra's book list on the power of books and reading

Phaedra Patrick Why did Phaedra love this book?

This non-fiction book is uplifting, funny, and heartbreaking in equal measure as Shaun Bythell shares his diary of owning Scotland’s biggest second-hand book store. We get to meet the eccentric readers who frequent his bookshop and learn first-hand about the struggles of owning a small business, and the importance of books and the community.

By Sean Bythell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Diary Of A Bookseller as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Love, Nina meets Black Books: a wry and hilarious account of life in Scotland's biggest second-hand bookshop and the band of eccentrics and book-obsessives who work there

'The Diary Of A Bookseller is warm (unlike Bythell's freezing-cold shop) and funny, and deserves to become one of those bestsellers that irritate him so much.' (Mail on Sunday)

'Utterly compelling and Bythell has a Bennett-like eye for the amusing eccentricities of ordinary people ... I urge you to buy this book and please, even at the risk of being insulted or moaned at, buy it from a real live bookseller.' (Charlotte Heathcote…


Book cover of Introverts in Love: The Quiet Way to Happily Ever After

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler Author Of The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together

From my list on for partners of opposite personalities.

Who am I?

I grew up in a talkative family in an extroverted culture near NYC. I discovered I also liked the quiet and found a man to marry who was very introverted. After the “opposites attract” phase we needed to learn ways to make our differences work and we've been doing that for almost 50 years. I took this knowledge to the workplace where, as a career coach and learning and development professional, I became a champion for introverts. I've written 4 books on harnessing the talents of both introverts and extroverts at work and speak about this topic around the world. I believe we are all better off when we work through our differences to achieve magic.

Jennifer's book list on for partners of opposite personalities

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler Why did Jennifer love this book?

I had a great deal of respect for this author from reading her Psychology Today columns. Sophia Dembling is an introvert and from her research and personal experience knows that relationships between different personality types can be challenging to say the least. 

She takes us through all aspects of the dating process and doesn’t slam extroverts. What she does is show us, through her great wit and transparency, how we are not perfect but that we can balance each other. 

Dembling teaches introverts “how to let someone into their hearts while honoring the solitude we need..” I found myself laughing many times, even while reading the table of contents. “Whee! Fun With Extroverts” and “I Love you But Please Don’t Call Me.” And she helps extroverted readers understand and empathize with introverts who don’t find joy in too much socializing. 

By Sophia Dembling,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

From the author of The Introvert’s Way, a friendly and accessible guide to dating and relationships for introverts.

Love is tricky for everyone--and different personality types can face their own unique problems. Now the author of The Introvert’s Way offers a guide to romance that takes you through the frequently outgoing world of dating, courting, and relationships, helping you navigate issues that are particular to introverts, from making conversation at parties to the challenges of dating an extrovert.


Book cover of Acts of Desperation

Ore Agbaje-Williams Author Of The Three of Us

From my list on very, very messy relationships.

Who am I?

I’m genuinely fascinated by human nature and why we behave the way we do, the things that make us act within or out of character, and at what point they become a part of who we are rather than just a lapse in judgment or an isolated incident. Relationships in particular fascinate me because of the way they force us to reckon with our behavior towards ourselves and other people. I love seeing how writers explore and examine those relationships, whether before, after, or during them, and how they allow their characters to move through those moments. Often, despite how far-fetched some of the scenarios may feel, I find myself within their pages.

Ore's book list on very, very messy relationships

Ore Agbaje-Williams Why did Ore love this book?

I loved this book – and read it in one or two sittings – because of how skillfully the author, Megan Nolan, is able to explore the pits of a broken relationship and the attempts and failures of trying to heal.

It pulls no punches in its depiction of what we are willing to do when we believe we are in love and that that love is good, and also in its depiction of what happens to us when the bad reveals itself in all its naked ugliness. Once you’ve read this, you’ll want to read anything else Nolan writes next.

By Megan Nolan,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

*A NEW STATESMAN, OBSERVER, IRISH TIMES, i, SPECTATOR AND STYLIST BOOK OF 2021*

'Please believe the hype ... a seriously exciting writer' Sunday Times

'Such brilliant writing about female desire... honest and visceral' Marian Keyes

Discover this bitingly honest, darkly funny debut novel about a toxic relationship and secret female desire, from an emerging star of Irish literature.

Love was the final consolation, would set ablaze the fields of my life in one go, leaving nothing behind. I thought of it as a force which would clean me and by its presence make me worthy of it. There was no…


Book cover of The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories

Stephanie Carroll Author Of A White Room

From my list on gothic historical fiction on hysteria.

Who am I?

I hold degrees in history and social science with a focus on women’s history at the turn of the century. I’ve studied the hysteria pandemic and its lasting results for over a decade. As someone who struggles with depression, anxiety, and the effects of psychological abuse, I find I know these women all too well. As a writer, I’ve been inspired by other classic gothic novels like Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson, and The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. In addition to writing novels, I’m also a blogger and marketing consultant in southern California where I live with my blind dog, Mr. Magoo.

Stephanie's book list on gothic historical fiction on hysteria

Stephanie Carroll Why did Stephanie love this book?

The Yellow Wallpaper inspired my book and brand. Gilman not only defined the madwoman of Gothic literature by writing one of the most haunting and empowering stories of the 19th century, but she also lived it. Her experience inspired her story and exposed the horror of hysteria treatments. This story inspired me because I could relate to Gilman and her main character. Though hysteria is no longer a recognized condition and women have gained many more rights, ideologies left over from the hysteria panic still creep in our culture and generational memory. Women are still called crazy. The assumption that women are emotionally unstable is still used to discredit, invalidate and control women. In an era where women couldn’t fight for their rights as we do, Gilman found her power by embracing madness, and so do I.

By Charlotte Perkins Gilman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Best known for the 1892 title story of this collection, a harrowing tale of a woman's descent into madness, Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote more than 200 other short stories. Seven of her finest are reprinted here.
Written from a feminist perspective, often focusing on the inferior status accorded to women by society, the tales include "Turned," an ironic story with a startling twist, in which a husband seduces and impregnates a naïve servant; "Cottagette," concerning the romance of a young artist and a man who's apparently too good to be true; "Mr. Peebles' Heart," a liberating tale of a fiftyish…


Book cover of Women in the Picture: What Culture Does with Female Bodies

Christine Lai Author Of Landscapes

From my list on art and the ways of seeing.

Who am I?

In Six Memos for the Next Millennium, Italo Calvino writes that “we can distinguish between two types of imaginative processes, one that begins with words and ends with the visual image, and another that begins with the visual image and ends with its verbal expression.” All of my writing projects begin with the visual image. It is difficult for me to verbalize what precisely about art that captivates me. But when I stand in front of certain artworks, I feel a magnetic pull, and something in the piece—the brushstrokes, the colors, the materiality—compels me to write something in response to it.

Christine's book list on art and the ways of seeing

Christine Lai Why did Christine love this book?

This well-researched and lucidly written book, by art historian Catherine McCormack, traces the representation of women throughout the history of Western art.

McCormack examines a wide range of images featuring female figures—from paintings by Old Masters to contemporary advertising—and pays close attention to the way in which these images betray deep-seated stereotypes about women and contribute to the objectification of female bodies.

This book was indispensable to my research for my book, especially the sections on the aestheticizing of sexual violence in paintings and sculptures. 

By Catherine McCormack,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Women in the Picture as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Venus, maiden, wife, mother, monster-women have been bound so long by these restrictive roles, codified by patriarchal culture, that we scarcely see them. Catherine McCormack illuminates the assumptions behind these stereotypes whether writ large or subtly hidden. She ranges through Western art-think Titian, Botticelli, and Millais-and the image-saturated world of fashion photographs, advertisements, and social media, and boldly counters these depictions by turning to the work of women artists like Morisot, Ringgold, Lacy, and Walker, who offer alternative images for exploring women's identity, sexuality, race, and power in more complex ways.


Book cover of Marian's Christmas Wish

Elisabeth Fairchild Author Of The Holly and the Ivy

From my list on film worthy regency era Christmas.

Who am I?

A Jane Austen devotee since third grade, inspired by subtlety, wit, and clever banter, neck deep in richly evocative Regency research and sensory detail, I've authored 17 Jane Austen-style novels, (3 Christmas) and 4 novellas (3 Christmas) published by NAL/Penguin. Fascinated by lyrical language, budding love matches, and honorable, moral, and ethical themes, I'm particularly fond of historically accurate warm-hearted Christmas novels. I'd love to see a Christmas Regency Classic added to the ranks of beloved Holiday films, so I was thrilled to come up with a list of favorites! Awards: Golden Quill, Holt Medallion, Bookseller’s Best, Waldensbook Bestseller of the Year, Romantic Times Top Pick, Reviewers Choice, Best Regency Novel, a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Elisabeth's book list on film worthy regency era Christmas

Elisabeth Fairchild Why did Elisabeth love this book?

A RITA Award winner, this sweet, character-driven Regency comes alive with playful Hepburn/Tracy style banter in a May/December romance. An impertinent younger sister, who takes in strays and the wounded, wins the attention of a scarred, slightly singed diplomat. She decides he must be reunited with his family for the holidays. With her rascal brother’s dubious assistance, the three embark on a surprisingly dangerous quest to fulfill heartfelt Christmas wishes.

By Carla Kelly,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Miss Marian Wynswich is a rather unconventional young lady. She plays chess, reads Greek, and is as educated as any young man. And she’s certain falling in love is a ridiculous endeavor and vows never to do such a thing. But everything changes when she receives a Christmas visit from someone unexpected—a young and handsome English lord.


Book cover of Pavilion of Women

Alice Poon Author Of Tales of Ming Courtesans

From my list on novels that take place in China.

Who am I?

Born and raised in Hong Kong, I received a fully bilingual (English and Chinese) education and also learned French in my youth. Since the release of my two historical Chinese novels: The Green Phoenix and Tales of Ming Courtesans, nostalgia for the magical world of wuxia fiction, which I grew up with, has spurred my desire to write wuxia stories following Jin Yong’s style, but with a mythical slant. Overall, my fiction writing has been influenced by Jin Yong, Emile Zola, and the wuxia/xianxia media.

Alice's book list on novels that take place in China

Alice Poon Why did Alice love this book?

Pearl Buck is an author whom I admire for her genuine love and respect of the Chinese culture and people. This sentiment shines through her novels. Pavilion of Women is unique in that it highlights a pronounced social change in China in the early 20th century, when Western values began to nudge younger Chinese to unyoke themselves of old traditions and customs. The fastidious, all-wise, and freedom-seeking protagonist attempts to dictate other people’s lives to keep her household in order, but fails miserably. She finally learns from a renegade missionary that her rigid attitudes and lack of empathy are in fact the real shackles that hobble her.

I love this novel because character development is superbly handled.

By Pearl S. Buck,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Pavillion of Women (View amazon detail page)


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