10 books like The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

By Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of All the Light We Cannot See

Dora Levy Mossanen Author Of Love and War in the Jewish Quarter

From the list on captivating World War II love stories.

Who am I?

I am a novelist, whose Persian family is comprised of a colorful cast of characters, who supply me with invaluable fodder for my historical novels. Years ago, my grandfather, Dr. Habib Levy, recounted how, when he was the dentist of Reza Shah Pahlavi, the King of Iran, the king commanded him to convert to Islam. Aware he might be uttering his last words, my grandfather had replied, Your Majesty, a man who turns his back to his faith is a traitor, and his Majesty will not want a traitor for a dentist. Now, after decades, this long past scene became the inspiration for my fifth historical novel, Love and War in the Jewish Quarter.

Dora's book list on captivating World War II love stories

Discover why each book is one of Dora's favorite books.

Why did Dora love this book?

This is a beautiful novel, and I fell in love with Marie-Laure, the twelve-year-old girl who, despite being blind, manages, with the help of her father, to learn how to navigate her way around the dangerous neighborhood of Saint-Malo as the war gets closer and closer.

Eventually, so close that the echo of German boots can be heard in the house where she is alone and hiding. I was especially in awe of Anthony Doerrs magical storytelling and his ability to seamlessly converge the stories of Marie-Laure and Werner, a German orphan and an expert in fixing radios. This is the story of a different kind of loveinnocent, selfless, and heartwarming amidst the horrors of war. 

By Anthony Doerr,

Why should I read it?

25 authors picked All the Light We Cannot See as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


A beautiful, stunningly ambitious novel about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II

Open your eyes and see what you can with them before they close forever.'

For Marie-Laure, blind since the age of six, the world is full of mazes. The miniature of a Paris neighbourhood, made by her father to teach her the way home. The microscopic…

Anxious People

By Fredrik Backman,

Book cover of Anxious People

John Young Author Of Getting Huge

From the list on mixing humor with serious topics.

Who am I?

My life carries absurd contradictions. A country kid and athlete, I fell in love with theater and literature. I hated school but became a teacher. An outdoorsman and environmentalist, I became a successful advertising executive and an entrepreneur. My novel Getting Huge has similar surprises: a 6’11” minister who hated basketball. He resented Concord, MA as a boy, but he returns to toil in his father’s church for 12 years. He’s never planted a thing, but discovers a passion for giant pumpkins and starts to be an entrepreneur who dreams way too big. I hope readers see how John Crackstone is (like many of us) humanized by comic contradictions.

John's book list on mixing humor with serious topics

Discover why each book is one of John's favorite books.

Why did John love this book?

The novel Anxious People is a mostly-comic novel that helped me, as a writer, think through how comedy is delivered.

Frederik Backman has a background as a standup comic and you can see it in the writing of the novel—and sometimes Backman’s clever quips get in the way of the story.

The situation is of a robbery gone wrong with a range of weird and wacky characters, but they are developed in a way that helps us care about them as their stories are revealed and common touchpoints emerge.

The father-son police team, the robber’s pains, the fractured relationships. In the end, I found myself caring about these people.

By Fredrik Backman,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Anxious People as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The funny, touching and unpredictable No. 1 New York Times bestseller, now a major Netflix TV series

'A brilliant and comforting read' MATT HAIG
'Funny, compassionate and wise. An absolute joy' A.J. PEARCE
'A surefooted insight into the absurdity, beauty and ache of life' GUARDIAN
'I laughed, I sobbed, I recommended it to literally everyone I know' BUZZFEED
'Captures the messy essence of being human' WASHINGTON POST

From the 18 million copy internationally bestselling author of A Man Called Ove

It's New Year's Eve and House Tricks estate agents are hosting an open viewing in an up-market apartment when…

Anne of Green Gables

By L.M. Montgomery,

Book cover of Anne of Green Gables

Cathy Gohlke Author Of Ladies of the Lake

From the list on the wonder and complexity of friendships and love.

Who am I?

From the moment my grandmother told me that books were not created by magic, but that real people write books (I was five years old) I knew that I wanted to become a writer—as surely as did Anne in Anne of Green Gables. Themes of the joy, the complexity, and responsibility of friendship and family, of working together despite great challenges to overcome obstacles for purposes beyond ourselves, and of doing that while sometimes working through stages of grief all resonate with me, are all part of my life. The books I’ve recommended, as well as the books I’ve written, contain those themes.

Cathy's book list on the wonder and complexity of friendships and love

Discover why each book is one of Cathy's favorite books.

Why did Cathy love this book?

Lucy Maud Montgomery’s characters live and breathe in my heart. 

In Anne of Green Gables, orphaned Anne Shirley is taken in by Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert of quaint Avonlea on beautiful Prince Edward Island. Anne’s many social challenges, her antics—well-meaning but with frequent disastrous (and humorous) results, her close friendship with neighboring Diana Barry, and her many hopes and longings and dreams warm and delight my heart. 

Like Anne, several characters in my own stories—as well as I—longed from childhood to become a writer. In my book, my heroine, also an orphan from Prince Edward Island, strikes up a correspondence with the author, Lucy Maud Montgomery. 

Anne of Green Gables is a book rich in characters that will never grow old—a perfect pleasure.

By L.M. Montgomery,

Why should I read it?

19 authors picked Anne of Green Gables as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Anne of Green Gables is the classic children's book by L M Montgomery, the inspiration for the Netflix Original series Anne with an E. Watch it now!

Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert are in for a big surprise. They are waiting for an orphan boy to help with the work at Green Gables - but a skinny, red-haired girl turns up instead. Feisty and full of spirit, Anne Shirley charms her way into the Cuthberts' affection with her vivid imagination and constant chatter. It's not long before Anne finds herself in trouble, but soon it becomes impossible for the Cuthberts to…

Gone With the Wind

By Margaret Mitchell,

Book cover of Gone With the Wind

Lisa Hall Author Of The Mysterious Double Death of Honey Black

From the list on for fans of Old Hollywood.

Who am I?

I’ve always loved stories, whether on the page or on the screen, and after reading Gone with the Wind I immediately watched the movie, feeling the pull of Old Hollywood drawing me in. My grandfather was a big movie fan, and I spent many an afternoon watching old movies with him – Hobson’s Choice was a favourite. As I got older, Gaslight, Ocean’s Eleven, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane… they all had me gripped. Factor in my self-confessed obsession with celebrity gossip and that was me done for – Old Hollywood is rife with scandal and gossip!

Lisa's book list on for fans of Old Hollywood

Discover why each book is one of Lisa's favorite books.

Why did Lisa love this book?

I picked this book up in a second-hand bookstore for 50p when I was a teenager, and this was the story that really ignited my love of old movies.

Although some might say that the ideals in the story are dated (and they are, there’s no argument from me there!) this novel is rich in history and is so well-written that it makes it easy to visualise life in the South. While Scarlett O’Hara can be perceived as a bit of a spoilt brat, to me she is the epitome of a strong female character – even when things don’t go as she’s planned.

By Margaret Mitchell,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked Gone With the Wind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The story of the tempestuous romance between Rhett Butler and Scarlet O'Hara is set amid the drama of the Civil War.


By Vladimir Nabokov,

Book cover of Lolita

Charles Salzberg Author Of Man on the Run

From the list on reads for valuable lessons as a crime writer.

Who am I?

I was an English major in college and my dream was to write the Great American Novel. My literary heroes were writers like Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, Bernard Malamud, Jean Rhys, Margaret Drabble, Truman Capote, and Norman Mailer. They “taught” me how to write. About a dozen years ago, I concentrated on writing crime novels, like Swann’s Last Song and Second Story Man, both of which were nominated for Shamus Awards (Second Story Man won the Beverly Hills Book Award.) I'm a magazine journalist and write nonfiction books, screenplays, plays, and book reviews. I teach writing here in New York City, and I’m on the Board of PrisonWrites and the New York Writers Workshop.

Charles' book list on reads for valuable lessons as a crime writer

Discover why each book is one of Charles' favorite books.

Why did Charles love this book?

Lolita isn’t usually thought of as a crime novel but it is.

Thirty-seven-year-old Humbert Humbert stalks 12-year-old Lolita, then breaks all kinds of laws, moral, ethical, and legal, as he transports her across state lines.

The first time I read Lolita, I was dazzled by Nabokov’s stunning use of language—and remember, English was not his native tongue—word-play, and his ability to create full-blooded characters that leap off the page.

Nabokov pulls off this morally compromised tale with wit and humor, while dealing with the serious topic of pedophilia.

Reading Lolita gave me license to create morally challenged characters like Francis Hoyt, one of the protagonists in my novels.

Nabokov proved you don’t have to like, admire, or even feel a kinship with a character, so long as that character is interesting and compelling enough that readers are fascinated about him or her without being turned off.

By Vladimir Nabokov,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of my tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.'

Humbert Humbert is a middle-aged, frustrated college professor. In love with his landlady's twelve-year-old daughter Lolita, he'll do anything to possess her. Unable and unwilling to stop himself, he is prepared to commit any crime to get what he wants.

Is he in love or insane? A silver-tongued poet or a pervert? A tortured soul or a monster? Or is he all…

The Book Thief

By Markus Zusak,

Book cover of The Book Thief

Annie Lyons Author Of The Air Raid Book Club

From the list on WW1 and 2 fiction featuring brilliant female characters.

Who am I?

I’ve always loved history. When I wrote The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett in 2019, I particularly enjoyed writing Eudora’s flashback scenes set during the Second World War and decided, in my wisdom, to write a novel entirely set during that time. After a lot of research (disappearing down the occasional rabbit hole), I began to write The Air Raid Book Club, creating a cast of female characters who show quiet courage and incredible resilience as they support their community by forming a book club during the course of the war. It was a joy to write and I hope readers derive similar joy from reading it and the books I’ve recommended!

Annie's book list on WW1 and 2 fiction featuring brilliant female characters

Discover why each book is one of Annie's favorite books.

Why did Annie love this book?

Sometimes as a writer you read books that make you think, ‘I wish I’d thought of that’ and so it is with The Book Thief.

For me, the idea of casting death as a character is brilliant but to portray him as the narrator, and one with a sense of humour too is genius. Through his eyes we are able to see not just the horror but the humanity of the people living in Nazi Germany and particularly the main character, Liesel. She is a smart young girl reeling from personal tragedy and fascinated by words.

She steals books that are threatened with destruction to read with Max, the Jewish man hidden by her foster parents. Powerful and original, it tells you everything you need to know about love, death, and humanity.

By Markus Zusak,

Why should I read it?

26 authors picked The Book Thief as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Life affirming, triumphant and tragic . . . masterfully told. . . but also a wonderful page-turner' Guardian
'Brilliant and hugely ambitious' New York Times
'Extraordinary' Telegraph


1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier.
Liesel, a nine-year-old girl, is living with a foster family on Himmel Street. Her parents have been taken away to a concentration camp. Liesel steals books. This is her story and the story of the inhabitants of her street when the bombs begin to fall.



By Ian McEwan,

Book cover of Atonement

Harper Ford Author Of Divorced Not Dead

From the list on beautifully sad love stories.

Who am I?

I write romcoms as Harper Ford, yet I also write historical fiction as Rebecca Mascull and Mollie Walton. You’ll probably notice that all of my choices are either historical fiction or writers from the past. I just love an old-timey love story! My romcoms are funny (or at least they’re trying to be). But funnily enough, it’s the tragic, heart-rending love stories that stick in my mind when I think about romance in books. I hope you enjoy these novels as much as I have. But don’t forget to have a box of tissues to wipe away the inevitable tears…there aren’t many laughs to be had here! But hopefully a transcendent reading experience instead.

Harper's book list on beautifully sad love stories

Discover why each book is one of Harper's favorite books.

Why did Harper love this book?

Atonement is a historical novel by McEwan, also made into a very fine movie with James McAvoy and Keira Knightley. Before you watch the film though (and even if you have), try the book as it’s a different experience (as books to films often are).

This book is really all about stories, narratives, and lies. Set in 1935 and beyond, the protagonist is a young girl Briony – a budding writer from a wealthy family and highly observant kid – who becomes fascinated by her older sister Cecilia’s relationship with local working-class lad Robbie.

The central romance between Cecilia and Robbie is beautifully wrought, passionate, and sexy, especially with its taboo across-the-class-divide vibe. Prepare for some tears though…

By Ian McEwan,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

On the hottest day of the summer of 1934, thirteen-year-old Briony Tallis sees her sister Cecilia strip off her clothes and plunge into the fountain in the garden of their country house. Watching her is Robbie Turner, her childhood friend who, like Cecilia, has recently come down from Cambridge. By the end of that day, the lives of all three will have been changed for ever. Robbie and Cecilia will have crossed a boundary they had not even imagined at its start, and will have become victims of the younger girl's imagination. Briony will have witnessed mysteries, and committed a…

All the Pretty Horses

By Cormac McCarthy,

Book cover of All the Pretty Horses

Mark Warren Author Of Indigo Heaven

From the list on Westerns that don’t thrive off of gunfights.

Who am I?

Because I grew up in the 1950s and ’60s, my supply of heroes was liberally doled out by the 130+ Western series that dominated nighttime television in those decades. My parents allowed me one program per week. It was a Western. I was soon interested in history, to know what really did happen in the American West, and so I came to understand the great discrepancies between fact and TV. The truth, for me, is so much more interesting than the myth. As a Western historian, I've done my share of historical research, but I still gravitate toward fiction as a writer. I love the freedom to engage my characters’ thoughts and emotions.

Mark's book list on Westerns that don’t thrive off of gunfights

Discover why each book is one of Mark's favorite books.

Why did Mark love this book?

The dialogue and immersion into Southwestern culture is so immediate and authentic, one might as well have signed up for a secret journey into the heart of the borderlands.

Every paragraph reads like a masterpiece of literature, and taken together they comprise the kind of story that the reader wants never to end. McCarthy has the rare ability to entertain and edify at the same time. 

By Cormac McCarthy,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked All the Pretty Horses as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

John Grady Cole is the last bewildered survivor of long generations of Texas ranchers. Finding himself cut off from the only life he has ever wanted, he sets out for Mexico with his friend Lacey Rawlins. Befriending a third boy on the way, they find a country beyond their imagining: barren and beautiful, rugged yet cruelly civilized; a place where dreams are paid for in blood.

The first volume in McCarthy's legendary Border Trilogy, All The Pretty Horses is an acknowledged masterpiece and a grand love story: a novel about the passing of childhood, of innocence and a vanished American…

The Key to Rebecca

By Ken Follett,

Book cover of The Key to Rebecca

Jim Carr Author Of Forget-Me-Nots

From the list on World War II you can't put down.

Who am I?

I grew up during the war years and remembered the backouts, ration cards, and the newscasts from the front and worrying about my cousins who were in the middle of it. My cousin Gerald always made sure I had a model airplane kit every Christmas, even though he was fighting in Europe. As a journalist, I was lucky to work with a few war correspondents that covered Dieppe and D-Day and heard what they went through. One of those people was Bill Anderson who died two years ago. I recorded a video interview of him when he was still 97 about his experiences in Canada and Europe

Jim's book list on World War II you can't put down

Discover why each book is one of Jim's favorite books.

Why did Jim love this book?

The war in Africa, where Rommel’s tanks seem unstoppable, sets the stage for this novel of intrigue and spies, with Egypt and The Suez Canal the prize. Follett is a master of suspense and he makes great use of it here as two secret agents lock horns. The German agent with a wonderfully appropriate name, The Spinx, enlists the wiles of a belly dancer and the British agent, seeks the help of a beautiful young Jewish woman, who plays a key role in unmasking the German agent and the final defeat of Rommel. I always love reading Follett. You’re never sure what.

By Ken Follett,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Ken Follett's The Key to Rebecca took readers and critics by storm when first published forty years ago. Today, it remains one of the best espionage novels ever written.

A brilliant and ruthless Nazi master agent is on the loose in Cairo. His mission is to send Rommel's advancing army the secrets that will unlock the city's doors. In all of Cairo, only two people can stop him. One is a down-on-his-luck English officer no one will listen to. The other is a vulnerable young Jewish girl. . . .

The Unlikely Spy

By Daniel Silva,

Book cover of The Unlikely Spy

Cristina Loggia Author Of Lucifer's Game: An Emotional and Gut-Wrenching World War II Spy Thriller

From the list on World War 2 for people who love history and fiction.

Who am I?

I am a former journalist and corporate public relations expert with a Ph.D. in Foreign Languages, I’ve always been passionate about World War 2 history and truly fascinated by the deceptions put in place by both the Allies and the Axis. I believe that a story that mixes fiction with history is highly powerful and evocative. I set my debut novel in the Rome in 1942 because I was inspired by the numerous stories heard from both my grandfathers who fought in the war and because Fascist Italy is not as well-known as it should be. As one of the very few female thriller writers in this genre, I wanted to celebrate the contribution of women in World War 2!

Cristina's book list on World War 2 for people who love history and fiction

Discover why each book is one of Cristina's favorite books.

Why did Cristina love this book?

The author clearly did a great deal of research for this book, and this is certainly something I truly love in this World War 2 novel: it provides that solid and rich actual background against which the story is set. It is fascinating to see how both the Nazis and the Allies were playing a game of deception, trying to outmanoeuvre and outsmart each other. The writing is very good, the characters are complex, all with their flaws, all very interesting indeed, all feeling very credible, real. An engaging spy thriller that remains one of my favourite in this genre.

By Daniel Silva,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

What if Nazis deactivated a 'sleeper',a blonde Mata Hari,in the winter of 1944 in London in an endeavour to steal the whereabouts of D-Day landings. In the tradition of Robert Harris's FATHERLAND Rights already sold to publishers in the United States and eight other countries

5 book lists we think you will like!

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