68 books like The Recycled Citizen

By Charlotte MacLeod,

Here are 68 books that The Recycled Citizen fans have personally recommended if you like The Recycled Citizen. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of Gaudy Night

L.A. Fields Author Of Mrs. Watson: Untold Stories

From my list on women dealing with domestic mysteries.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the author of the Sherlockiana duology My Dear Watson and Mrs. Watson: Untold Stories. I chose these books because they all have British women at the helm, involve detectives and/or investigative processes, and contain close-to-home scandals and intrigue. In that sense, these are “domestic” mysteries—books that contain puzzles related to everyday household drama. Miss Marple, Harriet Vane, and the women of Baker Street solve literal detective cases. The secret writings of Anne Lister and Constance Wilde show how they decoded the homosexual element in their lives, and used their writing to maintain a sense of self in oppressive societies. Each of them are women after my own heart.

L.A.'s book list on women dealing with domestic mysteries

L.A. Fields Why did L.A. love this book?

Gaudy Night is one of several books featuring Harriet Vane, a mystery writer who first meets detective Lord Peter Wimsey while on trial for allegedly poisoning her lover. Set in a fictional Oxford women’s college, the story involves threatening letters, escalating vandalism, and violence.

Harriet is an educated professional. She is notorious due to scandal. She is trying to balance her independence in the 1930s and her romance with Peter. She is conflicted about whether her future should involve marriage and children.

This book is both a detective story, and a novel about the work-life balance struggles faced by women. Can Harriet “have it all” on her own terms? With the respect of the right partner, and a knowledge of her own mind, needs, and desires, it’s definitely worth trying.

By Dorothy L. Sayers,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked Gaudy Night as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The twelfth book in Dorothy L Sayers' classic Lord Peter Wimsey series, introduced by actress Dame Harriet Mary Walter, DBE - a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie's Poirot and Margery Allingham's Campion Mysteries.

'D. L. Sayers is one of the best detective story writers' Daily Telegraph

Harriet Vane has never dared to return to her old Oxford college. Now, despite her scandalous life, she has been summoned back . . .

At first she thinks her worst fears have been fulfilled, as she encounters obscene graffiti, poison pen letters and a disgusting effigy when she arrives at sedate Shrewsbury…


Book cover of The Scarlet Pimpernel

Jessica James Author Of Noble Cause: A Novel of Love and War

From my list on enemies to lovers romantic.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have lived in Gettysburg, PA, all of my life, so I’m drawn to historical fiction, especially the Civil War era. The 1860s is the perfect setting for the enemies-to-lovers trope, and I am lucky enough to be surrounded by history all of the time. In doing lots of research, I have found that enemies fell in love more often than you might think during the Civil War. I hope you enjoy this list of books that got me interested in reading and continue to keep my attention to this day.

Jessica's book list on enemies to lovers romantic

Jessica James Why did Jessica love this book?

My grandmother had this novel on her bookshelf, which is why I read it the first time, but I’ve read it over and over. This is my favorite classic love story that is not really enemies to lovers, but still has lots of emotion and conflict.

I love it because of the conflict and for its educational value in teaching about the French Revolution.

By Baroness Emmuska Orczy,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Scarlet Pimpernel as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

HarperCollins is proud to present its incredible range of best-loved, essential classics.

"Vaguely she began to wonder ... which of these worldly men round her was the mysterious 'Scarlet Pimpernel,' who held the threads of such daring plots, and the fate of valuable lives in his hands."

In the early days of the bloody French Revolution, fleeing aristocrats are being captured and sent to the guillotine. But the mysterious Scarlet Pimpernel - along with his band of English gentlemen - is outwitting the revolutionaries. Known only by his calling card, he arrives in disguise and smuggles the nobles out of…


Book cover of Blindspot

Dory Codington Author Of Beside Turning Water

From my list on realistic historical fiction that makes you swoon.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started the Edge of Empire series which includes Beside Turning Water when I was a Park Guide at Boston’s National Historical Park. As a guide I gave tours on the Freedom Trail which preserves the buildings and stories from the era of the American Revolution. I wanted to create a book like the ones I love full of romance a bit of sex, and with historical accuracy. Books that would help readers fall in love with the characters and understand the history of the events in the Revolution without that dry history-class feeling.

Dory's book list on realistic historical fiction that makes you swoon

Dory Codington Why did Dory love this book?

I studied with Jane Kamensky while I was working on a MA in American History. Little did I know that she had a wicked historical character hidden inside. Learning that inspired me to write good history inside a realistic and sexy historical plot. This is a story of hidden identity and unexpected love. 

The characters are a portrait artist and his apprentice. The apprentice appears to be a young man, as only young men would take such a position in 18th-century Boston, and the artist is surprised at his yearning for him. 

By Jane Kamensky, Jill Lepore,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

BONUS: This edition contains a Blindspot discussion guide.

Stewart Jameson, a Scottish portrait painter fleeing his debtors in Edinburgh, has washed up on the British Empire's far shores—in the city of Boston, lately seized with the spirit of liberty. Eager to begin anew, he advertises for an apprentice, but the lad who comes knocking is no lad at all. Fanny Easton is a fallen woman from Boston's most prominent family who has disguised herself as a boy to become Jameson's defiant and seductive apprentice. 

Written with wit and exuberance by accomplished historians, Blindspot is an affectionate send-up of the best…


Book cover of A Most Unsuitable Man

Dory Codington Author Of Beside Turning Water

From my list on realistic historical fiction that makes you swoon.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started the Edge of Empire series which includes Beside Turning Water when I was a Park Guide at Boston’s National Historical Park. As a guide I gave tours on the Freedom Trail which preserves the buildings and stories from the era of the American Revolution. I wanted to create a book like the ones I love full of romance a bit of sex, and with historical accuracy. Books that would help readers fall in love with the characters and understand the history of the events in the Revolution without that dry history-class feeling.

Dory's book list on realistic historical fiction that makes you swoon

Dory Codington Why did Dory love this book?

I began to write my own series in response to Jo Beverley’s Mallorens. These novels are set in Georgian England with its Barons, Dukes and their gambling, their rakes, and their strict inheritance laws and traditions. I invented those same rakish sons of dukes, but made them the third and fourth sons – the ones barely mentioned in classic British historical romances. I put these adventurous men on merchant vessels, and in the red uniform of the British army. Then I sent them across the Atlantic to fight a war for the King and have their adventures in America. I regret that Ms. Beverley died before I had a chance to talk to her about our connection, but her books have been a great inspiration. 

Many writers use dramatic openings to bring you into a book, and Ms. Beverely gets behind you and kicks you in. It has been very…

By Jo Beverley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Most Unsuitable Man as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New York Times bestselling author brings back the most beloved family in romance!

Damaris Myddleton never expected to inherit a vast fortune-but she's ready to use it to buy the most eligible title in England. In comes Mr. Fitzroger, the dashing but penniless adventurer who first saves her from social disaster, and then saves her life. Now, trapped in mystery, danger, and forbidden intimacy, Damaris fights not to surrender her freedom and her heart to a most unsuitable man.

 


Book cover of A Trouble of Fools

Scott Von Doviak Author Of Charlesgate Confidential

From my list on crime that bring Boston to life.

Why am I passionate about this?

The roots of my debut novel Charlesgate Confidential are in the time I spent in Boston, most notably the three years I lived in the Charlesgate building when it was an Emerson College dormitory. I always wanted to find a way to write about that time, but it wasn’t until I immersed myself in the world of Boston crime—not only the novels of Higgins, Lehane, and company but nonfiction works like Black Mass and movies like The Departed and The Town—that I hit on the way to tell my story. I’ll always be excited for new Boston-based crime fiction, and I’m happy to share these recommendations with you.

Scott's book list on crime that bring Boston to life

Scott Von Doviak Why did Scott love this book?

Here’s another PI series set in Boston, and while Carlotta Carlyle is nowhere near as well-known as Spenser, Linda Barnes is every bit as readable as Robert Parker. In her first outing (an Edgar Award nominee for Best Novel), ex-cabbie and ex-cop Carlyle takes on a missing person case that has her tangling with IRA gunrunners. A Trouble of Fools is my pick because it brings the ‘80s Boston I remember to life, and because of the light, humorous voice Barnes lends the proceedings.

By Linda Barnes,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This award-winning debut mystery introduces a Boston PI who’s “one of the most sparkling, most irresistible heroines ever to grace the pages of a whodunit” (Chicago Sun-Times).
 
Six-foot-tall, redheaded ex-cop and Boston-based private eye Carlotta Carlyle is “the genuine article: a straightforward, funny, thoroughly American mystery heroine” (New York Post).

Let go from the Beantown police force for insubordination, Carlotta Carlyle is ready for business. Her first client is the genteel and elderly Margaret Devens, whose brother, Eugene, one of the last in a handful of Boston’s aging Irish cabbies, has suddenly vanished.
 
The case should be a cinch. Carlotta…


Book cover of Blanche Cleans Up

Catriona McPherson Author Of Dandy Gilver and the Proper Treatment of Bloodstains

From my list on where the house is a character.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I started writing historical mysteries, I made my sleuth posh so she would have the spare time and the spare money to go racketing about solving crimes. But I’m not posh (at all) and so, when I’m thinking about earlier times, I never imagine I’d be in the fringed flapper dress, or on the fainting couch. I always assume I’d be down in the basement, grating a block of lye soap to scrub the soot off something. I think that’s why I’m so endlessly interested in how the grunt work gets done.

Catriona's book list on where the house is a character

Catriona McPherson Why did Catriona love this book?

This is the third of Barbara Neely’s mysteries about a peppery African-American housekeeper, Blanche White, and the dirt she finds while she’s cleaning other people’s houses. It’s a different house in each of the novels – and a tough task to choose just one, I can tell you. This time, we find Blanche in Boston working for the Brahmin-ish Brindle family, who have got “too-good-to-be-true” written all over them. There’s a nifty plot, but what I love (and this can’t be a surprise after the first four books, surely) is Blanche’s take on everything from how a spice-rack is organised, to why rich people have such ugly art. She is irresistible. I wish somehow she could meet Frances Wray (from The Paying Guests) and share some of her moxie. I’d kind of love to hear her thoughts on the Mortmains too.

By Barbara Neely,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blanche Cleans Up as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Barbara Neely’s skill is a force to be reckoned with!” Essence Magazine

The third, ground-breaking mystery featuring African-American maid and amateur sleuth Blanche White by Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity Award winning Author Barbara Neely, the 2020 Mystery Writers of America Grandmaster

Blanche White is working as a temporary cook and housekeeper for a right-wing, Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate Alistair Brindle when someone tries to blackmail him. It’s an ugly mess that Brindle’s political team is eager to sweep under the carpet and that Blanche can’t resist cleaning up herself…especially after a young black man is killed who knew too much about…


Book cover of Sister of the Bollywood Bride

Ananya Devarajan Author Of Kismat Connection

From my list on young adult featuring Indian American characters.

Why am I passionate about this?

I specialize in writing Young Adult Fiction with an emphasis on the Romance genre, and my debut novel, Kismat Connection, releases from Inkyard Press and HarperCollins in Summer 2023. Growing up as an Indian American, I remember searching for bits and pieces of my identity in the media. Most of the time, I wouldn’t find any representation at all—so it wasn’t long before I decided that if I couldn’t find the representation that I so desperately wanted to see, I’d have to make it myself. Kismat Connection was born from this moment in my life, and it will forever serve as the foundation for my career in publishing.

Ananya's book list on young adult featuring Indian American characters

Ananya Devarajan Why did Ananya love this book?

This is a complex young adult contemporary novel that spotlights Mini as she singlehandedly organizes the wedding-of-the-year for her older sister and her fiancé. Amidst the primary plot of Mini pulling together the wedding and falling in love with the handsome Vir Mirchandani, there is a unifying theme of family. Nandini Bajpai does an incredible job of unpacking the elements of an Indian family, specifically in how they support each other after the loss of a loved one. It was heartwarming to see Mini come into her own by the end of her story, and I highly recommend this book to anyone with a penchant for Indian weddings, Indian culture, and young love. 

By Nandini Bajpai,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sister of the Bollywood Bride as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 13, 14, 15, and 16.

What is this book about?

Mini's big sister is getting married. Their mom passed away seven years ago and between Dad's new start-up and Vinnie's medical residency, there's no one but Mini to plan the wedding. Dad raised her to know more about computers, calculus and cars than desi weddings but from the moment Mini held the jewelry Mom left them, she wanted her sister to have the wedding Mom would've planned.

Now Mini has only two months to get it done and she's not going to let anything distract her, not even the persistent, mysterious and smoking-hot Vir Mirchandani. Flower garlands, decorations, music, even…


Book cover of Ceremony

Scott Von Doviak Author Of Charlesgate Confidential

From my list on crime that bring Boston to life.

Why am I passionate about this?

The roots of my debut novel Charlesgate Confidential are in the time I spent in Boston, most notably the three years I lived in the Charlesgate building when it was an Emerson College dormitory. I always wanted to find a way to write about that time, but it wasn’t until I immersed myself in the world of Boston crime—not only the novels of Higgins, Lehane, and company but nonfiction works like Black Mass and movies like The Departed and The Town—that I hit on the way to tell my story. I’ll always be excited for new Boston-based crime fiction, and I’m happy to share these recommendations with you.

Scott's book list on crime that bring Boston to life

Scott Von Doviak Why did Scott love this book?

As great as it was, Eddie Coyle didn’t leave much of a cultural footprint, at least not until the movie adaptation starring Robert Mitchum was rediscovered decades after its initial release. Robert B. Parker’s Spenser is another matter entirely, having spawned nearly 40 novels by Parker, another 10 by Ace Atkins, a popular ‘80s TV series, and a Netflix movie starring Mark Walhberg. Picking just one of the durable shamus’s adventures is a daunting task, but I’ll give the nod to Ceremony for its evocation of the seedy seventies Combat Zone (Boston’s long-gone red light district) and the murky morality of Spenser’s dealings with a teen runaway turned sex worker.

By Robert B. Parker,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The house looked right. And the neighborhood was perfect. And everything else was wrong. So Spenser took the parents' money and went after a runaway girl. Unfortunately, April Kyle had already traveled two lifetimes from her suburban home. Now she was caught up in a web of pinps, criminals, and exploiters—the kinf of people who won't listen to anything but money, or a gun. . . . 

Praise for Ceremony

“Sizzling.”—The Pittsburgh Press

“Pick of the crop, this one. Genuinely involving.”—The Cleveland Plain Dealer


Book cover of The First Step: How One Girl Put Segregation on Trial

Lisa Robinson Author Of Madame Saqui: Revolutionary Rope Dancer

From my list on biographies about perseverance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a child psychiatrist and children’s book author. I also teach an elective course, Creativity and the Unconscious Mind, in Lesley University’s Creative Writing/MFA program. I am the author of two fiction (Pirates Don’t Go to Kindergarten, Pippa’s Night Parade) and two nonfiction picture books (Madame Saqui, Revolutionary Ropedancer, Were I Not A Girl: The Inspiring and True Story of Dr. James Barry). Coming out in 2022 is The Sweetest Scoop: Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Revolution and there are more books forthcoming! In my free time, I read voraciously and fly through the air on aerial silks at my local circus studio. 

Lisa's book list on biographies about perseverance

Lisa Robinson Why did Lisa love this book?

The First Step tells an important and lesser-known story about Sarah Roberts, a schoolgirl who was not allowed to attend school in Boston in 1847 because of her skin color. Sarah and her family persisted by fighting this injustice; they took the City of Boston to court! Roberts v. City of Boston was the first case to challenge the United States’ legal system to outlaw segregation in schools. The Roberts family lost the battle, but their case was the first step toward desegregating schools. It’s important for children to learn that even if you don’t win, it’s vital to speak up and fight against injustice and that every step forward counts!

By Susan E. Goodman, E.B. Lewis (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The inspiring story of four-year-old Sarah Roberts, the first African American girl to try to integrate a white school, and how her experience in 1847 set greater change in motion. Junior Library Guild Selection 2017 Orbis Pictus Honor Book Chicago Public LibraryKids Best of the Best Book 2016 A Nerdy Book Club Best Nonfiction Book of 2016 An NCSS Notable Social Studies Trade Book of 2017 In 1847, a young African American girl named Sarah Roberts was attending a school in Boston. Then one day she was told she could never come back. She didn't belong. The Otis School was…


Book cover of Early Autumn

Gayleen Froese Author Of The Girl Whose Luck Ran Out

From my list on hard-boiled comfort reads for a disappointing world.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was nine years old, I joined a book club. The members were me and my dad. He’d throw detective books into my room when he was done with them, and I’d read them. We’d never discuss them. But that’s why hard-boiled detective fiction is comfort food for me and how I know it so well. I’ve been binging on it most of my life and learning everything the shamus-philosophers had to teach me. Now I write my own, the Ben Ames series, for the joy of paying it forward.

Gayleen's book list on hard-boiled comfort reads for a disappointing world

Gayleen Froese Why did Gayleen love this book?

Early Autumn made me cry from two directions. As a tween, reading about Spenser’s rescue of Paul, a shut-down, emotionally neglected boy that Spenser first assesses as “an unlovely little bastard”, I cried in sympathy and relief for Paul.

Over a summer, Spenser taught him skills, built up his strength and gave him the confidence to find his own dreams, before leaving him at the doorway to the life he now knew he wanted. As an adult, I cried with joy for Spenser, who connected with a stranger, taught what he had to teach, and changed a life.

Really helping someone in a lasting way is rarely so easy as it was in this book, but it’s a worthwhile dream and this Cinderella story gets me every time.

By Robert B. Parker,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Early Autumn as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“[Robert B.] Parker's brilliance is in his simple dialogue, and in Spenser.”—The Philadelphia Inquirer

A bitter divorce is only the beginning. First the father hires thugs to kidnap his son. Then the mother hires Spenser to get the boy back. But as soon as Spenser senses the lay of the land, he decides to do some kidnapping of his own.

With a contract out on his life, he heads for the Maine woods, determined to give a puny 15 year old a crash course in survival and to beat his dangerous opponents at their own brutal game.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Boston, Massachusetts, and detectives?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Boston, Massachusetts, and detectives.

Boston Explore 180 books about Boston
Massachusetts Explore 136 books about Massachusetts
Detectives Explore 2,676 books about detectives