67 books like The Vanished Bride

By Bella Ellis,

Here are 67 books that The Vanished Bride fans have personally recommended if you like The Vanished Bride. 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 Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance

Mary F. Burns Author Of The Spoils of Avalon

From my list on famous people as the amateur sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

My mother was an avid reader of Agatha Christie, and she gave me my first Nancy Drew book when I was nine, so I’ve loved mysteries all my life—not the ‘true crime’ kind, more the ‘cozy village’ kind, where the focus is on the characters and how they solve the mystery because of who they are and how they understand the people around them. After I wrote an historical novel about John Singer Sargent and his friends, I couldn’t stop thinking about them, even hearing their voices continuing to talk—I missed them! So naturally, I decided I’d turn John and his friend Violet into detectives and write mysteries. 

Mary's book list on famous people as the amateur sleuths

Mary F. Burns Why did Mary love this book?

This is the first book in a series that is as witty, complex, charming, and dark as Oscar Wilde himself. (“I can resist everything but temptation.”) The author is steeped in Wilde and his world, quotes him extensively (but appropriately) and also delivers a great mystery set in the fascinating era of Victorian decline and fin de siècle artistic fervor. Arthur Conan Doyle, in a great turnabout, plays “Watson” to Wilde’s “Sherlock” in all the mysteries. A later book in the series takes on Jack the Ripper, with some surprising suspects!

By Gyles Brandreth,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Lovers of historical mysteries will relish this chilling Victorian tale based on real events and cloaked in authenticity. The first in a series of fiendishly clever historical murder mysteries, it casts British literature’s most fascinating and controversial figure as the lead sleuth.

A young artist’s model has been murdered, and legendary wit Oscar Wilde enlists his friends Arthur Conan Doyle and Robert Sherard to help him investigate. But when they arrive at the scene of the crime they find no sign of the gruesome killing—save one small spatter of blood, high on the wall. Set in London, Paris, Oxford, and…


Book cover of Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor

Laura C. Stevenson Author Of All Men Glad and Wise: A Mystery

From my list on mysteries that make a time and place come alive.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an historian who writes novels, and an avid reader of historical murder mysteries—especially ones whose characters are affected by social, religious, and political change. Lately, I’ve been fascinated by the breakup of rural British estates between 1880 and 1925, when, in a single generation, the amount of British land owned by the aristocracy fell from 66% to perhaps 15%. I thought it might be interesting to set a “country house” mystery on one of the failing estates, with a narrator influenced by the other great change of the period: from horses to automobiles. “Interesting” was an understatement; writing it was eye-opening.  

Laura's book list on mysteries that make a time and place come alive

Laura C. Stevenson Why did Laura love this book?

Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor is the first of Stephanie Barron’s 14 Jane Austen mysteries, based on Austen’s “discovered” diaries about her adventures as a sleuth.  The series’ witty tone is true to Austen’s, and portrayals of Austen’s family are based in fact. In this opening volume, Jane is visiting a friend “of more fashion than means” newly married a middle aged earl—who dies, poisoned, after a celebratory party. His will divides his estate between his countess and an heir known to be too fond of her, making the pair obvious suspects. As Jane works to prove her friend innocent, the descriptions of aristocratic Regency life, dress, manners, and law are superb. 

By Stephanie Barron,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For everyone who loves Jane Austen...a marvelously entertaining new series that turns the incomparable author into an extraordinary sleuth!

On a visit to the estate of her friend, the young and beautiful Isobel Payne, Countess of Scargrave, Jane bears witness to a tragedy. Isobel's husband—a gentleman of mature years—is felled by a mysterious and agonizing ailment. The Earl's death seems a cruel blow of fate for the newly married Isobel. Yet the bereaved widow soon finds that it's only the beginning of her misfortune...as she receives a sinister missive accusing her and the Earl's nephew of adultery—and murder. Desperately afraid…


Book cover of A Study in Scarlet Women

Malka Older Author Of The Mimicking of Known Successes

From my list on Sherlock Holmes retellings.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve obviously read a lot of Holmes retellings. Part of the impetus behind my new novella was trying to figure out why I was so attracted to them. Part of it, I realized, is the neurodivergence aspect: fundamental to the Holmes story is the idea of someone who thinks differentlyand who finds a way to interact with the world that uses that as an asset. The other component I love is the Holmes-Watson dynamic. Whether it's romantic or not, the development of a relationship of affection between two people who think very differently is an emotional counterpoint to plot-driven mysteries. Those elements—along with stellar writing, gripping mysteries, and characters I love spending time with.

Malka's book list on Sherlock Holmes retellings

Malka Older Why did Malka love this book?

I just did a reread of this timed for the release of the seventh in the series, and every time I read it I’m blown away by the genius way Thomas deconstructs the Holmes mythology and then puts it back together again in a new, fascinating, plausible, entirely satisfying way.

In this retelling Holmes is not only a woman, but one who has been exiled from society forwell, behaving like Sherlock Holmes. The characterization—not only of Holmes, but also of her family, associates, and enemies—is rich and believable, and the mysteries are complex and gripping.

The whole series explores the fundamental injustice of women being treated differently from men, as well as the many ingenious ways women find to escape, avoid, and subvert that norm—and the price they pay.

By Sherry Thomas,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Study in Scarlet Women as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

USA Today bestselling author Sherry Thomas turns the story of the renowned Sherlock Holmes upside down in the first novel in this Victorian mystery series....
 
With her inquisitive mind, Charlotte Holmes has never felt comfortable with the demureness expected of the fairer sex in upper class society. But even she never thought that she would become a social pariah, an outcast fending for herself on the mean streets of London.
 
When the city is struck by a trio of unexpected deaths and suspicion falls on her sister and her father, Charlotte is desperate to find the true culprits and clear…


Book cover of The Pale Blue Eye

Mary F. Burns Author Of The Spoils of Avalon

From my list on famous people as the amateur sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

My mother was an avid reader of Agatha Christie, and she gave me my first Nancy Drew book when I was nine, so I’ve loved mysteries all my life—not the ‘true crime’ kind, more the ‘cozy village’ kind, where the focus is on the characters and how they solve the mystery because of who they are and how they understand the people around them. After I wrote an historical novel about John Singer Sargent and his friends, I couldn’t stop thinking about them, even hearing their voices continuing to talk—I missed them! So naturally, I decided I’d turn John and his friend Violet into detectives and write mysteries. 

Mary's book list on famous people as the amateur sleuths

Mary F. Burns Why did Mary love this book?

This book is a haunting and haunted story of the young Edgar Allen Poe when he was a cadet at West Point in 1830. Already a published poet at that point, young Edgar is a moody and very unlikely candidate for the army, but his inclination for the darker side of human life comes in handy when a cadet is found hanging—with his heart cut out—and Edgar is chosen to help the big city detective who comes on campus to solve the murder. I just learned this was made into a movie! I loved the book, read it years ago, and have never forgotten it—now I’ve got to go get the movie.

By Louis Bayard,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

**Soon to be a major Netflix film starring Christian Bale and Gillian Anderson**

April 19th, 1831. In two or three hours I'll be dead.

So begins the chilling last testament of Gus Landor, a retired New York City police constable, whose numerous talents include code-breaking, riot control and the 'gloveless interrogation'. A young cadet has been found hanged at a military academy on the shores of the Hudson River. Before his body could be buried, however, it was stolen and his heart brutally carved out.

Fearing a scandal, the top brass at West Point have summoned Landor to help catch…


Book cover of The Brontes

Elizabeth Buchan Author Of Two Women in Rome

From my list on soothing after a love affair, divorce or Covid.

Why am I passionate about this?

Elizabeth Buchan began her career as a blurb writer at Penguin Books. She moved on to become a fiction editor at Random House before leaving to write full-time. Her novels include the award-winning Consider the Lily, The Museum of Broken Promises, and the international bestseller, Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman, which was made into a CBS Primetime Drama. Elizabeth’s short stories are broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and published in magazines. She has reviewed for The Times, the Sunday Times, and the Daily Mail, and has chaired the Betty Trask and Desmond Elliot literary prizes. She has been a judge for the Whitbread First Novel Award and for the 2014 Costa Novel Award.

Elizabeth's book list on soothing after a love affair, divorce or Covid

Elizabeth Buchan Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Juliet Barker’s monumental biography, The Brontes (Abacus), certainly falls into the category of the tried and tested which will not let you down. A fiercely revisionist, meticulously researched reassessment of the background, landscape, and events that shaped and formed Patrick, Charlotte, Emily, Branwell, and Anne, it breathes fresh air and common sense into the dark myths and fantasies which envelop the sisters in particular. I love it for the hard work that the author invested in it, her detail, her scrupulous integrity, and her determination to get at the truth about the individuals and the family as a whole. She argues well and powerfully that "without this intense family relationship, some of the greatest novels in the English language might never have been written."

By Juliet Barker,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The story of the tragic Bronte family is familiar to everyone: we all know about the half-mad, repressive father, the drunken, drug-addicted wastrel of a brother, wild romantic Emily, unrequited Anne and "poor Charlotte". Or do we? These stereotypes of the popular imagination are precisely that - imaginary - created by amateur biographers from Mrs Gaskell onwards who were primarily novelists, and were attracted by the tale of an apparently doomed family of genius. Later biographers still repeat her mistakes, and have, without exception, relied on the bowdlerised texts published by T.J. Wise, a forger. Juliet Barker's landmark book is…


Book cover of Strange Affair

Steve Orme Author Of Storm Deaths

From my list on crime fiction with characters you won't forget.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated by crime ever since I was a junior reporter working on a daily newspaper and covered a huge number of court cases. I’ve written all my working life and turned to crime writing after reaching the final of a UK TV channel’s Search for a New Crime Writer competition. I’ve built up contacts within the police force during my career which has enabled me to write Storm Deaths, the first in a series of police procedural crime novels. I’ve seen so many films and TV shows that don’t follow the proper procedure, so I ensure that all my writing is as authentic as possible. 

Steve's book list on crime fiction with characters you won't forget

Steve Orme Why did Steve love this book?

Peter Robinson has managed to create a character, DCI Alan Banks, who remains likeable even though he can be petty, headstrong and displays behavioural traits not expected of a top police officer. We can all empathise with him when he acts in a way that causes him shame and regret.

In Strange Affair he’s become depressed after a devastating fire at his cottage. But he’s shaken out of his lethargy when he gets a telephone call to say his estranged brother Roy is missing and Roy’s girlfriend has been shot dead. 

The clever plot involves Banks digging into his brother’s life and discovering Roy’s dodgy business practices which threaten to engulf Banks whose life is in danger. It’s one of Robinson’s best thrillers.

By Peter Robinson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'Move over Ian Rankin - there's a new gunslinger in town looking to take over your role as top British police procedural author...' Independent on Sunday

Following on from Playing With Fire, Strange Affair is the fifteenth novel in Peter Robinson's Inspector Banks series, which inspired the major British ITV drama DCI Banks.

When Alan Banks receives a disturbing message from his brother, Roy, he abandons the peaceful Yorkshire Dales to seek him out amidst the bright lights of London. But Roy seems to have vanished into thin air.

Meanwhile, DI Annie Cabbot is called to a quiet stretch of…


Book cover of In the Dark Places

Christopher Murphy Author Of Where the Boys Are: Murder, Martinis and Mayhem... Boys Will Be Boys

From my list on twisty thrillers to keep you guessing until the end.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an activist, artist, and author of the breakout thriller, Where The Boys Are and The Other Side of the Mirror. I specialize in thrillers that highlight diverse characters (LGBTQ+ and people of color.) I’m a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and the Hurston/Wright Writers Foundation. As a graphic designer/copywriter/marketer by day and author by night, I can usually be found creating and designing behind the bright neon glow of my laptop. When I’m not writing, I enjoy traveling to new destinations. I live and work out of my home in Las Vegas with “the hubs” and our two yorkies, and I'm currently writing my next novel, The Dark Side of the Mirror.

Christopher's book list on twisty thrillers to keep you guessing until the end

Christopher Murphy Why did Christopher love this book?

Here’s a great suspense read from the UK that does everything right. Inspector Alan Banks and his team investigate the theft of a tractor from an area farm—an investigation that leads into a deeper mystery involving a murder, and the disappearance of a young man. Where some detective series tend to peter out and lose steam toward the end of the book, this page-turner keeps up the pace and delivers a very satisfying twist ending.

By Peter Robinson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Dark Places as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Published in the United Kingdom and Canada as Abattoir Blues

Louise Penny calls In the Dark Places "brilliant." Tess Gerritsen says it's "thrilling." And Michael Connelly describes Peter Robinson as "amazing." One of the world's greatest suspense writers returns with this sensational new novel featuring Inspector Alan Banks, hailed by Michael Connelly as "a man for all seasons."

It's a double mystery: Two young men have vanished, and the investigation leads to two troubling clues in two different locations.

As Banks and his team scramble for answers, the inquiry takes an even darker turn when a truck careens off an…


Book cover of I Found You

Nolan Cubero Author Of Shadow Drive

From my list on mystery thrillers about characters with elusive identities.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m still trying to figure out who I am. I’ve made films, I’ve written fiction, I’ve been in a punk band, and now I’m in law school. I’ve bopped around to different interests my whole life and never quite felt like I fit in anywhere, maybe because I grew up a part Puerto Rican kid in Kentucky. I don’t know. All I know is I’ve been a reader all this time, and I think because I’ve always found my own identity elusive, the mysteries and thrillers I gravitate towards are ones with characters that aren’t so easy to pin down.

Nolan's book list on mystery thrillers about characters with elusive identities

Nolan Cubero Why did Nolan love this book?

Alice Lake finds a man on the beach outside her house, but when she asks the man who he is, he can’t give her any answers because he says he doesn’t know who he is either. He’s lost his memory and his identification. Alice decides to help the unknown man and invites him into her home.

While Alice tries to help the unknown man figure out who he is, she also can’t help but wonder who she’s let into her home. He seems perfectly harmless, but is he? It reminds me of what I’ve felt in relationships. I’ll like someone, but then I’ll get to know them and start to wonder who they really are. I’ll look at a friend and wonder, where did you come from?

By Lisa Jewell,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked I Found You as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'How long have you been sitting out here?'
'I got here yesterday.'
'Where did you come from?'
'I have no idea.'

Surrey: Lily Monrose has only been married for three weeks. When her new husband fails to come home from work one night she is left stranded in a new country where she knows no one.

East Yorkshire: Alice Lake finds a man on the beach outside her house. He has no name, no jacket, no idea what he is doing there. Against her better judgement she invites him in to her home.

But who is he, and how can…


Book cover of A Great Deliverance

Catherine Maiorisi Author Of A Matter of Blood

From my list on mysteries that feature two detectives.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write the NYPD Detective Chiara Corelli Mystery series featuring Corelli and her partner Detective P.J. Parker. Most mysteries have a single main character so I’m passionate about finding other authors who write mysteries with two professional investigators as main characters. It’s fascinating to see how authors writing the same type of characters handle them and what they do about character growth over the course of the series. To me, watching two characters react to each other, seeing their relationship change over the course of a book or a series is much more interesting than reading about a single detective.

Catherine's book list on mysteries that feature two detectives

Catherine Maiorisi Why did Catherine love this book?

This is the first book in George’s twenty-one book series featuring Scotland Yard Inspector Thomas Lynley, the eighth earl of Asherton, and Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers, a commoner.

When I read A Great Deliverance, I fell in love with George’s beautiful writing, found her two characters fascinating, and adored the cast of characters supporting the detectives. Plus, the book is unusual because the reader knows from the start who the killer is and the investigation focuses on why she killed him.

When I sat down to write my first ever fiction, Linley and Havers were the inspiration for my two detectives, NYPD Detectives Chiara Corelli and P.J. Parker. And I learned from George that the characters are as important, if not more important, than the plot. She inspired my writing.

By Elizabeth George,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Fat, unlovely Roberta Teys is found beside her father's headless corpse, wearing her best dress and with an axe in her lap. Her first words are: 'I did it. And I am not sorry' and she refuses to say more. Inspector Thomas Lynley and DS Barbara Havers are sent by Scotland Yard to solve this particularly gruesome murder. And as they navigate their way around a dark labyrinth of secret scandals and appalling crimes, they uncover a series of shocking revelations that shatter the facade of the peaceful Yorkshire village.


Book cover of Ill Will

Claire O'Callaghan Author Of Emily Brontë Reappraised

From my list on Brontë sequels, prequels, spin-offs and biographies.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a writer and academic based at Loughborough University specialising in the lives, works, and afterlives of the Brontës. As a Lecturer in English, I teach and research different aspects of the Brontës writings. Alongside my own biography of Emily, I have published widely on the Brontës, including material on Jane Eyre, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, Emily Brontë’s poetry, and Charlotte's letters. I have also written about how the Brontës inspire contemporary authors, poets, and screenwriters. As well as rereading the siblings’ novels (I love Charlotte’s Shirley!), I’m fascinated by the many biographies and bio-fictions generated about this great Yorkshire family. I hope you enjoy these recommendations!

Claire's book list on Brontë sequels, prequels, spin-offs and biographies

Claire O'Callaghan Why did Claire love this book?

Another incredible rewriting of Wuthering Heights and one that’s as dark and Gothic as Emily’s momentous original. In Ill Will, Michael Stewart picks up Emily’s narrative at the point when Heathcliff, having heard Cathy declare that it would degrade her to marry him, departs the Heights. Stewart unravels the tale of where Heathcliff went during the three years that he was missing from Cathy’s world and imagines what happened to him to make him return in such a vengeful guise. Ill Will is also a rewriting that takes up the issue of race, for here, Heathcliff is a young black man and his departure from the Heights prompts him to trace Mr. Earnshaw’s walk to Liverpool in the hope of finding out who he is. 

By Michael Stewart,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'An astonishing novel' The Independent

I am William Lee: brute; liar, and graveside thief.

But you will know me by another name.

Heathcliff has left Wuthering Heights, and is travelling across the moors to Liverpool in search of his past.

Along the way, he saves Emily, the foul-mouthed daughter of a Highwayman, from a whipping, and the pair journey on together.

Roaming from graveyard to graveyard, making a living from Emily's apparent ability to commune with the dead, the pair lie, cheat and scheme their way across the North of England.

And towards the terrible misdeeds - and untold riches…


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