100 books like The Violence

By Delilah S. Dawson,

Here are 100 books that The Violence fans have personally recommended if you like The Violence. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of House of Hollow

Natalie Lund Author Of The Wolves Are Watching

From my list on YA to give you chills.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in a small town full of ghosts. They broke plates in a doctor’s office-turned-restaurant, feuded in a house built by twins, emerged from cornfields to stand in our headlights, and turned headstones blue in a cemetery where tombstones protruded from the ground like jagged teeth. The stories that surrounded me while I was a teen still bleed into my writing. And as reader, I gravitate toward books that are atmospheric, rich in moments of magic or the unreal, and riddled with stories of the past and long-forgotten.

Natalie's book list on YA to give you chills

Natalie Lund Why did Natalie love this book?

As one of four sisters, I appreciate a good sister story because there’s always something going on under the surface. House of Hollow is no different. There’s the complicated dynamic of the three sisters—the model and fashion designer, the grunge musician, and the loner high school student—revealed when the eldest goes missing and the two younger sisters search for her. And then there’s the twist of something otherworldly—the fact that the girls disappeared for a month as children, reappearing with black eyes, white hair, mysterious scars, and the ability to entrance others with their scent and touch. I couldn’t stop turning the pages.

By Krystal Sutherland,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked House of Hollow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

'A gorgeous, grisly modern fairy tale.'
- THE GUARDIAN

'Dark and delicious. House of Hollow hums with malice and mystery. I devoured it whole.'
- KIRAN MILLWOOD HARGRAVE

** SHORTLISTED FOR THE YA BOOK PRIZE 2022 **

The Hollow sisters - Vivi, Grey and Iris - are as seductively glamorous as they are mysterious. They have black eyes and hair as white as milk. The Hollow sisters don't have friends - they don't need them. They move through the corridors like sharks, the other little fish parting around them, whispering behind their backs.

And everyone knows who the Hollow sisters…


Book cover of Hide

Sarah Gailey Author Of Just Like Home

From my list on for making you lose sleep.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love books that keep me up at night. I'm constantly trying to get into a good, healthy bedtime routine—but I am also constantly sabotaging that effort by finding books that I simply can’t put down. The feeling of being drawn so deep into a story that the hours slip away is easily one of my favorite feelings in the world. I also love books that make me wake up in the middle of the night, books that slide into my brain and plant new ideas there. As an author, I am always striving to write those books. I can think of no higher compliment than “I stayed up all night reading it.”

Sarah's book list on for making you lose sleep

Sarah Gailey Why did Sarah love this book?

Hide feels like a book tailor-made to pull me in and refuse to let go. The pitch—a high-stakes game of hide-and-seek in an abandoned amusement park—is solid gold, and the book delivers so much more than it promises. With relentless, cutting-class commentary and a truly ferocious sense of clarity, Hide excoriates systems of exploitation with incredible efficiency. I found myself sneaking chapters wherever I could.

By Kiersten White,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A high-stakes hide-and-seek competition turns deadly in this dark supernatural thriller from New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White, perfect for fans of Stephen King and SQUID GAME.

The challenge: spend a week hiding in an abandoned amusement park and don't get caught.

The prize: enough money to change everything.

Even though everyone is desperate to win - to seize their dream futures or escape their haunting pasts - Mack feels sure that she can beat her competitors. All she has to do is hide, and she's an expert at that.

It's the reason she's alive, and her family isn't.…


Book cover of Number One Fan

Sarah Gailey Author Of Just Like Home

From my list on for making you lose sleep.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love books that keep me up at night. I'm constantly trying to get into a good, healthy bedtime routine—but I am also constantly sabotaging that effort by finding books that I simply can’t put down. The feeling of being drawn so deep into a story that the hours slip away is easily one of my favorite feelings in the world. I also love books that make me wake up in the middle of the night, books that slide into my brain and plant new ideas there. As an author, I am always striving to write those books. I can think of no higher compliment than “I stayed up all night reading it.”

Sarah's book list on for making you lose sleep

Sarah Gailey Why did Sarah love this book?

Elison is a master of her craft. With Number One Fan she constructs a multilayered horror story that has given me many sleepless nights. This book explores terror from every conceivable angle, from the physical to the existential, while delivering profound insight into the nature of creativity, fandom, and obsession. There’s a scene in this one that made me clench up into a ball and I’m not sure I’ll ever fully relax again. 

By Meg Elison,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Elison’s brutal, incisive novel cuts to the heart of what makes public figures vulnerable and asks us to question our voyeurism." —New York Times Book Review

She created a beautiful world. Now he wants it all.

On her way to a speaking engagement, bestselling novelist Eli Grey gets into a cab and accepts a drink from the driver, trusting that everything is fine. She wakes up chained in the stranger’s basement. With no close family or friends expecting her to check in, Eli knows she needs to save herself. She soon realizes that her abduction wasn’t random, and though she…


Book cover of Feed Them Silence

Sarah Gailey Author Of Just Like Home

From my list on for making you lose sleep.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love books that keep me up at night. I'm constantly trying to get into a good, healthy bedtime routine—but I am also constantly sabotaging that effort by finding books that I simply can’t put down. The feeling of being drawn so deep into a story that the hours slip away is easily one of my favorite feelings in the world. I also love books that make me wake up in the middle of the night, books that slide into my brain and plant new ideas there. As an author, I am always striving to write those books. I can think of no higher compliment than “I stayed up all night reading it.”

Sarah's book list on for making you lose sleep

Sarah Gailey Why did Sarah love this book?

When I was a kid I was very excited about wolves. Not in the sense that I knew a lot about wolves—I didn’t study them and learn about them—so much as I felt certain, in my heart of hearts, that if I met a wolf, we would understand each other in a way no two creatures ever have. Feed Them Silence is a book that returned me to that sense of certainty, but with a more fundamentally realistic understanding of the nature of animals as existing outside of human understanding. I couldn’t put it down, and the hours slipped right past me.

By Lee Mandelo,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Lee Mandelo dives into the minds of wolves in Feed Them Silence, a novella of the near future.

What does it mean to "be-in-kind" with a nonhuman animal? Or in Dr. Sean Kell-Luddon’s case, to be in-kind with one of the last remaining wild wolves? Using a neurological interface to translate her animal subject’s perception through her own mind, Sean intends to chase both her scientific curiosity and her secret, lifelong desire to experience the intimacy and freedom of wolfishness. To see the world through animal eyes; smell the forest, thick with olfactory messages; even taste the blood and viscera…


Book cover of Applying Anthropology to Gender-Based Violence: Global Responses, Local Practices

Allison Bloom Author Of Violence Never Heals: The Lifelong Effects of Intimate Partner Violence for Immigrant Women

From my list on domestic violence from a cross-cultural perspective.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been a researcher, educator, and practitioner of domestic violence services for over 15 years, and am extremely passionate about this topic. After having worked in the domestic violence field, I then pursued my PhD to study this problem, which I now continue to research and teach about as an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Moravian University. In our ever-globalizing world, I believe it's especially important for us to consider domestic violence from a cross-cultural perspective, and having studied this issue in Latin America and among Latina women in the U.S., I hope to spread that knowledge even further. More than ever, it is important for everyone to gain knowledge on this worldwide problem.

Allison's book list on domestic violence from a cross-cultural perspective

Allison Bloom Why did Allison love this book?

If you’re interested in learning about domestic violence from a cross-cultural perspective, the literature on domestic violence in anthropology is an excellent place to look.

This is the second book by Jennifer Wies and Hillary Haldane, two anthropologists who have carved out a space for understanding how to apply anthropological insights to actual domestic violence work. This book offers cross-cultural ideas for how to do just that from a variety of anthropologists working all around the world who continue to work together on this issue from an applied anthropological perspective.

Both Wies and Haldane are mentors of mine, and Haldane was a huge support in the development of my own research. I have also collaborated with several of the authors in this book and can attest to the excellence of their research.

By Jennifer R. Wies (editor), Hillary J. Haldane (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Applying Anthropology to Gender-Based Violence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Applying Anthropology to Gender-Based Violence: Global Responses, Local Practices addresses the gaps in theory, methods, and practices that are currently used to engage the problem of gender-based violence. This book complements the work carried out in the legal, human services, and health fields by demonstrating how a focus on local issues and responses can better inform a collaborative global response to the problem of gender-based violence. With chapters covering Africa, Asia, Latin and North America, and Oceania, the volume illustrates the various ways scholars, practitioners, frontline workers, and policy makers can work together to end violence in their local communities.…


Book cover of Virtuous Violence: Hurting and Killing to Create, Sustain, End, and Honor Social Relationships

Jessica Scott Author Of A Soldier's Promise: A Coming Home Anthology

From my list on the Iraq War that go beyond bullets.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a soldier, an author, and an army wife – the last fifteen years of my life have revolved around dealing with the fallout of the Iraq war, not only for my family but also as a soldier and a veteran. I write books because I wanted to read about people who stayed in the military after the war started. The best writing advice I ever got came from Robyn Carr who said, write the book that only you can tell. Wrestling with the legacy of a war that we as soldiers did not choose as we return home was something I deeply wanted to understand, both as an army officer and a novelist.

Jessica's book list on the Iraq War that go beyond bullets

Jessica Scott Why did Jessica love this book?

This book technically isn’t about the Iraq war but instead, about violence more broadly and it's super nerdy but super important.

As a soldier and sociologist, I’ve always been fascinated by the ways academia deals with questions of violence. In particular, since the popularity of moral psychology theories like Jonathan Haidt’s moral foundations theory (popularized in his book The Righteous Mind), the running assumption in a lot of academic circles is that harm = bad. But Fisk and Rai show that violence serves social purpose such as bonding people together or teaching them group boundaries.

It’s a difficult read because it challenges people’s assumptions about violence and harm but that makes it all the more important in understanding how people come home from war and the ways in which they wrestle with actions they’ve done. 

By Alan Page Fiske, Tage Shakti Rai,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

What motivates violence? How can good and compassionate people hurt and kill others or themselves? Why are people much more likely to kill or assault people they know well, rather than strangers? This provocative and radical book shows that people mostly commit violence because they genuinely feel that it is the morally right thing to do. In perpetrators' minds, violence may be the morally necessary and proper way to regulate social relationships according to cultural precepts, precedents, and prototypes. These moral motivations apply equally to the violence of the heroes of the Iliad, to parents smacking their child, and to…


Book cover of I Will Find You: A Reporter Investigates the Life of the Man Who Raped Her

Rebecca McKanna Author Of Don't Forget the Girl

From my list on true crime that still honor the victims.

Why am I passionate about this?

After writing a novel about the toll true crime can take on victims’ loved ones and the risk it runs of glamourizing killers while overshadowing victims, I’ve been on the hunt for true crime books that don’t fall into these traps. The titles on this list showcase beautiful writing and tell compelling stories without dehumanizing the victims or glamourizing the perpetrators. 

Rebecca's book list on true crime that still honor the victims

Rebecca McKanna Why did Rebecca love this book?

While on assignment for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Connors was raped by a man recently released from prison. Before, he lets her go, he tells her not to contact the police, warning her, “[…] I will find you.”

The phrase becomes the through line of Connors’ book, which is both about her quest to find a way forward after the assault and about her journey to uncover her assailant’s past and the reasons he might have committed this crime. The result is a poignant look at both the trauma left in crime’s wake as well as the societal influences that cause crime to occur in the first place.

By Joanna Connors,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A hard-hitting memoir about a woman's search to understand the man who raped her

Joanna Connors was thirty years old when she was raped at knifepoint by a stranger.

Many years later she realised she had to confront the fear that had ruled her life ever since that day. She needed, finally, to understand. So she went in search of her rapist's story, determined to find out who he was, where he came from, what his life was like - and what leads a person to do something as destructive as what he did to her.

'More chilling than a…


Book cover of Human Rights and Gender Violence: Translating International Law Into Local Justice

Michael Freeman Author Of Human Rights

From my list on the power and the limits of human rights.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an emeritus professor in the Department of Government, University of Essex. I taught political theory for many years with a speciality in the theory and practice of human rights. I'm the author of Edmund Burke and the Critique of Political Radicalism and Human Rights. I've published many articles in political theory, philosophy of social science, and human rights. I've directed academic programmes in political theory, The Enlightenment, and human rights. I've lectured on human rights in some 25 countries. I was a founder-member of my local branch of Amnesty International and served on the board of Amnesty’s British Section for five years, for two years as its Chairperson.

Michael's book list on the power and the limits of human rights

Michael Freeman Why did Michael love this book?

The initial reaction of anthropologists to the UN’s proposal for a universal declaration of human rights was to question it on the ground that it might be no more than an expression of the cultures of the world’s dominant powers. Human rights universalism was opposed by cultural relativism, the idea that no or few values are universally valid as values derive from particular cultures. Anthropologists then discovered that the cultural groups that they typically studied – `indigenous’ peoples – often suffered the most serious human rights violations and that ignoring this was ethically and scientifically unacceptable.

Although many anthropologists are still attracted to cultural relativism, some have not only embraced human rights but have made an original and distinctive contribution to our understanding of the human rights world in at least two respects: 1) understanding the culture of this world, and 2) understanding the real-world interaction of human rights and…

By Sally Engle Merry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Human Rights and Gender Violence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Human rights law and the legal protection of women from violence are still fairly new concepts. As a result, substantial discrepancies exist between what is decided in the halls of the United Nations and what women experience on a daily basis in their communities. "Human Rights and Gender Violence" is an ambitious study that investigates the tensions between global law and local justice. As an observer of UN diplomatic negotiations as well as the workings of grassroots feminist organizations in several countries, Sally Engle Merry offers an insider's perspective on how human rights law holds authorities accountable for the protection…


Book cover of The Calculus of Violence: How Americans Fought the Civil War

George C. Rable Author Of Conflict of Command: George McClellan, Abraham Lincoln, and the Politics of War

From my list on the American Civil War beyond the usual battles.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been researching and writing about the era of the American Civil War for something over half a century. My passion for the subject remains strong today, having just published my seventh book. Given the seemingly endless amounts of material from soldiers and civilians alike, I have enjoyed deeply researching neglected subjects and writing about them in a way that appeals to both historians and general readers. For me the Civil War never grows stale, there are always little-used sources to research and fresh ideas to consider. The American Civil is omnipresent in my life—not excluding weekends and holidays!   

George's book list on the American Civil War beyond the usual battles

George C. Rable Why did George love this book?

From its wonderfully apropos title to its cautionary final paragraph, The Calculus of Violence is a deeply thoughtful and original analysis of who was killed and did the killing in the American Civil War—and why. 

Aaron Sheehan-Dean argues that a very bloody civil war could have been much bloodier. The book is powerful but never preachy because complex human beings with complex beliefs and motivations are always at the forefront. This superb work forces readers to rethink many supposedly settled questions about the American Civil War.

By Aaron Sheehan-Dean,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Winner of the Jefferson Davis Award
Winner of the Johns Family Book Award
Winner of the Army Historical Foundation Distinguished Writing Award

"A work of deep intellectual seriousness, sweeping and yet also delicately measured, this book promises to resolve longstanding debates about the nature of the Civil War."
-Gregory P. Downs, author of After Appomattox

Shiloh, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg-tens of thousands of soldiers died on these iconic Civil War battlefields, and throughout the South civilians suffered terrible cruelty. At least three-quarters of a million lives were lost during the American Civil War. Given its seemingly indiscriminate mass destruction, this conflict is…


Book cover of They Left Great Marks on Me: African American Testimonies of Racial Violence from Emancipation to World War I

Fergus M. Bordewich Author Of Klan War: Ulysses S. Grant and the Battle to Save Reconstruction

From my list on the bloody history of Reconstruction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have written widely on themes related to race, slavery, 19th-century politics, the Civil War, and its aftermath. The Reconstruction era has sometimes been called America’s “Second Founding.” It is imperative for us to understand what its architects hoped to accomplish and to show that their enlightened vision encompassed the better nation that we are still striving to shape today. The great faultline of race still roils our country. Our forerunners of the Reconstruction era struggled to bridge that chasm a century and a half ago. What they fought for still matters.

Fergus' book list on the bloody history of Reconstruction

Fergus M. Bordewich Why did Fergus love this book?

This is a brilliant, harrowing book that should be must-reading for anyone who might still be swayed by the worn-out moonlight-and-magnolias mythology of the “Old South.”

Drawing heavily on a wealth of remarkable first-person testimony, Williams chronicles the systematic brutalization of usually helpless Black women by white men. In particular, she makes all too clear that rape and other forms of sexual abuse were not just incidental but central to the terrorism of the Ku Klux Klan in its campaign to assert power over freed people.

Although women couldn’t vote, the abuse of wives, daughters, sisters, and mothers was a way to intimidate the Black men who could. Williams also shows how that abuse continued long after Reconstruction to become part of the repressive fabric of the Jim Crow era that followed.

I found some of the accounts in Williams’s book difficult to read, but I don’t think the full…

By Kidada E. Williams,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked They Left Great Marks on Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Shares wrenching accounts of the everyday violence experienced by emancipated African Americans
Well after slavery was abolished, its legacy of violence left deep wounds on African Americans' bodies, minds, and lives. For many victims and witnesses of the assaults, rapes, murders, nightrides, lynchings, and other bloody acts that followed, the suffering this violence engendered was at once too painful to put into words yet too horrible to suppress.
In this evocative and deeply moving history Kidada Williams examines African Americans' testimonies about racial violence. By using both oral and print culture to testify about violence, victims and witnesses hoped they…


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