100 books like The Woo-Woo

By Lindsay Wong,

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

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We Were Liars

By E. Lockhart,

Book cover of We Were Liars

CJ Vermote Author Of Do I Know You

From the list on suspense with a splash of paranormal.

Who am I?

My love for reading suspense helped me develop the desire to write novels. It is as if I always have a movie in my head, so why not write them out. I have dyslexia, and reading along with learning is a challenge, but both have become my escape. I’ve always been fascinated by how a good suspense plays out and the relief that comes with the resolution. I added the paranormal world because I had a NDE (near death experience) in the 80s and became open to the paranormal. I became unafraid and see the paranormal as good. 

CJ's book list on suspense with a splash of paranormal

Why did CJ love this book?

I found this book interesting because life was so different from anything I had ever experienced. 

E. Lockhart spun a tale of how bonds are built among children. How to a child it is the parents who build the social walls. How it doesn’t matter what material your clothes are woven from, lies are lies. Privilege doesn’t mean anything when a crime is committed, or a marriage is destroyed.

Children are dragged around the dirt of the secrets and soon become their own secrets and lies. Every turn was a building block of different social aspects and the lives it took with it. 

I found this book to be a page turning, not for the suspense as much as for the characters themselves.

By E. Lockhart,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The TikTok phenomenon and #1 New York Times bestseller.

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends-the Liars-whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from New York Times bestselling author, National Book Award finalist, and Printz Award honouree E. Lockhart.

Read it.

And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.

Don't miss FAMILY OF LIARS, the thrilling prequel to We Were Liars, published in May 2022.

Pride and Prejudice

By Jane Austen,

Book cover of Pride and Prejudice

Joss Wood Author Of Confessions of a Christmasholic

From the list on romance when life gets a bit real and want to hide.

Who am I?

I’m an author of over seventy romance books and have been a romance reader all my life. I think the first book I wrote (at the age of eight) featured a kiss. Yes, I was precocious, but in my defense, I was spying on my much older sister and her boyfriend at the time. Reading and writing romance is my passion, and I love spending my days creating independent, intelligent, and feisty heroines and hot, smart, modern men. I’m lucky enough to spend my days doing what I love. I hope you love the books on my list, and that they bring you as much pleasure (and an escape from reality) as they did me.

Joss' book list on romance when life gets a bit real and want to hide

Why did Joss love this book?

Can you even call yourself a romance reader if you don’t like Jane Austen or haven’t read Pride and Prejudice?

Pride and Prejudice is widely regarded as the first romantic comedy published. Lizzy is a strong heroine, Darcy a strong, silent alpha male. They both have awesome character arcs and a happy ending. It’s a fantastic book, written by a groundbreaking author.

(PS: The BCC production of Pride and Prejudice from 1995 is also brilliant.) Sigh.  

By Jane Austen,

Why should I read it?

25 authors picked Pride and Prejudice as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of BBC's 100 Novels That Shaped Our World.

Jane Austen's best-loved novel is an unforgettable story about the inaccuracy of first impressions, the power of reason, and above all the strange dynamics of human relationships and emotions.

Part of the Macmillan Collector's Library; a series of stunning, clothbound, pocket sized classics with gold foiled edges and ribbon markers. These beautiful books make perfect gifts or a treat for any book lover. This edition is illustrated by Hugh Thomson and features an afterword by author and critic, Henry Hitchings.

A tour de force of wit and sparkling dialogue, Pride and…

Nothing to See Here

By Kevin Wilson,

Book cover of Nothing to See Here

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

Why did John love this book?

What I liked about Kevin Wilson’s novel Nothing to See Here is how it offers us a misfit outcast in Lillian who gets hired to nanny twins who are far-more dramatic outcasts.

They literally catch fire when upset. Yes, it’s absurd and funny.

On one level, the book is bizarre and entertaining, but on another level we see the challenges outcasts in our world, and Lillian gains perspective on the problems and weaknesses of the wealthy and popular around her.

Lillian also comes to care about these kids, and in the process she opens up emotionally in unexpected ways.

By Kevin Wilson,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked Nothing to See Here as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times Bestseller  •  A Read with Jenna Today Show Book Club Pick!

Named a Best Book of the Year by The New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, People, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, TIME, The A.V. Club, Buzzfeed, and PopSugar

“I can’t believe how good this book is.... It’s wholly original. It’s also perfect.... Wilson writes with such a light touch.... The brilliance of the novel [is] that it distracts you with these weirdo characters and mesmerizing and funny sentences and then hits you in a way you didn’t see coming. You’re laughing so hard you…

This Is Where I Leave You

By Jonathan Tropper,

Book cover of This Is Where I Leave You

Carmen Reid Author Of New Family Required

From the list on funny, feelgood fiction about families.

Who am I?

I’m a daughter, sister, Mum, wife, and writer. I’ve been writing light-hearted books about the intricacies of family life for 20 years now. When I first began my publishing journey, I was parcelled up with ‘chick lit’, but really, I’ve always written ‘Mum lit’. I love to write about the hilarious side of life, alongside the emotional. As it’s hard enough out there in the world, I want things to turn out happily in my stories. I love to add a sprinkling of travel and a touch of fashion. Sorry, but I just can’t help noticing a well-cut jacket, an embroidered silky skirt, or a carefully chosen accessory! 

Carmen's book list on funny, feelgood fiction about families

Why did Carmen love this book?

Every comedy needs a truly memorable comedy scene and once you’ve read this book, you will never look at any birthday cake with candles in quite the same way again.

This plot is based on of my favourite setups – grown up siblings being forced to spend time in their family home together. In this case, they are mourning their recently deceased Dad. The seven-day stay is long enough for all the niceties to wear off and the real sibling rivalries, unresolved arguments, and tensions to surface and here, they are properly aired and almost resolved.

The very funny side and the searingly painful side are both so well done. If your sibs and in-laws are crazy or crazy-annoying, Tropper will make sure you know you are not alone. 

By Jonathan Tropper,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked This Is Where I Leave You as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A riotously funny, emotionally raw New York Times bestselling novel about love, marriage, divorce, family, and the ties that bind-whether we like it or not.

The death of Judd Foxman's father marks the first time that the entire Foxman clan has congregated in years. There is, however, one conspicuous absence: Judd's wife, Jen, whose affair with his radio- shock-jock boss has recently become painfully public. Simultaneously mourning the demise of his father and his marriage, Judd joins his dysfunctional family as they reluctantly sit shiva and spend seven days and nights under the same roof. The week quickly spins out…

Rethinking Madness

By Paris Williams,

Book cover of Rethinking Madness: Towards a Paradigm Shift in Our Understanding and Treatment of Psychosis

Bruce E. Levine Author Of A Profession Without Reason: The Crisis of Contemporary Psychiatry―Untangled and Solved by Spinoza, Freethinking, and Radical Enlightenment

From the list on psychiatry for freethinkers.

Who am I?

I am a practicing clinical psychologist, often at odds with the mainstream of my mental health profession. I have a strong interest in how society, culture, politics, philosophy, and psychology intersect, and my previous books about depression, activism, and anti-authoritarianism reflect that. The late historian Howard Zinn described me this way: “It is always refreshing to find someone who stands at the edge of his profession and dissects its failures with a critical eye, refusing to be deceived by its pretensions. Bruce Levine condemns the cold, technological approach to mental health and, to our benefit, looks for deeper solutions.”

Bruce's book list on psychiatry for freethinkers

Why did Bruce love this book?

I found Rethinking Madness to be a highly original book. Clinical psychologist Paris Williams interviewed individuals who had been diagnosed with schizophrenia and other psychoses, and he integrated this research with prominent alternative explanations for madness. In contrast to the gloomy picture painted by establishment psychiatry, Williams describes how full recovery from schizophrenia and other related psychotic disorders is not only possible but is surprisingly common, and that many people who recover from these psychotic disorders do not merely return to their pre-psychotic condition, but often undergo a profound positive transformation with far more lasting benefits than harms.

By Paris Williams,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

As the recovery research continues to accumulate, we find that the mainstream understanding of schizophrenia and psychosis has lost nearly all credibility:

* After over 100 years and billions of dollars spent on research looking for schizophrenia and other related psychotic disorders in the brain, we still have not found any substantial evidence that these disorders are actually caused by a brain disease.
* We have learned that full recovery from schizophrenia and other related psychotic disorders is not only possible but is surprisingly common.
* We've discovered that those diagnosed in the United States and other "developed" nations are…

Brain on Fire

By Susannah Cahalan,

Book cover of Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

Michelle L. Teichman Author Of The Space Between

From the list on young adult books for women of all ages.

Who am I?

At heart, I’m still just a girl. I don’t think I’ll ever grow out of wanting to experience the excitement of first kisses, first loves, and of coming out, when everything was new and exciting, and the world was full of promise. That’s why we return to YA even as adults. To feel the butterflies of a first crush, the fluttering of first love, and the agony of first loss. Those transformative books, the ones that change the trajectory of our lives, are usually young adult novels. I wrote The Space Between to give readers a story to fall in love with and take with them the rest of their lives.

Michelle's book list on young adult books for women of all ages

Why did Michelle love this book?

This book will make you question everything you’ve ever thought about your sanity.

The incredible true story of Susannah Cahalan took the world by storm when it topped the charts to #1 New York Times Bestseller and was made into a film. Cahalan’s intense journey from New York Post investigative reporter to psychiatric lockdown patient spans only one month, a month that nearly ended her life.

A reader once described my books as ‘unputdownable,’ and I’m happy to share that label with Brain on Fire. Riveting, frightening, and incredibly moving, I couldn’t read quickly enough as Susannah fought to reclaim her sanity and her life.

Based on her article “The Month of Madness,” this book is one of the best about a young woman’s struggle to find and reclaim herself.

By Susannah Cahalan,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Brain on Fire is the stunning debut from journalist and author Susannah Cahalan, recounting the real-life horror story of how a sudden and mysterious illness put her on descent into a madness for which there seemed to be no cure

'My first serious blackout marked the line between sanity and insanity. Though I would have moments of lucidity over the coming days and weeks, I would never again be the same person ...'

Susannah Cahalan was a happy, clever, healthy twenty-four-year old. Then one day she woke up in hospital, with no memory of what had happened or how she…


By Catherine Cho,

Book cover of Inferno: A Memoir of Motherhood and Madness

Alena Dillon Author Of My Body Is a Big Fat Temple: An Ordinary Story of Pregnancy and Early Motherhood

From the list on for expecting moms who want the truth.

Who am I?

There is a dearth of books that span the emotional journey into motherhood. An old adage directs authors to write the book they would like to read, so I kept that in mind as I began the journey myself. Throughout my pregnancy and postpartum experience, I was often surprised by perfectly ordinary occurrences that aren’t often discussed. There is a hush cast on anything that isn’t purely nurturing and romantic, which means that mothers who encounter unpleasantness are blindsided, and consider themselves aberrations. I wrote my book as honestly as possible to normalize the normal and to offer myself as a compatriot to those mothers. 

Alena's book list on for expecting moms who want the truth

Why did Alena love this book?

This memoir of postpartum psychosis is not for the faint of heart, but is an absolutely necessary addition to the motherhood literary canon. In beautiful prose, it charts the author’s increasing mental instability following the birth of her son. These are the types of stories that should be shared more frequently to reduce the stigma of perinatal mood disorders. 

By Catherine Cho,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

______________________ 'A beautifully written account of postpartum psychosis, and the ties, blessings and burdens of family' - NIGELLA LAWSON SHORTLISTED FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES YOUNG WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD SHORTLISTED FOR THE JHALAK PRIZE *Observer Book of the Week* *A Guardian Memoir of the Year 2020* *Harper's Bazaar 10 Women Who Will Shape What You Watch, See and Read in 2020* ______________________ 'Striking and original' - Cathy Rentzenbrink, The Times 'Completely devastating. Completely heartbreaking' - Daisy Johnson ______________________ Catherine Cho's son was three months old when she and her husband left home to introduce him to their families. Catherine…


By Pat Cadigan,

Book cover of Mindplayers

Freddie A. Clark Author Of The Harbinger of Freedom: The Falling Feathers Series, Act I

From the list on cyberpunk hackers, cyborgs, and dystopian societies.

Who am I?

Although I write Fantasy, I’m a Cyberpunk enthusiast who mentally lives in the high-tech effed-up future authors and artists imagined in the ‘80s. My imagination has been so influenced by Cyberpunk since I watched (and eventually read) Akira as a kid that I ended up creating a Fantasy world with a retro-futuristic, low-life/high-tech vibe, and a lot of motorcycles. An awful lot. I’m also a rebel by heart and a queer person, hence my stories always feature a fight against society and LGBTQ+ characters. I like reading about dystopias, morally grey characters, and dark content. This is what I read, and this is what I write about.

Freddie's book list on cyberpunk hackers, cyborgs, and dystopian societies

Why did Freddie love this book?

Pat Cadigan is one of my favourite authors. Mindplayers is a short book, bizarre and strange but fascinating as per Cadigan’s style. The main setting here is the human mind. The protagonist is forced to become a Mindplayer, a sort of state-controlled psychologist who jacks into people’s minds in order to cure them. This book makes you wonder how vast the world inside your head is, and if your thoughts and memories really belong to you once a government takes control of them. There’s even Brain Police involved, what can be more dystopian than this?

By Pat Cadigan,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Allie Haas only did it for a dare - the kind of dare you know is a mistake but you do it anyway because it's Mistake Yime. But putting on the madcap that Jerry Wirerammer has 'borrowed' was a very big mistake. The psychosis itself was quite conventional, a few paranoid delusions, but it didn't go away when she took the madcap off. Jerry did the decent thing and left her at an emergency room for dry-cleaning but then the Brain Police took over. Straightened out by a professional mindplayer, Allie thinks she's left mind games behind for good but…

Muses, Madmen, and Prophets

By Daniel B. Smith,

Book cover of Muses, Madmen, and Prophets: Hearing Voices and the Borders of Sanity

Will Hall Author Of Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness

From the list on psychosis from someone who has schizophrenia.

Who am I?

I was an imaginative and sensitive kid – growing up in the confusing oppressions of the US south and raised by parents who are themselves trauma survivors. When I started to go into altered states, hear voices, withdraw in frightened isolation and drift towards strange beliefs, I was forcibly locked up at Langley Porter Psychiatric Hospital in San Francisco. I was drugged, put in restraints and solitary confinement, and told I was schizophrenic and would never live a normal life. Today I don’t take medication, work as a therapist teacher, and advocate, and have joined the international patients’ movement working to change an abusive and misguided mental health system. I am not anti-medication, but I see psychiatric meds for what they are – tranquilizers, not treatments, tools not solutions. We need compassionate approaches and caring communities for individuals suffering from a psychotic crisis like I was. I am also the author of the Harm Reduction Guide to Coming Off Psychiatric Drugs.

Will's book list on psychosis from someone who has schizophrenia

Why did Will love this book?

Hearing voices is considered a symptom of schizophrenia and can quickly lead to hospital lockup, medication, and being shunned by society as “mentally ill.” In this fascinating account, Smith reveals the truth about this experience we call “madness” – hearing voices is actually a normal human experience across history and culture. Poets, religious visionaries, people spending time alone or grieving – even Freud, Gandhi, actor Anthony Hopkins, singer Lady Gaga -- all heard voices, and anyone under the right kind of stress can hear voices. The problem only arises when people hear distressing voices and have nowhere to go for help other than being treated as ill by a doctor.

Psychiatry made the catastrophic mistake of calling homosexuality a mental disease, and for many decades LGBT people were abducted, confined in hospitals, drugged, tortured, and killed for the mental crime of being different. Today people who hear voices are also…

By Daniel B. Smith,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An inquiry into hearing voices-one of humanity's most profound phenomena

Auditory hallucination is one of the most awe-inspiring, terrifying, and ill- understood tricks of which the human psyche is capable. In the age of modern medical science, we have relegated this experience to nothing more than a biological glitch. Yet as Daniel B. Smith puts forth in Muses, Madmen, and Prophets, some of the greatest thinkers, leaders, and prophets in history heard, listened to, and had dialogues with voices inside their heads. In a fascinating quest for understanding, Smith examines the history of this powerful phenomenon, and delivers a ringing…

The Best Awful

By Carrie Fisher,

Book cover of The Best Awful

Debby Dodds Author Of Amish Guys Don't Call

From the list on serious subjects that are also hilariously funny.

Who am I?

In my first career as an actress, I often got cast as the “comic relief” in more serious films and plays. I cut my acting chops on improv comedy before getting my BFA in drama from NYU and performing in everything from Shakespeare to Seinfeld. I wrote and performed in stage shows at Disneyland and Disney World and screamed myself hoarse in B-horror films. As an author, I like to write about serious topics but I just can’t help being funny. I received my MFA from Antioch University and have had over 30 short stories and essays published. While I read voraciously (and genre-indiscriminately), my favorite books are often “darkly comedic” or “funny yet poignant.”

Debby's book list on serious subjects that are also hilariously funny

Why did Debby love this book?

Any book by the magnificent Carrie Fisher could be on my list. I love them all. This novel covers the difficult territories of drug abuse, failed marriages, and manic depression yet Fisher’s trademark biting wit and razor-sharp observational skills give us lines like this: Doris Mann was a famous fifties movie icon whose three failed marriages had left her publicly humiliated, bankrupted, and bankrupted again. "Anyway, think of it this way; we've had every kind of man in this family. We've had horse thieves and alcoholics and one-man bands and singers—but this is our first homosexual!" She punctuated her congratulatory speech with raised eyebrows and trademark grin and outflung arms.

By Carrie Fisher,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In a revealing, darkly humorous sequel to Postcards from the Edge, a woman struggles to cope with a descent into psychosis and to make her way through a challenging stay in a psychiatric institution to build a new life for herself. 125,000 first printing.

5 book lists we think you will like!

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