79 books like Touch the Dark

By Karen Chance,

Here are 79 books that Touch the Dark fans have personally recommended if you like Touch the Dark. 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 Halfway to the Grave

Maxym M. Martineau Author Of Kingdom of Exiles

From my list on fantasy with kick-ass heroines.

Who am I?

I’m a fantasy romance author with a love of creating real, in-depth characters with agency. To me, that’s the very definition of a “kick-ass” heroine. It doesn’t matter how she’s kick-ass (e.g., loud/vocal vs. quiet and cunning; the one charging ahead of the army or the one strategizing the attack), just that she’s in control of her own destiny. It’s important for me to have my characters feel like actual people, facing real decisions and the consequences of said decisions, and then I want those characters to have onus and show off their true bad-assery. 

Maxym's book list on fantasy with kick-ass heroines

Maxym M. Martineau Why did Maxym love this book?

Good lord, Kat simply dominates when she enters a scene.

She leaves no room for argument with all her decisions (some of them bad, some of them good) or dialogue, and even in moments where you’re screaming at her or she’s second-guessing herself, she grounds herself in her resolve and pushes forward.

Plus, Bones is swoon-worthy, and she still honors her own feels in the presence of his…well…everything, haha. I also love her evolution through the Night Huntress series and how her viewpoint toward vampires and paranormals shifts in a way that suits her character development. Also the spice? Heck. Yes.

By Jeaniene Frost,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Halfway to the Grave as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kicking off the sexiest, smartest, most badass paranormal romance series out there. You won't be able to stop turning the pages.

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of those deadbeats is her father - the guy responsible for ruining her mother's life.

But when she's captured by Bones, a bounty hunter and a vampire, she finds herself forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for his help in finding her father, and still astonished she hasn't ended up as his dinner, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her…


Book cover of Magic Bites

AK Nevermore Author Of Flame & Shadow

From my list on urban fantasies for snark and sass.

Who am I?

I love reading about strong main characters stuck in lousy situations that they have to pull up their big girl panties to get out of. I want a read where no one follows the rules, come what may. Wit and clever dialog are definitely one of the things that keep me reading. And all of the books on this list have that in spades.

AK's book list on urban fantasies for snark and sass

AK Nevermore Why did AK love this book?

This book has all the witty dialog and situations that go awry that I love to read about. The characters are quirky, and you can absolutely imagine having a beer or cracking open a bottle of Boones’ Farm wine with any of them.

And if that isn’t enough to keep you reading, the slow-burn romance will.

By Ilona Andrews,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Magic Bites as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kate Daniels is about to enter a world of gritty magic and dangerous mystery! Vampires, necromancers and mages abound on the city streets, with one kickass heroine in the middle

Future Atlanta is an interesting place to live: one moment magic dominates, and cars stall and guns fail. The next, technology takes over and the defensive spells no longer protect your house from monsters.

Here skyscrapers topple under the onslaught of magic; the Pack, a paramilitary clan of shapechangers, prowl through the ruined streets; and the Masters of the Dead, necromancers driven by their thirst for knowledge and wealth, pilot…


Book cover of Moon Called

AK Nevermore Author Of Grimdarke

From my list on motorcycles, shifters, and mayhem, oh my!.

Who am I?

I’m a huge fan of paranormal and dark romance, and these books definitely check all my boxes. Great world-building, plots that engage, and in most cases, a heavy dollop of smut. They also explore the unexpected and take into account real-world concerns in a fashion where you can absolutely justify the decisions the main characters are making.

AK's book list on motorcycles, shifters, and mayhem, oh my!

AK Nevermore Why did AK love this book?

This book is the beginning of an amazing series. I love the way Patricia Briggs folds in real-world concerns with shape-shifting and how every shifter is just a little bit different than the next.

Another fantastic element of her writing is the way she folds in various mythologies. It’s done absolutely seamlessly with the plot and makes for some incredibly enjoyable reading.

By Patricia Briggs,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Moon Called as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The first novel in the New York Times bestselling Mercy Thompson series - the major urban fantasy hit of the decade

'I love these books!' Charlaine Harris

The best new fantasy series I've read in years' Kelley Armstrong

MERCY THOMPSON: MECHANIC, SHAPESHIFTER, FIGHTER

I didn't realize he was a werewolf at first. My nose isn't at its best when surrounded by axle grease and burnt oil . . .'

Mercedes Thompson runs a garage in the Tri-Cities. She's a mechanic, and a damn good one, who spends her spare time karate training and tinkering with a VW bus that happens…


Book cover of Monster in My Closet

Kathleen Collins Author Of Realm Walker

From my list on urban fantasy series with strong female leads.

Who am I?

I have always enjoyed reading about strong women though when I was younger these books were harder to find. Far too often the woman needed to be ‘rescued’ by a man. I wanted tough women that could kick ass and were loved by the men in their lives because of it. I found that over and over again in the urban fantasy genre. The series listed here motivated me to write my own and continue to inspire my current work. I hope you enjoy them and maybe find some inspiration of your own.

Kathleen's book list on urban fantasy series with strong female leads

Kathleen Collins Why did Kathleen love this book?

In the Monster Haven series Zoey is a normal girl whose life changes overnight when she finds her childhood closet monster baking muffins in her kitchen. That should tell you everything you need to know about this series. While it does handle some heavier topics, there is a wonderful sense of humor that runs throughout. Truly enjoyable.

By R.L. Naquin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Monster in My Closet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

I stopped believing in monsters long ago. But I knew I wasn't imagining things when I found one in my kitchen baking muffins. I'd seen him before: lurking in my closet, scaring the crap out of my five-year-old self. Turns out that was a misunderstanding, and now Maurice needs a place to stay. How could I say no?

After all, I've always been a magnet for the emotionally needy, and not just in my work as a wedding planner. Being able to sense the feelings of others can be a major pain. Don't get me wrong, I like helping people…


Book cover of Some Girls Bite

Everlyn C Thompson Author Of Grave-Reaping Hermit

From my list on urban fantasy with unapologetic, flawed heroines.

Who am I?

I was born and raised on the beautiful Canadian prairies and prefer to spend my time outdoors with my family, kayaking, skating, fishing, and hunting. I love to read and write about vampires, witches, fae, and zombies that get to find their own version of happily ever after.

Everlyn's book list on urban fantasy with unapologetic, flawed heroines

Everlyn C Thompson Why did Everlyn love this book?

Anyone looking for an addictive urban fantasy series needs to read this. Merit is a strong female lead character that rises to the challenges that come with her new undead way of life. Intense world building with lots of vamp politics. Just the right amount of mystical blended with reality to give me hope that vampires really walk among us.

By Chloe Neill,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

First in a brand new series about a Chicago graduate student's introduction into a society of vampires.

Sure, the life of a graduate student wasn't exactly glamorous, but it was Merit's. She was doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip before he was scared away by another bloodsucker and this one decided the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.

Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she?s traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park…


Book cover of Bloodsucking Fiends

David Sosnowski Author Of Vamped

From my list on lovable monsters dealing with existential dread.

Who am I?

Along with a decidedly dark and quirky sense of humor, one of the things that connects Vamped with my other published novels is the way each takes its premise and builds an intricate world around it. I generally like to start with the world as it currently is, introduce an element of the fantastic, and then explore how that one tweak changes everything. In the case of Vamped, the fantastic element was having a group of vampires turn the vast majority of humanity into bloodsuckers by spiking blood donations, turning influencers, and getting “Pope Peter the Last” to add a little something special to the sacramental wine.  

David's book list on lovable monsters dealing with existential dread

David Sosnowski Why did David love this book?

Bloodsucking Fiends begins in the mid-1990s (the present day as of its writing) and is set in AIDS-fighting, pre-tech-boom San Francisco – a time and place rendered with great affection and plenty of humor. It’s that latter quality – the humor – that I love about this book. Beginning with the beginning, we get Moore’s take on the classic tableau of a vampire rising as the sun sets. But instead of emerging from a coffin, our vamp pops out of a dumpster that’s being peed on by a homeless, benevolent lunatic known as the Emperor. If that setup just made you smile (fangs or no fangs) then Bloodsucking Fiends is for you. It is also why, when I decided to write a funny vampire novel, I turned to Mr. Moore’s novel for inspiration.  

By Christopher Moore,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Jody never asked to become a vampire. But when she wakes up under an alley Dumpster with a badly burned arm, an aching neck, superhuman strength, and a distinctly Nosferatuan thirst, she realises the decision has been made for her. Making the transition from the nine-to-five grind to an eternity of nocturnal prowlings is going to take some doing, however, and that's where C. Thomas Flood fits in. A would-be Kerouac from Incontinence, Indiana, Tommy (to his friends) is biding his time night-clerking and frozen turkey bowling in a San Francisco Safeway.

But all that changes when a beautiful, undead…


Book cover of The Silver Kiss

Emily Kinney Author Of The Island of Lote

From my list on peculiar romance.

Who am I?

I love weird situations. I have been writing since I was four years old, and have been patiently waiting for the man who appreciates my wide range of vocal inflections. Books have always been companions for me. It helped me develop empathy for others at a young age. Reading about situations that involve people who are nothing like you helps you think beyond yourself. I think that is partly why I’ve always gravitated towards books with unique plots and characters. There’s something invigorating about a story that breaks the mold and offers something new, even if it’s a little strange. The books I’ve recommended all have heavily influenced me and my writing throughout the years. 

Emily's book list on peculiar romance

Emily Kinney Why did Emily love this book?

I’m amazed that more people aren’t talking about this book. It falls in line with the vampire romance genre so effortlessly, and yet it is egregiously overlooked. I remember reading it years ago when I was a teenager and being totally entranced. There’s this beautiful lilt to the writing, and the plot is so richly complex. It deals with the subject of immortality in such an interesting way, comparing the endless life of this vampire to the swiftly expiring life of this girl’s mother. The romance itself is actually refreshing as well. There’s this soft, sweet gallantry that you don’t see a lot in modern work, in my opinion.

By Annette Curtis Klause,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Silver Kiss 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?

Zoe is wary when, in the dead of night, the beautiful yet frightening Simon comes to her house.  Simon seems to understand the pain of loneliness and death and Zoe's brooding thoughts of her dying mother.

Simon is one of the undead, a vampire, seeking revenge for the gruesome death of his mother three hundred years before.  Does Simon dare ask Zoe to help free him from this lifeless chase and its insufferable loneliness?


Book cover of Handling the Undead

T.L. Bodine Author Of River of Souls

From my list on with zombie main characters.

Who am I?

I'm a life-long horror lover and author of dark fiction. I've been reviewing films and video games for Ravenous Monster ezine for nearly a decade, and my Wattpad horror novel The Hound is currently being adapted for film. My favorite thing is the intersection of the horrifying and fantastic with the mundane, and that's what appeals to me so much about zombies: in all of their multitudinous representations, they've always held up a mirror to humanity. No monster can so easily reflect the many facets of humanity as a zombie. Because, after all, the dead were once just like us – and if we're not careful, we might end up just like them in the end.

T.L.'s book list on with zombie main characters

T.L. Bodine Why did T.L. love this book?

Lindqvist already reimagined vampires with Let the Right One In, and Handling the Undead is his answer to the zombie apocalypse. Unlike some of the other books on this list, where the zombie protagonists are sympathetic and mostly retain their humanity, the characters who come back from the dead in this book are deeply unsettling. The main focus is on the still-living family members whose lives are turned upside down by the dead coming to life. Following multiple story threads as many families throughout Stockholm struggle to cope with their newly resurrected loved ones, this book is equal parts heartfelt and utterly chilling. 

By John Ajvide Lindqvist,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'Reminiscent of Stephen King at his best. Best read by sunlight' Independent on Sunday
Something very peculiar is happening in Stockholm. There's a heatwave on and people cannot turn their lights out or switch their appliances off. Then the terrible news breaks. In the city morgue, the dead are waking up.
What do they want?
What everybody wants: to come home.


Book cover of Undead and Unwed

Jean Marie Bauhaus Author Of Restless Spirits

From my list on haunting and unconventional love stories.

Who am I?

I’ve been fascinated with ghost stories since I was a kindergartener hiding in the closet with a flashlight, swapping scares with my friends. To this day I don’t walk into a bathroom without turning the light on first, just in case Bloody Mary is lurking in there with any ideas. Add in a love of reading spurred on by early exposure to a copy of Jane Eyre and the discovery of my mom’s secret stash of gothic romance novels. I love a good romance as much as I love a good scare, and when you combine the two… well, you pretty much had me at hello.

Jean's book list on haunting and unconventional love stories

Jean Marie Bauhaus Why did Jean love this book?

While I didn’t set out to copy this novel, I have to admit that unconsciously this mashup of chick lit and horror with a vampire protagonist probably spawned my idea to write a romantic comedy/horror mashup with a protagonist who has just become a ghost. If you enjoyed Restless Spirits, this book has a similar vibe, albeit one that’s quite a bit more, ahem, spicy than you’ll typically find in my own writing. At turns hilarious, frightening, poignant, and steamy, this is probably the book that put paranormal chick-lit on the map.

By MaryJanice Davidson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

First Betsy Taylor loses her job, then she's killed in a car accident.  But what really bites is that she can't seem to stay dead.  And now her new friends have the ridiculous idea that Betsy is the prophesied vampire queen, and they want her help in overthrowing the most obnoxious power-hungry vampire in five centuries.


Book cover of Mina and the Undead

Bryony Pearce Author Of Raising Hell

From my list on for Buffy lovers.

Who am I?

Growing up in the nineties I was a Buffy fan, although that is probably understating things. I have all the Buffy novels, which I read over when waiting for the next series to come out (this was in the days before Netflix!). For me, Buffy had the exact right mix of humour, horror, and deeper complexity, dealing with issues that really impacted me, but in a way that made them accessible. I loved the characters, I loved Buffy herself, I loved her strength and humanity. When I decided to write Raising Hell, I was influenced by Buffy, but there are differences – Ivy is no chosen one, she chose herself.

Bryony's book list on for Buffy lovers

Bryony Pearce Why did Bryony love this book?

With an awesome nineties vibe that took me right back to my own teen years, Mina and the Undead is about a British teen girl battling vampires (obviously) in New Orleans. A great Gothic horror written by a fantastic new British writer, filled with gore and references to 90’s pop culture. A ton of fun!

By Amy McCaw,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Mina and the Undead as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

'A dark and thrilling tale of the paranormal. With haunted houses, family secrets and murder galore, this delicious and gruesome tale of the macabre will ignite a whole new generation of vampire fans.' Lauren James

'Brimful of nostalgia and cinematic atmosphere. A thrilling read and a clever new twist on the vampire stories you love.' Laura Wood

New Orleans Fang Fest, 1995. Mina's having a summer to die for.

17-year-old Mina, from England, arrives in New Orleans to visit her estranged sister, Libby. After growing up in the town that inspired Dracula, Mina loves nothing more than a creepy horror…


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