100 books like Trail of Feathers

By Tahir Shah,

Here are 100 books that Trail of Feathers fans have personally recommended if you like Trail of Feathers. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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

Book cover of Walden: Life in the Woods

Lawrence Winkler Author Of Orion's Cartwheel

From my list on becoming the hero of your own myth.

Why am I passionate about this?

There is no quality of life without meaning, and there is no better meaning than the search for it. The Vision Quest has been a beacon of hope for me my entire life. It permeates all my aspirations and writing. It inspired me to hitchhike worldwide for five years and continued into my professional life. I hope you enjoy the selections.

Lawrence's book list on becoming the hero of your own myth

Lawrence Winkler Why did Lawrence love this book?

I first read this book at M.I.T., and it changed my outlook on life and its meaning. On odd weekends, I would drive out to his pond and stare at the lake to restore my own natural balance.

It is true that Thoreau was not as self-sufficient as he wished us to believe, but his lesson of mindfulness is a gift of Zen. I have emulated him my whole life and live on my own pond, Westwood Lake, where I’ve written my own chronicles of the seasons.

By Henry David Thoreau,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Henry David Thoreau is considered one of the leading figures in early American literature, and Walden is without doubt his most influential book.

Designed to appeal to the booklover, the Macmillan Collector's Library is a series of beautiful gift editions of much loved classic titles. Macmillan Collector's Library are books to love and treasure.

It recounts the author's experiences living in a small house in the woods around Walden Pond near Concord in Massachusetts. Thoreau constructed the house himself, with the help of a few friends, to see if he could live 'deliberately' - independently and apart from society. The…


Book cover of Robinson Crusoe

Lawrence Winkler Author Of Orion's Cartwheel

From my list on becoming the hero of your own myth.

Why am I passionate about this?

There is no quality of life without meaning, and there is no better meaning than the search for it. The Vision Quest has been a beacon of hope for me my entire life. It permeates all my aspirations and writing. It inspired me to hitchhike worldwide for five years and continued into my professional life. I hope you enjoy the selections.

Lawrence's book list on becoming the hero of your own myth

Lawrence Winkler Why did Lawrence love this book?

This book is the first story of the Southern Sea and the first true English novel. Full of sailing ships, stormy seas, symbolism, exotic desert islands, muskets, wild boars, and cannibals, it set the standard for every adventure story that followed. 

I love the narrative of a lone castaway—facing the ultimate tests of nature to triumph over hardship. Robinsonade, a new renegade literary genre, emerged in which the hero is suddenly isolated from the comforts of civilization, marooned on a secluded island, tropical, uninhabited, and uncharted. He must improvise to become self-sufficient from limited resources.

Like my own hero quest, solitary conflict was required for character development, and the solitude led back to society and survival, or the ordeal would have no meaning. 

By Daniel Defoe,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Robinson Crusoe as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

'Robinson Crusoe has a universal appeal, a story that goes right to the core of existence' Simon Armitage

Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, regarded by many to be first novel in English, is also the original tale of a castaway struggling to survive on a remote desert island.

The sole survivor of a shipwreck, Robinson Crusoe is washed up on a desert island. In his journal he chronicles his daily battle to stay alive, as he conquers isolation, fashions shelter and clothes, enlists the help of a native islander who he names 'Friday', and fights off cannibals and mutineers. Written in…


Book cover of The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches

Lawrence Winkler Author Of Orion's Cartwheel

From my list on becoming the hero of your own myth.

Why am I passionate about this?

There is no quality of life without meaning, and there is no better meaning than the search for it. The Vision Quest has been a beacon of hope for me my entire life. It permeates all my aspirations and writing. It inspired me to hitchhike worldwide for five years and continued into my professional life. I hope you enjoy the selections.

Lawrence's book list on becoming the hero of your own myth

Lawrence Winkler Why did Lawrence love this book?

I’ve always been a sucker for haiku. No one did it better than Matsuo Bashō, and none of his anthologies were better written than this book. Ten years ago, I went to Japan to experience his poem-pillow places.

The result was my own travelogue, Samurai Road, a vision quest perhaps not quite as spiritual or erudite as that of the master but no less inspired. Days and months are travelers of eternity. So are the years that pass by. 

By Matsuo Basho, Nobuyuki Yuasa (translator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'It was with awe
That I beheld
Fresh leaves, green leaves,
Bright in the sun'

When the Japanese haiku master Basho composed The Narrow Road to the Deep North, he was an ardent student of Zen Buddhism, setting off on a series of travels designed to strip away the trappings of the material world and bring spiritual enlightenment. He writes of the seasons changing, the smell of the rain, the brightness of the moon and the beauty of the waterfall, through which he sensed the mysteries of the universe. These writings not only chronicle Basho's travels, but they also capture…


Book cover of Moon, Sun, and Witches: Gender Ideologies and Class in Inca and Colonial Peru

Susan Kellogg Author Of Weaving the Past: A History of Latin America's Indigenous Women from the Prehispanic Period to the Present

From my list on the history of Native women in Latin America.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up in a sheltered environment on Long Island, NY, I had little sense of a larger world, except for seeing images of the Vietnam War. Going to college in the early 70s and becoming an anthropology major, the world began to open up, yet I hadn't experienced life outside the U.S. until my mid-20s as a graduate student living in Mexico to do dissertation research. That experience and travels to Guatemala, Peru, Cuba, and Costa Rica helped me to see how diverse Latin America is, and how real poverty and suffering are as well. Coming into my own as a historian, teacher, and writer, my fascination with women’s voices, experiences, and activism only grew.

Susan's book list on the history of Native women in Latin America

Susan Kellogg Why did Susan love this book?

This book is a classic of Latin American women’s history, telling the story of how Andean women’s relative gender equity (what the author calls “gender parallelism,” a concept that applies to gender structures in many Latin American societies, especially the Aztecs—known as Nahuas—about whom I’ve also written) became transformed first by the Inca, then by the Spanish.

Written with feeling about forms of both complementarity and exploitation, Silverblatt shows women of the past, non-elite and noble, to have been productive, creative, and responsive to the social and economic conditions around them.

By Irene Marsha Silverblatt,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

When the Spanish arrived in Peru in 1532, men of the Inca Umpire worshipped the Sun as Father and their dead kings as ancestor heroes, while women venerated the Moon and her daughters, the Inca queens, as founders of female dynasties. In the pre-Inca period such notions of parallel descent were expressions of complementarity between men and women. Examining the interplay between gender ideologies and political hierarchy. Irene Silverblatt shows how Inca rulers used their Sun and Moon traditions as methods of controlling women and the Andean peoples the Incas conquered. She then explores the process by which the Spaniards…


Book cover of Antisuyo: The Search for the Lost Cities of the Amazon

Vincent R. Lee Author Of Forgotten Vilcabamba: Final Stronghold of the Incas

From my list on discovery of the true Lost City of the Incas.

Why am I passionate about this?

Vincent Lee is a professional architect and former Alpine climbing guide and instructor, US Marine Corps officer, Andean explorer, and author. Searching in the high Andes of Peru and the rain forests of the Upper Amazon for the remains of the long-lost final redoubt of the once-powerful Inca Empire not only appealed to his life-long interest in all of these disparate fields, but it called upon his many years of experience in each: wilderness trekking, mountain warfare, mapping and drawing the remains of the more than 500 ancient structures discovered.

Vincent's book list on discovery of the true Lost City of the Incas

Vincent R. Lee Why did Vincent love this book?

Following up on Hiram Bingham's 1911 visit to an overgrown ruin in the forest at a place called Espíritu Pampa (The Plain of Ghosts) and dismissed by Bingham as unimportant, Savoy set out in 1964-5 to prove him wrong. Bingham had identified Machu Picchu as the lost Inca capital, Vilcabamba, but Savoy was sure there was more to be found at the Plain of Ghosts than Bingham knew. He was right, and in several adventurous expeditions found a large Inca city there that he thought better met the Spanish accounts of Vilcabamba.

By Gene Savoy,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This inspiring and historic book: Antisuyo by Gene Savoy, is about the search for the lost cities of the Amazon. Antisuyo is the full account of the authors' daring expedition beyond one of the few remaining uncharted frontiers, and of his glorious discovery of the fabled cities of Viacabamba and Muyok Viejo--two of the most important archaeololgical sites found in recent years. He takes the reader through the forbidding mysteries of the wild territory in search for of clues to puzzles that have remained unsolved since the days of Pizarro: Aztahualpa: the legendary Manco Capac; the famed El Dorado, City…


Book cover of At the Mountains' Altar: Anthropology of Religion in an Andean Community

Catherine J. Allen Author Of The Hold Life Has: Coca and Cultural Identity in an Andean Community

From my list on Andean life, landscape, and personhood.

Why am I passionate about this?

My connection with the Andean highlands of southern Peru stretches back to 1975 when I spent about a year in a small community of Quechua-speaking potato farmers and llama herders. I have returned there many times over the years, most recently in 2019. Its people, their way of life, and vision of the world are dear to my heart and are the subject of The Hold Life Has as well as a play, creative nonfiction, and, more recently, poetry. I love the way anthropology forces me to think outside the box and experience the world with different eyes, something I aim to convey in my work.

Catherine's book list on Andean life, landscape, and personhood

Catherine J. Allen Why did Catherine love this book?

This is a wonderful, sophisticated yet accessible book that provides readers with a vivid community study that is also a wide-ranging introduction to the anthropology of religion. The title refers to a small adobe house in the community of Rapaz that serves as a temple for religious practices directed to sacred mountains. Each chapter explores aspects of the temple and related ritual practices from a different theoretical vantage point, in order to “put before students’ eyes one case, an Andean temple, and treat it as an example for pondering the possibly pan-human matter of sacred ritual” (p.9). It’s beautifully written, personal and thought-provoking.

By Frank Salomon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked At the Mountains' Altar as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In high-Andean Peru, Rapaz village maintains a temple to mountain beings who command water and weather. By examining the ritual practices and belief systems of an Andean community, this book provides students with rich understandings of unfamiliar religious experiences and delivers theories of religion from the realm of abstraction. From core field encounters, each chapter guides readers outward in a different theoretical direction, successively exploring the main paths in the anthropology of religion.

As well as addressing classical approaches in the anthropology of religion to rural modernity, Salomon engages with newer currents such as cognitive-evolution models, power-oriented critiques, the ontological…


Book cover of The Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the Origins of Knowledge

Dawn Baumann Brunke Author Of Awakening the Ancient Power of Snake: Transformation, Healing, and Enlightenment

From my list on the history, mystery, and healing power of snakes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an animal communicator and author of many books about our deeper connections with the animal world. A powerful dream featuring an archetypal Snake ignited my curiosity about snakes and inspired me to learn more. I immersed myself into the history, biology, and incredible diversity of snakes as well as their role in art, myth, medicine, and dreams. I also lived with two rescue snakes: a shy ball python named Carl and lively corn snake named Chloe. What I found was not only fascinating but life-changing. This book celebrates the mystery of Snake and the undeniable wisdom and healing that it offers our world.  

Dawn's book list on the history, mystery, and healing power of snakes

Dawn Baumann Brunke Why did Dawn love this book?

Tracing Snake back to ancient times in its role as creator god, anthropologist Jeremy Narby follows both a scientific and shamanic approach to understanding our connection with Snake in its role as healer and mentor.

Why do life-creating, knowledge-imparting snakes appear in the visions, myths, and dreams of countless humans, Narby asks. Could this mythical serpent that created life be another way of perceiving the DNA molecule, which holds the organizing principle inherent in all life?

Highly recommended for a fascinating journey into the nature of reality and ourselves!  

By Jeremy Narby,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This adventure in science and imagination, which the Medical Tribune said might herald "a Copernican revolution for the life sciences," leads the reader through unexplored jungles and uncharted aspects of mind to the heart of knowledge.In a first-person narrative of scientific discovery that opens new perspectives on biology, anthropology, and the limits of rationalism, The Cosmic Serpent reveals how startlingly different the world around us appears when we open our minds to it.


Book cover of The Fabric of Resistance: Textile Workshops and the Rise of Rebellious Landscapes in Colonial Peru

Leo J. Garofalo Author Of Afro-Latino Voices: Translations of Early Modern Ibero-Atlantic Narratives

From my list on Afro-Latin American and Afro-Andean history.

Why am I passionate about this?

History tells us who we are and what we can become. History in the Andes tells us that people of the African Diaspora have been a part of building that part of the world into what it is today for over 500 years. I have been fascinated by learning this history and inspired by leaders, writers, artists, and fellow historians who consider themselves Afro-Andean and are building the future. For 25 years now, I have been scouring historical archives in Peru, Spain, and the US to find more sources to help us recognize and understand that history as we use it to build a better, more just present and future. 

Leo's book list on Afro-Latin American and Afro-Andean history

Leo J. Garofalo Why did Leo love this book?

For thousands of years, right down to the present, textiles and weaving in the Andes has been some of the most exquisite and sophisticated in the world. It has been linked to the amazing cultural creativity of people in the Andes and the rise and fall of successive empires because controlling textile production is controlling power and wealth.

This book shows us something entirely new: how the weavers who made these amazing textiles experienced and often resisted that power and the exploitation of their labor. Even though this book is not explicitly about Afro-Andean people, they were an integral part of the Andean labor force, and they figure in histories of resistance and rebellion in the Andes.

By Di Hu,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Fabric of Resistance: Textile Workshops and the Rise of Rebellious Landscapes in Colonial Peru documents the impact of Spanish colonial institutions of labor on identity and social cohesion in Peru. Through archaeological and historical lines of evidence, Di Hu examines the long-term social conditions that enabled the large-scale rebellions in the late Spanish colonial period in Peru. Hu argues that ordinary people from different backgrounds pushed back against the top-down identity categories imposed by the Spanish colonial government and in the process created a cosmopolitan social landscape that later facilitated broader rebellion.

Hu's case study is Pomacocha, the site…


Book cover of Zonia's Rain Forest

Laura Resau Author Of Stand as Tall as the Trees: How an Amazonian Community Protected the Rain Forest

From my list on children’s pictures set in South America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I feel passionate about spreading the word about all the fantastic children’s literature set in South America. As an author and a multilingual mom whose son enjoys learning about his Latin American heritage, I’ve always brought home stacks of picture books—in Spanish and English—that celebrate Latin American cultures and settings. I’ve loved traveling to the Andes mountains and the Amazon rain forest as part of my children’s book collaborations with Indigenous women in those regions. Most of all, I love transporting young readers to these inspiring places through story.

Laura's book list on children’s pictures set in South America

Laura Resau Why did Laura love this book?

Several years ago, I took a beautiful and eye-opening trip to an Indigenous-run ecolodge in the Amazon Rain Forest.

Tragically, the following year, the community was displaced after an oil company invaded and destroyed their forest. So, I connected strongly to this book, which tells the story of Zonia, an Indigenous Asháninka girl living in the Peruvian Amazon, who forms playful and sacred bonds with her plant and animal friends.

But when she comes across felled trees, she must respond to the forest’s call for help. The illustrations are sweet and warm, inviting readers to take part in Zonia’s experiences. And when we witness the stark devastation, we feel her despair and her call to action.

I loved this book that encourages us all to support Indigenous and environmental rights.

By Juana Martinez-Neal,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Zonia's Rain Forest as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

A heartfelt, visually stunning picture book from Caldecott Honor and Robert F. Sibert Medal winner Juana Martinez-Neal illuminates a young girl’s day of play and adventure in the lush rain forest of Peru.

Zonia’s home is the Amazon rain forest, where it is always green and full of life. Every morning, the rain forest calls to Zonia, and every morning, she answers. She visits the sloth family, greets the giant anteater, and runs with the speedy jaguar. But one morning, the rain forest calls to her in a troubled voice. How will Zonia answer?
Acclaimed author-illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal explores the…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the Inca Empire, Peru, and the Amazon River?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about the Inca Empire, Peru, and the Amazon River.

The Inca Empire 18 books
Peru 48 books
The Amazon River 14 books