Hi everyone! It’s Sabrina here, and today I am recommending you books to try if you enjoyed specific other books – basically, “if you like this book, try this book”. I love seeing posts like this and watching similar Youtube videos too, so I thought I would give it a try myself and I’m fairly happy with the result! I have ten pairs of books for you today, so I hope you’ll find some in this list that interest you 🙂
I know Percy Jackson is almost everyone’s favourite demigod! The middle grade series is a fantastic one filled with humour and heart and I loved it. The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee also includes a lot of humour and heart – it revolves around Chinese folklore while centring a hardworking high school girl set on getting into Harvard. I loved the characters in this book, especially Genie, and the dilemmas she finds herself facing once a new guy shows up at her school. I think if you grew up loving Percy Jackson, you have to give Genie Lo a go!
I’m almost certain no one reading this post will have read either of these nonfiction books, but I had to include them anyway because I enjoyed them so much. Diary of a Young Naturalist is exactly what it sounds like – teenage author Dara McAnulty writes diary entries over the course of a year sharing his experiences as a naturalist and a bit about his everyday life too. World of Wonders by Aimee Nezhukumatathil is probably more appropriate for an older audience as the themes are a bit darker and I advise you check the content warnings (The StoryGraph has them here) before reading. Similarly to Diary of a Young Naturalist, World of Wonders features shorter entries that talk about both nature and the author’s life, often in an intertwined way. Both books delighted me with their beauty and I highly recommend them!
Honestly I am hopeless when it comes to history so I couldn’t tell you if Clockwork Angel and Soulless take place in similar time periods or not, but they do both take place in an alternate England of the past – one that is filled with all manner of paranormal beings. I think I’m remembering correctly when I say that one significant difference between the two series is that in The Infernal Devices, humans aren’t aware they live among the paranormal, but in The Parasol Protectorate, they are. Also, the former is YA and the latter is adult. Both have intriguing characters that aren’t always likeable and big mysteries to be solved. I strongly believe that if you enjoy one of these series you will also enjoy the other.
Ultimately, Tarnished Are The Stars may not have been a favourite of mine, but there were elements to it that I loved, some of which can also be found in Crier’s War, (which I adored), – for example, an unlikely f/f romance and a cool, specific blend of sci-fi and fantasy. I also think the characters of Nathaniel from Tarnished Are The Stars and Crier from Crier’s War have a lot in common. I believe there’s a good chance that if you like one of these books, you will like the other too.
Of all my pairings in this post, I think this has the weakest link. Still! Both are slow-paced books with a strong focus on one character’s internal journey. Both have an emphasis on art (All’s Well is theatre and The Gallery of Unfinished Girls is painting) and both include some strange (possibly magical, possibly hallucinated?), elements that bring a touch of urgency to the story. All’s Well is adult fiction and has a tone of frustration and anger, The Gallery of Unfinished Girls is YA and has more sadness and confusion – but both involve dealing with loss and change.
If you love baking competitions and enemies-to-lovers romances, you need to check out these two books! Both offer detailed descriptions of delicious baked goods and moments of profound connection between two people who thought they hated each other. A Taste For Love, the YA romance, is also a Pride and Prejudice retelling which helped it catch my eye. Another draw for the adult romance, Battle Royal, was that it involves trying to nab the cake contract for a royal wedding. While neither of these books became favourites for me, they both had some great moments and I think if you like one you will probably like the other.
Both of these books are thrillers that feature a woman with a science career as their main character (though one (The Echo Wife) is a bit on the sci-fi side while the other (Give Me Your Hand) is strictly contemporary). One thing I loved about each book was the scenes of the leads in the lab, doing their work. It’s not something I see often in the books I pick up and it also reminds me of my uni days, haha. I also feel like there are similarities to be found between the female relationships featured in these stories as well as the slow, patient way their mysteries unfold. I really enjoyed both of these!
I admit this pairing appears to be a little bit of a stretch, as one book (His Only Wife by Peace Adzo Medie) is an adult literary contemporary, while the other (We Set The Dark On Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia) is a YA dystopia with romance. However! They both feature a main female character moulded for and then shoved into a role in society – a wife, to be specific – with very little (if any) choice of her own, who then begins to live for herself despite others trying to use her for their own ends. Though the settings (real world vs fantasy world) are very different, I think some of the themes explored in these books are similar, so if you liked one, you might also like the other!
I read Defy the Dark, a YA horror anthology from 2013, last year and unfortunately it was just not for me. I thought almost all the stories were trying to fit too much into a small word count and as a result, none of the elements were executed to perfection. And it did ultimately feel very 2013. Hometown Haunts, released in 2021, gelled a bit better with me – I think the stories were more focused, and there were a couple in there that I truly loved as well. This book is also a YA horror anthology so from that alone I think if you enjoyed Defy the Dark, you would probably like Hometown Haunts as well.
I just finished reading In Deeper Waters by F.T. Lukens today and it was super fun! Lots of fast paced action and a cute romance – a great combination! Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller, on the other hand, has a more intense romance and is slower paced. Still, both feature pirates and magic and a certain something else (that is weirdly a bit spoilery for both books), so I think if you enjoyed one you would most likely enjoy the other – like I did! Small disclaimer – I feel that In Deeper Waters would be more appropriate for the younger side of YA while Daughter of the Pirate King is for older YA audiences.
What do you think?
Have you read any of these books? Do you think my comparisons/recommendations are realistic? Do you have a book comparison to share? Let me know!