Hello everyone! It’s that time of the week again! Top Ten Tuesday is a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Basically, you get a different bookish topic every Tuesday, and you comprise a list of ten (or however many you’re able to list) relating to said topic.
Today’s topic is ‘Ten Books to Read if You Like This Popular Book/Series/Author.’ You basically choose a popular book/series/author you’ve read, and you recommend books based on the one you’ve chosen. I decided to choose the Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater for this. This series has been getting very, very popular recently- and for a good reason. And because it’s so unique, I thought fans of the series would like to know other books that are similar in feel.
If you guys didn’t know, the Raven Cycle follows the story of five friends: Blue, Gansey, Adam, Ronan and Noah. Blue has been told her entire life that if she kisses her one true love, he’s going to die. One night while standing with her clairvoyant mother watch the soon-to-be-dead pass by, Blue sees her first spirit. The spirit of Gansey. The only reason a non-seer would see a spirit is if the spirit was their true love, or if they had killed the spirit. Blue soon discovers that Gansey goes to Aglionby- the elite school in her town. Immediately, she hates him for his arrogant air, but is drawn to him for reasons unexplainable. But when she gets to know Gansey and his group of Raven Boys, she gets to know them a little better.
Edit (07/15/16): I designed some phone wallpapers for the series! If you’re interested, you can check them out over here.
1. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Here’s the thing. If you know anything about me as a reader, you know that this book is my favorite book of all-time. It’s eerie, and creepy, and explores things like evil. Every character in this book is an anti-hero of sorts. The writing is to die for, and the characters are beyond realistic. The story is delicious, and everything is fantastic. I had never read anything like it before. So after turning the last page, I set out on a quest: to find something else like this book. I looked for over a year, and nothing came close to this. The books in most ‘similar to the Secret History‘ list were nothing like it. Until I stumbled across the Raven Boys.
While reading the Raven Boys, I was strongly reminded of the Secret History. The atmosphere was similar- the relationships between the friends were similar. Gansey reminded me so much of Henry, while Adam reminded me of Richard. Noah was just like Francis, and Ronan was a better version of Charles. I devoured the Raven Boys because I felt like I was reading TSH all over again, and I loved that feeling. If you’re looking for something similar to the Raven Cycle, guys, read TSH. I thought I was the only one who felt the similarities, but Google it, and you’ll see I’m far from being the only one.
2. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
Although not supernatural or fantastical in nature whatsoever, this book has that eerie feel. Set in a college surrounding, focusing on revenge, friendship and betrayal, it’s an interesting read about what can go wrong when friends begin to compete. Think of it like this: what if Adam began to grow bitter towards Gansey? What would happen then? This book might tell you the answer.
3. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Although the story or the setting of this book is NOTHING like the Raven Cycle, the writing is eerily similar. Stiefvater writes very whimsically, with attention to interesting minor details and distinct characters. Neil Gaiman is the same. I haven’t read anything else by him- maybe one of his other books resembles the Raven Cycle more, so this is more of an author recommendation than a book recommendation.
4. Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
This is a graphic novel that follows five short stories. It’s horrifying, and I mean that in the best way possible. Books don’t scare me. At all. But this graphic novel was creepy- the stories were all chilling, and the artwork was magnificent and the writing was phenomenal. I feel that if you appreciate the atmosphere set up in the Raven Cycle, you’d like the atmosphere set in this too.
5. The Diviners by Libba Bray
The Diviners has a similar feel to the Raven Cycle. Some of the focus on the occult is similar. Even though Stiefvater has some whimsy to her writing, Libba Bray is more to-the-point, but the skill is there in both either way. The main character reminds me of Blue since they’re both feisty and bad-ass.
6. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
The writing. Laini Taylor has the same winding, quirky style as Maggie Stiefvater. I know a ton of people compare Laini Taylor’s writing to Tahereh Mafi’s, but I have to say- she’s more like Stiefvater than anyone else. They both have this tremendous control over their imagery; they both write vividly but with restraint, and I don’t think Mafi has that restraint yet.
7. Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
Love the characterization in the Raven Cycle? You’d love the characterization in this series too. I do think this series is miles better than the Mortal Instruments, but I’d still suggest reading Clare’s books in order of publication, since that adds another layer to the series.
8. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Very similar writing, with similar characterization, with some similar themes that readers of the Raven Cycle can appreciate.