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It’s Alive! – Read a horror story featuring monsters


The Twisted Ones by T. Kingfisher

In this creepy found-footage style novel, a young woman and her dog travel to North Carolina to clean out her deceased grandmother’s home. She quickly stumbles upon unsettling secrets and a strange colony of beings in the woods.

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The Ritual by Adam Nevill
Three university buddies start to quarrel on their hike in the Scandinavian wilderness near the Arctic Circle. In this haunting creature feature, a member of the party, Luke, takes the group on a short cut that leads them to an ancient pagan sacrificial site and a beast that is ready to hunt.

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A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill
This interesting coming-of-age cosmic horror story features a boy named Noah who has been shielded by his mother and sister from his father’s compulsive construction of a haunted house. He considers the ultimate sacrifice when he chooses to recognize a monster that his family has been trying to ignore.

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Devolution by Max Brooks

A modern retelling of the Bigfoot legend, this gruesome and action-packed novel takes place in a high-tech Pacific Northwest community and is told through a woman’s journal entries as the community becomes cut off from the rest of the world after a volcanic eruption.

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The Twilight Pariah by Jeffrey Ford
Three college students discover a vial of red liquid and the skeleton of a horned child in a mansion’s outhouse. With likable characters and descriptive writing, this novel details how these students’ lives are wrecked by a monster that will stop at nothing to retrieve its child.

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Mongrels by Stephen Graham Jones
In this “werewolf among us” story with a twist, a marginalized family exists on the outside of a society that doesn’t care about them. They watch as a young boy traverses the night to see if he will display the same features that have shaped their unusual lives.

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A People’s History of the Vampire Uprising by Raymond A. Villareal

A pandemic virus has swept across the world in this intricately plotted, suspenseful novel, which transformed victims into beautiful, vampire-like beings. They begin to rise in all sectors of society, before one runs for political office.

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The Burning World by Isaac Marion

In this reflective zombie apocalypse novel, Zombie R is learning new survival skills and contemplating a relationship with the woman who restarted his heart. Meanwhile, people are coming to fix his undead world.

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The Pandora Room by Christopher Golden

When what appears to be Pandora’s box is found in an ancient city, the US Department of Defense sends Dr. Ben Walker to examine it. The neighboring countries fighting over its ownership is only one problem Dr. Walker faces, because jihadi forces are hot on his trail. This novel contains well-developed characters and plenty of suspense!

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Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant

Victoria Stewart and her crew are setting sail for the Mariana trench to look for the wreckage of the Atargatis. This ship had Victoria’s sister on it when it was lost at sea filming a mockumentary about sea creatures of the deep. This novel is for those who are looking for something gruesome and fast-paced.

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Feast your ears – listen to an audiobook


In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

This audiobook presents Capote’s unconventional account of the gruesome 1959 murders of a farm family in Holcomb, Kansas, and the hunt for the killers. This account is well-researched, accessible, and sobering and generates both suspense and empathy.

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Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson

Narrated by Neil deGrasse Tyson, this audiobook breaks down everything you need to know about the cosmos. Recognizing that most have little time to contemplate this topic, Tyson makes this book succinct and clear with interesting chapters that are easily consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.

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In the Woods by Tana French

Twenty years after a traumatic experience in which two of his companions go missing in the woods outside of his Dublin suburb, Rob Ryan is now a detective on the murder squad and keeps his past a secret. When a young girl is found murdered in the same wood, Ryan must unearth his memories of the past to help solve the case. With flawed and complex characters and a compelling style, this police procedural is sure to be a great listen!

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World War Z by Max Brooks

The Zombie War came close to eradicating humanity. Now that the war is over, Max Brooks, wanting to capture the stories of war, interviews survivors and details how the uprising started. This fast-paced, multiple-perspective, found-footage style novel is narrated by the author and a star-studded cast including Alan Alda, Mark Hamill, Martin Scorsese, and many others!

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Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Beautiful Amy Dunne seems to have the perfect marriage, until she disappears from her Missouri home. Her husband Nick claims innocence, and while he might not be to blame it doesn’t seem like he’s telling the truth. With twisted characters and an intricately plotted story line, this audiobook offers an unsettling view into a souring marriage.

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The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
30-year-old Stella is a math whiz with Asperger’s Syndrome, and wants her love life to be as fulfilling as her career. To help, she does the unconventional and hires an escort to teach her about dating and everything that comes with it. Will sparks fly in this fake relationship? This contemporary romance is steamy, with well-developed characters and an engaging style.

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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Scout Finch likes to spend her summers swimming, catching bugs, and playing in her treehouse with her brother Jem. But one summer those days end, when a local black man is accused of raping a white woman. Scout will join her father, the town lawyer, in battling ignorance and prejudice. This classic coming-of-age story is atmospheric and lyrical.

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Miles: The Autobiography by Miles Davis

In this candid and leisurely paced autobiography, Davis reflects on the “cool” era of music and offers views on fellow musicians, promoters, producers, critics, and his personal life.

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Natalie Tan’s Book of Luck and Fortune by Roselle Lim
In this engaging and atmospheric novel, Natalie Tan has just inherited her grandmother’s restaurant in a run-down San Francisco neighborhood. Her seer advises her to cook three recipes out of her grandmother’s cookbook to save the struggling community.

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The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

A Vermont graduate student finds a book which has a story from his life, which leads him to follow clues to a magical underground library that is about to be destroyed. This lyrical piece of fantasy fiction has a lot to offer, from its unconventional storyline to its well-characterized full cast.

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Big Brother – Read a dystopia


The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood


A young woman struggles with day-to-day life in the Republic of Gilead, an authoritarian government that controls every aspect of a woman’s reproductive life and forces women into rigid, predetermined roles. 

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1984 by George Orwell

In a futuristic ‘Oceania,’ a young propaganda writer struggles to keep his personal thoughts in a journal, an act punishable by death by Big Brother, an overbearing government that watches and controls every aspect of individuals’ actions and speech.

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Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

In a futuristic England, children are bred and raised in labs to become predetermined types of workers, and personal feelings and relationships are prohibited.

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Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

In a chaotic world, Wade Watts finds respite in a competitive immersive online game where easter eggs hidden by a rich old man provide a means of escape, among the bleakness.

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Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

Intrigue in a futuristic hacker world. When a new drug leaves people in a catatonic state by wiping their minds, Hiro works to uncover the conspiracy, save his friends, AND humanity. 

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Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

A classic tale of a society that seeks to end suffering by getting rid of confusion caused by complicated thoughts, like those found in books.

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A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

In a futuristic England, the State deals with thuggery in a novel way, by physically conditioning perpetrators to abhor violence.

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Animal Farm by George Orwell

A group of sentient animals attempt to create a better society through social uprising. 

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The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

A sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, the story catches up with Offred and her struggle against Gilead.

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The Hive by Barry Lyga & Morgan Baden

Throwing a tantrum on social media has never been this dangerous.

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Excelsior! – Read a graphic novel


Chew by John Layman and Rob Guillory

Tony Chu is a detective with the Special Crimes Division of the FDA. Tony is also a cibopath who can psychically pick up information from what he eats—by necessity this may be a corpse, but it’s never chicken.

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East of West by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta

This alternate history poses a no-longer-United States, in which the Civil War hasn’t ended and instead has split into seven different nations. A compelling revenge story featuring the apocalyptic horseman Death and his half-human son.

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Fables by Bill Willingham and Lan Medina

If you like the TV show Once Upon a Time, try this series in which fairy tale and folklore characters are forced by mysterious circumstances into current-day New York City and must adapt to their new surroundings.

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Head Lopper by Andrew MacLean

Norgal is a Viking warrior-for-hire and is known for good reason as “Head Lopper.” His companion on these expressively-illustrated quests is the severed—but still vocal—head of Agatha, the Blue Witch.

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Marvels by Kurt Busiek and Alex Ross

This mini-series provides a broad overview of the entire historical span of the Marvel comic universe and its characters, but told from the point of view of regular, everyday people who witness their exploits.

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Monstress by Majorie Liu and Sana Takeda

Steampunk. Manga. Monsters. Magic. All come together in the story of a brutally violent world and a young woman who struggles to rise above it.

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The Sandman by Neil Gaiman

Gaiman uses mythology, folklore, and fairy tales to tell a tale of fantasy and horror in which the entity known as The Sandman rebuilds his kingdom after a 70-year absence.

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Superman: Red Son by Mark Millar

What if baby Kal-El had landed behind the Iron Curtain in the Soviet Union instead of Smallville, Kansas? Explore how different Superman—and Batman and Lex Luthor—would be in this alternate Cold War universe.

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The Umbrella Academy by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba

Seven children with extraordinary powers are adopted by a millionaire inventor to form The Umbrella Academy, which he intends to save the world, again and again.

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Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan

A worldwide plague kills every male mammal except Yorick Brown and his pet monkey Ampersand, who must look for hope and love in a drastically different world.

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“Braaaaaains” Read a horror book with zombies


Cell by Stephen King

The King of Horror takes a stab at the zombie genre with the premise that mobile phones have been mysteriously used to turn people into zombie-like homicidal maniacs.

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Feed by Mira Grant

Cancer and the common cold had both been eradicated, and no one was prepared for an infection that inflicted an unstoppable bloodthirsty hunger. What conspiracy lies behind The Rising?

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The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

Told from the perspective of Melanie, an exceptional child, who finds in the midst of a zombie apocalypse that she has even more gifts than expected.

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Grave Secrets by Alice James

A young estate agent in the heretofore quiet county of Staffordshire is faced with a murder mystery, complicated further by the appearance of zombies and vampires. And her powers as a necromancer.

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Handling the Undead by John Ajvide Lindqvist

The author of Let the Right One In sets aside vampires for zombies to tell a story of grief and loss, as loved ones come back to life, rise from their graves, and return home.

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Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton

When you’re a domesticated—but foul-mouthed—crow and your owner has succumbed to a zombie plague, what are you to do? You head out to save humanity, armed only with the knowledge gained from a lifetime of watching TV!

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My Life as a White Trash Zombie by Diana Rowland

Angel Crawford lives with her deadbeat dad in the swamps of southern Louisiana, a high school dropout with addiction and arrest problems. If that weren’t enough, she wakes up from an overdose to find herself a zombie.

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The Reapers are the Angels by Alden Bell

Called “Flannery O’Connor with zombies” and “The Road with zombies,” this story of a young girl on a journey looking for redemption is a fresh take on the zombie novel.

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World War Moo: An Apocalypse Cow Novel by Michael Logan

Zombie herds to zombie hordes as with the spread of mad cow disease, a zombie plague must be contained to Great Britain. How will the world react in this comic novel?

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World War Z  An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks

In a classic example of “the book is so much better (and different) than the movie,” Brooks records the testimony of those who saw the undead face-to-face during a pandemic that nearly wiped out humanity.

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“Howdy, Partner” – Read a book about the wild west


Billy the Kid & Jesse James: Outlaws of the Legendary West by Bill Markley

A side-by-side evaluation to decide who has the dubious distinction of being the biggest, baddest outlaw of the Wild West.

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Black Hat Jack: The True Life Adventures of Deadwood Dick, As Told by His Ownself by Joe R. Lansdale
Call him “Jack,” call him “Dick,” or call him by his given name, Nat Love, the African American cowboy who rubbed shoulders with likes of Bat Masterson, Pat Garrett, and Billy the Kid.

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Butch Cassidy: The True Story of an American Outlaw by Charles Leerhsen

A look behind the legend of the life and death of Butch Cassidy to find facts even more fascinating than the myth.

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The Great Cowboy Strike: Bullets, Ballots & Class Conflicts in the American West by Mark Lause

The little-known story of the interrelated phenomena of labor unrest among cowboys, the violence of the “range wars,” and third-party political movements.

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The Greatest Mountain Men Stories Ever Told edited by Lamar Underwood

Though outlaws and cowboys get the most attention, let’s hear it for the other fixtures of the Western frontier: the mountain men!

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The Real Dirt of America’s Frontier Outlaws by Jim Motavalli

This history of Wild West outlaws delivers the true stories of some of the most mythologized figures and introduces a number of lesser-known, but no less dangerous, individuals.

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Ride the Devil’s Herd: Wyatt Earp’s Epic Battle Against the West’s Biggest Outlaw Gang by John Boessenecker

Thanks to the movies, we know much about Wyatt Earp and the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. But here’s your chance to learn about his two-year war with the Cowboys, the biggest outlaw gang in the West.

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The Taming of the West: Age of the Gunfighter by Joseph G. Rosa

Gunfighters, whether outlaws or peace officers, not surprisingly often died an early death. This tale focuses both on the fighters and their weapons of choice.

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They Call Me Doc: The Story Behind the Legend of John Henry Holliday by D.J. Herda

A dentist and gambler, a man of education and refinement, Doc Holliday headed west looking for relief from his tuberculosis and found adventure and violence there.

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Wicked Women: Notorious, Mischievous, and Wayward Ladies from the Old West by Chris Enss

Women behaving badly: gamblers, thieves, sex workers, and murderers are all on display in this action-packed collection of true stories.

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Band of Brothers – Read a book of military history


Veterans’ Reflections: History Preserved by William R. Graser

Stories of the sacrifice and valor of American veterans in conflicts from World War II to the War in Afghanistan.

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Navy SEALs: Their Untold Story by Dick Couch and William Doyle

A history of the select and celebrated fighting force, the U.S. Navy SEALs, featuring interviews with over 100 former special operators.

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The Good Soldiers by David Finkel

A detailed report of the Army’s 2nd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment during the surge in the War in Iraq.

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We Were Soldiers Once… And Young: Ia Drang, the Battle That Changed the War in Vietnam by Harold G. Moore and Joseph Galloway

A battalion finds itself outnumbered and surrounded by the enemy in Ia Drang Valley in a tale of perseverance and sacrifice.

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Ghost Flames: Life and Death in a Hidden War, Korea 1950-1953 by Charles J. Hanley

Twenty different accounts of varied participants—both soldiers and civilians—of the “Forgotten War.”

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Normandy ’44: D-Day and the Epic 77-day Battle for France, A New History by James Holland

A new perspective on the meticulously planned and bitterly fought invasion of Normandy, based on archival material and eye-witness testimonies.

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Flyboys: A True Story of Courage by James Bradley

Of the nine American pilots shot down during a particular bombing mission in the Pacific theater of World War II, one was rescued and later became President of the U.S.; the fate of the others was a mystery—until now.

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The Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman

A step-by-step recounting of the first month of World War I, the “war to end all wars.”

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The Second Colorado Cavalry: A Civil War Regiment on the Great Plains by Christopher M. Rein

An in-depth history of the volunteer regiment that fought back invasions of New Mexico and Indian Territory before keeping the peace in the Burned District and on the Santa Fe Trail.

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1776 by David McCullough

An engagingly told story of the first months of fighting after the Declaration of Independence, from Washington’s retreat from New York City to his surprise post-Christmas attack after crossing the Delaware.

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I Feel Fine – Read a post-apocalyptic book


Ashfall by Mike Mullin

Ever wondered what might happen if the Yellowstone super volcano erupted?

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The Stand by Stephen King

A mysterious plague wipes out most of humanity, leaving two ‘tribes’ to fight it out for the ultimate salvation of humanity.  

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The Road by Cormack McCarthy

A father and son attempt to survive in a post-cataclysmic world by traveling south to warmer climates.

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World War Z by Max Brooks

Interviews with and oral histories of survivors from the recent Zombie War.

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The Last by Hannah Jameson

In an apparent homage to the true story of Elisa Lam, an exploration of a body found in a Swiss hotel water tank, set amidst a raging nuclear apocalypse.

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One Second After by William R. Forstchen

Life in a typical American town unravels after terrorists release an EMP burst, in what becomes a one-second apocalypse.

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Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
A survivor of a bioengineering pandemic wanders the earth in search of other humans, living mostly among failed genetic experiments.

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Bird Box by Josh Malerman

A terrifying malady is spreading through visual contact with the infected world. To survive, a woman and her children must find their way to safety while blindfolded.

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I Am Legend by Richard Matheson

A lone survivor of a strange pandemic struggles to find the origins of the bacterium and develop an antidote before he is overwhelmed.

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Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

At the end of the world, a tribe of wandering actors perform, bringing respite to a population decimated by a pandemic.

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Western Women – Read a western featuring a woman


Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

In this suspenseful historical fiction, the Rose Riders are after a journal that shows the whereabouts of a secret gold mine. They kill Kate Thompson’s father to get it, so the eighteen-year-old disguises herself as a boy and explores the gritty plains for answers and justice.

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Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee

This high-drama western follows Sammy and Annamae, a Chinese American girl and an African American slave girl. The year is 1845, and they make the decision to disguise themselves as boys to take the Oregon Trail from Missouri to California.

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Cattle Kate: A Novel by Jana Bommersbach

Her name is Ellen Watson and she was lynched, along with her husband, in the Wyoming Territory in 1889; the crime was cattle rustling. Bommersbach takes this piece of history and weaves a fictional mystery that strives to tell the whole story.

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The Personal History of Rachel DuPree by Ann Weisgarber

Agreeing to a marriage of convenience in order to share a parcel of land granted by Homestead Act, an African American man and a hired woman stake claim on land and begin a life in the South Dakotan Badlands. In this novel you’ll find domestic fiction combined with a fast-paced, character driven story.

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Sawbones by Melissa Lenhardt

After being falsely accused of murder, Dr. Catherine Bennet is due to hang. She quickly disappears into the Colorado territory with her doctor’s bag and a new name, but a female doctor with a bounty on her head can only hide so long. This gritty and atmospheric novel has strong female characters and an intricately plotted storyline.

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Silver on the Road by Laura Ann Gilman

In this historical fantasy, Izzy takes a job in the wild American West serving a powerful being who makes deals with people and gives them what they deserve. Gilman takes us on a creepy and atmospheric journey after Izzy receives training in the manipulations of human desire and travels throughout the territory causing magical chaos.

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The Outlander by Gil Adamson

Mary Boulton has just killed her husband and is fleeing for the mountains with visions of her cold -blooded brothers-in-law chasing her. In this fast-paced, compelling novel, Mary is forced further into the wilds of the west trying to escape her tormentors and her imagination.

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True Grit by Charles Portis

This descriptive, vengeance-is-mine novel follows fourteen-year-old Mattie Ross. She’s got her papa’s pistol tied to her saddle horn and is ready to avenge her father’s death.

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These is My Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 Arizona Territories A Novel by Nancy E. Turner

Based on the author’s ancestress who was a child of westward expansion, this richly detailed diary novel records her dreams, hopes, adventures, joys, and sorrows.

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River with No Bridge by Karen Wills

In this dramatic and atmospheric western, Nora Flanagan, daughter of Irish immigrants, moves west to marry a miner. Her husband dies in a mine explosion, which sets a series of actions in motion including an affair with a gambler that leaves her alone and pregnant and her friend Jim Li coming to her rescue in more ways than one.

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Postmortem – Read a forensic thriller


Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell

In the series that launched them all, Cornwell introduces forensic pathologist and general overachiever Kay Scarpetta in her first case, where four dead women are linked in death to one creepy, brilliant killer.

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Deja Dead by Kathy Reichs

Temperance Brennan, forensic anthropologist, makes her debut appearance when skeletal remains are discovered in the grounds of a Montreal monastery.

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The Bone Collector by Jeffrey Deaver

Quadriplegic ex-forensic investigator works with his former NYPD colleagues to find kidnapping victims before they are dispatched by a twisted killer. 

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The Sinner by Tess Gerritsen

Two nuns are brutally murdered inside their convent. Forensic Pathologist Maura Isles and Detective Jane Rizzoli work to decipher the unexpected autopsy findings.

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Shadow Play by Iris Johansen

Forensic sculptor Eve Duncan must discover the identity of a nine-year old girl before the killer stops her.

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Evidence of Murder by Lisa Black

An apparent suicide death by hypothermia of a young mother does not sit well with forensic investigator Theresa MacLean.

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The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

An FBI Academy student gets drawn into an existing serial murder investigation when she interviews an incarcerated criminal mastermind.

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The Chemistry of Death by Simon Beckett

Set in the tiny village of Manham, Norfolk, a retired and psychologically broken forensic investigator playing country doctor finds himself looking into a gruesome, ritualistic death.

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At Close Range by Laura Griffin

At the scene of a double murder by the lake, conflicting clues call for an expert consult in ballistics and firearms.

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Without Mercy by Jefferson Bass

Forensic anthropologist and Body Farm creator Bill Brockton finds himself investigating skeletal remains found chained to a mountainside.

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