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Read-Alikes for the Best Books of 2021

Two books: Apples Never Fall and Confessions on the 7:45

December 1st, 2021
Jovy · Staff Recommendations

Everyone is coming out with their Best Books of 2021 list just in time for the holiday season. Most of these books will have hundreds of holds. What’s a reader to do? That’s where we come in with this handy list of titles that you can borrow right now. 

If You’re Waiting For Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty, try Confessions on the 7:45 by Lisa Unger

In these compellingly written psychological suspense novels, a mysterious stranger comes into the unhappy lives of a married couple (Apples Never Fall) and a married woman (Confessions on the 7:45). After these encounters, the mother (Apples Never Fall) and the nanny (Confessions on the 7:45) disappear. Is it coincidence or foul play? 

If You’re Waiting For Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr, try Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

These stylistically complex novels follow the lives of an ensemble cast through time and space. The characters are connected in some way and it is that puzzle that the reader must solve. 

If You’re Waiting For Oh William! By Elizabeth Strout, try Monogamy by Sue Miller 

In these reflective and character-driven novels, Lucy Barton (Oh William!) and Annie Graham (Monogamy) recount their long-standing relationships with their unfaithful ex- (Oh William!) and dead (Monogamy) husbands.

If You’re Waiting for Our Country Friends by Gary Shteyngart, try The Summer Guests by Mary Alice Monroe

In these engaging and character-driven novels, a pandemic (Our Country Friends) and a hurricane (The Summer Guests) throw together an eclectic group of individuals in a country house (Our Country Friends) and a farm (The Summer Guests). This extended proximity forces everyone to confront issues of friendship, love, loss and betrayal. 

If You’re Waiting for State of Terror by Hillary Clinton and Louise Penny, try While Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams  

These suspenseful political thrillers have untested protagonists that are thrust into dangerous conspiracies targeting the Supreme Court (While Justice Sleeps) and the State department (State of Terror). The insider perspective by the authors gives the books that extra element of realism. 

If You’re Waiting for The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave, try Watch Me Disappear by Janelle Brown

In these intricately plotted domestic thrillers, the mysterious disappearances of a husband (The Last Thing He Told Me) and a Berkeley mom (Watch Me Disappear) lead to the unraveling of long-buried secrets, an intimate look at motherhood and the ties that bind a family together.

If You’re Waiting for The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles, try This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger

In these atmospheric coming-of-age stories set in the 1950s (The Lincoln Highway) and in the 1930s (This Tender Land), boys on the brink of adulthood embark on an American odyssey, meeting interesting and quirky characters along the way. Cliched though it may be, the main characters come to realize that it is not the destination but the journey within that matters.

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