The Ultimate List of Fiction Books You Should Read At Least Once in Your Life

Finding the next “good read” is never easy. Sometimes you want to read something in your genre. Other times you want to read something that’s completely different. Sometimes you have no clue what you want to read. No matter what “reading” mood you’re in, This is Writing has got you covered with in-depth book recommendation list.

Below you will find the top book recommendations from the five major genres of fiction (like romance) or you can get super specific with 104 sub-genres (like the Top 5 Reads in Chick Lit). If you need a quick recommendation for a fiction book, you can probably get started with one of the books from these set of booklists.​ Now get reading!

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I. TOP THRILLER/SUSPENSE NOVELS

For those who enjoy reading novels that are filled with thrills, mystery and suspense, here are five novels by some of the best-selling authors of the genre. These books are full of dark characters and their even darker secrets. These novels offer chills and the inability to put the book down.​

Action Book Recommendations

This book recommendation list showcases books that are filled with action. Many are about characters facing antagonists who are psychopaths and murders. They face great dangers as they fight to save themselves and others...

Top Comic Thriller Book

For those who love thriller, who enjoy the mystery and sling crawling thrill but also enjoy comedy this list is full of great books for you. They are full of exciting mysteries and murder as well as each finding a way to be filled with hilarity.

Best Conspiracy Books

For this list, I have pulled together six great conspiracy novels. These books are written by some of the top authors in this genre, many of them have written many other books around these themes of suspense, thriller, politics and secrets and the conspiracies that drive them.​

Disaster Book Recommendations​

These disaster stories are filled with survival, horrific destruction and coming together in the worst of times. These stories are both fiction and non-fiction covering disasters like hurricanes, volcanoes, and changes in the rules of the earth itself. All of these books were written by magnificent authors, creating an array of interesting, emotional and often terrifying stories.​

​Best Eco-Thriller Book Recommendations

These books tell stories of the environment collapsing, strange turns in the very rules of how the world should work and each with a secret to why it is happening and who is behind it. These authors have created fantastic problems for their heroes to face with the fate of humanity as the stakes. These books are exciting, intriguing, exhilarating and deadly.​

​Best Erotic Thriller Books

These novels feature characters who have found themselves in terrible situations and are surrounded by secrets. But even caught up in trying to stay alive and solve mysteries, they find time for a little love and romance.

This list is full of exciting, thrilling and secretive books that will have you reading none stop to discover the truth. They feature secret double lives, fake corporations and traitors hidden amongst friends. Within them, our heroes find themselves with no one to trust and little time to solve the mysteries to save themselves and those around them.​

​Top Forensic Thriller Novels To Add To Your Bookshelf

These novels delve into to some of the science that lives behind both solving crimes and the murders themselves. The main characters must find clues within the bodies of victims of horrific murders to keep themselves and the people around them safe. These stories are thrilling, exciting and full of death, murder and of course dead bodies.

Historical Thriller Book Recommendations

These books traverse through time, often following modern heroes trying to trace back and discover the secret mysteries of ancient events. These stories are often based on a real piece of history but given a new, exciting and intriguing twist that builds mystery. Our characters must fight to divulge the secrets of the past before they themselves are killed.

Horror Thriller Book Recommendations

In these books, you can expect to find some of the greatest authors in the genre of horror thrillers including renowned authors such as Stephen King and Ann Rice. These books are the terrifying stories of murder, secrets, and revenge. Each is filled with the paranormal and the fight to keep from succumbing to evil and to death.​

Legal Thriller Books To Read Right Now

This list is full of books that tell the stories of how murders get solved. Focusing on the legal side, our heroes are the attorneys looking for the truth or simply defending their clients but often find themselves embroiled in much darker pots than they could have imagined.​

Medical Thriller Book Recommendations

These books are thrilling stories set in the place we think can save and heal us, but inside these hospitals mysteries things are happening and not even the doctors can all be trusted with their patients’ lives.

The Best Military Thriller Books

In this list, the novels are full of war, violence, mystery and brave military men who must race against the enemy to save themselves and often the world. Whether the enemy is outwardly against them or hidden amongst them, time is short and the stakes are high.​

Political Thriller Book Recommendations

These books are full of danger and intrigue. The heroes of these stories are thrust in the midst of tense political atmospheres and dangerous conspiracies that could lead to their deaths or the deaths of everyone in the world.

Psychological Thriller Book Recommendations

In these books, you can expect to find the troubling tales of women who are running out of options. Whether being forced to deal with old trauma or dealing with others controlling their lives, these women will have to work hard to save themselves.

Romance Thrillers You Have To Read

In these books, there is danger, excitement, death, mystery and above all love and passion. These books piece together the thrilling stories of murder and escape alongside the greatest struggle of all, dealing with the affairs of the heart.

Supernatural Thriller Books You Have To Read

Enter the terrifying worlds created by these renowned authors as they take you on journeys that are full of supernatural beings that have their own agendas and secrets. Those who are unlucky enough to be mortal in situations where few will make it out alive.​

Technological Thrillers To Read Right Away

These books are by their very nature complex. These authors are dealing with imagining up technological advances in human society and the potential danger that can erupt from them. From accidents to schemes, humans must fight against their own creations to save themselves and save the world.

II. ROMANCE NOVELS WE RECOMMEND

This list contains alluring, passionate, and beautiful romance stories. Each has the heroes and heroines fighting for their right to love and be loved. With everything from gangs, families, and past secrets trying to keep them apart, all of these lovers are in for great struggles but the rewards far outweigh any risk.

Popular Chick-Lit Books

In these novels, we get to follow the lives of women who are trying to seek happiness. Each has their own method for making it through the world of careers, friendship, and love. These books are funny, heart-warming and full of the awkward moments that come with day to day life

Get Reading These Christian Romance Books

These stories are of people who are seeking happiness and love in a world that does not always seem fair. But these heroes and heroines have faith and that faith may just be strong enough to get them through anything.​

Contemporary Romance Novel Recommendations

These books are of contemporary romance stories. From young adult learning to deal with first heartbreaks and the true meaning of love to women who have chosen to give up on love right as they meet the man who might just be Mr. Right.

Best Erotica Books

Controlling one’s feelings is difficult but controlling romantic feelings can often be impossible. Our main characters are all faced with this hardship as they find themselves with growing passion for people they know in their minds they should not get involved with.

The Top Glamour And Glitz Books

These books are all centered around women living the highest of the high life. With parties, jewels, and men surrounding them they live a lifestyle dependent upon their wealth.

The Best Historical Romance Books

These authors have dug deep into the past to find their inspirations and have produced exciting, passionate romances. Our Heroine’s and Hero’s find themselves surrounded by money, love, and the rules of society.​

Top Multicultural Romance Books

These books tell stories about love that cross cultures. Romances that spring from people from different backgrounds and places and yet still find each other. These brilliant authors have given their readers exciting, passionate romances that will make it hard to put the book down.

Paranormal Romance Novel Recommendations

Nothing brings out the passion and danger of love quite like throwing in a bit of magic. These authors have created worlds and creature unlike those that can exist within reality.​

Romantic Comedy Novel Recommendations

These books are fun, passionate, and hilarious as they tackle the game of love. Looking at our awkward, overconfident, desperate, and cynical lovers, these stories cannot help but make you laugh.​

Best Romantic Suspense Books

The suspenseful romances take the struggles of finding love and place them in difficult and dangerous times. Our heroes and heroines must literally fight for their lives if they want to find happiness.​

Gripping Romantic Mystery Books

These books hold within them both terrifying mysteries, where a slight mistake can mean death for you and those around you, and the equally dangerous game of love, where trust and attraction often find themselves opposed.

Sensual Fiction Book Recommendations

In this list, the books come romances that are full of steam and passion. Whether friends or strangers, each of these couples finds each other pulled together by lust and desire. Some try to fight it while other immediately succumb. But love and passion are not that simple.​

Awesome Spicy Romance Novels

These stories are between sexy pairs that cannot fight their passionate attraction. From rivals to lovers and strangers to blooming love, none of our heroes and heroines can fight the feelings before them.​

Great Sweet Romance Books

These stories are the sweet and beautiful relationships of our heroes and heroines. They tell of first love and finding those that can make your walls come tumbling down. These amazing authors have given us stories that you cannot put down.

Great Sweet Romance Books

These stories are the sweet and beautiful relationships of our heroes and heroines. They tell of first love and finding those that can make your walls come tumbling down. These amazing authors have given us stories that you cannot put down.

Young Adult Romance Book Recommendations

Each of these books tells the story of young love, whether it is first crushes, or finding a love that can make you forget the hardships that come before. They are sweet, sad, beautiful, and funny tales of life when feelings were strong and love often the only thing that mattered.

LGBT Romance Novels

These books are beautiful, tragic and inspiring stories of love. While some are only brief, others are romances that will last a lifetime. But first, the lovers must admit their feelings for each other and dive headfirst into the whirlwind adventure that is love.

Best Regency Romance Books

Take a trip back in time with these strong and beautiful women and the dashing men they fall in love with. Each tale delves into the unstoppable pull of passion and love, leaving our heroines and heroes powerless to resists.

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III. SCIENCE FICTION BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Alternate History Books
  • Biopunk Books
  • Comic Science Fiction
  • Cyberpunk Books
  • Dystopian Books
  • Erotic Science Fiction
  • Hard Science Fiction Books

Best Selling Historical Fiction Books You Need to Read

Discover our list of favorite historical fiction book recommendations to either introduce you to the genre or refill your bookshelf if you're already an avid fan.

  • Mundane SF
  • Military SF
  • Mystery SF
  • New Age Book Recommendations
  • Post-Apocalyptic
  • Social SF
  • Soft SF
  • Spy-Fi

Steampunk Books You Have To Read

​If you're an avid steampunk reader or just delving into the distinctive and exciting world of steampunk who hope this link helps you find your next must-read book.

  • Thriller SF
  • Young Adult Science Fiction

IV. FANTASY BOOKS FROM AWARD-WINNING AUTHORS

Our recommendations of exciting books from some of our favourite fantasy authors.​

  • Arthurian Fantasy
  • Bangsian Fantasy
  • Children’s Fantasy
  • Comic Fantasy
  • Dark Fantasy
  • Erotic Fantasy
  • Game-Related Fantasy
  • Heroic Fantasy
  • High/Epic Fantasy
  • Magical Realism​
  • Mythic Fiction
  • Religious
  • Science Fantasy
  • Space Opera
  • Superhero Fiction
  • Sword and Sorcery
  • Time-Travel
  • Urban Fantasy
  • Vampire
  • Wuxia Fantasy

Young Adult Fantasy Book Recommendations

New and fantastical worlds fill these books. If you are looking for some excellent fantasy with even more fantastical authors below are our favorite young adult fantasy books from bestselling authors.​

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V. BEST HORROR BOOKS TO READ

For this list of the best horror books, we’ve compiled some of the most renowned authors not only within the genre itself but in literature as a whole. Authors like Mary Shelly and Stephen King.​

Comic Horror Book Recommendations

Laugh while you scream! Comic Horror combines the best of both worlds; horror and comedy.

This sub-genre tends to be rich in satire and wit all while in the midst of the most horrifying situations!

Novels With Creepy Kids 

​Child serial killers, blood sucking kids, teens with unnatural powers, or even brainwashed devil worshiping youngsters, the creepy kids sub-genre has you covered. But be warned, you probably won’t want to babysit ever again!

Dark Mystery / Noir Novels You Won't Want To Miss

Dark mystery or noir sub-genre takes the reader beyond your average whodunit plot. This subgenre is filled with sinister and psychological twists and turns, leaving readers in suspense and often with jaw-dropping endings.​

Fabulist Fiction Recommendations

Fabulist Fiction is a sub-genre growing in popularity and it’s easy to understand why! This genre combines the best of all worlds including science fiction, fable, fantasy, horror, realism, and fairytale.

Sexy Erotic Vampire Book Recommendations

Kissing the devil? The Erotic Vampire sub-genre is filled with fear, sex, longing, taboo, and a passion beyond what you’ve ever experienced. Perhaps you are searching for the next Twilight, or maybe you desire something deeper, something more erotic? Either way, you have come to the right place!​

Fabulist Fiction Recommendations

Fabulist Fiction is a sub-genre growing in popularity and it’s easy to understand why! This genre combines the best of all worlds including science fiction, fable, fantasy, horror, realism, and fairytale.

Gothic Haunting Novels You Won't Want To Miss

Gothic Haunting is a sub-genre which combines often fictional horror with historical horror. It also involves death, supernatural elements, and a person or place under haunting. Specific time periods such as the Victorian Era or beautiful architecture to a haunted home may contribute to a gothic vibe within this genre.​

The Best Books With Hauntings

From haunted houses to human possession, the haunting sub-genre has you covered. Open up to a world of malevolent spirits, unexplained illnesses, and haunting secrets. Check out these five spooky novels that will leave you feeling just a bit haunted yourself!

Historical Horror Novels That Are Must Read!

Notorious serial killers, spine-tingling writers, historical figures with frightening pasts, or even politicians who find themselves in something much more sinister than just your average corruption. Historical horror combines fictional horror with a bit of a non-fictional setting.​

  • Psychological Horror
  • Quiet Horror
  • Religious horror
  • Milton’s Paradise Lost
  • Science-Fiction Horror
  • Splatter
  • Supernatural Menace
  • Technology Horror
  • Weird Tales
  • Young Adult Horror
  • Zombie

VI. MYSTERY BOOKS YOU HAVE TO READ

This list covers mystery novels that are dark, horrifying and with secrets and mysteries that make the books hard to put down.

  • Amateur Detective
  • Child in Peril
  • Classic Whodunit
  • Comic Mystery (Bumbling Detective)
  • Cozy mystery
  • Courtroom Drama

Crime Fiction Recommendations

These crime novels follow intriguing mysteries with great detectives from renowned authors like Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie to newer authors continuing the genre into the modern area.​

  • Dark Thriller
  • Espionage
  • Heists and Capers
  • Historical Mystery
  • Historical Crime Fiction
  • Inverted
  • Locked Room

Top Murder Mystery Book Recommendations

With at least one victim already our heroes and heroines are in a race against time to stop the killer before they can kill anyone else. Each must use all their intelligence to solve them. But they must be careful, when dealing with murderers it is easy to find yourself a victim.

  • Medical
  • Police Procedural
  • Private Detective
  • Psychological Suspense
  • Technothriller
  • Suspense mystery
  • Woman in Jeopardy
  • Young Adult Mystery

About the Author

Scott Mullins is a freelance writer and digital content manager. When he’s not finding ways to distract himself from writing his novel he writes killer copy for companies all over the world. Connect with Scott on Twitter @ScottMullins86 or LinkedIn. He’s always looking to connect with other writers.