The 20 Best Books Like Malibu Rising (by Taylor Jenkins Reid)

If you enjoyed Malibu Rising, you’ll be sure to love these 20 thrilling reads as well. They’re packed with secrets, mystery, and incredible detail. You’ll love these must-read stories!


The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid 

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel

Possibly Taylor Jenkins Reid’s most popular novel yet, this thrilling installation in the historical fiction genre is sure to please anyone who enjoys Reid’s entrancing writing and creative storylines. 

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo follows the story of fictional Hollywood actress, Evelyn Hugo, as she unveils her life story to struggling journalist Monique. Glitz and glamor jump off the pages as the reader gets to know the mysterious, scandalous, and at times deeply emotional story of what goes on beyond the public eye. 

You can purchase the book here, and be prepared to be drawn into Evelyn Hugo’s world until it seems just as real as your own. 

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens 

Where the Crawdads Sing: Reese's Book Club (A Novel)

Coming-of-age drama, lyrical writing, a deeply atmospheric setting, and a murder mystery at its core have made Where the Crawdads Sing into the wildly popular novel that it is today. 

The story follows two intersecting timelines; one from the perspective of young heroine Kya, and one following the murder investigation into a North Carolina celebrity’s untimely murder. Mystery and intrigue unfold as the reader slowly gets to know Kya, and discovers how her story relates to the murder investigation at the story’s heart. 

You can purchase Where the Crawdads Sing here, and get ready to be drawn into the enthralling story that Delia Owens has crafted. 

Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty 

Apples Never Fall

Popular suspense writer Liane Moriarty has written another hit with Apples Never Fall, the story of a missing woman, ex-tennis stars, and family secrets of great consequence. 

Apples Never Fall is told from the perspectives of the four Delaney siblings, and begins with the mother of the four, Joy Delaney, unexpectedly going missing. Surprisingly, their father Stan Delaney is the one and only suspect, and long-buried family history begins to be uncovered as the police dig into this case to try and figure out what could’ve happened to this once-happy family of promising tennis stars. 

You can buy Apples Never Fall here, but be ready for a long day of reading, as this is a novel you won’t be able to put down once you get started. 

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

We Were Liars

This award-winning, young adult suspense novel has made waves since its publication in 2014, continuing to surprise and dazzle readers with its jaw-dropping twists. 

We Were Liars jumps between the past and present, following the story of a Sinclair family summer on a private island, and a story too destructive to ever tell the truth about. Unreliable narrators and a twisted, dark secret come to light as readers try to determine what actually went down, and what part of what they’re reading is just another lie. 

You can buy this book here, and make sure to check out its prequel, Family of Liars, to get to know the story even more. 

Normal People by Sally Rooney 

Normal People: A Novel

From the New York Times bestselling novel to the Emmy-nominated Hulu adaptation, Normal People has been all the rage since its publication in early 2020. 

Normal People depicts young love, class differences, and the dynamic between two main characters, Marianne and Connell, with heartbreaking authenticity. Readers follow the pair as they connect and grow apart in high school, through college, and into the real world. They are forced to decide how far they’re willing to go for each other while staying true to themselves. 

You can buy Normal People here, and get to know for yourself what all the buzz is about. 

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield 

The Thirteenth Tale: A Novel

Gothic suspense novel The Thirteenth Tale reimagines classic fantasy tropes in this beautifully written, lengthy exploration into life, love, and literature. 

The Thirteenth Tale follows recluse Vida Winter, who has been writing alternate lives for herself over the past six decades to hide from the truth of her shocking and dismal past. As she grows old she knows she must finally reveal the truth, and she calls upon a young biographer to relay a tale of haunted people and places, secret topiary gardens, and fires with secrets of their own. 

You can buy The Thirteenth Tale here, and prepare to be captivated by Diane Setterfield’s poetic, un-put-downable, storytelling. 

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Little Fires Everywhere (Movie Tie-In): A Novel

One picture-perfect, well-off family and a struggling mother-daughter duo find themselves living as neighbors in Celeste Ng’s award-winning psychological mystery novel. 

This novel begins at the end: a house set on fire, a child nowhere to be seen, and the readers are swung back to months before any of this took place to learn why all these events unfolded. Little Fires Everywhere explores themes of class, culture, race, prejudice, art, and what it means to be a mother. 

You can buy Little Fires Everywhere here, and get ready to be shocked and amazed by the story’s authenticity and intrigue. 

The Guest List by Lucy Foley

The Guest List: A Reese's Book Club Pick

Lucy Foley’s bestselling murder mystery masterpiece, The Guest List, has garnered comparisons to classic Agatha Christie novels for its witty and detailed writing. 

Set on a small island off Ireland’s coast, The Guest List tells the story of a wedding party gone wrong, as somebody turns up dead amid the celebration. This brilliant novel stands apart from traditional murder mysteries, as readers don’t even know who the victim is until the end, leaving a suspenseful and captivating guessing game to unfold. 

You can buy the book here, and don’t forget to put your detective’s cap on before you begin! 

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry 

People We Meet on Vacation

Author Emily Henry is the queen of the beach read, as she has mastered witty dialogue, interesting characters, and page-turning storylines like no other. 

People We Meet on Vacation is the ideal lighthearted, easy read — readers are introduced to Poppy and Alex, polar opposites on the outside, but best friends at heart. After a dramatic falling out on their last trip together which has led to them not talking, the two take one last vacation together, hoping to fix everything in one week and finally become friends again; or maybe, even more than friends. 

You can buy People We Meet on Vacation here, and be sure to check out Emily Henry’s other popular beach reads once you’re done!

Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel

Maria Semple’s popular comedic mystery, Where’d You Go, Bernadette is both a page-turner and a riveting social commentary all in one. 

The story begins when  agoraphobic Bernadette vanishes mysteriously, with all signs pointing to her taking an unplanned trip from Seattle to Antarctica. Bernadette’s fifteen-year-old daughter, Bee, sets out on a private mission to find out what happened, and most importantly, to find her mother.  

You can purchase the novel here, and help Bee out as she searches for answers in this surprising and sharp literary adventure. 

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt 

The Goldfinch: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)

Clocking in at over 900 pages, Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch is far from a quick read, although it is certainly a rewarding one. 

Literary genius Donna Tartt sets the scene with young Theo Decker, who survived an accident that resulted in the death of his mother, and this traumatic memory follows him into his adulthood with secrets of its own. This novel beautifully speaks on grief, art, life, second chances, and the choices we all make, as we follow Theo who seeks to define his life after great tragedy. 

You can buy The Goldfinch here, and prepare to be swept away by the moving characters and stories that Donna Tartt writes about.

The Diviners by Libba Bray 

The Diviners (The Diviners, 1)

Libba Bray’s The Diviners is the first in a series of four, written for young adults but appealing to an older audience as well with its skillful writing and complex storytelling. 

Heroine Evie O’Neill is sent to live with her Uncle Will, who runs an occult museum in New York City. However, Evie has one big secret: a supernatural power, which soon gets her involved in a series of cryptic murders, as she harnesses her power to try and help catch a serial killer. 

You can purchase The Diviners here, and be sure to check out the rest of the series to see what Evie O’Neill and crew get up to next. 

Saint X by Alexis Schaitkin 

Saint X

Scintillating writing, intelligent characters, and a surprising premise have made Alexis Schaitkin’s debut novel into a modern-day favorite practically overnight. 

Saint X follows the story of Claire, who, at the young age of seven, lost her college-aged sister Alison to a shocking murder in the Caribbean during their family vacation. Suspects were arrested, and then released due to a lack of evidence, and years later Claire is working in New York City when she encounters one of the men who was potentially involved in her sister’s murder. This surprise meeting ignites a fire in Claire, who sets out to discover who her sister was, and what happened that fateful night many years ago.

You can buy Saint X here, and see for yourself what all the hype is about. 

This Time Tomorrow by Emma Straub 

This Time Tomorrow

Time travel, tender writing, and heartwarming characters make This Time Tomorrow a strong contender on any contemporary reading list. 

Protagonist Alice wakes on the morning of her 40th birthday and discovers that she has been transported to 1996, and is reliving her sixteenth birthday as her younger self. As she relives her past and gains new insight into the people in her life, Alice is given the option to make small changes, and she must consider how it might affect the people she loves the most. 

You can purchase the book here, and get ready to be swept up into a world of time travel like no other. 

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr

Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel

Award-winning author Anthony Doerr transports his readers into a world that is both keenly relatable and yet distant from ours in so many ways; a world of imagination and beauty. 

Cloud Cuckoo Land is told in three different places and times: fifteenth-century Constantinople, present-day Idaho, and an interstellar ship from the not-so-distant future. As the pages fly by, readers will learn how the character’s in each period connect, and be dazzled by the immersive power of storytelling through the generations. 

You can purchase Cloud Cuckoo Land here, and prepare to be stunned by Anthony Doerr’s inspiring world-building. 

My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh 

My Year of Rest and Relaxation

Class issues, mental health, and the difficulties of growing up with emotionally neglectful parents are explored in My Year of Rest and Relaxation

Ottessa Moshfegh uses dark humor to look at universal themes through a unique lens, as our narrator makes the interesting decision to spend an entire year in a drug-induced hibernation. Although comedic and entertaining, this novel also touches upon relevant themes in our modern world in a highly thought-provoking manner. 

You can buy the book here, and learn from the narrator’s unorthodox decision right alongside her. 

Little Lovely Things by Maureen Joyce Connolly

Little Lovely Things: A Novel

This sizzling debut novel grips readers from page one, and you won’t want to put it down once you pick it up. 

Claire Rawlings is driving to work with her two daughters in the backseat, when she is hit with severe nausea, and makes a quick stop at a gas station, running to the bathroom, and passing out. When she returns, her car is gone with her two girls in it, and Claire lives out every parent’s worst nightmare as hours pass by with no leads — only her gut feeling that her daughters are still out there. 

You can buy Little Lovely Things here, and be prepared for a read that will keep you on the edge of your seat. 

The Dutch House by Ann Patchett

The Dutch House

Bestselling author Ann Patchett delivers again with The Dutch House, a riveting novel about deep family ties, and the magical house where two siblings grew up. 

Wealthy sibling duo Danny and Maeve are thrust into poverty in this dark fairy tale and are left to rely on each other and their impenetrable bond. People and places from the past emerge in surprising ways throughout this multi-faceted, reflective tale of family bonds and paradise lost. 

You can purchase The Dutch House here, and prepare for a satisfying reading experience that you won’t want to end. 

Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult 

Wish You Were Here: A Novel

Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult is a thought-provoking, at times heartbreaking, look into the Covid-19 pandemic and how it affected people and the world as a whole. 

Set at the beginning of the pandemic, protagonist Diana sets out on a vacation to the Galapagos by herself, as her boyfriend is required by his job to stay at work due to the impending virus. After she embarks, things immediately turn sour, from lost luggage to her hotel being shut down, and she finds herself connecting with a local family and re-examining her life back home from a fresh perspective. 

You can buy the novel here, and make sure to check out more of Jodi Picoult’s award-winning writing for similarly well-written dramas. 

Circe by Madeline Miller 


Madeline Miller’s Circe is a popular historical-fiction retelling, placing the Greek goddess Circe at its center. 

With Greek mythology at the novel’s core, Circe follows a fantastical cast of characters through a world of wild beasts, witchcraft, and the wrath of gods. Circe must make a stand as a woman in a man’s world, and choose between the life of gods or that of mortals.  

You can purchase Circe here, and you’re sure to enjoy this epic tale of love, loss, and palace intrigue. 


Is Malibu Rising a book series?

No, Malibu Rising is not a series, although Taylor’s Jenkins Reid wrote Malibu Rising (2021), The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo (2017), and Daisy Jones & the Six (2019) in the same historical-fiction universe.

What is the Malibu Rising book about?

Malibu Rising tells the story of the Riva family’s annual end-of-summer party gone awry, as guests show up with unforgettable secrets which soon spiral the party out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion has gone up in flames, and readers are left to discover how we got here, and which secrets each family member had been keeping.

What should I read if I like Malibu Rising?

The above list describes twenty books you are sure to enjoy if you liked Malibu Rising, from historical dramas to murder mysteries to suspense thrillers.

What comes after Malibu Rising?

Malibu Rising does not have a direct sequel, although the twenty books listed above are sure to be enjoyed by anyone who liked Malibu Rising.

Is Malibu Rising becoming a TV show?

A television adaptation of Malibu Rising is currently in the works with Hulu, although nothing more concrete has been set.

What time period is Malibu Rising set in?

Malibu Rising is set in 1983.

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Layla Hughes