Historical Mysteries: The 20 Best Books Like The Da Vinci Code

The Da Vinci Code is a beloved thriller known for its historical lore, engaging storyline, wonderful characters, and mysterious premise. Here are the 20 best books like The Da Vinci Code. All of them are fast-paced and fun reads for your book list!

Historical Mysteries: The 20 Best Books Like The Da Vinci Code

The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl 

The Dante Club: A Novel

Matthew Pearl’s scintillating debut The Dante Club is a historical thriller like no other and is sure to keep readers hooked from the first page to the last. 

It’s 1865, and three literary experts are putting together a translation of Dante’s The Divine Comedy. The so-called Dante Club quickly recognizes a local string of killings as being modeled off of Dante’s writing. With lives at stake and authorities on the prowl, the Dante Club must act quickly to ensure that the killer is found before it’s too late. 

You can buy The Dante Club here, and enjoy this sparkling mystery novel firsthand. 

The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton

The Great Train Robbery: A Novel

National bestselling author Michael Crichton dazzles readers with The Great Train Robbery, a historical thriller that’s based on a true story. 

The Great Train Robbery tells the story of Edward Pierce, a well-respected man who masterminds and completes a shocking gold heist on a steam locomotive in the 1800s. This fast-paced read is both informative and interesting, keeping readers on the edge of their seats until the very end. 

You can buy this book here, and get ready for the most exciting train ride of your life! 

The Unlikely Spy by Daniel Silva 

Portrait of an Unknown Woman: A Novel (Gabriel Allon, 22)

Espionage meets wartime drama in Daniel Silva’s debut novel, The Unlikely Spy, which quickly landed him a spot on multiple worldwide bestselling lists. 

Set during World War 2, The Unlikely Spy follows history professor Alfred Vicary, who was chosen by none other than Winston Churchill to expose a dangerous traitor within British ranks. The Nazis have also chosen an unexpected agent: hospital volunteer and widowed war hero Catherine Blake. Suspense builds as Silva’s storytelling flashes back and forth from one side to the other, and you’ll be guessing what happens next in no time. 

You can purchase The Unlikely Spy here, and prepare to be immersed in a historical thriller like no other. 

The Last Templar by Raymond Khoury 

The Last Templar (A Templar Novel)

Prepare to be twisted and turned when you pick up a copy of Raymond Khoury’s The Last Templar, the first in a series of six bestselling historical mystery novels

It’s the present day in Manhattan, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art is raided by four masked horsemen, dressed as Templar Knights from the Crusades era. FBI agent Sean Reilly and archaeologist Tess Chaykin are put on the investigation, and they soon find themselves whisked into a deadly game with merciless killers, searching for the lost secrets of the Templars. 

You can purchase the book here, and be sure to check out the rest of the series for more breathtaking historical adventures. 

The Pelican Brief by John Grisham 

The Pelican Brief

Award-winning author John Grisham pens a legal thriller that is chock full of high-stakes conspiracy and political drama. 

The Pelican Brief details the assassinations of two Supreme Court justices, murdered at the hands of a wanted hitman named Khamel. Law student Darby Shaw theorizes that the two were not killed for political reasons and makes that the subject of a legal brief, but as more people begin to be taken out by this hitman, Darby realizes she must be the next target. 

You can buy this book here, and prepare to be invested in Grisham’s riveting legal mystery at every turn of the page. 

The Codex by Douglas Preston 

The Codex

Douglas Preston’s The Codex is a non-stop thrill ride teeming with ancient mystery, Egyptian history, and adventure that you won’t want to put down. 

Maxwell Broadbent, a man known for his years of tomb robbing and treasure hunting, disappears mysteriously along with his massive fortune. All that’s left is a video message for his three sons, urging them to find his treasure, which he buried (alongside himself) somewhere in the world. The only catch? Broadbent’s sons are far from the only ones searching for the treasure, and these people will stop at nothing to make a fortune. 

You can buy The Codex here, and race right alongside the Broadbent brothers in search of great fortune. 

The Cloisters by Katy Hays 

The Cloisters: A Novel

The Cloisters is a genre-bending read set in the famous Met Cloisters, written by debut novelist Katy Hays in expert fashion. 

The novel’s protagonist Ann Stilwell snags a curatorial summer job working in the Met Cloisters, where she is thrust into a world of medieval art and divination. Ann is pulled deeper when she discovers a 15th-century deck of tarot cards that might hold the key to predicting the future — or maybe all they hold is the key to Ann’s fate. 

You can purchase The Cloisters here, and get ready to be seduced by Katy Hays’ masterful storytelling. 

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson 

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Series)

Steig Larsson’s national bestseller The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first in a popular series of addictive thrills and criminal masterminding. 

Set in Sweden, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo follows ex-convict and journalist Mikael Blomkvist, along with punk prodigy Lisbeth Salander, as they investigate a years-old disappearance case. The two stumble into a set of events more convoluted and dangerous than they could have ever expected, as they seek to escape with answers (and their lives). 

You can buy the book here, and make sure to check out the rest of the series for more thrilling antics. 

The Eight by Katherine Neville

The Fire: A Novel

History, fantasy, and murder collide in Katherine Neville’s The Eight, a cult classic with secrets and mysteries at every turn. 

Our lead character is a computer expert named Cat Velis, who is setting off towards a job in Algeria when a fortune-teller warns her of danger ahead. The predicted danger catches up with her in the form of a chess board, which is revealed to have belonged to medieval emperor Charlemagne and holds great power within its pieces. 

You can purchase the novel here, and be sure to check out its companion novel for more historical chills and thrills. 

The Flanders Panel by Arturo Perez-Reverte 

The Flanders Panel

Written skilfully by Arturo Perez-Reverte is the international bestseller The Flander Panel, a must-read historical thriller that’s perfect for lovers of art history.

The Flanders Panel opens with heroine Julia, a young art restorer, discovering a hidden inscription in the corner of a beloved fifteenth-century painting. She is determined to solve the centuries-old murder which is linked to the painting, but soon bodies begin dropping, and she realizes that this haunting inscription has present-day ties which put her very life in danger. 

You can purchase The Flanders Panel here, and get ready to be deciphering clues right alongside Julia. 

Mind Virus by Charles Kowalski 

Mind Virus

Mind Virus is a frightening modern thriller, full of well-written characters and a heavily- researched storyline sure to grip readers from page one. 

Readers are introduced to Robin Fox, a world religions professor and ex-military interrogator, who uncovers a deep conspiracy intended to eradicate religion from the face of the earth. With a mastermind on the loose attempting to release this deadly virus worldwide, Robin must race the clock in this intelligent adrenaline rush of a novel. 

You can buy Mind Virus here, and prepare to be blown away by a multitude of clever plot twists. 

Never by Ken Follett 

Never: A Novel

Political suspense and page-turning thrills abound in literary genius Ken Follett’s Never, a must-read story of “what-if” that’s frighteningly plausible at times. 

International tensions are high as the United States is caught in an escalating global crisis of mayhem that could potentially lead to another world war. Intrigue and mystery are everywhere you turn as Never follows the next steps of both US and Chinese presidents, and spies on every side of the political spectrum. 

You can purchase the book here, and be prepared for a story that’s nearly impossible to put down once you pick it up. 

Mona Lisa’s Secret by Phil Phillips

Mona Lisa's Secret (Joey Peruggia Book Series)

Art history meets fast-paced adventure in Mona Lisa’s Secret, the first in a thrilling trilogy sure to appeal to fans of The Da Vinci Code and history buffs alike. 

Mona Lisa’s Secret follows Joey Peruggia, great-grandson of the man who stole the original Mona Lisa painting, as he discovers the painting hidden in a secret room in his father’s house. The Louvre wants their painting back, and they’ve taken Joey’s girlfriend, Marie, hostage… until they get what they came for. But this historical painting has revealed its secrets to Joey, and he needs to strike a bargain before it’s too late. 

You can buy the book here, and make sure to check out the next in the series for more of Joey Peruggia’s thrilling historical escapades. 

Blood Memory by Greg Iles 

Blood Memory: A Novel

Blood Memory is a murder-mystery meets psychological thriller that will leave readers gasping for breath by the conclusion. 

Cat Ferry is suspended from an FBI task force due to a string of panic attacks and blackouts, which sends her spiraling into her past with broken memories of her father’s murder. Cat works to connect her memories to the work of a present-day killer, but startling truths about herself are bound to emerge along the way. 

You can buy Blood Memory here, and buckle up for a shocking thrill ride that will surprise even the most unshakeable of readers. 

The Raphael Affair by Iain Pears 

The Raphael Affair (Art History Mystery)

The Raphael Affair is the first in a series of mystery novels by Iain Pears, where art commentary meets well-written historical mystery

Readers are introduced to Jonathan Argyll, an art scholar who is pursuing answers to the destruction of a long-lost Raphael painting. During his pursuit he discovers that the conspiracy goes even deeper than he had expected, becoming an investigation into forgery and art crimes with unspeakable consequences. 

You can purchase The Raphael Affair here, and be sure to check out the rest of the series for more of Jonathan Argyll’s literary adventures. 

The Omega Factor by Steve Berry 

The Omega Factor

Beloved author of countless thrillers, Steve Berry, delivers again with The Omega Factor, a must-have addition to anyone’s collection. 

The Omega Factor follows UNESCO investigator Nicholas Lee, whose job is to protect valuable cultural artifacts. He travels to Belgium and finds himself embroiled in the conflict between a secret order of nuns and the Vatican itself, with the missing Ghent Altarpiece at the center of it all. 

You can buy The Omega Factor here, and prepare to be deeply immersed in a historical mystery like no other. 

The Rose Code by Kate Quinn

The Rose Code: A Novel

Kate Quinn is all the rage in the literary historical fiction community these days, and it’s easy to see why when you read The Rose Code. 

Three female code-breakers are at the center of this novel, set in post-World War Two Britain. With a dangerous traitor emerging from the shadows, cryptanalysts Osla, Mab, and Beth must work hard to crack the code hidden in an encrypted letter before it’s too late. 

You can buy The Rose Code here, and be swept into Kate Quinn’s world of historical mystery and intrigue. 

The Camel Club by David Baldacci 

The Camel Club (Camel Club, 1)

Beloved author David Baldacci is at his best with The Camel Club, a page-turning thriller that’s sure to please readers with its excellent storytelling. 

The Camel Club is the story of four conspiracy theorists who witness a shocking murder, leading them to team up with a Secret Service agent in a quest for truth. Soon a much greater scale of peril is revealed to be at play, and our characters must act quickly before an international terrorism crisis takes over. 

You can purchase The Camel Club here, and make sure to check out the rest of the series for more high-stake political thrills. 

I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes

I Am Pilgrim: A Thriller

Hailed as the best suspense novel of the decade by many, I Am Pilgrim is a thrilling and carefully-researched read that you won’t want to put down. 

The novel begins with ex-spy Pilgrim being recruited to help solve a mysterious crime committed in the heart of New York. Miles away, a young man known as the Saracen is conspiring a plan of destruction against Americans after witnessing the execution of his father. Eventually, the two storylines will cross paths, and a nail-biting race to justice ensues with an ending that no one could predict. 

You can buy the book here, and enjoy Terry Hayes’ widely applauded debut for yourself. 

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown 

Angels & Demons: A Novel (Robert Langdon)

Although Dan Brown’s most popular story starring protagonist Robert Langdon is The Da Vinci Code, its predecessor Angels & Demons is sure to equally delight fans. 

Angels & Demons introduces readers to Robert Langdon, a Harvard cryptologist who finds himself in a thrilling race to stop a ticking time bomb threatening to destroy the Vatican. This suspenseful adventure kicks off with the murder of a scientist, whose death appears to have ties to the Illuminati, and there is no end of interesting conspiracies and historical puzzles to follow. 

You can purchase Angels & Demons here, and enjoy finding out where Robert Langdon’s exciting story began. 


What genre is The Da Vinci Code?

The Da Vinci Code is a historical mystery and/or historical thriller, but it appeals to readers of many other genres, too.

What should I read after Dan Brown?

Readers who enjoyed Dan Brown will love the twenty books listed above, as they are all exciting, well-written thrillers.

What is the storyline of The Da Vinci Code?

The Da Vinci Code tells the story of a Harvard professor who is hired to solve a brutal murder that took place inside the Louvre. During the murder investigation, protagonist Robert Langdon uncovers a secret society who have left clues in works of art over the centuries, and it’s all part of a conspiracy much greater than anyone could have predicted.

Is The Da Vinci Code true?

The Da Vinci Code is a fictional novel, although it does feature many legitimate historical figures and works of art.

Is The Da Vinci Code a series?

Although readers can enjoy The Da Vinci Code as a stand-alone novel, Dan Brown has written four other books featuring Robert Langdon, including Angels & Demons, The Lost Symbol, Inferno, and Origin.

Is The Da Vinci Code worth reading?

The Da Vinci Code is certainly worth reading, as it is full of entertaining plot twists, well-written characters, and an interesting storyline that has made it into the bestseller it is today.

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Layla Hughes