There’s a common misconception that only big name publishing houses pump out quality books, but in fact there’s tons of great reads that have been self-published. Many successful authors start out self-publishing or begin doing so after they’ve created a name for themselves. Some of the benefits of self-publishing include having your own timeline, and complete control of your work. Here are some of the best self-published reads you can find:
1. Still Alice by Lisa Genova
Genova, a neuroscientist originally self-published this heartbreaking tale in 2007. The book follows a 50-year-old Harvard professor dealing with the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease and how it changes her relationships with those around her. Although the novel is gloomy, Genova has a way of somehow making this terrifying disease seem less frightening.
2. The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
An ancient Peruvian manuscript is found holding the nine key insights to life. Packed full of adventure, this story also serves as a guidebook for the reader, explaining why you are where you are in your life and how to get to where you want to be in the future. Redfield, a former therapist originally published The Celestine Prophecy in 1995. It was the #1 American book in the world during both 1995 and 1996.
3. 1929 by M.L. Gardner
Set in New York City during the stock market crash, three young couples must trade their lives of luxury for poverty. As the couples adjust to low paying jobs and going back to more traditional means of living, they also find companionship and hope – but not without some added drama. Published in 2015 and the first of the best-selling 1929 Series, Gardner has since written five more installments.
4. My Blood Approves by Amanda Hocking
Teenage Alice has fallen completely head over heels for two different guys. To make matters worse they’re brothers. Just when Alice thinks things couldn’t get any more complicated, she discovers their secret – they’re vampires. Alice’s biggest problem is no longer deciding which guy to choose, but whether it’s worth risking her life by being in their presence. Published in 2010, My Blood Approves is one of many young adult novels by Hocking. Hocking is a New York Times Bestselling author.
5. Jalan Jalan by Mike Stoner
In the wake of a personal tragedy, Newbie moves across the world to Indonesia in attempts to start a new life and forget about everything from his past. Unfortunately for him, his past seems to turn up, regardless of his new crazy lifestyle. This culturally-rich story was first published in 2014 and won The Guardian Self-published Book of the Month award in December of the same year. Stoner currently resides in the United Kingdom.
6. Storyteller by G.R. Grove
Set in 550 AD, this exciting tale follows storyteller Gwernin as he journeys across several war torn countries, hoping to live to tell about them once more. Storyteller, told in the voice of an actual medieval storyteller, is the first book in the Storyteller Series. Published in 2007, Grove has written many medieval-themed novels and two volumes of poetry.
7. Snake Skin by C.J. Lyons
Published in 2010, this FBI thriller is the first of the Lucy Guardino series. Lucy is living the perfect life – she has the perfect family and career until she finds herself involved with a criminal mastermind that forces her to choose between the life of the victim she’s trying to save, or the life of her own daughter. Lyons has written 29 novels and is a New York Times Bestselling Author.
8. Yesterday by Sheila Norton
It’s 1964 and Cathy is determined to be a Mod, despite her mother’s protests. When a fight between the conflicting Mods and Rockers breaks out, Cathy is left scarred for life. Now 40 years later she’s forced to revisit these painful memories in order to write a story, but perhaps this isn’t such a bad thing. This tale of healing, published in 2014, will leave the reader feeling good. Norton has written several books and Yesterday was The Guardian Self-published Book of the Month winner in November of 2014.
9. Stone of Fire by J.F. Penn
This thrilling tale by New York Times Bestselling Author Penn, follows characters across the planet trying to track down stolen stones and risking their lives while doing so. Stone of Fire, published in 2014, combines archeology, psychology and early Christian history. In addition to being an author, Penn is a professional speaker and entrepreneur.
10. Wool by Hugh Howey
Wool, a post-apocalyptic science fiction thriller, follows a community, built several hundred levels underground. When one of their people finally asks to go outside one day, order is lost and an uprising is hinted at. Published in 2013, this read is sure to expand the imagination. Wool is the first of a three-part series. Howey is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author.
11. The Carrot by Virginia Gray
How does someone who’s achieved the “perfect” life for themselves end up right back in the place they worked so hard get away from (their hometown)? Susan, already critical of her surroundings, somehow finds herself in cahoots with an arrogant local. Though the more time they spend together, Susan discovers perhaps she doesn’t detest him after all. This hilarious romantic novel was published in 2014. Gray is a #1 Bestselling Author and former University professor.
12. Damaged by H. M. Ward
Ward’s first novel, published in 2011, follows Sidney, a girl always down on her luck until she meets a sexy stranger who completely captivates her but then disappears. Things take a turn for the worse when she discovers he’s teaching her class. This juicy tale will have readers on the edge of their seat from start to finish. Ward, now a New York Times #1 Bestselling Author has sold over 10 million books worldwide.
13. Angel Fall by Susan Ee
This post-apocalyptic tale tells the story of Penryn, a teen forced to risk her life in attempts to save her younger sister. Penryn’s acts of courageousness leave the reader feeling empowered yet wanting more. Originally published in 2011, Angel Fall is the first of the Penryn & the End of Days trilogy. Ee, a former lawyer, is a USA Today Bestselling author and short film maker. Originally self-published, Angel Fall was later published via Amazon Children’s Publishing.
14. Daniel’s Gift by Barbara Freethy
This classic tale of love and loss follows a summer romance that results in a broken heart – and a child. Years later, the couple reconnects with the help of their child and a special someone. Originally published in 1996, Freethy had a successful career long before she decided to start self-publishing and one of her books even made it to #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List.
15. The Emperor’s Edge by Lindsay Buroker
Donned a “high fantasy” novel, The Emperor’s Edge, published in 2010 is the first in a series of the same name. The story follows Amaranthe Lokdon, a powerful imperial law enforcer who suddenly seems to be faced with more than she’s bargained for. Amaranthe starts finding herself in dangerous situations and begins to question whether someone wants her dead. Buroker has written several fantasy novels and also blogs about self-publishing and marketing.
16. A Bird Without Wings by Roberta Pearce
Published in 2013, A Bird Without Wings is one of many romance novels written by Pearce. This tale of discovery follows Callie, a girl who’s determined to get rich and not let anything like a love or a relationship distract her until she meets Lucius. Lucius turns her world upside down and shows her that perhaps money isn’t everything. Pearce is a 2013 and 2014 winner of the NaNoWriMo award.
17. A Rumor of Dragons by Michael A. Heald
A Rumor of Dragons follows Marc, a man who’s got nothing to lose in a Kingdom called Cathgar. Laughed at by his friends and used as a political pawn by his father, Marc decides to take a new approach to his life and starts enjoying it, until the kingdom falls into the hands of a traitor. Published in 2007, this gritty tale is sure to leave the reader eager to read the next installment. A Rumor of Dragons is Heald’s first installment of the Chronicles of Ganus series.
18. Anathema by K.A. Tucker
This thrilling tale is the first book in Tucker’s Casual Enchantment series. Young and bored Evangeline meets someone who turns her dull life upside down but with excitement comes danger when she discovers her new friend might not be who she seems. This page turner was published in 2011 and is now part of a four-book series. Tucker, resident of Toronto, Ontario published her first book at the age of six, thanks to the help of her parents.
19. Cluck: Murder Most Fowl by Eric D. Knapp
An adventurous tale of battle, mixed with humor, Cluck: Murder Most Fowl follows Bobby, a man who finds himself trapped in a labyrinthian farm. Luckily for Bobby, Exorciste de Volaille is willing to fight the Rooster and his army of undead hens. Published in 2007, this tale will have you on the edge of your seat, but also in hysterics. Knapp is an award-winning author of several books.
20. North of Sunset by Henry Baum
Michael’s bored – he has it all, riches, fame, the best women and drugs. Now that he’s achieved what he wanted, he doesn’t know what to do with himself. Then a serial killer emerges in Los Angeles and everything changes. Perhaps this could be the exciting turn in events he’s been looking for. North of Sunset, published in 2007, proves to be an exciting and relatable read for anyone who’s ever wondered what’s next. Baum is the author of several novels and is also a musician.
21. Swans are Fat Too by Michelle Granas
This informative yet heartwarming novel follows Hania, a young overweight woman who returns to her native Poland to attend the funeral of her grandmother. Hania’s past failures comes to a halt in Poland, when she discovers her family needs her and perhaps someone could fall in love with her. Swans Are Fat Too published in 2014, offers a rich history of Poland. Granas, author of four novels, is a writer and translator living in Warsaw, Poland.
Image credit: Pixabay [author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://writingtipsoasis.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Gabrielle.png[/author_image] [author_info]Gabrielle Lazaro is a writer and freelancer living in Portland, OR. She has spent time working as a reporter at newspapers in her home state of Nebraska. She has an English degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.