Share 7 Unputdownable Novels About Secret Societies

7 Unputdownable Novels About Secret Societies

Alice Martin is a PhD candidate in English Literature at Rutgers University, where she obsesses over nineteenth-century women writers, the history of the publishing industry, and writing practices. She’s also a regular contributor to Shelf Awareness and a freelance writer and editor. Her writing has appeared in The Carolina Quarterly, Appalachian Heritage, and Sixfold among other publications. You can find her talking about books, food, and basketball (in that order) on Twitter @AliceJeanMartin.

Bookish cults, deadly clubs, and crews of castoffs, oh my! Secret societies come in all shapes and sizes in these seven thrilling tales of murder, liberation, and ambition. At some time or another, we’ve all dreamed of what it would be like to get that exclusive invite or stumble upon the hidden world of a community bound together by something beyond our greatest imaginings. Consider this your invitation to join in on the secrets tucked between these pages.


Angels & Demons
by Dan Brown

Before THE DA VINCI CODE, Dan Brown’s crime-solving professorial protagonist Robert Langdon went to the Vatican in ANGELS & DEMONS. In this intellectual, action-packed pager-turner, an ancient secret society has stolen powerful antimatter to create an apocalyptic time bomb that threatens the Vatican’s existence. To prevent the destruction, Langdon teams up with an Italian scientist to solve the clues that may be able to prevent the explosion, before it’s too late.

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Angels & Demons
Dan Brown

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MENTIONED IN:

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By Alice Martin | November 6, 2019

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The Parting Glass
by Gina Marie Guadagnino

In THE PARTING GLASS, two women struggle to embrace their true selves within the sharply stratified world of nineteenth century New York City. By day, Mary is an obedient maid to the wealthy socialite Charlotte. But by night, Mary unwinds by drinking with the dangerous members of a secret society while Charlotte pursues an affair with a stable boy, who happens to be Mary’s brother. Lush and provocative, this debut novel will appeal to fans of Sarah Waters’s historical fiction.

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The Parting Glass
Gina Marie Guadagnino

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The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
by Theodora Goss 

What happens when the monsters of classic fantasy and science fiction’s most fearful scientists finally meet their creators? In THE STRANGE CASE OF THE ALCHEMIST’S DAUGHTER, Mary Jekyll is on a mission to hunt down her father’s partner, famed murderer Edward Hyde. Together with his daughter, Diana, and a handful of other female experimentations, Mary soon learns that her father, Hyde, and many others were members of a fearsome secret society, and it’s up to them to put a stop to the madness.

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The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
Theodora Goss 

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School for Psychics
by K.C. Archer

SCHOOL FOR PSYCHICS is the first in K.C. Archer’s new series about a school of psychics and the forces trying to manipulate them. Teddy is a headstrong young woman with the ability to read people with uncanny accuracy. Soon, she’s invited to a secret, cutthroat institution that trains the talented to work in the upper echelons of the U.S. government. But all is not as it seems, and Teddy must identify friend and foe before her own abilities are used against her.

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School for Psychics
K.C. Archer

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MENTIONED IN:

7 Unputdownable Novels About Secret Societies

By Alice Martin | November 6, 2019

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Ninth House
by Leigh Bardugo

A fantastical reimagining of Leigh Bardugo’s own time at Yale University, NINTH HOUSE follows Alex Stern, the sole survivor of a multiple homicide. While recovering in the hospital, Alex is offered a full-ride scholarship to Yale University by a mysterious benefactor who asks only that Alex monitor Yale’s aristocratic secret societies while she’s there. But Alex soon learns this is no easy task as the activities of these societies are far darker and more deadly than she could have ever imagined.

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Ninth House
Leigh Bardugo

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MENTIONED IN:

7 Unputdownable Novels About Secret Societies

By Alice Martin | November 6, 2019

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Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore
by Robin Sloan

In Robin Sloan’s award-winning romp, Clay Jannon, a web-design expert in San Francisco, is forced to work in a bookshop after the recession costs him his job. But all is not what it seems in this hole-in-the-wall store. Suspicious customers “check out” mysterious volumes and no one ever buys a book. After Clay begins snooping for answers, he discovers a bookish cult beyond his wildest imagination. MR. PENUMBRA’S 24-HOUR BOOKSTORE offers readers a thrilling, witty love letter to books with an old-fashioned sensibility.

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Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore
Robin Sloan

Clay lands a job at a mysterious 24 hour bookstore with few customers and almost no book sales. What he discovers about the store and the owner and the world beyond makes this a page turner of a novel.

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MENTIONED IN:

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The Seven Dials Mystery
by Agatha Christie

A lesser-known whodunit by the queen of mystery Agatha Christie, THE SEVEN DIALS MYSTERY appears, on its surface, to be nothing more than a prank gone wrong. A party of houseguests decides to tease Gerry Wade, who is well-known for being a marathon sleeper, by setting eight alarms, all meant to go off one right after the other. But when one alarm does not sound, their prank has fatal consequences. Featuring characters from Christie’s other books, this novel offers a look at the complex web of Christie’s own oeuvre.

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The Seven Dials Mystery
Agatha Christie

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MENTIONED IN:

7 Unputdownable Novels About Secret Societies

By Alice Martin | November 6, 2019

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