It's a great time to be a fantasy fan. Right now, readers are celebrating (and likely devouring) House of Flame and Shadow, the third entry of the bestselling Crescent City series by Sarah J. Maas, which hit bookshelves on January 30. Maas has managed to be incredibly consistent with her publishing schedule: She delivered the nearly 900-page tome just two years after House of Sky and Breath (Crescent City Book 2), which itself was published two years after the series-starting House of Earth and Blood.
It's remarkable to churn out books with such consistency and quality. Early reviews of the third work are already glowing, and Maas has confirmed that the series won't stop here. There's plenty more story left to tell in this universe, and we can't wait to read it all. But, if you're one of the devout fans who has already finished House of Flame and Shadow and begun to lament the wait for Book 4 that lies ahead, don't worry.
In an interview with We Are Bookish, Maas was asked a simple but vital question: “What books do you recommend readers pick up while they wait [for Crescent City sequels]?”
Maas answered, “If readers want something in the vein of Crescent City, pick up anything by Nalini Singh, all of her books are brilliant. There’s also J.R. Ward, Karen Marie Moning, Gena Showalter, Ilona Andrews, Jennifer L. Armentrout, Laurell K. Hamilton.”
If you want to go check out those authors and discover their catalogs for yourself, we certainly won't stop you. But here's a list of the seven works we think will most directly appeal to Crescent City fans desperate for something with similar themes, strengths, and passions.
What Is Crescent City?
House of Earth and Blood
The Crescent City series begins with Bryce Quinlan, a woman who works hard and plays hard in a contemporary world. You might almost call her ordinary, except for the fact that she's half-Fae. That all changes when a demon attacks her closest friends. Though the authorities capture their suspect, Bryce's desire for both the truth and justice doesn't end there. She's determined to avenge her friends, no matter what it takes … even if that means teaming up with Hunt Athalar.
Hunt is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved as an assassin. But when Bryce offers him a chance at freedom, he leaps at it. Together, Bryce and Hunt discover both a dark power and a passion that could consume them both.
“The first in the Crescent City series has all of the fantastic elements, colorful characters, steamy romance, and action-packed plot Maas' readers look for,” wrote LynnDee Wathen for Booklist in her online review. The mystery and adult audience, however, help make the story feel new and powerful.
House of Sky and Breath
The relationship between Bryce and Hunt managed to ignite under dangerous and troubling circumstances. Now, all they want is a chance to breathe and figure out what comes next.
Unfortunately, inaction means turning a blind eye, which isn't something either of them has ever been good at. Soon, the pair find themselves swept up in a rebellion against a race of god-like conquerors.
The second book of the series is more character-driven, deepening the relationship between its two heroes and the personal histories that make their connection so compelling.
House of Flame and Shadow
The first two books of the series showed just how potent Bryce and Hunt can be together. House of Flame and Shadow brings a new challenge, however: How well can they adapt to being apart?
Bryce is stranded in a strange new world, and though Hunt is desperate to reach her, his hands are tied…
More Books for Crescent City Fans
If you're looking for a full series to binge, you really can't go wrong with the Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh. This 16-book series follows vampire hunter Elena Deveraux, who is the very best (and she knows it). In Angels' Blood, the first book of the series, seductive Archangel Raphael hires Elena for a job that stretches even her limits.
This time, she's not tracking down a wayward vampire. Instead, it's another archangel that Raphael wants to put down. Trapped between these heavenly forces, Elena is thrust into the midst of a terrible killing spree. What chance does a mere mortal stand in a game of angels?
Jim Heron specializes in revenge, not redemption. When he is made into a fallen angel, however, he is charged with saving the souls of seven people. If he fails, trouble is sure to follow.
One of Jim's charges is Vin DiPietro. A soulless businessman, Vin never expected to have his own personal guardian angel … or to fall in love. But when a woman walks into his life and makes him question everything he knew, Vin must work with his fallen angel to win her over and save himself.
Shadow and Ice
Knox of Iviland might not be an archangel's assassin, the way Hunt is in Crescent City, but he is considered the most ruthless warrior in All War History and, like Hunt, Knox seeks his freedom through conquest. If he can prevail in the battle for Earth, he will no longer be a slave.
Vale London, the book's heroine, is a modern woman on an arctic getaway with her foster sister when she stumbles into a cave filled with ancient gods locked in combat.
Vale and Knox are from entirely different worlds, and when those worlds collide, they ought to be enemies. Despite this, the pair are drawn to each other through an undeniable bond.
The Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews details a world where magic and technology dominate the landscape in waves. At some points, mages can cast their spells and monsters arise from nowhere, while guns and cars refuse to work. Then the tide shifts, and technology takes its turn as magic recedes.
It takes a clever and versatile mercenary to thrive in such times, and Kate is not exactly thriving. Similar to Bryce's backstory, Kate's guardian has been attacked, thrusting her into a quest for justice. To earn that justice, she'll need to work through the confusing division between necromancers and shapechangers.
She's fairly certain she's out of her league, and she wouldn't have it any other way.
Many Crescent City readers try Armentrout's bestselling From Blood and Ash, but Wicked might be better-suited for fans. Set in modern-day New Orleans, the story follows 22-year-old Ivy Morgan, a college student who has lost everything at the hands of dark creatures she swore to hunt.
Ivy knows that her newfound connection with Ren Owens is dangerous. He might be handsome and charming, but she remembers how crushed she felt at losing her last love. Besides, she has a duty to the ones she lost, to justice. Shouldn't that duty be more important than these new desires?
A Terrible Fall of Angels
Detective Zaniel Havelock can communicate with angels. Once a devout follower of the celestial, Zaniel abandoned that life after a betrayal and became a cop. Now, he communes not just with angels but with demons, too.
When a college student is murdered, Zaniel must determine whether such evil is of human origin and whether he can stop the killer before death strikes again.
MacKayla “Mac” Lane's life is flipped upside down when her sister is murdered, leaving behind a single clue. A cryptic message on Mac's cell phone leads her to Ireland and then onward into the strange, shadowy realm of the Fae. Working out who to trust and how to stay alive soon becomes just as important as the mystery.
The boundary between realms begins to crumble as dangerous men circle Mac. In the first entry of Karen Mari Moning's completed, 11-book series, Mac must seek a book of powerful dark magic and take control of the fabric of two worlds … before someone far worse does.