How do I find a fiction book by topic or genre?

How do I find a novel? How can I search for fiction by genre?


The SDSU Library tends to focus on literary fiction – literature that will have lasting value for scholars. The library does collect some popular literature, particularly award winners and titles that cross over to a more general audience. Both San Diego Public Library and San Diego County Library have a collections of popular fiction and non-fiction ebooks, article databases, and streaming media.

Find fiction books by topic or genre in the SDSU Library

  • Do a subject keyword search in OneSearch and remove books that discuss or analyze the topic. ‚ÄčLimit to online books by applying the Available Online and Books filter available on the left navigation bar. Sample search statement:
         (horror OR ghost) AND (fiction OR stories OR tales) NOT (criticism OR authorship OR history)
  • Use OneSearch to find a book you have read and liked, then use the Subjects and Genre links to find similar books.
  • Browse the EBSCO eBook Collection categories Children's & Young Adult and Fiction. Search by keyword or limit by Subject.
  • Browse Ebook Central using the Browse Subjects link; select Fiction, then limit by Subject terms (on the left).
  • Take a look at recommendations from SDSU Librarians:

Find fiction books by topic or genre in the San Diego Public Library and San Diego County Libary

Consult a recommended reading database 
Check OneSearch for recommended titles. If SDSU doesn't have the book, the San Diego Public Library or San Diego County Library may have it.

  • What Should I Read Next Enter a book you like and the site will provide recommendations for what to read next.
  • Gnooks Who do you like? Gnooks will suggest similar authors and titles.
  • Fiction DB Search by series, plot snippets, genres, themes, people/characters, time periods, age level, award winners, and more.
  • WhichBook - Ask for recommendations by Mood & Emotion; World Map; Character & Plot; Bestsellers.
  • NoveList K-8 is available thru SDPL, and allows you to find fiction titles for classroom use or reading including picture books; children's chapter books; and young adult titles.
  • NoveList Plus is available thru SDPL, and is a guide to suggested reading for all ages with reviews and other features.


  • Last Updated Mar 16, 2023
  • Views 502
  • Answered By Laurel Bliss

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