Lottie and Lisa by Erich Kästner
Lottie & Lisa
Erich Kästner

It’s amazing how many novelists use twins as key characters in their books or attempt to explore the complex relationships between twins in their plots.

Romulus and Remus, Artemis and Apollo, and Castor and Pollux have long been left behind in history and mythology. In recent decades, there have been numerous novels featuring identical twins, evil twins, separated at birth twins, warring twins, twin sleuths, imprisoned twins, twins that are not twins and so on.

To novelists, twins can be very bad, very misunderstood, very mysterious and sometimes badly mistreated. In fact, it would be fair to argue that twins get a bad rap from most writers.

One thing is clear - twins are never dull in literature. Audrey Niffenegger, Wally Lamb, Pat Conroy, Arundhati Roy, V.C. Andrews and Madeleine L’Engle are just a few of the authors to have turned to twins.

This mostly dark selection of twin-themed books does not include the Bobbsey Twins and other gentle interpretations of twin life.

If you're a twin, tell us about your reading habits. Do authors represent twins fairly in literature? Do you share the same taste in books as your twin? Email us.

A Selection of Twin-Themed Novels

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger
Her Fearful Symmetry
by Audrey Niffenegger
Chang & Eng by Darin Strauss
Chang & Eng
by Darin Strauss
I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb
I Know This Much is True
by Wally Lamb
Stranger with My Face by Lois Duncan
Stranger with My Face
by Lois Duncan
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
The Thirteenth Tale
by Diane Setterfield
Wise Children by Angela Carter
Wise Children
by Angela Carter
The Separation by Christopher Priest
The Separation
by Christopher Priest
Black Fox of Lorne by Angel De Maguerite
Black Fox of Lorne
by Angel De Maguerite
Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson
Jacob Have I Loved
by Katherine Paterson
The Third Twin by Ken Follett
The Third Twin
by Ken Follett
Juno & Juliet by Julian Gough
Juno & Juliet
by Julian Gough
Lives of the Twins by Rosamond Smith
Lives of the Twins
by Rosamond Smith
The Siamese Twin Mystery by Ellery Queen
The Siamese Twin Mystery
by Ellery Queen
The Girls by Lori Lansens
The Girls
by Lori Lansens
We Lead A Double Life by Ruth & Helen Hoffman
We Lead A Double Life
by Ruth and Helen Hoffman
The Solid Mandala by Patrick White
The Solid Mandala
by Patrick White
26a: A Novel by Diana Evans
26a: A Novel
by Diana Evans
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
Cutting for Stone
by Abraham Verghese
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
The God of Small Things
by Arundhati Roy
Identical by Ellen Hopkins
Identical
by Ellen Hopkins
The Last Child by John Hart
The Last Child
by John Hart
Many Waters by Madeleine L’Engle
Many Waters
by Madeleine L’Engle
The Nightspinners by Lucretia Walsh Grindle
The Nightspinners
by Lucretia Walsh Grindle
One Who Kills by Ridgwell Cullum
One Who Kills
by Ridgwell Cullum
Red Sky at Morning by Margaret Kennedy
Red Sky at Morning
by Margaret Kennedy

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