It’s not at all uncommon for authors to compare their work to that of others. In fact, it’s not uncommon for agents to do the same thing. In a quick search of Publishers Marketplace I found the following comparisons:
pitched as in the tradition of Raymond Carver and Lorrie Moore
pitched as in the spirit of Alain de Botton’s How Proust Can Change Your Life or Richard Holmes’s The Age of Wonders
pitched as a James Bond-meets-The Da Vinci Code political crime thriller
pitched as in the tradition of Kate DiCamillo
pitched as in the tradition of Robert Ludlum and Dan Brown
pitched as a Pete McCarthy-meets-Nick Hornby travelogue
pitched as Infinite Jest with Silence of the Lambs
pitched as Sebastian Faulks’s Birdsong meets Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander
pitched as Dexter meets The Silence of the Lambs for teens
Now, my guess is that while some of these samples will appeal to you, others will turn you off. Maybe you’ve never been a fan of Robert Ludlum or you despised Infinite Jest. Whatever the reason, that’s the trick with using comparisons and why I caution you to be careful when doing so. Just as a comparison can give an agent or editor a very quick and easy idea of what your book is, it can turn them off or, worse, make it more confusing.
For example, I have no idea what Twilight meets Blue’s Clues would even be. Who would be the audience and how would a book like that work? And yes, this example is based on an actual pitch I received.
If you choose to do comparisons, take a look at Publishers Marketplace to get an idea for what works. Comparisons are used to show who an audience might be and work best if you’re using bestselling names, current or recent bestselling names, and not old or obscure references. They also work best if you have some idea that they are books or authors that will appeal to the agent you’re trying to pitch.