Uplifting book club reads
Does your book club always choose dark and intense books? If so, it’s time to focus on some cheerful and uplifting books. Books that will make you feel good, help you get through the winter blues and inspire you to keep moving forward!
So what is a good uplifting book for book club? Uplifting books are those which take your mind of for a while and make you untroubled and delighted. Whenever you book clubs want to have fun and joyful discussion, these books are perfect.
The books on this list are all uplifting in their own way. Whether it’s Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau or The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley, they each have something unique to offer and can be enjoyed by readers of all ages!
I definitely think book clubs should have more feel-good books in their reading list. Not only do they boost your mood, but are also a reminder to be positive and happy. And guess what, we all need that pick-me-up in our lives!
This list has some of the best works of authors, Lucy Score, Beth O’Leary, Emily Henry, Mitch Albom and many more!
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People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
Alex and Poppy have been best friends since college. Although they have no shared interests, they somehow managed to remain friends for years and have been taking vacations together. But for the last two years, things have been different. The two have drifted away and never spoken to each other since. Downhearted Poppy thinks they should take another trip to make things right, and to her surprise, Alex agrees. People We Meet on Vacation is an utterly charming slow-burn romance for your book club.
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One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
August has been moving from one place to another, trying to find a place that she can finally call home. Now she is in New York City, living with a few weird roommates and doing a waitressing job along with her studies. However, on her first day of class everything seems to go wrong. She is devastated and almost drawing in the spilled coffee. Thankfully, she receives an unexpected kindness from a subway girl named Jane and it really made her day. But soon she discovers that Jane is in fact displaced in time from the 1970s. A feel-good and swoon-worthy YA love story for your reading group!
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman
Introvert Nina Hill has always preferred a quiet life. She is the only child of a single mother and has the best job in the world. She will happily spend as much time as possible with books. This is also her way of avoiding people and surprises that might give her panic attacks. But when time comes she is forced to meet people, a lot of them who turn out to be her relatives. Abbi Waxman has written a hilarious tale, filled with vivid characters which makes the story a perfect pick-me-up
Things We Never Got Over by Lucy Score
Romance author Lucy Score’s latest is a charming small town romance novel. The main character is Naomi, who has a knack for cleaning up her twin sister’s mess. And this time she left her fiance at the altar to save her troublemaker sister in Knockemout, Virginia. However, little did she know that she is going to be a guardian for her niece that she never knew existed. And what’s more, she is in a new town with no job and no home.
The House In The Cerulean Sea by by TJ Klune
Linus Baker is a Case worker and lives by the rules. He leads a secluded life in a tiny house with his cat. Most of his days are spent in orphanages, overseeing the functioning for these government shelter homes. Now, he has been given a top secret assignment by Extremely Upper Management. His task includes travelling to a mysterious island to investigate the orphanage where six dangerous children reside. But then once there Linus is able to find a home for the first time.
Yours Cheerfully by AJ Pearce
The Sunday Times bestselling author AJ Pearce’s second novel is a follow up to her first novel Dear Mrs Bird. Things are going well with Emmy Woman’s Friend magazine. After her previous boss Henrietta Bird’s departure, she is the wartime advice columnist and is given more responsibilities. One of which is to write articles about the wartime female workers. She realises how hard it is for women to be working in the factories for less pay along with taking care of their children. Yours Cheerfully brilliantly elucidates the hardships and challenges of working mothers in the war time.
The Switch by Beth O’Leary
From the author of Flatshare comes an uplifting tale about two women from different generations who want to escape reality and find new life. 79 year old Eileen is looking for a second chance in love. As her tiny village isn’t the right place for her endeavours, she decides to swap places with her granddaughter. Meanwhile, Leena, who just had a nervous breakdown at work, agrees to it immediately. An engaging novel with rich characters that you wouldn’t be able to put down.
The Library by Bella Osborne
Introvert Tom is lonely and clueless about his future. Having lost his mother when he was eight, he is living with his alcoholic father. Maggie is an enthusiastic woman who loves people. Their unlikely friendship begins at the library, where these lonely bookworms spend the majority of their time. Later they join the mission of saving the local library. The Library is a beautifully written feel-good novel that exemplifies the joy of books.
Messy Wonderful Us by Catherine Isaac
Allie is a hardworking and young researcher who loves to spend time with her family. But when she finds a letter from her grandmother’s cupboard, which contains a secret about her deceased mother’s past, everything changes. As her grandmother refuses to talk about it, Allie decides to hire a detective to investigate the matter. Shortly after, Allie travels to Italy, along with her best friend, Ed, who is also battling his own share of problems. A delightful read for your book club!
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
In 1946, as London is slowly emerging from the clouds of WWII, writer Juliet Ashton is searching for a new subject for her book. Then she receives an unexpected letter from a native of the island of Guernsey. As they exchange more letters, she learns about The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society of the Island and their love for literature. Fascinated by the island and the people, Juliet decides to travel to Guernsey. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a poignant story, must-read for book lovers!
Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
American author Mitch Albom’s inspirational memoir explores the profound meaning of life and the most important lesson in it. Morrie was Mitch’s former teacher and loved his job a lot. Both had become close friends. However, after graduation Mitch hasn’t been in touch, until he learns about his best teacher’s illness. And realises that it’s his last chance to meet him. Thus the two decide to meet every tuesday, it’s what Mitch calls his final class- lessons in how to live.
Dear Reader by Cathy Rentzenbrink
A true bookworm will know the joy of spending endless hours of reading. Always buried in books, disconnected from the outside world. In Dear Reader author Cathy Rentzenbrink discusses this very notion. How she is rarely seen without her nose in a book. In every chapter she discusses a book that changed her life or helped her overcome the struggle. An uplifting memoir that is filled with childhood memories and plenty of book recommendations.
One Day In Summer by Shari Low
One Day In Summer is set in 24 hours and follows three characters, each story having a certain relation that’ll unfold over the course of the story. First we meet Agnetha, at the age of 45 year, has finally got time to reevaluate her life. Having spent decades looking after her children and parents, she finally wants to live for herself. Meanwhile her ex-husband who happened to marry her ex-best friend is going through a rough patch in marital life. And then there is Hope, who is finally going to meet her biological father, Aron.
Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau
Jessica Anya Blau’s dazzling novel takes you back to the Rock n Roll era of Hollywood. Set in 1970s Baltimore, the story centres around fourteen-year-old Mary Jane. A shy girl who follows the strict house rules and loves cooking. When she lands a job as a summer nanny at The Cones’, the whole family is excited at the prospect of working at a respectable household. However, it turns out that The Cones’ are actually an utter mess. There is litter in every corner and it’s always cereal and takeout for dinner. Suddenly the young Mary Jane discovers a whole new life.
The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley
79-year old Julian Jessop is certain that nobody is honest. People are always pretending to be someone else. So he decides it’s time to write the truth about himself in a green notebook and calls it, The Authenticity Project. He then leaves the book in a local cafe so that next person has the chance to write in it. The owner of the cafe, Monica, picks up the book and reads the content. Soon she also writes her story in the book and leaves it in the bar next door. As the notebook is passed on from one character to the other, each shares their vulnerabilities and loses. The Authenticity Project is an insightful and uplifting tale of love and friendship.
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The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot by Marianne Cronin
Marianne Cronin debut novel ‘The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot’ is diarmily funny and narrates a tale of an intergenerational friendship between two residents of the Glasgow Princess Royal Hospital, 17-year old Lenni and 83-year-old Margot. As both have lived 100 years, when adding their ages, they decide to celebrate their long life by painting memories of their lives. And their friendship deepens as they share their life stories. This heartwarming bitter-sweet tale is a testament to love and friendship
Miss Benson’s Beetle by Rachel Joyce
Ten year old Margery Benson loved the golden beetle of New Caledonia from the book “Incredible Creatures”. She is sure that someday she will be able to see the creature in real life. Now early 40s, Margery is a school teacher and is often ridiculed by her students. One day, she decides to leave the job and go on a quest for the golden beetle. She appoints Enid Pretty as her assistant in the mission. Together they travel across the ocean in search of the rare beetle.
The Guncle by Steven Rowley
Guncle is a feel-good novel that centres around retired sitcom star, Patrick. After losing the love of his love to a car accident, he leads an isolated life with occasional socialising. When he learns that his best friend and brother’s wife, Zara, passed away, he is forced to bring her two little kids to his house. Well, he adores them so he doesn’t think twice about the prospect! After all, how hard can it be to look after two kids!
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The Extraordinary Hope of Dawn Brightside by Jessica Ryn
This contemporary novel tells the story of Dawn Elisabeth Brightside who has been running away from her past for a while. After finding shelter in St Jude- a hostel for the homeless, she has finally come to terms with her urge to flee. Although she herself is struggling with mental illness, she constantly tries to help others. And we also meet Grace, a social worker who is in charge of the hostel. The narrative tackles the themes of mental health, homelessness and addiction.
Nothing To See Here by Kevin Wilson
Lillian and Madison were inseparable at school. But the former had to drop out of school to save her wealthy friend, Madison, from shame. Now here she is again begging Lilian to save her once again. This time she is married to Senator Roberts and a father of two kids. Lilian is asked to be in charge of these two, inflammable children (literally). The problem? Lilian needs a job, but she has no clue how to take care of children, as she never had a functional parent. A heart wrenching novel about a dysfunctional family and parenthood, written in a hilarious tone.
The Love Story of Missy Carmichael by Beth Morrey
If you loved A Man Called Ove and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine you’ll love this lovely book. 79 years old Missy is leading a solitary life in the family home where once her husband and children had lived. Now that they are all gone, she feels the stillness is haunting her. Until, she meets the lovely Angela and her son Otis. Subsequently, Sylvie and Bobby. This unexpected friendship gives Missy a new life and a family. A charming uplifting story that shows how friends and community can be life-changing.
The Lido by Libby Page
26-year-old Kate is a junior reporter for a local newspaper in Brixton, London who is responsible for covering small stories. Her new assignment includes writing about the closing of the local lido (an outdoor pool and recreation centre). That’s when she meets 86-year-old Rosemary to whom the Lido has been an essential part of life. Katie and Rosemary with the help of their community work together to save the Lido. Libby Page’s debut novel is a warm and affectionate tale about love, friendship and the power of a community.
The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
Curmudgeon A.J. Fikry runs the bookstore called Island Books on Alice Island. Even though it’s the only bookstore in the area, the store is on the verge of closure. Fikry is not very keen on running the business either, his plan is to sell the bookstore and auction his most precious possession, a rare collection of poems by Edgar Allan Poe. He was very confident of his plan, until it was stolen! Thanks to his habit of drinking! Amidst all this he receives a mysterious package that changes everything.
The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce
If you’ve read The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, you might have been curious about the famous Queenie Hennessy, for whom Harold had walked miles! This sequel you will learn more about her story. Now she writes a long letter to Harold describing her childhood and university days. She also confesses secrets that she has been hiding from him for years. A thoughtful tale filled with black humour, just like its prequel.
There you have 21 best uplifting book club reads.
What other feel-good uplifting books would you add in the list?
Let me know in the comments!
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