Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sunday Salon: Books That Bring a Smile To Your Face

There are some books that just make you smile when you read them. They make you feel happy, even if they tackle tough subjects. Calling them heartwarming is probably the kiss of death in literary terms but that's not really fair. Sure, the most celebrated literary books seem to celebrate dysfunction but there are some really lovely, well written books out there that are very much worth the read. The one I've been recommending most recently is A Man Called Ove by Fredrick Backman. And after I recommended it to a friend, she asked for more recommendations in the same vein. Because you can't read this without smiling. So I thought about others that made me feel the same way and came up with this list from the past however many years:

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson
A Guide to the Birds of East Africa by Nicholas Drayson
Jana Bibi's Excellent Fortunes by Betsy Woodman
The House at the End of Hope Street by Menna van Praag
a non fiction option: Merry Hall by Beverley Nichols
and one that made me giggle recently (review coming soon): Mr. Blandings Builds His Dreamhouse by Eric Hodgins

Do you have any books that just make you smile when you read them, books that you just wanted to hug to your heart when you were finished with them? Let me know in the comments because these sorts of books are too infrequent in my life and I'd love to change that.

This week I didn't get a lot of reading in but my bookish travels took me to a remote Polynesian island where seven people trying to hide from life come together and to the Natchez Trace where a woman walking the Trace and her elderly father providing support try to repair their relationship. I am still stuck in the supposedly humorous world of professional athletes and I am also moving between a POW camp in WWII Germany and the rural English home of the prisoner and his wife. Where did your reading travels take you this week?


  1. I LOVED A Man Called Ove! Thanks for the additional recommendations- I love a great book that makes me smile!

  2. Well, you hit the one: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry...another probably would be Yes Please by Amy Poehler and also Bossypants by Tina Fey. Although I haven't read them all, I have read a few of the Serge Storms series by Tim Dorsey and they've made me smile too.

  3. I recently had this discussion with my sister-in-law when I was describing The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. She recommended The Book of Ebenezer Le Page by G. B. Edwards, a book I had never heard of. I promptly bought it --and it's near the top of my next to read list.


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