Goodreads Members Suggest: Favorite Comfort Reads

Posted by Sharon on March 25, 2020


"Stay calm and read on" might be our collective slogan for the coming months. Since we all might need some help with that, we asked Goodreads members on Twitter and Facebook to name the comforting reads they turn to when life is hard.

Their responses ranged from classic children's stories to comedic memoirs. Some readers swear by "anything romance." Others like a heavier read to remind themselves of human resilience. And a good number mentioned cozy mysteries as their genre of choice—it's in the name, after all. One surprise? Multiple mentions of books featuring cats (and none featuring dogs).

Here are some comforting titles that are vetted and approved by your fellow readers. We hope you find a cozy book or two to cuddle up with in the weeks ahead.
 
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Comments Showing 1-50 of 158 (158 new)


message 2: by Rui Ning (new)

Rui Ning One hundred years of solitude? A comfort read? You guys are hardcore!


message 3: by Dina (new)

Dina The Goth Girl series by Chris Riddell


lucky little cat Rui Ning wrote: "One hundred years of solitude? A comfort read? You guys are hardcore!"

Thanks for saying it! And When Breath Becomes Air is a pretty tough read, too. . .


message 5: by Maria (new)

Maria Always Harry Potter


message 6: by Paul (new)

Paul  Kelly Nancy Mitford's "The pursuit of Love"is very funny and cheering.

Funniest book ever for me is John Steinbeck's "Tortilla Flat", this is naturally comedic in the language of the Paisanos of Monterey. Just pure genius in the "show, don't tell" style of writing that is given by an author respecting the reader.


message 7: by Anna (new)

Anna Mine might be a bit of a strange pick: Süskind's "Perfume". I first read it in high school, and now that I've picked it back up, it's oddly comforting. It's such strange, beautiful prose.


message 8: by Emkoshka (new)

Emkoshka Children's fantasy books all the way. The top drawer of the dresser by my bed is full of all my childhood favourites, and I intend to (re)read my way through all of them in these months of self-isolation. Currently reading 'A Wrinkle in Time' and will probably pick up 'The Ogre Downstairs' next.


message 9: by Hcolleen (last edited Mar 25, 2020 03:51AM) (new)

Hcolleen For me, comfort reads include "Good Omens', 'Snow Crash', and 'A Wrinkle in Time'...Good Omens because it makes me laugh, Snow Crash...I'm not really sure why but it's comforting to me... and A Wrinkle in Time because it was my favorite book in childhood and I've read 3 copies to pieces and it's like...I suppose a comfort object...a blankie...

ETA: Also (almost forgot...shame on me) Fred the Vampire Accountant series and Pears and Peril are rather comforting...Fred for his calm approach to a crazy life and Pears and Peril because it's such a comforting concept.


message 10: by Oda Renate (new)

Oda Renate Most Meg Cabot books comfort me, geek girl by holly smale is also comforting. The parasolverse books by Gail carriger are like warm hugs.


message 11: by Javier (last edited Mar 25, 2020 07:57AM) (new)

Javier I would recommend The Dead Writer a novel by Núria Añó who is translated in English and it shows the creation of a literary work trough Anna, the main character.


message 12: by Aura (new)

Aura Rui Ning wrote: "One hundred years of solitude? A comfort read? You guys are hardcore!"

I was thinking the same!


message 13: by Tamera (new)

Tamera Glenn Devine BRIDGET JONES'S DIARY. So funny always puts me in a good mood.


message 14: by Holly (new)

Holly Right now my comfort reads are Moo and Horse Heaven by Jane Smiley.


message 15: by Annie (new)

Annie Caldwell “The Shadow of the Wind” for me!!! So beautifully written and engrossing.


message 16: by Ni (new)

Ni No Harry potter . But now trying to read LOTR series with this continuous spare time .


message 17: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Ober Any/all of Dorothy Sayers' Lord Peter Wimsey books.


message 18: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Cannon For me, my comfort read has always been Mary Stewart's romantic mystery/thrillers. I guess this is because I read them when I was a teenager and they gave me a warm, comfy, safe feeling.


message 19: by Mon (new)

Mon      Harry Potter! It's almost like a salve but in book form.


message 20: by Shelby (new)

Shelby Eagleburger De Caster Anna wrote: "Mine might be a bit of a strange pick: Süskind's "Perfume". I first read it in high school, and now that I've picked it back up, it's oddly comforting. It's such strange, beautiful prose."

I totally agree with this!


message 21: by Violaine (new)

Violaine Ila wrote: "Its Wuthering Heights, The Song of Achilles, David Copperfield, and The Great Gatsby for me."

Tempted to start Ulysses so I feel productive during this time.


message 22: by Ann (new)

Ann Nicolas wrote: "Someone here really likes cats hahaha :P"

I do but i didnt make the list lol


message 23: by Michael (new)

Michael Brown Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. Easy reads, some cheesy humor, fun action. Basically the perfect comfort read.


message 24: by Julie (new)

Julie Anything by PG Wodehouse


message 25: by Pam (new)

Pam Michael wrote: "Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. Easy reads, some cheesy humor, fun action. Basically the perfect comfort read."

I agree. Also, the Virgil Flowers' books by John Sanford have lots of humor.


message 26: by Elaine (new)

Elaine These are my go to's for comfort: Jan Karon's Mitford series, Anne of Green Gables series, Jane Austen, Laura Childs, Kattie Fforde, Rosamunde Pilcher, Susan Wittig Albert, Earlene Fowler and Sophie Kinsella.


message 27: by Bethany (new)

Bethany Ooh, I love these! The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, the Chronicles of Narnia, and Anne of Green Gables are my favorites from this list.


message 28: by Isaac (new)

Isaac Hughes Dear God,

All authority is Yours, but You have given authority to leaders to protect and guide us. Today, we ask that You would give all our leaders wisdom, discernment, strength, and resolve. Keep them healthy, safe, and rested so that they can continue to guide us through this troubling time.
Give our government leaders wisdom about what needs to be done to stop the virus and stabilize our economy.
Give our spiritual leaders Your discernment on how to meet people’s needs as they continue to glorify Your name and encourage the Church.
Give our medical leaders insight into how to stop the virus. Strengthen their resolve and honor their hard work in creating a treatment for COVID-19.
Give our civic leaders inspiration, courage, joy, and strength to meet the needs of their communities.
And help us, as leaders in our communities, to display courage, hope, generosity, and kindness. Would the way we honor others inspire those around us.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen🙏🏾


message 29: by Lee (new)

Lee The Lord of the Rings Hands down, my top choice. I read it every few years, so I am probably on my 10th reading. Even the audio version is wonderful. Not the battle moments so much, but the visions of the elves, and Tom Bombadil and the Ents -- they ARE real, aren't they?


message 30: by DS (new)

DS The Distant Summer by Sarah Patterson is a great YA book, if you can find it. Also, the entire Maisie Dobbs seriesiJacqueline Winspear and the entire Bess Crawford series Charles Todd are excellent for those who like historical mysteries.


message 31: by DS (new)

DS Julie wrote: "Anything by PG Wodehouse"

Absolutely!


message 32: by Bronwyn (last edited Mar 25, 2020 09:23AM) (new)

Bronwyn Knox I always turn to my Bloom County collection. Bloom County Babylon: Five Years of Basic Naughtiness and Classics of Western Literature: Bloom County, 1986-1989 have been my anxiety-reducing books of choice since I was a kid.


message 33: by Jim (new)

Jim Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons
The Necroscope by Brian Lumley
Dhalgren by Samuel Delaney
The Memory Room by Mary Rakow
The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth
Macbeth by William Shakespeare
Aureole by Carole Maso


message 34: by Rouan (new)

Rouan What does Isaac's post have to do with comfort reads?

Some of my comfort reads are The Dog Who Wouldn't Be by Farley Mowat; Thales Folly by Dorothy Gilman, Jane Austen books, of course, any books by Mary Stewart, Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series.


message 35: by Midelaye (new)

Midelaye The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet is like comfort food in book form.


message 36: by Alfred (new)

Alfred Weber The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, A Prayer for Owen Meany


message 37: by Sophie (new)

Sophie Nicolas wrote: "Someone here really likes cats hahaha :P"

Cats, actually all animals, are comforting.


message 38: by Varun (new)

Varun Rajwade My comfort reads are all Ruskin Bond. He is my fav author cause he just simplifies life to its minimum.

My top reads are: The Room on the Roof, Rusty- the Boy from the Hills, The Book Of Nature, A book of Simple Living & Rain in the Mountains.


message 39: by Amy (new)

Amy Hearst I agree - some of these books aren't comforting at all! Very well written, but not comforting.

When I feel anxious, I reach for anything by Maeve Binchy. She soothes my soul.

Kent Haruf is another author that I love to escape with.


message 40: by Erin (new)

Erin Goolsby Mine is The Neverending Story by Michael Ende


message 41: by Fenris (new)

Fenris My comfort reads are cozy mysteries, like Rita Mae Brown's Sneaky Pie novels, in which the animals do most of the sleuthing and have speaking roles throughout (to the audience, not the other characters). Agatha Christie's Poirot novels are excellent because they engage the mind and Poirot is adorable. Aside from mysteries I go for fantasy and magical realism, the best example of which (for me) is Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susannah Clark. I never read dystopic novels anymore, since our world is dystopic already.


message 42: by Fenris (new)

Fenris Bethany wrote: "Ooh, I love these! The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, the Chronicles of Narnia, and Anne of Green Gables are my favorites from this list."
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society was a lovely movie as well. It was on Netflix not too long ago.


message 43: by Fenris (new)

Fenris Rouan wrote: "What does Isaac's post have to do with comfort reads?

Some of my comfort reads are The Dog Who Wouldn't Be by Farley Mowat; Thales Folly by Dorothy Gilman, Jane Austen books, of course, any books ..."


Never Cry Wolf by Mowat was excellent too!


message 44: by Amari (new)

Amari Kiyo's Story, by Kiyo Sato, is doing it for me right now.

Short stories as a genre are also appealing to me at the moment, appropriate as they are for diminished concentration. I'm currently reading Sarajevo Marlboro (thank you, Archipelago Press, for free online access to this and 29 other titles!).

LeGuin's No Time to Spare (a collection of her blog entries) is excellent and might be a fitting, calming choice for many.


message 45: by Ashes (new)

Ashes Harry Potter, the 100th reread!


message 46: by Laura (new)

Laura I love niche memoirs by authors like Bob Tarte and William Alexander, or even Amy Chua's controversial book. Not someone's whole life, and not necessarily someone famous, but just a specific time or subject in their life. . . I recently read one called The Less People Know About Us, which was about a woman's lifelong experience with identity theft! It can be hard to know exactly where to start with these, but they have come up randomly for me in recommendations, and I find sinking into someone else's life and focus for that period of time very distracting and calming.


message 47: by Arianna (new)

Arianna Maria wrote: "Always Harry Potter"

It has been my comfort reading since I was 11


message 48: by Kathi (last edited Mar 25, 2020 11:40AM) (new)

Kathi Anything by Louise Penny or Anne Perry!! Everything Louise Perry has written I've read at least twice and want to again!! I want to live in Three Pines. Also A Gentleman in Moscow and Alexander McCall Smith-the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Series is sweet and so very special.


message 49: by Mary Catherine (last edited Mar 25, 2020 11:38AM) (new)

Mary Catherine Smith I'm currently reading Little Women and it has definitely become my favorite comfort reading book!!! It has actually become my favorite book and I have only gotten halfway through.


message 50: by Kayla (new)

Kayla I weirdly find 1984 by George Orwell comforting... I know it’s strange!


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