Fiction, Lists, YA

5 Feel Good Books For When You Have The Lonelies A List Of Feel Good Books

When it’s cold out and it gets dark early, we tend to get the lonelies quite a lot. Then we grab our fluffy dog, cat or significant other, or perhaps… A fluffy book. This is the time when we need feel good books, possibly even romantic books that would pick us up! And this is precisely the list for that. Although I have to admit, while making this it, I started thinking I should read more sweet and fluffy stories myself!

When You Are Bashful In A Castle

I capture the castle

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith is one of my favorite books. It’s sort of a girl’s coming of age story, although it doesn’t tell any particularly special tale or anything – what appealed to me about it was that it’s so well told through the lips of a young teenage girl. If you’re a woman, it might remind you how you felt back when you were sixteen or seventeen yourself. The sense of being unsure of the world, of yourself, what you really want – and slowly learning to find it. The first kindlings of being in love, and not being sure what is exactly going on, or who you’re even in love with, and are you supposed to know how it works? Aside from that, as you might have guessed by the name, all of it sort of happens in a castle. In a very shabby, decrepit castle, because the family living in it is sort of a bunch of misfits. And one of those misfits if your incredibly adorable main character. It’s definitely one of those feel good books, and you know it – even if it’s a little bit wistful.

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When You Want To Switch Lives With Someone Else
the thousand tiny miracles of living twice

You will laugh at me, but the premise of The Thousand Tiny Miracles of Living Twice is really fun! A middle-age woman, a beautiful superstar, a prankster angel. Can you tell where this is going? Yes, long story short, the women switch bodies, without the consent of one of them, of course (can you guess which one?), and chaos ensues. This book manages to be light, fun and lyrical at the same time. There is some philosophising without any moralizing, although of course, you know which of the characters shouldn’t be doing what they’re doing. You will hardly be surprised by what goes on in this book, cause such a premise can only really go one way, but it surely is fun and uplifting, and you will get attached to the characters, even the ones who aren’t all that positive. Like all feel good books, it’s sweet, light and undemanding, although it might grab at your feels from time to time!

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When You Think You Have To Have Control Of Everything

things I should have knownThis is a teen book, and although I don’t read too many sweet YA books, Thing I Should Have Known by Claire LaZebnik really hit the spot! I was so in love with it. I wouldn’t say it’s a feel good book so much, but it just… Sort of makes you feel good? (Badum tsss.) It’s about a teen who shoulders a little bit too much responsibility, as she helps her Autistic sister deal with the world and life, and dearly and truly loves her. But from that love, comes a desire to control everything, to fix everything, to set it all right – even if it’s not about her own life, but rather the life of her sister. The main character learns a lot about how you never know what another person wants, or even what you yourself want. It’s an ode to sibling love, that’s one of the points I liked most! It’s also just so sweet and adorable. And to top it off, it’s a gem of diversity – it doesn’t just have an ASD character, it has more than that! But I’m not going to tell you what more it has, because you don’t want spoilers. So if you’re looking for something cute to read, or even something for a niece or daughter, this is it.

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When You Need To Say Goodbye To The Past

throwing my life awayThis one is definitely one of the YA feel good books you should mark down! (I know I said I don’t read a lot of YA…) It’s also perfect for reading in the winter, because it will remind you of warm and summery times. The premise of Throwing My Life Away by Liz Czukas is literally what it says in the title – the main character has to say goodbye to all her childhood and teens mementos because of a mix up, during which they are all lost. It’s a tough thing to read about, because imagine throwing away all your memories! But the bottom line is that the memories live on in you, and you don’t really lose them if you just remember who you are. The trick is to keep building new memories and not get trapped in the past! Aside from that, it’s also a story about moving off into your new life, getting ready to grow up, moving our of your parents’ house, graduating school. It might appeal to you if you’re at this point of your life right now. Truly recommended!

[ Shelve on Goodreads | Buy at Book Depository | Read the full review here ]

When A Spoiled Child Gets Responsibilities

The Secret GardenSo you all know this one! The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett is hardly a new release, and you wouldn’t really put it on your typical feel good books shelf either. (But you might have noticed that this is a bit of a different list already!) I don’t know what it is about books like these that makes me feel better, but they do – maybe because it’s about childhood? In The Secret Garden, a little girl is taught that one’s life is worth more when one invests into the lives and needs of others, when one cultivates something instead of letting everyone give them whatever they want. It teaches that you should have goals in life, that you should strive for somethingnot because hard work is cool or being lazy is bad, but simply because you will have more of a drive in your own life if you put some effort into it. Of course, this is a classic, and you must keep in mind that it’s sufficiently moralizing! Tended to happen with little girls’ or just kids’ books back then, apparently! If you can ignore the moralizing, it really is a sweet and uplifting, emotional story. You can even read it with the little ones!

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Have you read any of these feel good books? What do you read when you are cold and lonely? Any recommendations for me?

I’m Evelina and I try to blog about books that matter, with a bit of fun there too! Disability and equality will be topics you see a lot, but there’s also a lot of scifi, fantasy and… GIFs. I’m also the proud founder of #ARCsAnonymous.

54 thoughts on “5 Feel Good Books For When You Have The Lonelies A List Of Feel Good Books

  1. Thing I Should Have Known was so precious! It will be in many book lists for me this year! Best Neurodiversity books, Best LGBTTQQIAAP etc. I made a list of “How to beat the winter blues, “feel good” books that is coming up next week. I should have added Thing I Should Have Know! 🙂
    I think I added The Thousand Tiny Miracles of Living Twice t GR bc of your review 🙂
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    1. It truly WAS so precious, wasn’t it 🙂 I can’t say I have read anything like it since. Even though it was such a simple book, it was also very cute and very pure. I’d love to read one more like that 🙂 oh, and I hope you’ll like the Thousand Miracles! 🙂

    1. Throwing My Life Away is relatively unknown, I guess, but it’s very light, clean and adorable 🙂 I’m almost sure you’d like it!

      P.S. I have received your Twitter messages, I’m sorry I haven’t been able to reply, but I will definitely note down the posts, thank you for sending me the links <3

    1. That’s great, I’m glad you enjoyed the list! 🙂 yeah, those are definitely cute and fluffy reads, and they’re also relatively clean reads (as you might not know, I really dislike non-clean reads xD) And thank youuuuu! 🙂 yes, I plan on doing more lists, for sure 🙂

    1. I think you might have, books we read in childhood just tend to go away and leave nothing but the name and cover 😀 it’s also often packaged in one book with Lord Fauntleroy. Maybe you remember that one? 🙂 and yes! Book #4 is incredibly cute and adorable 🙂

  2. Oh. My. God. I freaking LOVE I Capture the Castle!! It’s also one of my all-time favorite feel-good books 🙂 My dad bought it for me when it was reprinted here in the States after he heard a public radio review saying it was perfect for young girls. He doesn’t pick out presents himself very often, so it’s both a great story and a fond memory rolled into one 🙂
    JJ @ This Dark Material recently posted…film review: insideMy Profile

    1. Yay! I think we do have similar tastes a lot, cause I just saw Book of Dust on your blog, and you love I Capture the Castle too! Have you read We Have Always Lived in the Castle? It’s different, but it has intersections with this one too 🙂 I loved that as well.
      Aw, that’s a lovely story of how you got that book 🙂 I recently bought another book by Dodie Smith (okay, recently = last spring). So eventually I’m going to read it xD

      1. It looks like it! 🙂 I haven’t read We Have Always Lived in the Castle, but it was recommended to me last year and has languished on my TBR ever since. I think I’m going to have to bump it up to the top of the list!

        Ooo, which one? I’ve only read I Capture the Castle, but I know she also wrote 101 Dalmations? I think??
        JJ @ This Dark Material recently posted…film review: insideMy Profile

        1. Oh, you should totally read it, it’s SO GOOD! It’s such a summer read for me though, I guess I can recommend to read it this summer then? 😀 hehe

          And the book is called The Town in Bloom 🙂

  3. Seems like a great list! I haven’t read any of these but they definitely look like the ones I would enjoy Also, that book – living twice one- reminds me of a movie with a similar plot where two friends switch their lives when they go to that Rome fountain I can’t remember the movie name right now but that movie was quite enjoyable
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    1. Thanks 🙂 yeah, keep this list for a day when your mood isn’t very good, and then choose something from here 😀
      Oh, I don’t know that movie! But yeah, stories like that can be really uplifting, even though they’re simple and not too fancy 🙂

  4. I read The Things I Should Have Known last year and really liked it. The bond between the sisters, as well as the one between the brothers, were some of my favorite aspects of the story. I have been wanting to read a Czukas book and this may be a good one to start with.
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    1. Yeah, that was one epic good, sweet and fluffy, as well as diverse and honestly written 🙂 and I think you’d like Czukas too! BTW she’s writing under “Ellie Cahill” now, I think?

  5. I love this post and you’re right, sometimes we do need something fluffy and heartwarming to make us feel good inside <3
    The Secret Garden is one of my all time favorite children's books and I'm so glad it made the list 🙂

    1. Aww, thanks 🙂 yes, I think the world would be a better place if we all read or watched some fluffy and adorable things more often 🙂
      I’m glad you like The Secret Garden! A lot of people say it’s too didactic and too cutesy, but I absolutely loved it. Any recs along these lines?

  6. Some great book recs, and a couple on here I’ve not read! Love the sound of Thousand Tiny Miracles. I’d not even heard of it but it just sounds like the kind of book you get sucked into without expecting it. It sounds a little ridiculous but so good. And Throwing My Life Away is one I forgot was even on my to buy list but I totally want to treat myself now. Maybe I’ll buy soon although it sounds more of a warm summer night read to me.
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    1. Yeah, The Thousand Tiny Miracles was very cute and engaging indeed 🙂 yes, it was a little ridiculous, that is true 😀 Throwing My Life Away is totally worth it! I hope you enjoy these, if you do get them this year 🙂

  7. I’ve managed to never read The Secret Garden (although I’m pretty sure I own a copy), I do have one of the film adaptations spring to mind whenever I think about it though. And having said that, I’ve read none of these books at all!

    When I’m feeling lonely I usually grab one of my cats and force them to snuggle (they’re usually not very impressed by this 😛 )
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    1. I know the drill, I am the same with my cat 😀 CATS ARE THE BEST. But when enough is enough, then I grab a sweet book xD oh, and classics seem to be THE books people usually don’t get to read xD

  8. I am a bit embarrassed to say that I haven’t read ANY of these books! But I Capture the Castle was recently recommended to me and it sounds PERFECT for me. I have recently gotten into older Western European atmospheric novels such as Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. I want to read a ton like that, and I was told I Capture the Castle is written in a similar style and is WONDERFUL. You’ve recommended it too, so obviously I’m going to read it. 😀

    There is something about The Secret Garden which has always put me off from picking it up. And that’s probably the bratty main character (yes, yes, I understand she grows and develops throughout and that’s the POINT of this book…). I love your reasoning for adding it to this list, however.

    I have desperately been craving feel good books lately. With the Winter and the state of my country and the pressure of my job plus the wedding… well, let’s just say my mental state has certainly been better. I’ll be adding The Thousand Tiny Miracles and Living Twice and Things I Should Have Known to my TBR. The books I’ve recently picked up to meet this craving in me are Geekarella and Etiquette and Espionage. But are YA, but sometimes you just need that fluff to make you happy! 😀
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    1. I have a ton of recs like that, actually, and I remember writing out a long list in a comment for you a long time ago xD I am actually thinking of making a proper link post for that, and I had you in mind when I was thinking of it 😀

      I Capture the Castle isn’t like Rebecca, it’s not really dark. It’s kind of the opposite, in the same setting? And it’s absolutely amazing. I’m sure you’ll love it. Although your feminist side might find stuff I didn’t really notice. But it was written 100 years ago.

      Yeah, the bratty MC in The Secret Garden is precisely the point 😀 but yeah, it’s either that, or the moralizing that puts people off. I agree that being the way she is, she got off pretty easily and “reformed” without any substantial losses, which is not that common in a didactic tale and often leaves you with a bitter aftertaste xD

      But isn’t a wedding supposed to make you happy? XD the event of a lifetime? XD I do realize it’s very stressful though. And yeah, both the ones you TBR’ed and those other ones sound like good picks for the situation 🙂

  9. I love I Capture the Castle and The Secret Garden, and will now add all the others to my TBR, because you made them all sound so GOOD. Also, I really appreciate how you give the feel of a book without giving too much away–I don’t like to have many expectations going into a book.

    One book I’d suggest for beating the winter blues is Happy All the Time by Laurie Colwin. Her characters aren’t actually happy all the time, but there is a core of goodness and hope to her work.

    1. Hahaha, I hope you’ll like them too, I don’t want to ruin my reputation in your eyes if they don’t turn out too good 😀 oh yeah, I always try to explain the emotion, because why else do we read 🙂 it’s no fun to talk about what actually happens in a book! That’s why people read the book, not the review 😀 aw, thank you, I should definitely look that one up 🙂

  10. I really like this post. I actually have that book by Katarina West and have yet to read it, so I will probably pick that one up on a day when I need something feel good for winter or the lonelies. Oh, and I remember reading The Secret Garden when I was younger. That was totally my childhood DD:
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