Apple Tree Dreams

The ramblings that appear when I'm driven to write what's in my head, rather than what's in someone else's.

105 Books That Don’t Contain Angst, Sex or Dead People (mostly)

Book recommendations from my friends and fellow readers (gathered from Facebook). I have not read all of these, and understand that occasionally there’s no accounting for taste. However, someone liked all these well enough to remember the titles and/or authors, and that they don’t contain angst, sex or dead people. That’s worth appreciating.

Please add to the list, or include endorsements in the comments. I’m keeping my recommendations for a future post, although I enjoyed many of these.

  1. Francine Rivers
  2. Judith Pella
  3. Bible
  4. Georgette Hyer
  5. Essie Summers
  6. Cheaper by the Dozen
  7. Where the Heart is by Billie Letts
  8. Barbara Kingsolver
  9. D.E. Stevenson
  10. L.M. Montgomery
  11. James Herriott
  12. Ivan Doig
  13. Karen Kingsberry (or Kingsbury–I’m presenting the spelling exactly as it was given to me)
  14. Ralph Moody
  15. Heaven is for Real
  16. Dawn Nelson
  17. Jane Kirkpatrick
  18. Ben Green
  19. When a Man’s a Man & Shepherd of the Hills by Harold Bell Wright
  20. Cleo Coyle
  21. Deborah Sharp
  22. Happy Happy Happy
  23. Irene Hannon
  24. Mercedes Lackey
  25. Cecelia Ahern
  26. Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls (my mom also recommends this, which gives it a tad more credibility in my, ahem, book)
  27. Travelers Gift
  28. The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  29. The Princess Bride (YES!–Fencing, fighting, torture, chases, escapes, true love, miracles–but no angst, sex or dead people–or not many)
  30. Hank the Cowdog
  31. Debbie Macomber
  32. Tuesdays with Morrie
  33. Kim Meeder
  34. Stephanie Plum by Janet Evanovitch
  35. Nicholas Sparks
  36. Max Laredo (Lucado?)
  37. RaeAnn Hadley
  38. Jan Karon- Out of Mitford Series
  39. Guideposts’ books
  40. Ree Drummond, Black Heels to Tractor Wheels
  41. Emily Greyson or Grayson
  42. Richard Paul Evans
  43. Chicken Soup for the Soul Series
  44. John L. Moore
  45. Number One Ladies’ Detective Agency
  46. Phillipa Gregory
  47. Leaning Into the Wind
  48. C.S. Lewis
  49. Love Comes Softly series by Janette Oak
  50. Rightful Place and Winter of Beauty by Amy Hale Auker
  51. Anything by Duck Dynasty folk
  52. Elmer Kelton
  53. Lauraine Snelling
  54. Divided Soul, the life of Gogol by Henri Troyat (very dry but interesting is the disclaimer with that one)
  55. Daphne DuMaurier (There, Mom–happy now) 🙂
  56. Calder series by Janet Daily
  57. Chris Kinds
  58. One Woman’s West, Pulling Leather, anything about the Oregon Trail
  59. The Help
  60. The Elm Creek quilt series by Jennifer Chiaverini
  61. Mrs. Lincolns Rival Jennifer
  62. Crowded in the Middle of Nowhere by Bo Brock
  63. Winter Garden
  64. Crazy in Alabama
  65. Cold Sassy Tree
  66. The Goldfinch
  67. A Girl Named Zippy
  68. Bossy Pants
  69. Divergent series (AWESOME…but probably not what you’re going for here…)
  70. Abraham’s Daughters by Beverly Lewis
  71. David Sedaris
  72. Christy & Julie & A Man Called Peter by Catherine Marshall
  73. The Longest Ride & The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
  74. Code Name, Verity
  75. Sarah Jio’s “Violets of March”
  76. Suzanna Kearsley (I’ve read nearly all she’s written, “The Winter Sea” and “The Firebird” — from my friend, Mari)
  77. Maggie Stiefvater’s books (especially the Shiver series
  78. first three of Immortal Instruments (book 6 is great but books 4 & 5 are dull)
  79. Carrie Ryan
  80. The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen
  81. Nora Roberts for a guaranteed happy ending
  82. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (et al)
  83. The Power of Now, A New Earth, A Return to Love, Conversations with God series
  84. The Big Love
  85. I Captured the Castle (I just read it–perfect for my parameters)
  86. My Family and Other Animals
  87. To Be Sung Underwater
  88. Longbourn by Baker (Downtown abbish), A Place Called Freedom by Follett, All the Light We Cannot See by Doerr, On the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Ford and A Hundred Flowers by Tsukiyama (from my Aunt Jenny, which means they rate almost as high as my mother’s recommendations)
  89. The Giver by Lois Lowry
  90. Stand Back, Said the Elephant, I’m going to Sneeze*
  91. Let’s Forget this Ever Happened
  92. Sh%t My Dad Says
  93. Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand and The Elegance of a Hedgehog
  94. Patrick F. McManus
  95. The Brushstroke Legacy by Lauraine Snelling
  96. Fortune’s Hand by Belva Plain
  97. Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud
  98. The Guernsey Literary and Potato-peel Society
  99. The Rose Project (read it, recommend it)
  100. Grace Livingston Hill (look for these with dusty old cloth covers in junk stores–the best books disguise themselves like this)
  101. Redshirts by John Scalzi
  102. Michael Perry’s “Coop” and “Visiting Tom”
  103. Crazy in Alabama
  104. Jayber Crow
  105. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Age 13 3/4

*From here on are recommendations friends of a friend gave when she posted a status asking for books with similar requirements. I trust her friends.



6 comments on “105 Books That Don’t Contain Angst, Sex or Dead People (mostly)

  1. bob
    July 21, 2014

    Oh! Half broke horses is awesome!!!!!!! Definitely worth reading!!!!

    • LaVida
      July 22, 2014

      The Glass Castle by the same author, Jeannette Walls, ranks higher on my list.

  2. Nancy and Gary Fisher
    July 22, 2014

    You have Debbie Macomber twice–31 and 55, but not Daphne duMaurier. Nora Lofts is also good and I like Anne Tyler. But there are a lot of really good books out there that I don’t know anything about.

    • windsong81
      July 22, 2014

      I changed a Debbie Macomber to Daphne duMaurier. Anyone know where I might get some copy editing skills from?

  3. Melody
    July 22, 2014

    Longbourn will be better and make more sense if you read Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice first.

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