It definitely seems a bit funny, but if you’re in on the amazingness that is books about books you’ll know what I mean! Bookish subjects like libraries, bookstores, librarians, academia and researchers all have a place in my heart.
If you haven’t read a book in this genre yet, I firmly believe I can turn you to the dark side if you read one of the books I have listed here. These books transcend genres like fantasy, scifi and mystery. You might find all three in some!
There’s something for everyone here so pick what speaks most to you and let me know what you think after reading it. If for some strange reason you don’t like anything on this list, don’t worry there’s going to be another!
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, By Gabrielle Zevin
AJ Fikry is a sad, lonely bookstore owner whose wife had passed away and bookstore sales are down. To top it all off, his most prized possession, a rare and valuable first edition mysteriously disappeared from his apartment. Then his life turns upside down when someone leaves a package in his bookstore. A life altering, love filled package that will lead Fikry down the path he was always meant to live.
This amazingly heart warming story will leave you smiling and possibly even shedding tears of happiness. Seeing Fikry’s life go from rock bottom to everything he’s ever wanted is so touching, you’ll want to read this book over and over again like I do. Word is it’s being adapted into a movie too! (We all know the book will be better, so read this first!)
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill, By Abbi Waxman
Introvert Nina is used to her simple life consisting of her job at the bookstore, her cat named Phil and her trivia team. There is nothing more to life than reading a good book at home, until there is. Nina finds out her father, who she never knew existed, has died and left her an inheritance. She also has a whole family now and they all live nearby!
This is Nina’s journey out of her shell into this amazing life she never realized she could have. A truly delightful, witty and heart warming novel. I loved every second of it.
The All Souls Trilogy, By Deborah Harkness
This is one of two (technically three) series I will be recommending on this list. For all those witchy fantasy lovers out there, this book is for you. Diana Bishop is a scholar researching at the Bodleian Library and happens to recall a book that will change her life forever. She’s a witch who has been suppressing her magical instincts her whole life, so when this book practically has magic seeping out of the pages, she takes a peek and sends it back wanting nothing to do with it. The book is the much sought after, previously believed to be myth, Book of Life and many creatures are looking to get their hands on it. A crazy, awesome, magical story ensues.
This is my absolute favorite series to date. There is witches, magic, romance, books, and libraries. What else is there in life?! I felt so immersed in this magical world Harkness creates. It is so well written and will leave you at the edge of your seat.
If that hasn’t drawn you in, the second novel in the series is set in Elizabethan times and so many historical figures are in it. Love love love!
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, By Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
For those who like epistolary novels, this is for you. World War II has just ended and writer, Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. When just so happens she receives a letter from a man she never met that leads her on a life changing adventure to Guernsey Island to interview the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.
Brilliantly written through a series of letters, this story is equal parts heart warming and gut wrenching. I love how books, at first just a clever disguise to cover up an after curfew dinner, end up bringing this lovely group together. This novel speaks for friendship, family and a universal love of books.
The Bookshop on the Corner, By Jenny Colgan
This is one of those books about books where books take the front stage (have I said “books” enough yet?). Anyway, Nina’s a librarian who’s out of a job when her library closes, so she takes this as an opportunity to completely change her life for the better. She buys a giant van which she turns into a mobile bookstore and moves up to rural Scotland. Nina grows to love the new place she calls her home, of course with the addition of some romance! The town grows with her too as she shares her love of books with everyone and successfully runs her little bookmobile.
I’m a fan of contemporary romance, but all the better when the main character is a librarian who wants to run a bookmobile. This is such a delightful, lighthearted story if you’re into some gentle romance in the country (of course with the addition of lots of books!). Sometimes you just need an escape and this book will definitely do the job.
The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend, By Katarina Bivald
Sara travels all the way from Sweden to visit her pen pal Amy in the small town of Broken Wheel, Iowa, only to find out when she arrives that Amy has passed away. Little does this sad town know that Sara is exactly what they need. She opens a bookstore in Amy’s honor and spreads the love of reading, fixing more than just the lack of readers. A little drama, a little romance, a whole lot of feels.
This is a lovely, gentle read that I actually listened to in the car. This is the librarian in me coming out, but if you haven’t tried audiobooks before you should! Listening to a book is such a delightful experience and you can do a wide range of activities while listening.
Harry's Trees, By Jon Cohen
I’m gonna start by saying I loved this story. It’s so, let’s say outrageous even though there is no element of magic whatsoever in this tale. This is a tale of love, loss, and of moving on, but through the bizarrest set of circumstances you can imagine.
Harry has lost his wife and thinking it’s his fault, doesn’t know how to go on. In comes Oriana, a little girl who is dealing with her own loss. Then we have a lotto ticket and the fairytale Grumm’s Ledger. They all combine into a fantastical adventure that you will not be able to put down. There of course is a library and lovely librarian featured in this tale as well!
The Secret Book & Scone Society, By Ellery Adams
This a book for lovers of cozy mysteries. It’s also a book for foodies! Nora Pennington, former librarian, comes to Miracle Springs to start fresh and open a bookstore. She has a talent called bibliotherapy and is able to find the perfect set of books to help ease a person’s suffering. I adore this!
Anyway, when a businessman Nora was going to meet with is mysteriously murdered, Nora forms the Secret Book and Scone Society with her new friends from town to find out what happened. These lady sleuths figure out the mystery in no time! Definitely a cutesy, relaxing read.
P.S. This is a series! You can keep reading if you need somre more bookish cozy mysteries in your life.
Bibliomysteries, Edited by Otto Penzler
NYC mystery bookstore owner, Otto Penzler edited this delightful book of short stories. I will tell you now, I do not read short stories often, but I’m happy I read this one. Once I saw the theme of the collection, I had to read it. Book themed mysteries, how cool is that?!
I didn’t love every single story in this book, I would say about two-thirds. There’s one in particular that I will remember forever. That’s how much I loved. Here’s a hint, it involves literary characters coming to life in an enchanted library. This is a solid collection I recommend every book lover flip through.
The Great Library Series, By Rachel Caine
Last, but certainly not least is this amazing, magical steampunk adventure saga called the Great Library series. The first book in the series is titled, Ink and Bone. This series is definitely in my top favorites. I highly highly recommend it to fantasy lovers.
Imagine the library being an all powerful entity that controls all knowledge in the land and personal ownership of books is forbidden. They have the power through Alchemy to deliver any book into your hands, but only they decide whether or not you can have it. Jess Brightwell gets chosen to train as a librarian and enter the ranks of the Library, but he has a secret and his choices will change the world as he knows it.
I cannot say enough good things about this series. Honestly, just read it. You’ll thank me later.
More reading lists to come! Directly from a librarian, so you know they have to be good. Check out my Books section for more great book recs.
- Bronx Zoo: Jungle World Langurs Pt. 1
- Introduction to Bullet Journaling
- How to Make Book Page Roses
- Self Care During Stressful Times
- Chocolate Oreo Trifle (Vegan & Gluten Free Options!)
- Easy Homemade Applesauce
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