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Books that make you feel good about the world

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I've just started reading Goodnight Mister Tom and it's blown me away with how GOOD it makes me feel. It's so uplifting to read about a kid being emotionally healed by a grumpy old man (who's also getting healed in the process).

Anyone got any favourite books that just make them feel wonderful? I'd like a whole shelf devoted to feel-good books so I have them to hand whenever I need to smile!

Because of Winn-Dixie and Anne of Green Gables are others that make me feel like that. I'd love to find some more modern stories, though.
#1 - March 12, 2011, 03:43 PM

Aud

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8th Grade Superzero!
#2 - March 12, 2011, 03:56 PM

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One of my favorite "feel good" books as a child was Julie Edwards' (also know as Julie Andrews) Mandy.  I loved the idea of the abandoned cottage in the woods and how Mandy made it hers...and gained a family as well.  I also loved Nightbirds on Nantucket by Joan Aiken because it took place in places I knew well (and was a rollicking story to boot)...but I was so in love with the idea that a story could happen so close to my home--that just made it magic.  And A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett was such a feel-good-ending, Cinderella kind of story.

When I want to read a feel-good kidlit book now, I go back to Laura Ingalls Wilder.
#3 - March 12, 2011, 04:00 PM
The Leland Sisters series: Courtship and Curses, Bewitching Season, Betraying Season (Holt BYR/Macmillan)
www.marissadoyle.com
www.nineteenteen.com

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It's been a long time since I read that one, but I remember having the same reaction, Siski.

Others that have done that for me:

PEACE LIKE A RIVER, Leif Enger (adult but with child characters)
SAVVY and SCUMBLE, Ingrid Law
FLIPPED, Wendelin van Draanen
CROSSING TO PARADISE (or GATTY'S TALE in the original UK version), Kevin Crossley-Holland
FIRMAMENT, Tim Bowler
MARCELO IN THE REAL WORLD, Francisco X. Stork
HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, JK Rowling
THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE, CS Lewis
A WRINKLE IN TIME, Madeleine L'Engle
LONDON CALLING, Edward Bloor

...and an as-yet-unpublished book by a Blueboarder--hopefully I can add it by title soon. :)
#4 - March 12, 2011, 04:04 PM

I'm with Marissa.  I instantly thought of Mandy.  A Little Princess, too.  There are certain books I re-read every year just when I want comfort and those are among them.  Also the Noel Streatfeild books.

For modern, my pal Linda Urban's books are lovely comfort.  Also Patricia MacLachlan.  Savvy was another and Saffy's Angel.  Funny--books about families--intact or just forming--are what I seem to turn to!
#5 - March 12, 2011, 04:55 PM

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THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME
WHEN YOU REACH ME
RULES
TOUCH BLUE
#6 - March 12, 2011, 08:57 PM
ANTIQUE PIANO & OTHER SOUR NOTES
http://decoowlpress.com

Barb  :owl

Website: http://barbaraetlin.com
Blog: http://owlsquill.blogspot.com

Most Eva Ibbotson books. I'm not very good at writing happy endings, but I sure do love them.
And I second (third?) A Little Princess.
And A.A. Milne
Ooh, and The Railway Children!
#7 - March 13, 2011, 07:21 AM
Blog: http://lauralsullivan.blogspot.com/
YA: LOVE BY THE MORNING STAR (soon!)
LADIES IN WAITING
MG: Under the Green Hill
Guardian of the Green Hill

Ooh, Ibbotson, Nesbit!  Laura, let's be best friends! :yup
#8 - March 13, 2011, 07:58 AM

Considering I have just posted in the biggest loser thread and moaned about people's critcism of chocolate, maybe this is daft.  One of my most favourite books is Charlie & The Chocolate Factory.  I just can't resist it.
#9 - March 13, 2011, 08:13 AM

Pride and Prejudice is my grown up feel good book. ;) For kids, do PB's count? Puff-Puff Chugga-Chugga by Christopher Wormell is wonderful. It has that lovely British rhythm that always makes me happy. ;) For modern kid books - Harry Potter. They always make me happy!
#10 - March 13, 2011, 11:08 AM
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Diana Wynne Jones! anything Diana Wynne Jones. :love Also the Harry Potters.

Also, concurring with MysteryRobin - Pride & Prejudice is a grown-up feel-good book for me too! Along with Northanger Abbey. Also the majority of Georgette Heyer.

I'm struck by how many authors/books listed on this thread, USED to be my comfort reads, but I haven't actually read them in years. Laura Ingalls Wilder, Mandy, Joan Aiken, CS Lewis, Noel Streatfield and more ... Must reread!! they are all sitting on my top shelf, still!
#11 - March 13, 2011, 11:35 AM

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"Close Your Eyes" by Kate Banks, illustrated by Georg Hallensleben, 2002, Frances Foster Books.

"Down by the Cool of the Pool" by Tony Mitton, illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees, 2001, Orchard Books.

"Some Dogs Do" by Jez Alborough, 2003, Walker Books.

"Bobby Dazzler" by Margaret Wild & Janine Dawson, 2006, Working Title Press.
#12 - March 13, 2011, 02:01 PM
I've Got Eyes! - Amicus Ink

www.juliemurphybooks.com

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I'm so pleased there are some I don't know here! I'm salivating as I go and order some new yummy books that'll make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Thanks!

PS I've just noticed there's a disproportionately big number of Brit authors in these lists. Weird. Suckers for a feel-good feel, I guess.
#13 - March 13, 2011, 02:27 PM

gatsby

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Harry Potter, especially the seventh one. But the humor and imagination of the others is so much fun.
#14 - March 13, 2011, 04:20 PM

sary

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Definitely BECAUSE OF WINN-DIXIE. Also VIVE LA PARIS by Esme Raji Codell. I could read the last page of that book a hundred times and never lose that feeling. SUCH a perfect ending.
#15 - March 14, 2011, 05:44 AM

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Add me to the list of Eva Ibbotson fans! I have A COUNTESS BELOW STAIRS listed on my website as "a book to make you happy you can read." :werd

Our own Deva Fagan's books have the same bright, uplifting spirit to them--particularly FORTUNE'S FOLLY.

And even though the subject matter might lean toward the macabre, I loved everything about A DROWN'D MAIDEN'S HAIR by Newbery winner Laura Amy Schlitz. :love
#16 - March 14, 2011, 01:13 PM

I second FLIPPED (I've made a few non-kids-books-reading friends read it, and they love it too) and wonder if, on your shelf next to Anne, you perhaps have Jane of Lantern Hill? It's one of my three favorite non-series Montgomery books, and I just picked it up again after an ill-advised more-than-one-year break in readings. I had forgotten how much I love this book. It makes me so happy...I kind of want to live her life. I want a pot called Bootles and a boot-shelf!
#17 - March 14, 2011, 04:29 PM
I'm looking for a dare-to-be-great situation.

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I just got a brand new PB that made me dance, and I'm barely managing to type here as I think about it. I want to get up and twirly-swirly hug the world.

HARVEY THE CHILD MIME, by Loyn Brantz. Check it out.

Otherwise my list would include so many classics, many of your (Blue Borders') books, and some that were already mentioned on this thread. 
#18 - March 14, 2011, 06:04 PM
THE VOICE OF THUNDER, WiDo Publishing
THERE'S A TURKEY AT THE DOOR, Hometown520

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http://mirkabreen.BlogSpot.com

Let's not forget the Penderwicks - and I agree with Jaina - Saffy's Angel, and the sequels -
#19 - March 14, 2011, 06:12 PM
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NO PLACE TO FALL (Harper Teen, 2014)
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sary

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Oh, I hadn't thought about picture books! ANYTHING by Mo Willems! I love the pigeon. I love Elephant and Piggie. I love Knuffle Bunny. I have a student who does NOT read for fun, ever. I've taught this kid 10 years now, and he does not like to read. And he will read anything by Mo Willems. That definitely makes me feel good about the world!
#20 - March 15, 2011, 05:19 AM

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For me, it's mostly historical quaint heartwarming books, so ANNE OF GREEN GABLES is definitely on my list!

Also:
The BETSY-TACY series by Maud Hart Lovelace (especially the high school books, which I adore)
A COUNTESS BELOW STAIRS
The ALL-OF-A-KIND family series
101 DALMATIANS

(and thank you ecb! I am blushing over here!)
#21 - March 15, 2011, 10:59 AM
Circus Galacticus
Fortune's Folly
The Magical Misadventures of Prunella Bogthistle

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Well, I'm feeling good just reading these lists! :D

I would add:

Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
Frog and Toad are Friends and Owl at Home by Arnold Lobel
Bunnicula by James Howe

#22 - March 15, 2011, 11:43 AM
XVI, Puffin/Speak, available now
Truth, Puffin/Speak, January 2012
http://juliakarr.com

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I am a hard sell for anything EXCEPT happy endings. I read mostly to escape, feel sense of wonder, and have an adventure. The books I've enjoyed lately:

THE INCORRIGIBLE CHILDREN OF ASHTON PLACE by Maryrose Wood
Nancy Springer's ENOLA HOLMES series
KAT, INCORRIGIBLE by Stephanie Burgis (out in the US soon -- you will LOVE this book!!!)

And an old favorite:
THE WESTING GAME by Ellen Raskin

-Jenn
#23 - March 15, 2011, 11:52 AM
Above World, 2/2012, Candlewick
Mirage (Book 2), 3/2013
Horizon (Book 3), 4/2014

Oh, my dd loves Enola Homles, and Springer's other series, Rowan Hood. So good!
#24 - March 15, 2011, 12:36 PM
Robin

Some additional books that I'm happy to recommend:  :yup

(Newbery & Newbery Honor:)
HATTIE BIG SKY
RAMONA QUIMBY, AGE 8
MR. POPPER'S PENGUINS
THE FAMILY UNDER THE BRIDGE
THE GOOD MASTER
THE VIEW FROM SATURDAY

(Magical Classics:)
PIPPI LONGSTOCKING
THE LITTLE PRINCE
THE VELVETEEN RABBIT
THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS

(Comforting Contemporary Reads:)
A CROOKED KIND OF PERFECT
CLEMENTINE
EMMA-JEAN LAZARUS FELL OUT OF A TREE
FRINDLE
THE STORIES JULIAN TELLS

(Picture Books:)
LITTLE CRITTER SERIES
OWL BABIES
OWL MOON
SNOWFLAKE BENTLEY
SNOWMEN AT NIGHT
SOMETHING FROM NOTHING
THE GROUCHY LADYBUG
THE MITTEN
THE SCAREBIRD
 
#25 - March 16, 2011, 10:35 AM
« Last Edit: March 16, 2011, 10:37 AM by hazelnut »

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Oh, my dd loves Enola Homles, and Springer's other series, Rowan Hood. So good!

I haven't tried the Rowan Hood series yet -- now I can't wait! Thanks for the rec.

Jenn
#26 - March 16, 2011, 11:03 AM
Above World, 2/2012, Candlewick
Mirage (Book 2), 3/2013
Horizon (Book 3), 4/2014

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Let's add ALL THE WORLD by Liz Garton Scanlon to the PB list.
Jean
#27 - March 16, 2011, 11:30 AM
Jean Reidy
Coming soon: Pup 681, Truman, When the Snow is Deeper Than My Boots Are Tall, Group Hug , Specs and Specs II.
Others at www.jeanreidy.com

I love feel good books. I'll definitely have to add these to my 'must read' list!

Oh, and I just read Jenny Moss' new novel, TAKING OFF and it left me with such a feeling of open possibilities. Definitely feel good even though it's about a tragic event. I'd also highly recommend it to any teens that need motivation to analyze their goals and life choices. Very inspirational.
#28 - March 16, 2011, 11:42 AM

Don't know why, but the BFG has just popped into my head (not literally, of course).  What is it about Roald Dahl?  His satirical take on things just make me laugh.
#29 - March 16, 2011, 11:51 AM

MaryWitzl

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'Charlotte's Web', definitely. Frances Hodgson Burnett's 'The Secret Garden', and Mary Norton's 'The Borrowers' series.

Think I'll go hunt those down right now...
#30 - March 16, 2011, 12:26 PM

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