Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Make Me Smile

This week's topic is:  Books That Make Me Smile

This one is deceptively tricky because a lot of books make me smile in the sense that I either enjoyed them or there were some humorous points that made me laugh throughout. For this specific topic, though, I tried to think of those books that make me immediately smile and feel a bit warm or happy inside whenever I think about them or while reading them. That's not to say that other books don't make me happy or smile when reading them, but these ones just hold a little something extra that makes me happy and want to read them whenever I need something to pick me up.

The House in the Cerulean Sea
The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
This was the first book that popped into my mind upon seeing this week's theme! This book is the ultimate hug and I just have all of the best feelings while thinking about it. The characters were all incredibly endearing, the story was low-key yet still compelling with a strong plot, and the messages were beautiful.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Illustrated with Interactive Elements): Through the Looking-Glass
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Most people know Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and although I find it darker than it often seems, the absolute wackiness and unpredictability of this book always makes me smile.

The Illumination of Ursula Flight
The Illumination of Ursula Flight by Anna-Marie Crowhurst
This book was just such a delight because of the narration of the main character! I loved following her story and perspective on anything, she has such a quirky and interesting personality and I always think of this book fondly.

Once Upon a River
Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield
This book is the definition of sitting in a comfy chair by a fireplace on a cozy rainy day with your hot beverage of choice. This has such an enveloping storytelling narration and it's so easy to just get wrapped up into the characters and magic of Setterfield's prose. This one definitely makes me smile!

Senlin Ascends (The Books of Babel, #1)
Senlin Ascends by Josiah Bancroft
Senlin Ascends is unique and immensely imaginative that I can't help but smile when I think about how detailed and quirky it is. Josiah Bancroft is an awesome person and author and I have such a great time when reading or thinking about this series.

The Red Wolf Conspiracy (The Chathrand Voyage, #1)
The Red Wolf Conspiracy by Robert V.S. Redick
This one makes me smile simply because of what a fun adventure I remember this being! It just makes me think of what a great time I had reading this book.

Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1)
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
I mainly smile when I think of Strange the Dreamer because I just love Lazlo so much! He is the sweetest character that you just want to hug and I love his interactions with all the other characters and setting of the world featured in the book.

The Heart's Invisible Furies
The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne
My smile for this book is sort of a bittersweet heartbreak smile, one of fondness but also a little melancholy when I think about everything that happened in this book. It was so beautiful and moving and I loved the protagonist so much.

The Other Boleyn Girl (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #9)
The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
I love historical fiction, I love reading about the Tudors, and I'm a huge fan of Philippa Gregory's work. This book might be one of her most well-known books, but i have to say that there's a reason for it! I remember reading this over the Thanksgiving/Christmas holiday time a few years back and just enjoying it so much. This book makes me smile because of both how much I enjoyed it and couldn't put it down, as well as the warm and positive seasonal environment I read it in.

Caraval (Caraval, #1)
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
This is one of those books that makes me smile just because of the sheer mystique and magic around it all! I love these sort of 'real-life gameplay' ideas where nothing is at it seems and you never know what's around the corner. I just get excited when I think of it!

The Toymakers
The Toymakers by Robert Dinsdale
Okay, this is eleven books, but I couldn't not include The Toymakers! This is another one where it's a bit bittersweet to think about, but it's also so perfect for the holiday season and just such a beautiful smile that I just can't help but have a smile when I think about it.

The Phantom of the Opera
The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
...and now I'm onto twelve books, but hey, it's okay! There's something about the dark intrigue of The Phantom of the Opera that I love--the dramatics of it all, the stunning music from the musical, the atmosphere, etc. Plus, the book is just super weird. I always smile thinking about how much it all hits the right spot for me!

Have you read any of these books? What books make you smile?


  1. That cover for The Toymaker is very eye catching!

  2. The Other Boleyn Girl is one of my favorites!

  3. I like historical fiction too, but I've never read any of Philippa Gregory's work! Here is my Top Ten Tuesday.

  4. Loved Caraval, such a great book!
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2020/07/14/top-ten-tuesday-272/

  5. I've seen both The House in the Cerulean Sea and Senlin Ascends on multiple lists today😁 Great choices!

  6. I can't wait to read The House in the Cerulean Sea! I'm on a long library waitlist for it.

    My TTT .

  7. I would read 'The house in the cerulean sea' - it sounds like a book I would like, I have put it on my 'check it out later list'

    I've never read 'Alice in wonderland' which is weird because it seems to be my type of books and yet, I never got the urge to read it. Even now, I see the title a lot but still, no urge to read it.

    Have a lovely day.

    P.S. Here's my top ten tuesday (actually 7) here but it's not a list of books, just some complaints relating to books.

  8. I love a book that has that little something extra. Some just have that magical quality, it seems like! The House in the cerulean sea has been popping up a lot lately, I'm intrigued by that one, it sounds great, and The Red Wolf Conspiracy sounds fun too!

  9. I read Alice over and over as a preteen. It made me happy for sure.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

  10. I have a copy of The House in the Cerulean Sea, but I hadn't read it yet. I can't wait to dive in!