Discussion in 'Non-WOT - Literature and Fiction' started by Jarl Lewin, May 9, 2018.
100x yes on Anne Bishop! I reread this series so often.
Black Jewels have definitely been one - I say have been because I realised after this latest reread that I need to not touch them for a few years to let them recharge the magic.
Bujold always works, The Curse of Chalion/Paladin of Souls and select Vorkosigan books (the lighter ones) in particular.
Though I think Kristin Cashore's Fire may be my top comfort read, in the "hear, cry about this instead of worrying about whatever you've got going on" sense. It's sad in all the right ways.
(Actually that's a lie, Margit Sandemo's Sandemo Series of books are no. 1, but that doesn't tell anyone but me and maybe a few Norwegians anything.)
I adore Bujold, but she's not light reading for me, I'm always grappling with some kind of heavy emotion when I read her.
LM Montgomery (especially The Story Girl) and Madeleine L'Engle are comfort reads for me. Also gothic romances like Daphne DuMaurier or Victoria Holt. They're my guilty pleasure old-lady reads.
I'm another one who turns to C.S. Lewis when stressed, though only one Narnia book - 'The Horse and His Boy.' That was the only one I felt an attachment to as a child, for some reason, and I'm still very attached to it. I also go for The Screwtape Letters, The Great Divorce, and The Four Loves - I find thinky stuff helpful sometimes when I want comfort. Thinking about the reading distances me from everything most enjoyably.
WoT-wise - right now, actually, I have 'The Path of Daggers,' 'Winter's Heart,' and 'New Spring' off the shelf, because of comforting familiarity (WH), I-enjoy-imagining-myself-there (the pre-raising and immediately post-raising chapters of NS) and...just because (PoD). In one particularly stressful semester of college, I read three Terry Pratchett books a week and thus got through most of Discworld in one gulp, but as a rule, somehow, I seem to go to non-fiction for my relaxation/comfort reading - my little collection of books about the Bronte sisters are very well-worn, and I have a reputation at the local library for checking out ten or fifteen books at a time on one topic that has for some reason caught my interest (late 19th-early 20th century jewelry, the history of make-up, birds of the Southeastern United States, spies in World War II...the list goes on).
@Jarl Lewin Sedai, you should read Little House on the Prairie sometime! I loved those books when I was small, and recollections of Charles Ingalls proved useful in unexpected ways when RL circumstances once demanded I figure out how to revive a failing fire. Other childhood favorites were Redwall, Lloyd Alexander, and dozens of one-shot books from my school library that I don't remember the titles or authors of, much to my regret.
I'll usually read Rick Riordan books (usually the Kane Chronicles) or The Host when I want a familiar book.
@Tatiane Arvaignin I loooooove a Horse and His Boy!
My go to feel good books are the Emily Trilogy by L. M. Montgomery, Calvin and Hobbs Comics, and Notes to Myself My Struggle to Become a Person by Hugh Prather.
I love Emily! I think I liked her better than Anne of Green Gables.
Same! Anne is great, but Emily is so fierce and beautifully flawed! I feel a deep connection to her every single time I pick up one of those books. I love her quiet strength.
Agreed! I also appreciate that it was 3 books that focused solely on her and her friends and her growth as a person. I don't really like that Anne kept going and switched focus to the kids. Especially since you get all sorts of attached to them in Rainbow Valley and then Rilla of Ingleside happens.
For me, it's J.R.R.Tolkien, especially The Lord of the Rings, WoT and the Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov. I grew up with Asimov, Heinlein, Clarke and Tolkien. It gave me always a warm feeling of old times when I read them even when I'm depressed.
A warm feeling of old times! That's a great thought, Cahr.
Definitely Tolkien for me too. I know a lot of people find his prose dry, but I love the scholarly feel. It's comforting to me. I have the Silmarillion audiobook and I sometimes play it at bedtime when I am having trouble settling down. The narrator has a relaxing rhythmic voice, and I've always loved the way Tolkien describes things.
I love Tolkien, though I have trouble keeping all the similar names apart in Silmarillion... I listen to the audio books for LoTR, and while it sounds a bit strange with the poetry, I love the narrator
I have the audio books for LoTR too. The narrator ist great .
I like Tolkien for comfort reading too--it's so easy to just get lost in the world. The Hobbit has been a favourite of mine since grade 6, and I frequently flip through it to help centre myself. And I recently have been rereading Lord of the Rings to help with stress, though I've been going very slowly and it is taking me forever!
The Hobbit has such a light tone, I can't wait to read it to my son. The first chapter with Bilbo and the dwarves all bumbling around is just hilarious. When I was a teenager I read it out loud to my youngest brother (he's a lot younger than me) and it's one of my favorite memories.
So, I read the title and I think for a moment I confused "comfort reading" with "my brain needs a break" reading. (I get bogged down with drama and action heavy fantasy books; I had to take breaks with "fluff" books during my first read-through of the WoT series.) With that in mind, when I want comfort reading, I inevitably turn to Charlotte Bronte's "Shirley", which is my favorite novel and no one else I know likes. I have at least 3 physical copies and a digital copy on my Kindle app.
I also break out the Narnia books and Anne of Green Gables. They were both huge parts of my childhood and remind me of when life was a little simpler, if not easier.
I'm a little surprised at so many people mentioning the Dresden books, but I suppose that's only because I've just started reading them (I'm up to Death Masks) and I do not find them comforting at all. They're great! Funny, engaging... but they're definitely not my bedtime books.
Every so often I like to revisit The Belgariad/Malloreon books Dragonlance Chronicles and.
David Eddings was my introduction to Fantasy followed by Weis & Hickman.
WoT is number one. I listen to those when I can't sleep or in the hospital for comfort. I also read R.L.Stine when I want something sort and familiar. Harry Potter for another comfort read. Kate Forsyth, mostly her "The Witches of Eileanan" is good when I want good fantasy but just finished WoT.
There are way too many good reads and writers to list them all though.
Am I the only person that dislikes Tolkien's writing style? Don't get me wrong he is a wonderful linguist and world builder but not a storyteller IMHO...
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