Cozy Reads

It’s that season here in my neck of the woods. Leaves are falling and so are the temperatures. I’m inclined to dig out the fuzzy throw blankets and keep them handy for the moments where I have the actual time to curl up and read, with a mug of tea next to me. 

Which got me thinking, along with MCA Hogarth’s offhand comment on her books, about them (and especially Mindtouch) being recommended as good cozy reads. It’s the season for good cozy books. It’s been a while since I did a book list. So! Without further ado, what cozy reading material do you recommend? 

(note this isn’t a self-promo ask, that’s a different day of the week and poke me privately about it)

I’m looking for books that make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and have a good happy ending. Your comfort reads.

10 thoughts on “Cozy Reads

  1. My comfort reads are… Hmm…

    The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede
    The Joyous Season by Philip Barry (I reviewed it here:
    ‘Ware Hawk by Andre Norton
    Vision of the Future by Timothy Zahn
    The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
    Dinotopia – the first two books by James Gurney
    All Cats Are Gray and The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton
    Almost anything written by Louis L’Amour, but special shout-out to The Cherokee Trail, Hondo, and Last Stand at Papago Wells
    Marvel Masterworks and a few other comic collections
    and I will end with Cyrano de Bergerac, by Edmond Rostand. Gosh, I love that play…

    Anyway, those are my comfort reads. 😀

  2. Most of Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe mysteries (it would take less time to list the exceptions) are top of the list for me.

    In fact, thinking on it on the fly, it’s never one book. It’s either a series, or an author, that brings comfort for me.

    For example, when I was reading Sarah’s new book, Bowl of Red, it was oddly relaxing to me simply because I was in one of her worlds again. Either familiar characters, relationships, and settings, or a familiar “taste” from an author overall.

    Butcher’s Dresden Files series.

    Pratchett’s Discworld.

    Catherine Asaro (I’ve only read one book out of her Skolian space opera series, but I loved that one too, so it’s her more than the series).

    Bujold’s Vorkosigan books.

    Anything by Nevil Shute, even the books that ultimately don’t quite work.

    James Clavell, particularly Shogun and Noble House.

    I’ve read Les Miserables cover to cover four times, unabridged. (Maybe five.) But I’m not sure that quite counts, given how harrowing it is, and the ending.

    Sir Walter Scott’s books can get a bit repetitive, in ways, and it’s been some time since I read any (and there are many I have not yet read), but they are a comfort in memory for sure. (Fair warning: I know at least one person, not me, who is utterly convinced that Scott was the model for S. Morgenstern, author of The Princess Bride according to William Goldman, in particular the fact that Goldman’s father supposedly did quite a bit of skipping when reading it aloud to his son.)

    And two outliers, that are comfort reads to me because the authors are so good at what they do, rather than the books they wrote being especially comforting: Elmore Leonard, and James Ellroy. Ellroy in particular, his books are dark and harsh and the endings generally have justice, but not a lot of happy. For these two especially, YMMV.

  3. I always liked the Mrs. Pollifax books, along with her others (most of the rest were stand-alones) by Dorothy Gilman. L.M. Montgomery wrote a lot of other books besides Anne of Green Gables – my favorite of those is The Blue Castle. A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan was fun. Dan Willis’s Arcane Casebook series. Wearing the Cape series by Marion G. Harmon. Most anything by Charlie N. Holmberg (Paper Magician was very enjoyable, for one). Dean Koontz. The Cobweb Bride trilogy by Vera Nazarian. I had a long P.G. Wodehouse streak. Biographies of current people I find interesting – Thomas Sowell and Elon Musk most recently. Historical WWII fiction. M.A. Rothman. Jeff Wheeler, Will Wright. Johnny Worthen. The occasional free First Reads from Amazon, though most of those are iffy, sometimes you find a good mystery or thriller.

  4. Gene Stratton Porter — Freckles; The Keeper of the Bees
    Frances Hodgson Burnett — A Little Princess
    Kipling — The Jungle Books; Kim
    Dick Francis — Hot Money; Decider; 10 Lb Penalty
    Josephine Tey — Brat Farrar
    Theodore Sturgeon — The Dreaming Jewels (aka The Synthetic Man)
    Nevil Shute — esp. A Town like Alice

  5. I think Lindsay Buroker’s books might fit with what you are looking for – fun reads, quirky heroes. She has more books out than you can shake a stick at, but I’ve read and enjoyed: the Heritage of Power series, the Agents of the Crown series, and the Forgotten Ages series, plus the first few books each in the Dragon Blood series and the Emperor’s Edge series.

    Sara Roethle’s Tree of Ages series is pretty fun, as is her Thief’s Apprentice series.

    The Witches of Karres series – fun, Classic sci-fi stories

    The Liaden series is pretty fun too.

  6. I like Star Nomad and its sequels by Lindsay Buroker, her fantasies didn’t grab me. There’s basically two tiers of Georgette Heyer Georgian/Regency novels – nicer and harsher – and I tend to marathon one category or another, usually whichever I haven’t read recently. Lois McMaster Bujold I’ve kind of gone off of in recent years, but Memory, Curse of Chalion, Hallowed Hunt, and Passage were this for me at one time.

    Dorothy Sayers, Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham: whatever I haven’t read recently.

    John C. Wright’s Moth and Cobweb books.

    There’s a cluster of Dean Koontz novels that I’m fond enough of to revisit: Watchers, The Bad Place, Dragon Tears, Dark Rivers of the Heart, One Door Away From Heaven, Darkest Evening of the Year, maybe the Taking.

  7. I read a lot of cookbooks to relax. Peg Bracken’s “I Hate to Cook Book” and its follow up “Appendix to the I Hate to Cook Book” are very funny reads – and good research if your WIP is set mid 20th century. Laurie Colwin’s two cook books (“Home Cooking” and “More Home Cooking”) and her novels – particularly “Happy All the Time.”

  8. My comfort reads:
    Anything by Dorothy Grant, especially “Scaling the Rim”.

    Nathan Lowell’s “Trader’s Tales from the Golden Age of the Solar Clipper” series, plus “The Wizard’s Butler”.

    Terry Pratchett’s “Thud”, among many, many others. I even bought the spin-off “Where’s My Cow?” and read it to my kids. I also own the game, which is (un)surprisingly good.

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