Ditch the TV remote, these feel-good books will have you gripped throughout autumn
So, we can all pretty much embrace the sartorial elements of autumn – interesting textures, luxurious fabrics and rich hues, were swooning over velvet, shearling and faux fur, in deep berries and teals. Hot drinks and comfort food yes well take those too. But the weather, seriously? Now thats a totally different story, we cant say were massive fans of the shorter, darker and colder days that autumn brings. Dragging yourself from beneath a mound of warm cosy bed sheets to be greeted by a pitch black sky and freezing cold radiator doesnt hold much appeal.
Spring and summer are made for scenic evening walks with the pooch and winter for Christmas and family gatherings, but this time of year can sometimes leave us feeling a bit lost after weve finally tackled a day at work, not forgetting the tedious commute home. Theres nothing better than raiding the bookshelf for an autumnal tale, so if kicking off your heels and snuggling up on the sofa in your PJs with a book and mug of hot chocolate in hand sounds like your kind of night too, then read on.
Here in the Marie Claire office, we love feel-good fiction thats full of warmth and witty charm. When your minds been active all day, its complete bliss to just switch off. We love a novel thats easy to follow and pick up and drop as we please, but thats also engaging and relatable. Our top picks do just that. From Cecelia Ahern to Lindsey Kelk, rom-com to real-life struggles, these fiction writers know how to inspire us, make us cry, laugh and smile, sometimes all at once.
Weve pulled together the new and the old, with a whole host of lovable and intriguing characters in tow, so jump in to another world, for just an hour or so. Turn your phone off, and dont blame us if it stays that way for the rest of the evening.
Words by Ashleigh Houlton
Set in New York, where best friend Amy resides, it tells the tale of everyday ups and downs, from heartbreak to work problems, through the eyes of Tess Brookes. If its anywhere near as good as Kelks I HEART series, then we cant wait to get our hands on this book, due to hit the shelves 5th November. Ever been in that sticky situation where your feelings for someone are unreciprocated? Then youll totally understand where Tess is coming from.
Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) returns, this time on a road trip to Las Vegas as she comes to her family and friends rescue, when they need help most. And yes, shes got another crazy plan to make it happen in this warm and fun addition to the iconic Shopaholic series.
A festive treat from the Sunday Times bestseller, Tabby hits an all-time low, ending up boyfriendless, jobless and catless, but in the words of Primal Scream, shes movin on up now, as things take a positive and exciting turn for the main character. A good pick-me-up when you youre having one of those I hate my life moments. NB, it cant get much worse than Tabbys.
The much-anticipated sequel to Me Before You, from award-winning writer Moyes, has finally arrived and it doesn’t fail to please we reckon this will be selling in its millions too. Lou Clark is back and this time she has a whole load of new issues to face and life changing decisions to make. Therell be tears, therell be laughter and therell be joy as you see how Lou tackles the truths of modern life.
This was a real eye-opening read, as we see Anna transform from a shy and reserved character, who simply settles for ordinary, in to a confident and self-assured woman, sparked by the delivery of several parcels from a mystery sender.
Chocolate, Christmas, romance and friendship float your boat? Obvs. Sunday Times bestseller author of 27 novels, Matthews, tells the story of Lucy, Nadia, Chantal and Autumn as they deal with relationship woes and muddle together to pull through the tough times. This is the perfect Sunday book to settle down with. FYI, chocolate is mentioned A LOT, in case the title doesnt give it away, so youll need your own stash to dig in to during this read.
In a nutshell, the two main characters, Jasmine and Matt, both end up on gardening leave at the same time, and it just so happens that they live on the same street – we know what you’re thinking – but the plot doesn’t unravel as we had expected. Ahern captures the gritty details of Jasmine’s life, now she has no job to fill it, and it’s as if we’re going through it with her. The unlikely relationships that form between several characters along the way, namely Jasmine and Matt, are so heartfelt and uplifting, that we found ourselves reaching for the tissue box.
Forgotten what sunshine, sea and sand looks like? Indulge in this warm and witty number from the queen of chick lit, Colgan. The lovable and endearing baker, Polly Waterford, finally feels as though her life is on track in all areas, until a series of unsettling events occur in her seaside town of Mount Polbearne, Cornwall. We cant help but feel for her when she deals with dilemmas many of us have or will face at some point. Well, maybe not the part about her pet puffin, Neil.
For any of you that have had to move in with your partners parents to save up for a first home, and you werent short of pulling your hair out, this read will make you STOP and put things in perspective. From the mums less than desirable cooking and wild karaoke nights, to the non-existent private time, Costello tells the story of young couple Gemma and Dan, with ease and humour.
Sophies life changes forever when she receives a mysterious and unexpected inheritance pay out. Theres just one catch, she has to meet the father shes never known. Bramley documents the raw mix of emotions Sophie feels along the way, as if youre going through the process yourself, with a touch of heart-warming romance for good measure.