Book Suggestions Please! - Los Angeles,CA

Updated on June 04, 2010
S.S. asks from Los Angeles, CA
18 answers

Hi moms, I used to love to read but these days, all I read are how to and parenting books! I want to read fiction again but I'm having a heck of a time finding a book thats good enough to devote my free time to. Chick lit seems a bit shallow to me these days -- I used to like them but when I pick them up now, I feel like I can't relate anymore to these single protagonists who are just trying to land a man. I do like light reads though -- are there any that involved married women with children?? Any books that you read lately (or not) that you loved? Thanks! (oh and I have to say, it has to be well written -- nothing like danielle steel!)

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answers from Seattle on

Here's some not-so-new books that are on my tops lists:


- Anne McCaffrey (Dragon Riders series, Decision at Doona, Crystal Singer, etc.)

- Robert A. Heinlein (Stranger in a Strange Land, Friday, I will fear no evil, etc)

- Harry Harrison (The Stainless Steel Rat series)

- David Eddings (The Belgariad -5 books-, The Mallorean -5 books-)

- Elizabeth Peters (Ameila Peabody Mysteries)
- Rex Stout (Nero Wolfe Mysteries)

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answers from Detroit on

A second for "The Help" and "The Red Tent"

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

A great series of 7 books is the Yada Yada Prayer group by Neta Jackson.

This is about a group of women who meet at a Women's Conference and are assigned to be part of a prayer group during the conference. They are from all walks of life and continue the relationship after the conference. The series covers their lives as they get to know each other and go through life. GREAT series and definitely not the old Chick lit. =-)

Even women who are not 'religious' will enjoy as it's about women and relationships. I sent it to my mom for Christmas , she is not into church, etc - and she loved the series.

Hope you enjoy! T.



answers from Houston on

I love almost everything that Jodi Picoult has written--almost every one involves a family scenario. "The Red Tent" by Anita Diamant. I enjoy John Steinbeck and his son, Thomas Steinbeck. Isabel Allende has many books with Latin American themes. Phillipa Gregory writes some interesting takes on historical romance.

For non-fiction, Edmund Morris has a series of books about Theodore Roosevelt that I love.

My guilty pleasure are the Twilight series. Light, fast reads. I'm not afraid to admit it.



answers from St. Cloud on

I will second KAREN KINGSBURY! There hasn't been a book of hers yet that I haven't liked! I usually have them read in 24 hours when I get them from the library!

"Redemption" is the first book in a series of hers. VERY GOOD! This is the one I recommend that you START with if you are going to read any of her books. The characters/family in this series are wonderful. You really feel like you get to know them as you read through this! And it spins off into a couple other sets so you get to keep learning about them!

"Even Now" is another one with "Ever After" being the sequel. (Ever After was so good! Very touching. Even Now was good too!)

The last one I just read of hers a couple weeks ago was called, "Like Dandelion Dust." About a couple who adopted a baby boy and when he was 4 years old, a judge ruled that the adoption wasn't legitimate because of a signature stipulation. VERY GOOD, EASY READ! I couldn't put it down!

"When J. Came to Stay" is another one of hers I've read recently.

A TRUE story that is SUPER EASY READ, FUNNY, and just all around enjoyable is called "Full House: The Story of the Anderson Quintuplets". Their mother, Karen, helps co-write it Jo Robinson. I LAUGHED OUT LOUD in many parts. My husband kept asking me what was so funny and I'd have to read him parts. It is VERY GOOD! I've actually checked it out twice from the library and enjoyed it just as much the second time around!

The last one I'll tell you about that I enjoyed about 10 years ago and I am actually re-reading it for about the 5th time is by Dorothy Eden. It's called "The Schoolmaster's Daughters." An easy read. Interesting.


answers from Oklahoma City on

I LOVE all of Ted Dekkers books! He's a christian fiction writer and everything I have read of his has beed excelent! Also Frank Perretti (sp?) Good Luck!



answers from Chicago on

these are my fav's. Mostly all mysteries or legal or medical forensic type thrillers. although most of the nora roberts and jayne ann krentz/ jayne castle books have romance in them. they are in no way chiclits lol
Kay Hooper any of the bishop series
Iris Johansen the eve duncan series
Nora Roberts just about any of her trilogies or her stand alones
Julie Garwood the stuff written after 1990 (before is historicals)
David Baldacci
John Grisham
Jayne Ann Krentz
Elizabeth Lowell
Susan Elizabeth Phillips (not mystery but just plain fun)
Janet Evonavitch
J.D. Robb (nora roberts futuristic series)
Amanda Quick (she is jayne ann krentz but historical mysteries)
Jayne Castle (also jayne ann krentz lol but futuristic mysteries)
Karen Robards (anything she writes lol

I just got some new books that are random authors
Crazy School weird but good
Look Again
the last child
these are my favorite authors. the minute a new one comes out I go get it. so many great books. I am rereading the iris johansen series right now waiting for a new book from anyone to come out lol



answers from Chicago on

Read The Choice by Nicholas Sparks.



answers from Kansas City on

I read a ton and a variety of different styles. Well except the cheesy romance stuff, no offense.
I can read though the Janet Evonovich books pretty quick, but it is the girl really trying to the guy and the bail jumper.
Anything by Jodi Piccoult usually involves some parental story that makes you think.
Last summer I read "Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett. I would have never picked it up on my own, but had to read it as part of our book club. It is 1000 pages, but I LOVED it! I've since read "World Without End" by the same author which is the sequel.
"The Women" by TC Boyle is a great book about the many women in the life of Frank Lloyd Wright
"The School of Essential Ingredients" by Erica Bauermeister
"Water for Elephants"
"The Thirteenth Tale"
The Woman with the Blue Tattoo
The Glass Castle
Life List a true account about a woman on a mission to see all 9000 bird species. *It really was a good book!
The Help! GREAT BOOK!!
I'm now reading the Stieg Larsson trilogy over the summer.



answers from Lake Charles on

I absolutely LOVE and HIGHLY recommend all Karen Kingsbury Books! She is a Christian fiction author. Some of her books have been made into movies. She writes about family, 911, divorce, abortion, adoption, down syndrome, death, lost loves, regrets, etc. Sometimes I laugh and sometimes I cry! LOL! She has a website if you want to check it out.! Hope you enjoy!
I also Like Nicholas Sparks books!


answers from Dallas on

I didn't read all the posts, so my apologies if these are repeats. These are all over the map but I keep a list of books I would recommend so I'm sharing! Some of my favorites:

The Persian Pickle Club by Sandra Dallas
The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Ann Monk
The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb
Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd by Jim Fergus
Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore
Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum
The Help Kathyrn Stockett
Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef
Ordinary Heroes by Scott Turow



answers from State College on

Laurien Berenson- , Rett Macpherson



answers from Pittsburgh on

Here are some I've liked:

Thursdays at Eight by Debbie Macomber - 4 women in various stages of life become friends in a writing class. They continue their friendship by meeting on Thursday mornings at eight for breakfast and discussing their lives. Quick, light read.

Susannah's Garden by Debbie Macomber - a woman returns to her childhood home to pack things up as her mother is placed in a nursing home. She explores her relationship with her parents, her husband and her children. Quick, light read.

Dear John by Nicholas Sparks - there is a strong component of young love across the miles but also of a man discovering his sense of self and figuring out his relationship with his loving, yet distant father. Easy read.

Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson - "Katie Wilkinson's boyfriend Matt dumps her; not a total cad, he leaves her a gift, a diary kept by Suzanne, his first wife, for their son Nicholas. Though it's not exactly the diamond ring Katie was hoping for, she's unable to make herself destroy the diary--against her better judgment, Katie begins to read." Tear jerker.

Sam's Letters to Jennifer - "Jennifer, a newspaper columnist who's grieving the death of her husband, has more reason to mourn when her beloved grandmother, Sam, falls into a coma. Jennifer rushes to Sam's home in Lake Geneva, Wis., where she finds a packet of letters addressed to her. The letters detail her grandmother's life story, including an affair she had with a mysterious man. Jennifer takes comfort in the letters, and at the same time, embarks on her own romance with Brendan, an old friend." Sweet and sentimental.

Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons by Lorna Landvik - "Five friends live through three decades of marriages, child raising, neighborhood parties, bad husbands and good brownies...novel of female bonding..." Funny, reminiscent.


answers from Jacksonville on

I have never been into "chick lit" myself. I prefer mysteries or detective novels. Have you ever tried reading Michael Connelly? He has a series of novels focused around a detective named Harry Bosch. They are pretty good. Also a couple that don't involve that character, The Lincoln Lawyer is one, and it's a good read. Also some of William F. Buckley jr.'s novels (Elvis in the Morning, Spytime, Last Call for Blackford Oaks). They are pretty fun. I have also enjoyed a few of the Jack Reacher novels by Greg Iles. But I only read them during the summer when I'm at the beach or sitting by the pool with the kids. During the winter, I prefer historical fiction by Jeff Shaara.

Oh.. just read a previous post... and I had forgotten about Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet. I read it YEARS ago and it was wonderful! I did just recently finally read the follow-up World Without End this past winter... and it was also good (not quite as good as the first one, imo, but still very worth the 1000 pages).



answers from Sioux Falls on

Karen Kingsbury is a wonderful fiction author. I just read "Even Now" I had it read in two days! All of her books that I have read, I enjoyed. Very "feel good" and uplifting.
If you like suspense and action without the sex and gore, Ted Dekker is a very good author too. I have read most of his books. Very full of adrenaline and hard to put down!



answers from San Antonio on

I read Atonement by Ian McEwan recently and I was kind of blown away by it. I know it was made into a movie but I have not seen it, nor would I want to, the prose was just superb.

I have also had fun reading the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. So far there are 7 books to the series, each a page turner and fun. The first read like a romance novel, but had a good plot. I'm not a romance novel reader at all, but it was a fun book to read. By the 6th book I think Ms. Gabaldon is actually writing good literature. The stories are great, each one. I keep meeting people who are hooked on that series. I have tried to get into other things she's written, but I didn't think they were nearly as good.

I also loved The God of Small things by Arundhati Roy and The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. Siddhartha by Herman Hesse is a book I re-read at each different point in my life. I also liked Narcissus and Goldmund by Hesse, but if you've read one Hesse you've kind of read them all. :)



answers from Indianapolis on

Read "The Red Tent" and "Ahab's Wife". They are like really-well-written, historical fiction. They are amazing books. They are based on Bible figures, "The Red Tent" is about Jacob's only daughter Dina, and "Ahab's Wife" is about, well, King Ahab's wife. But they aren't religious books at all (and I suppose if they were, it would be Judaism since they are both Old Testament characters...). Anyhow...they aren't religious. Just historical fiction about characters that aren't written much about in scriptures.

Everyone's read "Angels and Demons" and "The DiVinci Code" but Dan Browns other books are just as good. I just finished "Deception Point" and couldn't put it down.



answers from Cincinnati on

I don't know how many of these involve married women with children, but they're great books. My most influential books, although some are uplifting and others disturbing, all leave an impression.

"The Poisonwood Bible" by Barbara Kingsolver
"Beloved" by Toni Morrison
"Native Son" by Richard Wright
"East of Eden" by John Steinbeck
"Julie of the Wolves" by Jean Craighead George and John Schoenherr
"The House of Seven Gables" by Nathanial Hawthorne
"The Genesis of Ethics" by Burton L. Visotzky
"Desert Flower" by Waris Dirie
"Life of Pi" by Yann Martel

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