Relaxing Reads!

orangutan list

Recently I’ve felt the need for some serious down time. And obviously being a bookworm, I ALWAYS turn to books in my hour of need. I thought I’d share some of the book series I turn to when the going gets tough! Here’s a quick list:

Discworld– this is my go to whenever I just need to chill and have fun. These eccentric, witty and hilarious books never fail to put me in a good mood!

howl's moving castle

Howl’s moving castle– another wacky writer that I consider every time I’m looking for some fun has to be Diana Wynne Jones. And while I grew up more on the Crestomanci series, I’ve been trying more of the Howl’s Moving Castle series later. Honestly, if you need a break from anything heavy, I recommend either of these.

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Song of the Lioness– this is one of the few series on the list I haven’t been reading lately, but I used to take these on holiday, because they are such a fun read. They’re often described as “gateway to fantasy” books and I think that title’s pretty apt. If you’re looking for fantasy, but don’t want to read anything dark, grim or grimdark, this could do the trick!

Percy Jackson and the Olympians– this one is fairly new to me. Surprisingly (and despite recommendations *for years*) I didn’t start this till about a year ago. I thought it was too young for me so didn’t continue until recently when I realised how much I missed out on this as a teen- and how great it is when you just need to chill!


Harry Potter– Good ol’ HP has been there for me through virtually every stage of my life. It’s like turning to a good friend in my hour of need. I know many of the kinks and turns in the story, and yet, like all the best friends, it never fails to surprise me.

anna and the french kiss series.jpg

Anna and the French Kiss– I certainly appreciate a good contemporary companion novel series and this one really works for me- especially the last one in the series Isla and the Happily Ever After– which… well, swoon!

sisterhood of the travelling pants.jpg

Summers of the Sisterhood– since I’m talking contemporary, let’s be honest, it’s pretty hard to go wrong with The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. As a contemporary series, it deals with a lot of issues like family, friendship and love- all with a charming deftness that will leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside (well, except for the last one- it’s my favourite, but it’s quite the change of tone- maybe save the last one for a different kind of mood!)

And that’s all for now- do you have any go-to books when you’re looking to relax? Let me know in the comment! I’d greatly appreciate all the recommendations!

60 thoughts on “Relaxing Reads!

  1. We seem to have a similar taste in lighthearted books. Wanted to recommend the Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriager if you hadn’t stumbled across it. I just finished it and really enjoyed it. Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next series is another one that I loved taking on vacation but couldn’t put down.

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  2. Oh I love your list of relaxing reads – I read Howl’s moving castle a while ago, but I remember LOVING it, and… that’s pretty much all that I remember about it, I think I should re-read it haha 🙂 I also loved the sisterhood of the traveling pants, such a fun and relaxing read ❤

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  3. Percy Jackson is my go-to is I just want a fun adventure. It’s so comical and ridiculous sometimes, but I thrive on the adventure and Greek mythology infusion.

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  4. Diana Wynne Jones is one of my favorite writers–I first read Dogsbody when I was young and found my way to her other books.
    The funny thing is I find her relaxing and often challenging at the same time. Howl’s Moving Castle and Dark Lord of Derkholm are great books but I feel like on the first page they throw the reader into the deep end. Whereas most fantasy novels offer an explanatory prologue or an outsider who acts as a window for the readers Jones puts us right in the middle of fully and beautifully realized worlds.
    Catching up is a fun challenge.

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  5. I think this is a great list, and of the books I read I definitely agreed with your choices as well. Both Harry Potter and Percy Jackson strike me as the kind of books you can pick up on a whim and jump right into the story. I even feel like I could pick up the third book of the series and still be able to follow the story.
    Also I’ve never seen those covers for the Discworld books before, they’re so gorgeous! 😀
    Great post. 🙂 ❤

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  6. Lovely post 😊 I still haven’t read Song of the Lioness, but I really want to get to them soon. They sound like such fun, old school fantasy books! When I want a relaxing read I usually pick up a YA contemporary, one of the best ones I’ve read lately is Tash Hearts Tolstoy.

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  7. Making a mental note to actually read to relax. I’ve been recently reading a lot of non fiction and this is a great reminder to actually read to switch off, not to think even more. 🙈🙈😂

    I love your list, Tamara Pierce is one of my favourite writers. And Percy Jackson ❤️❤️❤️ I haven’t read the Sisterhood of Travelling Pants books yet. I saw those two movies though and have a feeling it was be a great relaxing read. Thank you!

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  8. I love the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants film but have never gotten round to reading the books! Though I still do turn to the film when I need a break or some cheering up, despite the fact that it makes me cry just as much as it makes me smile… :’)

    Also PJO and HP are great too! I’m hoping to reread HP this year – I’ve missed it.

    Simi ~

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  9. I definitely agree on the Potters, Tamora Pierce and Discworld novels! They always make me feel comfy & relaxed and I like rereading them over and over. Especially when I am in a reading slump, they come in handy.

    Charlie N. Holmberg’s books have me feeling the same lately. They are so short and sweet and I haven’t picked up a bad one yet. Fingers crossed it’ll stay like that!

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  10. Discworld is the only one I’ve read, but I love it!! They never fail to amuse and often make me laugh out loud. Most of these I listened to as audiobooks and I think Nigel Plainer (sp?) is a fantastic narrator.

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  11. Love this! Anna and the french kiss was such a fun series, kind of my guilty pleasure haha. I have to check out these other ones because I haven’t heard of many!!

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  12. Relaxing reads are all about re-reads for me. I know the story, I don’t really have to concentrate too much, and can just get swept up in the world. So anything with Sam Vimes from the Discworld series 🙂

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  13. I agree with Isla and the Happy Ever After! That’s my favourite one of all the three books and it works wonders whenever I want to relax with a contemporary! Tamora Pierce was also a really big name in fantasy when I was growing up but for some reason I never had access to any of her books. Now she’s jumped back onto my radar I’m interested and excited to see what her books are like!

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  14. I totally agree with you on Harry Potter, it’s one of the books (or book series) I can always re-read, and it always brings back so many nice memories. And I really want to read something by Rick Riordan sometime, thanks for the reminder. 🙂

    Wonderful list! ❤

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  15. I absolutely love Pratchett, I’m currently at book 12 in my audio-re-read of the entire set, but I’m a bit surprised to see him on the “most relaxing” list. Maybe, some of them… but in many the satire is so sharp, that my blood pressure actually rises a bit 😉 As Gaiman wrote, ‘there is a fury to Terry Pratchett’s writing’…

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  16. Ooooh Howl’s Moving Castle and Tamora Pierce and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants! Love them all and yeah they’re def books I could return to as fave relaxing reads. I also find myself returning to The Phantom Tollbooth, The Thief of Always, Coraline (ha I think there’s a particular kind of childhood escapism I’m into), Roald Dahl and Beatrix Potter. Good stuff! This was a cute post, thanks 🙂

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  17. As someone that switches genres with each book that I pick up my idea of relaxing is usually romance/contemporary type of stories. Although I do think cozy mysteries are usually pretty relaxing too compared to thrillers. Fantasy type of books though are usually right up there with the heavier mystery/thrillers in I think too much about the world and characters, any abilities etc. So it’s always the lighthearted let my brain rest reads between those heavier ones. 🙂

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  18. I always relax with some form of contemporary romance. If I need to a break I want something to make my squishy heart happy. Anna and the French Kiss did just that for me too!

    I hope you’re getting your down time x

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  19. Harry Potter! I re-read the whole series almost on a yearly basis. I know the books so well, but I just love pretending to discover that world all over again! I also have the Calvin and Hobbes set which I often pick up for some light bedtime reading😃

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  20. Nice picks! I’ve had Terry Pratchett and Tamora Pierce on my TBR ever since I was in middle school (yikes so long ago!) so it’s great to hear their reads are so much fun. Also: I totally agree with Percy Jackson and Harry Potter (duh) ❤

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  21. I just started the Percy Jackson series based on your review and I’m having so much fun with it 🙂 I’m only half way through the first one, but I’m only reading it during breaks at work right now.

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  22. Amazing list! I really need to get around to trying out the Discworld books soon. I finally got my hands on the The Colour of Magic and got an amazing bargain on the next 4 too. I even found the first graphic novel that adapts the first two books I think! 😮 Ever thought of trying that adaptation out? I wonder what a veteran like you would think of it.

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  23. What a wonderful list .. I’ve got he HP series, though would consider re-reading them sometime.
    I love the covers on the three; ANNA, LOLA, ISLA and may look into these now you have brought my attention to them 🌸

    Liked by 1 person

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