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  • Writer's pictureTerrie

Top 10 Tuesday: Books That Made Me Cry

The official theme for this week's Top 10 Tuesday is "favorite 'awww' moments in books that give all the feels". Well there's no way my brain manages that. So, a twist is in order - I'm going with books that made me cry.

Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl is hosting another week of Top Ten Tuesday. I enjoy participating each week for a couple reasons. I'm a compulsive list maker and love a good list. And, I love a connection with other readers as I wander their book blogs. Here goes.

Let me preface this list with the fact that I rarely cry with books - TV shows are different; I'm often brought to tears by touching moments. But, it seems like the harder the book tries to be sad or touching, the less likely I am to go there. I'm more likely to tear up with an unexpected event or moment that touches me. These all touched me.

The One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood

Read Feb 2020

It's no spoiler to say that an odd but special little boy dies very early in the book. The people that he touched with his short life and the impact he left is such a touching story. Tears? Absolutely!

Reviewed here

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman

Read this in 2017, which was before blogging - on GR I wrote:

What a quirky, unusual format to tell a story! A story of love, of loss, of growing up. Though I wasn't sure I liked it at first, I quickly got so caught up in the story and characters that they sat in my mind urging me back to the book when I should have been working.

Using homemade fairytales, a grandmother weaves incredible stories to help her "different" (precocious) 7-year-old granddaughter cope with struggles in her life. When the granny dies, she leaves letters for her clever granddaughter to find that allow her to meet and understand her neighbors and her granny's life. An ordinary tale told in an extraordinary way. And yes, tears were shed. Highly recommended.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Read August 2020

I've read enough WWII fiction about strong women that I rarely get emotionally invested enough to cry. But this one, this one got me at the end. Tears rolling down my cheeks.

Review here

A Big Little Life by Dean Koontz

Read in 2012 on the recommendation of my sister, a dog lover

This book is a heartfelt ode to his much loved golden retriever, Trixie. It's a bit memories, philosophy, humor, and faith. And how could I not get a bit teary at the expressions of so much love?

Review here

The Lobster Kings by Alexi Zentner

Read in 2015

My GR comments from back then:

I really liked this book. It tells the story of a lobster fishing family, their sibling and parental relationships, and even has a little touch of the mystical. Well written, a strong female main character, good enjoyable read.

What I don't say is my memory of tears and tears at the end, though I don't remember it being an overtly sad book. Just touching.

And Every Morning The Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman

Read January 2022 - Another emotional entry by Backman

This short story is in honor of his dad and explores the relationship between a man struggling to hold onto his memories and the grandson he loves. He tries to connect as much as possible while he still can. Touching and heartwarming without being maudlin. Tears? Of course.

Monsters of Men #3 Chaos Walking by Patrick Ness

Read December 2019

I loved this trilogy and loved the two main characters. It is fantasy with lots of action, lots of social commentary and so very well written. I was surprised when I cried my way through most of the last chapters.

Review here

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

Read in 2019

I wouldn't be surprised in many people had tears in their eyes at the end of this novel about a couple working at a lighthouse who find an infant and keep her with devastating results.

Review here

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

Read in 2010, like most of the world at that time

Another book that 'everyone' read at the time, a heartwarming story told from a dog's perspective as he reflects back on his life with his humans. It's a great story, but honestly, the tears!!

Harry's Trees by Jon Cohen

Read in 2018

This is a book I feel like needs more attention. In the first few pages a man's wife is tragically killed and the rest of the story is him trying to find his way through that - he retreats to nature and meets a young girl trying to get over the loss of her father. The bond is rare and touching. Though starting from a sad premise, it's not a sad book, and yet, I cried at the end.

Review here

And there you have it - 10 books that made me cry. Did any of these affect you that way too? Do you see a new-to-you book on this list that you might try?

Looking forward to adding to my TBR this week as I visit your blogs and read about books that gave you "all the feels".

Welcome to Bookshelf Journeys.

It's my goal to provide real reviews of the books I read without totally rehashing every plot. I'll never spoil a story by giving away a plot twist! Hopefully you'll find one or two of interest and will discover a new book or author to add to YOUR TBR list.  Take a moment to explore, read a couple reviews, and let me know what you think.


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The review ratings are based on a 5 star  (1/2 stars sometimes) system with a 3 being an average read for me. I hope you find that helpful. Knowing, of course, that all opinions are just that - my opinion!  Let me know if you agree or disagree - I'd love to hear from you.

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