This is going to be one of the hardest topics I’ve covered yet. As a bookseller I often get customers in who haven’t read a book in years, but who want to begin reading again. They ask for recommendations and this is probably the hardest request a bookseller has to fulfill, so I’m sharing my go-to books for such a situation.

This week’s topic: 5 books for the person who hasn’t read a book in years (but suddenly wants to start reading again)

  1. The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson – This is a great book for the person who likes a good adventure with some humour in it. It jumps time lines, from a humourous story of an old man just trying to get away from all the excitement surrounding his 100th birthday and randomly stealing some important luggage from a young thug who made him angry, then back to his past where he has randomly influences major events in world history just by being his pragmatic self.
  2. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion – I recommend this book to the person who tells me they like lighter romance that still has some depth to it. Don is a really smart guy who just doesn’t connect with others that well. In his attempt to find a life partner he makes the mistake of assuming that the woman his best friend and colleague sent to his office is actually a candidate for “The Wife Project”. This book is cute, funny, and Don will likely remind people of Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory.
  3. The Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks – These are for the person who likes epic fantasy but hasn’t been able to find a new series that captures their interest. I’m honestly surprised at how many people don’t know about these books. It has orphans, assassins, damsels in distress (and others who kick butt), magic swords, and sorcery. The characters are interesting and the story is fast-paced and engaging. Everyone that I have sold these books to has come back to let me know how much they enjoyed reading them.
  4. The Library of the Dead by Glenn Cooper – This is a book for the person who read The DaVinci Code and hasn’t read anything since. It’s actually a series, but I think the first book is the best and can be read on its own. A nearly retired FBI agent is assigned a case that no one else can seem to solve. Random people have been receiving postcards with the date and time of their death written on it, but each death is different and totally unexplainable.
  5. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness – I recommend this book for the adult who read Twilight when it was hot but now needs something more grown up. This series still has all the pretty vampires and other cool paranormal creatures that we have come to know and love, but the relationships are more mature, the setting jumps around in the past and present, and there are some interesting historical figures that show up to keep the more academically inclined readers interested.

What are your go-to books when people ask for recommendations? Tell me about them in the comments!