15 Books You Can’t Put Down

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15 Books You Can't Put Down

Last summer I got addicted to reading again after a long hiatus and I realized how much I love to read.

But here’s the thing. As you fellow mommies know, finding spare time in the day to to read a book can be hard to come by so I don’t have the time or patience to “get into a book.” It has to grab me from the first chapter and be so good it becomes one of those books you can’t put down.

Over the past year I have read lots of books that fall into the books you can’t put down category, so I wanted to share the titles with you.

Many thanks to those that respond to my Facebook inquiries asking for “books you can’t put down” suggestions and the readers that helped me compile this “Good Summer Reads” list from last year, of which many of these books came from. Here goes:

15 Books You Can’t Put Down

(Disclosure: Amazon Affiliate Links used in text links and images)

1. Gone Girl

Given. Most everyone and their mother has read this book, but if you haven’t, put this first on your list. Gripping who done it.

2. What Alice Forgot

One of my favorite books of all time about a woman who wakes up after a bump on her head with no memory of the past 10 years (or the three children she had during that time)! Hilarious, touching and thought-provoking. Poignant read for our stage of life.

3. The Language of Flowers

This book just touched my soul. The story of a girl who grew up in the foster care system, and newly emancipated at 18, realizes the gift she has for choosing flowers for people based on their meanings and the chance meeting with a stranger that will change her life forever.

4. The Silent Wife

This book is about a marriage in crisis; told in alternating voices of he said she said. Murder, lies and chilling surprises. Beautifully written. 

5. Me Before You

The beautiful story of a quadriplegic man grieving the life that once was, the lost soul that came to care for him and the lessons they both learn from each other.  Get a tissue box ready. 

6. Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

I don’t typically read memoirs, but this one came highly recommended and was so gripping, again, I couldn’t put it down. It’s the real life story of a healthy 24-year-old New York reporter and the illness that suddenly sent her into the depths of mental madness. Story chronicles her journey to diagnosis. Fascinating information on the brain and the chemistry it takes to keep us in working order. 

7. The Fault in Our Stars

The beautiful love story of a terminal cancer patient and the handsome boy she meets in the Cancer Kid Support Group. Once again, give me a tissue please.

8. Reconstructing Amelia

An academic overachiever at a private high school accused of cheating has jumped to her death. Or did she? The story of a mother’s struggle to vindicate the memory of her daughter to discover the events that lead to her death.

9. The Snow Child

The story of a childless couple in brutal Alaska in 1920 breaking apart from the stress of the farm and the wife’s desperate loneliness.  During the first snowfall they build a child out of snow and the next morning the snow child is gone -but they glimpse a young, blonde girl running through the trees.  I wish I was in a book club to discuss this one.  The ending had me thinking for weeks to come. 

10. The Husband’s Secret

I just finished this one on vacation last week. One of the best books I have ever read. The story of a letter from a husband that was not supposed to be found, or read, and the secret that will change everything. 

11. Defending Jacob

A legal thriller of the story of an assistant district attorney in suburbia whose fourteen-year-old son has been charged with the murder of a fellow student. The devoted dad rallies to protect his boy, of course, believing his innocence. But as facts are revealed he realizes how little he knows of his son which leaves him questioning everything he once believed to be true. Chilling read. 

12. Sarah’s Key

The story of a ten-year-old Jewish girl brutally arrested with her family by the French police in the Vel’ d’ Hiv’ roundup directed by Nazi authorities in 1942. Sixty years later, journalist Julia is asked to write an article about this black day and stumbles onto a trail of long-hidden family secrets that connect her to Sarah.  Haunting.

13. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America

This one was not my “typical” read but so gripping and fascinating, again, I couldn’t put it down. The author intertwines the true story of the 1893 World’s Fair and the cunning serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims to their death. Incredible research and impeccable storytelling make this a can’t put it down read.


14. When She Woke

The futuristic story of a stigmatized woman living in an America where the line between church and state has been eradicated and convicted felons are not longer imprisoned,  but chromed – their skin color genetically altered to match the class of their crimes and then released into the population to survive best they can. Hannah is a Red, a convicted murderer, and hers is the story of discovering her path to safety in a hostile world.


15. The Kitchen House

This story takes place on a thriving plantation in the decades before the Civil War and follows an Irish orphan, Lavinia, who arrives on the steps of the kitchen house and placed as an indentured servant under the care of Belle, the master’s illegitimate slave daughter. As she is accepted into the kitchen house she has to straddle the worlds between the kitchen house and the big house, but her skin color forever separates her from Belle and the other slaves. And, once again, have a tissue box ready.

If you have your own books you can’t put down to add to our list, please leave it in the comments! I have to get started on creating a new list…

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