The best uplifting books to cheer you up

Team Closer share the books that are getting them through this time of crisis

Best uplifting books

by Marianna Manson |
Updated on

Books have long been a friend and mentor for us, but during lockdown they've proved to be invaluable sources of entertainment, inspiration and optimism.

From part-time readers who normally only get lost in a novel on holiday to dedicated bookworms known for powering through tomes in record time, when you've exhausted Netflix and the rest of the internet, books will always be there to whisk you elsewhere and soothe any anxieties you might have about the current reality.

With everything from no bullsh-t self help books to dystopian fantasy and subtle, touching mood-boosters, team Closer have rounded up the best uplifting reads to cheer us up and keep us feeling positive during lockdown.

CHECK OUT the best uplifting books from Team Closer

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Uplifting reads

Uplifting-reads1 of 10
CREDIT: Amazon

Daisy Jones and The Six, by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Digital writer Marianna MansonWhile the sex, drugs and rock n' roll underlining this blistering 'memoir' doesn't exactly scream uplifting wholesome content, anyone who's invested in the culture of 70s LA will be utterly enchanted by this – reading it in the sunshine was positively euphoric in parts. Comprised of 'interviews' with musicians from a stratospherically successful rock band, Taylor Jenkins Reid's writing will consistently make you forget that Daisy and The Six are entirely fictional.

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CREDIT: Amazon

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman

Digital writer Marianna MansonCast your mind back to 2017 and it's likely you'll remember the unassuming cover of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine being EVERYWHERE. Readers fell in love with Eleanor, a single woman who struggled with socialising and often said exactly what was on her mind, who really did think she was fine. But it wasn't until she started forging friendships in her adopted home that Eleanor really started to understand how full her life could be. We were rooting for her from the first page.

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CREDIT: Amazon

The Lido, by Libby Page

Digital writer Marianna MansonI LOVED the vivid portrayal of Brixton in this, a neighbourhood that's been at the centre of the gentrification-in-the-capital row for decades. This easy-going novel bridges the gap between traditional and developing south London with protagonists from each camp and proves that we can live harmoniously – and achieve great things in the process – if we just look out for each other. The definition of an uplifting book for these trying times.

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CREDIT: Amazon

The Rosie Project, by Greame Simsion

Digital Editor George TerryDon is looking for love and has a very clear idea of what his life partner will be like. Rosie ticks none of the boxes. Sounds like the plot of any number of throwaway romances, right? But… you're going to have to trust me, I don't want to give away any of the plot, but this is unlike any story I've ever read. It's hands down, one of the most feel-good books ever, without any pesky jeopardy to bring you down: who needs light and shade in these dark days anyway?

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CREDIT: Amazon

A Man Called Ove, by Fredrik Backman

Digital Editor George TerryIf, however, you do like your novels served with many shades of grey (but not 50, never 50), a man called Ove takes you on quite the emotional rollercoaster. Can a grumpy old man find joy in the world? Well, look. There's a reason it's in the uplifting book pile, right?

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CREDIT: Amazon

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F-ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life, by Mark Manson

Shopping Editor Amiee JakesIf you don't fancy fiction, a self-help book can be both liberating and feel-good. Knowledge is power, my friends.This is the tough-talking book that we sometimes need to forget our petty worries and focus on the stuff is actually worth giving a fu-k over.As Manson aptly points out, "In life, we have a limited amount of fu-ks to give. So you must choose your fu-ks wisely." We shall cheers to that.

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CREDIT: Amazon

How to Fail: Everything I’ve Ever Learned From Things Going Wrong, by Elizabeth Day

Audience Development exec Louella BerrymanIf you've ever felt like everything is going wrong and it's all your fault (dramatic, I know) then Elizabeth Day's How To Fail is the perfect tonic. In her part-memoir, part exploration of what happens when things go wrong, Elizabeth Day makes you feel as if everything will be OK again, whether you're struggling with massive life experiences like losing your job or if you've just burnt your dinner. She's got a hugely successful podcast too, also called How To Fail, so if you love the book then it's definitely worth a listen.

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CREDIT: Amazon

The Flatshare, by Beth O'Leary

Head of Content Amy CooperI recommended this book to so many people at the beginning of lockdown. The Flatshare is the perfect distraction and antidote to the mess that is 2020 and is a feel-good romantic comedy with lots of heart about Tiffy and Leon, an unlikely pair that meet in the most unconventional of ways.

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CREDIT: Amazon

Red, White and Royal Blue

Digital Writer Nathan KatnoriaIs there anything more uplifting than a good old-fashioned love story? Casey McQuiston puts a modern spin on the traditional romance as she tells the tale of a British prince and an American first son falling in love and packs in tons of pop culture references along the way. It's just as bingeable as your fave Netflix series and will have you reading from cover to cover in no time.

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CREDIT: Amazon

The Long Earth series, by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter

Digital Writer Marianna Manson's mum, CarolThis a great series to keep you company in lockdown, with five books in all, starting with the Long Earth, and filled with Pratchett's humour and Baxter's fierce intellect, it gives a welcome feeling of positivity about our future.Set in a distant post apocalyptic earth with a vastly reduced population it's a story about ourselves and our growing understanding of the world. But more importantly it's about the need to understand and not to judge people around you and the ones you love.

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This is a tough time for everyone, but we've taken it upon ourselves to become your one-stop-shop for boredom busting in lockdown.

First off, we've got loads more book recommendations, from romance novels to our all time favourite reads and the audiobooks we're loving - as well as some must reads for anyone wanting to pick up a new hobby.

We've had a good think and come up with ways to holiday in your own house,whether you're a single pringle or have little people in the house to think about too.

A good pamper session is the ideal solution for whiling away an evening and so we've suggested some of our favourite beauty subscription boxes to get stuck into.

And don't neglect your love life while you've got time to kill - check out our guides to the best sex toys to spice up your iso life.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us