Can anyone recommend a really engaging, not too taxing read?

(40 Posts)
birdofthenorth Wed 09-Jan-13 08:05:07

I am embarrassed to admit that since I had DD two years ago the only books I have made it all the way through are One Day and the Cheryl Cole autobiography!! I have started several others but rarely make it past the first couple of chapters.

I am keen to sort it out especially now I have an iPad so can Kindle, but am in my second trimester of pregnancy now and knackered so not looking for anything mind-bending, but not potboiling rubbish.

I like stuff with an interesting social or political or gender element, strong characters, a good storyline and preferably modern in style. I am not a big fan of fantasy, silly romance, mystery or crime stuff. Can anyone recommend something I might like that is reall engaging from the start?

Many thanks in advance!

valiumredhead Thu 14-Feb-13 10:18:14

I second Capital by John Lancester - brilliant book and all the more engaging for me because I used to live right near the road where it's set!

Phineyj Sun 10-Feb-13 23:22:56

The Crow Road by Iain Banks is gripping and not as grim as The Wasp Factory. It starts 'It was the day my grandmother exploded... '

snozzlemaid Sat 09-Feb-13 18:53:42

Best thing I've read in ages is Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes.

cuggles Sat 09-Feb-13 17:48:49

Anything by Jodi Picoult (issue based) and I recommend Me before You also. Diane Chamberlaine also good for Jodi Picoult style stuff but I find a bit lighter....tend to have a medical slant whilst JP tend towards legal.

stargirl1701 Fri 01-Feb-13 21:16:21

The Prodigal Sunmer by Barbara Kingsolver.

Fishandjam Fri 01-Feb-13 21:14:29

Perfume by Patrick Susskind.

CoteDAzur Fri 01-Feb-13 21:13:23

I didn't think Labyrinth was really engaging and if you don't want "potboiling rubbish", I would stay clear of Truth About Melody Browne.

Since you say you like political & modern books, I think you could be interested in Charles Cumming's very modern spy books.

Zappo Fri 01-Feb-13 20:16:23

"Notes on a Scandal" an enjoyable, easy but unputdownable read

Megsdaughter Fri 01-Feb-13 20:10:11

Kate Mosse Labyrinth was brilliant

FuriousRox Fri 01-Feb-13 20:01:12

Any human heart or Restless by william Boyd - readable and satisfying

Diary of a provincial lady - v amusing

The light years by Elizabeth jane Howard

Hope you find something you enjoy!

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Feb-13 19:36:57

Another vote for "Me Before You". Intriguing story. I started a thread on it.

"The Pursuit of Happiness" by Douglas Kennedy, or "A Special Relationship" by him. Ignore the daft girly covers. Both gripping, socio/political background....

Anything by Jane Green is fun - similar thoughtful "issues" based chick lit to Marian Keyes.

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Feb-13 19:36:56

Another vote for "Me Before You". Intriguing story. I started a thread on it.

"The Pursuit of Happiness" by Douglas Kennedy, or "A Special Relationship" by him. Ignore the daft girly covers. Both gripping, socio/political background....

Anything by Jane Green is fun - similar thoughtful "issues" based chick lit to Marian Keyes.

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Feb-13 19:36:55

Another vote for "Me Before You". Intriguing story. I started a thread on it.

"The Pursuit of Happiness" by Douglas Kennedy, or "A Special Relationship" by him. Ignore the daft girly covers. Both gripping, socio/political background....

Anything by Jane Green is fun - similar thoughtful "issues" based chick lit to Marian Keyes.

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Feb-13 19:36:55

Another vote for "Me Before You". Intriguing story. I started a thread on it.

"The Pursuit of Happiness" by Douglas Kennedy, or "A Special Relationship" by him. Ignore the daft girly covers. Both gripping, socio/political background....

Anything by Jane Green is fun - similar thoughtful "issues" based chick lit to Marian Keyes.

BikeRunSki Fri 01-Feb-13 19:36:54

Another vote for "Me Before You". Intriguing story. I started a thread on it.

"The Pursuit of Happiness" by Douglas Kennedy, or "A Special Relationship" by him. Ignore the daft girly covers. Both gripping, socio/political background....

Anything by Jane Green is fun - similar thoughtful "issues" based chick lit to Marian Keyes.

GoLadyEdith Fri 01-Feb-13 19:24:20

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
Alys, Always by Harriet Lane

hellohoney Thu 31-Jan-13 05:13:31

Definitely check out Getting Rid of Matthew by Jane Fallon. Dark kind of chick-lit, easy read but brilliant. I read it on my kindle when I was in hospital following DS being born and finished it in one night, while baby slept on my chest. Great stuff.

Stonefield Thu 31-Jan-13 04:45:56

I've just finished A Fault in our Stars by John Green, actually aimed at teens but he's a brilliant writer. Intelligent, funny and moving.

Also try This is where I leave you by Jonathan Tropper. Anything by him is excellent.

Oh and definitely Perks of being a wallflower, it's brilliant.

bluecat237 Thu 31-Jan-13 04:35:40

Read "Schizophrenic Rainbows" by Addison Maitland recently - was something I really got into - social lives of kids, but relayed in a really interesting way. Lots to think about - but also not taxing.

lynnh28 Fri 11-Jan-13 11:12:15

ive just finished 'Thoughtless' & 'Effortless' by SC Stephens,3rd book 'Reckless' is out 5th march, its a great story line smile

sorryimlateagain Fri 11-Jan-13 10:25:33

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd - great book and theres a film of it too. Set in Sth Carolina in 1960s during civil rights movement. 14 yo motherless girl runs off from her father with her black maid. It's a fabulous story but an easy read.

The Host by Stephanie Meyer, who wrote the Twilight books. I loved this one. Less for teenagers if you don't like twilight (which I do blush). A film is being made of this too which I can't wait for.

I also enjoyed the Hunger Games trilogy.

harryhausen Wed 09-Jan-13 22:16:50

Try 'the truth about Melody Browne' by Lisa Jewell.

It's a suspense/intriguing story about a woman who gets hypnotised at a hypnotist show and wakes up the next day with fleeting 'memories' of another life. She sets off to find out what the hell is going on.

Not a hard read. Very intriguing. Satisfying ending.

Smudging Wed 09-Jan-13 20:18:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

birdofthenorth Wed 09-Jan-13 20:00:56

Thanks very much all, heaps if great sounding suggestions here!

I see The Perks of Being a Wallflower us cheap to download at the mo, can anyone recommend it?

tumbletumble Wed 09-Jan-13 19:55:39

Agree with Me Before You.

I also think Maggie O'Farrell might fit the bill.

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