62 books like I'm Glad My Mom Died

By Jennette McCurdy,

Here are 62 books that I'm Glad My Mom Died fans have personally recommended if you like I'm Glad My Mom Died. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Crying in H Mart

Kathryn Betts Adams Author Of The Pianist's Only Daughter: A Memoir

From my list on Memoirs illness aging death moving vivid prose.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was first a clinical social worker and then a social work professor with research focus on older adults. Over the past few years, as I have been writing my own memoir about caring for my parents, I’ve been drawn to memoirs and first-person stories of aging, illness, and death. The best memoirs on these topics describe the emotional transformation in the writer as they process their loss of control, loss of their own or a loved one’s health, and their fear, pain, and suffering. In sharing these stories, we help others empathize with what we’ve gone through and help others be better prepared for similar events in their own lives.

Kathryn's book list on Memoirs illness aging death moving vivid prose

Kathryn Betts Adams Why did Kathryn love this book?

Michelle Zauner’s writing is rich with detail, especially descriptions of Korean foods and visits to relatives in Korea that blossom with imagery, scents, and sounds. Against the backdrop of those vivid childhood scenes and the food shopping and eating scenes, the story remained vivid as her mother succumbs to cancer.

Two themes struck me throughout the book: Michelle’s father is Caucasian American, her mother is a Korean immigrant, and M. struggles to find her place in either culture. Her youthful rebellion against her mother’s over-protectiveness and very Korean-ness becomes painful to face as her mother is sick and dying.

I was deeply moved as Michelle came to accept her mother, forgive herself, and embrace the family and culture her mother had given her.

By Michelle Zauner,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Crying in H Mart as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of Barack Obama's Favorite Books of 2021

The New York Times bestseller from the Grammy-nominated indie rockstar Japanese Breakfast, an unflinching, deeply moving memoir about growing up mixed-race, Korean food, losing her Korean mother, and forging her own identity in the wake of her loss.

'As good as everyone says it is and, yes, it will have you in tears. An essential read for anybody who has lost a loved one, as well as those who haven't' - Marie-Claire

In this exquisite story of family, food, grief, and endurance, Michelle Zauner proves herself far more than a dazzling singer,…


Book cover of Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Jim Landwehr Author Of Dirty Shirt: A Boundary Waters Memoir

From my list on the trials and joys of outdoor adventure.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been a lover of all things outdoors since I was a boy. After my father was killed at a young age, my brothers and I took his love for outdoor adventure and made it our own. Fully aware of all that can go wrong, my brothers and I went into our ventures with a keen sense of humor. Camping, fishing, and kayaking all come with their own challenges and requisite hilarious moments. It is these moments of adversity, and personal risk, that are sometimes lightened by a good dose of laughter and levity.

Jim's book list on the trials and joys of outdoor adventure

Jim Landwehr Why did Jim love this book?

Much like A Walk in the Woods, Wild takes an ordinary person and puts them in an extremely challenging environment only to show they were unprepared for the rigors of the great outdoors.

Strayed has a similar goal to Bryson, but chooses the Pacific Crest Trail. The hike is an attempt at self-discovery as well as to challenge herself after experiencing various addictions and the loss of her mother. Strayed’s motives are not unlike those of my brothers and I as we ventured into the BWCAW while navigating our young lives as twenty-somethings.

By Cheryl Strayed,

Why should I read it?

27 authors picked Wild as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A powerful, blazingly honest memoir: the story of an eleven-hundred-mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe—and built her back up again.

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother’s death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life. With no experience or training, driven only by blind will, she would hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the…


Book cover of Will I Ever Be Good Enough? Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers

Meg Arroll Author Of Tiny Traumas: When You Don't Know What's Wrong, but Nothing Feels Quite Right

From my list on helping you understand why you feel the way you fee.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a psychologist, yet I am also a human being with real, complex, and, at times, disturbing thoughts and feelings. I would say I’ve learnt more from my own experiences and those shared by others than any training or qualifications. I never tire of listening to these real-life narratives, which are full of more color and depth than our rudimentary single-word emotion labels describe. I gather these stories up to feed my emotobiome (our microscopic inner world of feelings) along with the books and learnings from my list. I hope you’ll join me on this rollercoaster ride through human feelings–I wouldn’t miss it for the world. 

Meg's book list on helping you understand why you feel the way you fee

Meg Arroll Why did Meg love this book?

I’ve found so much value in this book; it’s one of my most recommended titles to both friends and clients.

It never ceases to amaze me how many people feel “not good enough” and the impact this has on our lives. Some of the most challenging feelings, such as guilt and shame, frequently emerge out of complex early life family dynamics, and more subtle forms of emotional neglect associated with narcissistic personality disorder can be incredibly difficult to disentangle.

The ”a-ha” moments in this book, especially emerging from the case studies, shone a light on feelings of insignificance and how to heal the inner child.

By Karyl McBride,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Will I Ever Be Good Enough? Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From experienced family therapist Dr. Karyl McBride, Will I Ever Be Good Enough? is an essential guide to recovery for women with selfish, emotionally abusive, and toxic mothers—designed to help daughters reclaim their lives.

The first book for daughters who have suffered the abuse of narcissistic, self-involved mothers, Will I Ever Be Good Enough? provides the expert assistance you need in order to overcome this debilitating history and reclaim your life. Drawing on more than two decades of experience as a therapist specializing in women’s health and hundreds of interviews with suffering daughters, Dr. Karyl McBride helps you recognize the…


Book cover of The Burning Light of Two Stars: A Mother-Daughter Story

Karen C.L. Anderson Author Of You Are Not Your Mother: Releasing Generational Trauma and Shame

From my list on difficult mother/adult daughter relationships.

Why am I passionate about this?

In the 1980s, my mother “divorced” her mother with a letter in the mail. In 2010 I did the same via email. I thought it was just my dysfunctional family, but come to find out, mother-adult daughter estrangement is not unusual and difficult mother-daughter relationships don’t happen in a vacuum, they happen in the context of patriarchy, white supremacy, internalized misogyny, and other oppressive systems. Through therapy and, later, when I trained to be a life coach, allllll my “mother stuff” came up. The tools and practices I learned and developed were so helpful to me, I couldn’t keep them to myself. 

Karen's book list on difficult mother/adult daughter relationships

Karen C.L. Anderson Why did Karen love this book?

Laura Davis hits it out of the park with this epically honest and human memoir.

In it, she tells the story of how, after decades of estrangement due to family abuse and incest, which her mother denied, she decides to care for her elderly mother. I believe any woman will find value, wisdom, and relief in The Burning Light of Two Stars, but it is especially poignant for mothers and adult daughters who have struggled, are estranged, and/or are navigating reconciliation.

It is in revealing and speaking the truth, that healing, even when it's messy and emotional, can take place. 

By Laura Davis,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Burning Light of Two Stars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Caregiving an elderly parent, especially against the backdrop of a difficult shared past, can be a bruising spiritual ordeal. We who must travel this territory don't need any more sentimental narratives about it. What we do need is the healing medicine of truth-telling, and Laura Davis brilliantly and generously gives it to us. I literally could not put this book down."

—Katy Butler, bestselling author of Knocking on Heaven's Door and The Art of Dying Well

This riveting memoir by Laura Davis, the author of The Courage to Heal, examines the endurance of mother-daughter love, how memory protects and betrays…


Book cover of The Year of Magical Thinking

Michele DeMarco Author Of Holding Onto Air: The Art and Science of Building a Resilient Spirit

From my list on transforming your mental and spiritual health.

Why am I passionate about this?

Officially, I’m an award-winning author and specialist in the fields of psychology, trauma, and spirituality. I’m also a professionally trained therapist, clinical ethicist, and researcher. Ultimately, I’m an ardent believer that the same life that brings us joy also (sometimes) brings us pain. More importantly, that every aspect of life has a role to play in making us who we are today and who we’ll be tomorrow. We don’t always have control over the events in life, but the script we live by is ours to write—and write it we must, as only we can. I’m also a three-time heart attack survivor.

Michele's book list on transforming your mental and spiritual health

Michele DeMarco Why did Michele love this book?

Joan Didion’s book is heralded for its bravery, clarity, and confessional witness about grief and loss. Indeed, it’s all these things, but for me, more importantly, this book paints a masterful depiction of the loss of innocence that comes when you lose something meaningful—like a loved one.

Particularly, it shows, with exhilarating force, the fragmented sense of time of such an experience, moving from Didion’s darkest moments of despair at the loss of her husband in the present to treasured memories of her life before his passing and musings about what comes now—in the future.

This book is not for the faint of heart, but it is for the savoring soul who, like Didion, possesses an inherent human desire for a sense of coherence and wholeness after life has torn it asunder.

By Joan Didion,

Why should I read it?

14 authors picked The Year of Magical Thinking as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From one of America's iconic writers, a portrait of a marriage and a life - in good times and bad - that will speak to anyone who has ever loved a husband or wife or child. A stunning book of electric honesty and passion.

Several days before Christmas 2003, John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion saw their only daughter, Quintana, fall ill. At first they thought it was flu, then pneumonia, then complete sceptic shock. She was put into an induced coma and placed on life support. Days later - the night before New Year's Eve -the Dunnes were just…


Book cover of For Black Girls Like Me

Jiordan Castle Author Of Disappearing Act: A True Story

From my list on resilience for young adults and adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been interested in stories about becoming. Whether it’s a coming-of-age story, a story about overcoming adversity, or a story about discovery or recovery, I find that the best books about becoming also tend to be books about resilience. For me, the lure of a book is often more about its themes and perspective than it is about where it’s categorized and shelved. Having written a memoir in verse for an upper young adult reading group, this is especially true of my experience as an author. Each of the books on this list has something profound and singular to offer young adult readers and adult readers alike.

Jiordan's book list on resilience for young adults and adults

Jiordan Castle Why did Jiordan love this book?

Everyone should be reading middle grade books for characters and stories like this.

Eleven-year-old Makeda is loved, but as a Black girl in an adoptive family of white people, she questions what it might be like to grow up in a family that looks like her. Lockington draws from her own experience as a transracial adoptee, and writes with lyrical accessibility and honest, meaningful depictions of mental health struggles within a family.

This coming-of-age story for the younger set reminds people of all ages that while love matters, it takes work every day to keep evolving, showing up for, and fighting for those we love.

By Mariama J. Lockington,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked For Black Girls Like Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Makeda June Kirkland is eleven-years-old, adopted, and black. Her parents and big sister are white, and even though she loves her family very much, Makeda often feels left out. When Makeda's family moves from Maryland to New Mexico, she leaves behind her best friend, Lena - the only other adopted black girl she knows - for a new life. In New Mexico, everything is different. At home, Makeda's sister is too cool to hang out with her anymore and at school, she can't seem to find one real friend.

Through it all, Makeda can't help but wonder: What would it…


Book cover of Competitive Grieving

Bella Rainey Author Of The First Year

From my list on feeling validated in your grief.

Why am I passionate about this?

After losing my dad to suicide, I jumped into the only thing I could think to do: writing. After spending a full 365 days writing about my grief, it only felt right to share it with other people for the sake of feeling less alone through the isolating journey of parent loss. Through that process, I have learned so much about myself, societal ways of grieving, and the un-comfiest parts of grief. I know how hard it can be to talk about someone you miss and are also mad at simultaneously, so my suggestions are truly from the heart to help process those difficult and big emotions. 

Bella's book list on feeling validated in your grief

Bella Rainey Why did Bella love this book?

This book shows how layered and difficult grief can be, in the most uncomfortable and sometimes taboo ways. While flipping from page to page, you feel like you’re having a talk with your big sister, hearing her uncover things that no one else would be honest enough with you about.

Through her character Wren, this author is honest about how impossible it feels to grieve while also trying to live, as the narrator uncovers parts of her deceased friend she didn’t even know about. 

By Nora Zelevansky,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Competitive Grieving as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

*An Entertainment Weekly Pick of Summer’s Best New Books
*A USA Today Pick of Best Beach Reads
*A PopSugar Pick of Best New Summer Books
*A Daily Break Selection of the Month's Best Book

Wren’s closest friend, her anchor since childhood, is dead. Stewart Beasley. Gone. She can’t quite believe it and she definitely can’t bring herself to google what causes an aneurysm. Instead of weeping or facing reality, Wren has been dreaming up the perfect funeral plans, memorial buffets, and processional songs for everyone from the corner bodega owner to her parents (none of whom show signs of imminent…


Book cover of One of Us Is Lying

Gabriella Lepore Author Of Bad Like Us

From my list on whodunit mystery books from a huge mystery fan.

Why am I passionate about this?

Gabriella Lepore is a YA author from Wales in the UK. When she isn’t reading or writing, she can usually be found exploring the coastline or perusing a bookstore. She enjoys autumn days and cups of tea and is always searching for the next mystery!

Gabriella's book list on whodunit mystery books from a huge mystery fan

Gabriella Lepore Why did Gabriella love this book?

Next, we have a true standout in YA—a novel that arguably revolutionized the mystery genre for teen readers.

While mysteries have long been a staple in YA literature, in my view, this book sparked a new age. This novel, now adapted into a popular Netflix series, firmly established YA mystery as a force to be reckoned with, largely thanks to its clever twist.

Taut, scandalous, and enthralling, this book exemplifies the blame game genre.

By Karen M. McManus,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked One of Us Is Lying as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

NOW A MAJOR NETFLIX SERIES. This stunning collector's edition of the internationally bestselling YA smash hit, ONE OF US IS LYING, contains a thrilling BONUS chapter!

Five students go to detention. Only four leave alive.

Yale hopeful Bronwyn has never publicly broken a rule.

Sports star Cooper only knows what he's doing in the baseball diamond.

Bad boy Nate is one misstep away from a life of crime.

Prom queen Addy is holding together the cracks in her perfect life.

And outsider Simon, creator of the notorious gossip app at Bayview High, won't ever talk about any of them again.…


Book cover of The First Time I Died

Jessica Ingold Author Of The Spirit Catchers

From my list on contemplating your own mortality.

Why am I passionate about this?


Jessica's book list on contemplating your own mortality

Jessica Ingold Why did Jessica love this book?

In my book, the character learns that death is not a permanent phenomenon, but something more cyclical – so it’s no surprise that The First Time I Died sits at the top of my list. The novel centers around Garnet McGee, who returns home for the holidays and gets swept away in a cold case involving the death of her boyfriend. That is, until she falls into a frozen pond and drowns. This story is a dark roast coffee with just the right sprinkle of sugar – a tragic death interwoven with memories of a once-in-a-lifetime love. 

By Jo Macgregor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The First Time I Died as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The first time I died, I didn’t come back alone.

When Garnet McGee returns to her small Vermont hometown for the holidays, she vows to solve the mystery of the murder which shattered her life ten years ago. Then she dies.

After she's resuscitated, she starts hearing voices, seeing visions and experiencing strange sensations. Are these merely symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and an over-active imagination, or is she getting messages from a paranormal presence?

Garnet has always prided herself on being logical and rational, but trying to catch a killer without embracing her shadow self is getting increasingly difficult.…


Book cover of Unsaid

Jessica Ingold Author Of The Spirit Catchers

From my list on contemplating your own mortality.

Why am I passionate about this?


Jessica's book list on contemplating your own mortality

Jessica Ingold Why did Jessica love this book?

Told from the perspective of Helena, a veterinarian whose career was cut short by—you guessed it!—cancer, this book explores the ethical implications of testing on animals while unpacking the messy reality of grief. As Helena’s husband, David, struggles to care for his late wife’s houseful of beloved animals, ghost-Helena reflects on the meaninglessness of her existence. I think we all like to believe we leave some kind of impact on the world, but what if we don’t? And who are we to call ourselves superior beings when other creatures are forced to suffer at our expense?

By Neil Abramson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unsaid as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

UNSAID is told from the perspective of Helena Colden, a veterinarian who has just died of breast cancer. Helena is forced to witness the rapid emotional deterioration of her husband David. With Helena's passing, David, a successful Manhattan attorney, loses the only connection that made his life full. He tries to carry on the life that Helena had created for them, but he is too grief stricken, too angry, and too quickly reabsorbed into the demands of his career. Helena's animals likewise struggle with the loss of their understanding and compassionate human companion. Because of Helena, David becomes involved in…


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