The most recommended Easter books

Who picked these books? Meet our 9 experts.

9 authors created a book list connected to Easter, and here are their favorite Easter books.
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Book cover of Blackwater: The Complete Saga

Jill Hand Author Of White Oaks

From my list on Southern Gothic that are dark and twisted.

Who am I?

I’m a lifelong New Jerseyan married to a man whose family comes from Georgia. It gave me an opportunity to observe the white, Southern, upper-class weltanschauung, up close. To hear them talk, you’d think the Civil War had ended just a few days earlier, and if the Yankees had only respected states’ rights, none of that mess would have happened. My book is about a dysfunctional Georgia family who has far too much money than is good for them. Hijinks ensue.

Jill's book list on Southern Gothic that are dark and twisted

Jill Hand Why did Jill love this book?

I love a sprawling family saga set in a small town. My husband’s father came from a small town in South Georgia that was founded by one of his ancestors. My husband’s grandfather, after visiting Chicago and being impressed by the big department stores he saw there, decided that what his tiny little town needed was a huge department store of its own. He built one, and amazingly, it was a success for many years, with folks coming from all around to marvel at its architectural sophistication and its dazzling array of wares. Like the fictional town of Perdido, Alabama, where the action is centered in Blackwater, everyone there knows everybody else, and nothing secret stays hidden for long.

On Easter Sunday, 1919, a flood engulfs Perdido. Oscar Caskey, the eldest son of the town’s most influential family, discovers a stranger named Elinor Dammert waiting patiently inside a room on…

By Michael McDowell,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Blackwater is the saga of a small town, Perdido, Alabama, and Elinor Dammert, the stranger who arrives there under mysterious circumstances on Easter Sunday, 1919. On the surface, Elinor is gracious, charming, anxious to belong in Perdido, and eager to marry Oscar Caskey, the eldest son of Perdido’s first family. But her beautiful exterior hides a shocking secret. Beneath the waters of the Perdido River, she turns into something terrifying, a creature whispered about in stories that have chilled the residents of Perdido for generations. Some of those who observe her rituals in the river will never be seen again…


Book cover of Imagination of an Insurrection: Dublin, Easter 1916

Ashland Pym Author Of The Serpent and the Swan: A Grimm-Dark Fairy Tale

From my list on capturing the power of myth.

Who am I?

I’m a fantasy author and mythologist who studies myth’s place in culture, history, and heritage conservation. To finish my doctorate, I moved from Seattle to Galway, Ireland and never left. Myth and folklore permeate the landscape around me as well as my day-to-day life. After grad school I returned to my first love, fiction, with all the knowledge and passion that came from the better part of a decade spent studying mythology. When I’m not writing, I spend my time exploring 5000-year-old tombs or practicing Fiore (14th century Italian sword fighting) with my husband. The Serpent and the Swan is the debut fairy tale in a much larger series.

Ashland's book list on capturing the power of myth

Ashland Pym Why did Ashland love this book?

This book is one of the best at capturing the impact of myth on history, culture, and politics. Thompson starts long before the Easter 1916 Rising, the book’s central event, and examines how Celticity became a focal point of reclaiming an Irish identity separate from the British. Just as Jack Zipes’ Grimm Legacies demonstrates how the collection of folklore developed a unified German cultural identity, Thompson illustrates how collecting (and in many cases updating) the myths of the land gave Ireland not only a new identity but also a new history. The heroes of those mythic stories would be used for the next three centuries as allegories for both Ireland and the Irish in art, literature, theatre, and political rhetoric. It is the blueprint of all my worldbuilding.

By William Irwin Thompson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

We know from our literary histories that there was a movement called the Irish Literary Renaissance, and that Yeats was at its head. We know from our political histories that there is now a Republic of Ireland because of a nationalistic movement that, militarily, began with the insurrection of Easter Week, 1916. But what do these two movements have to do with one another?… Because I came to history with literary eyes, I could not help seeing history in terms and shapes of imaginative experience. Thus Movement, Myth, and Image came to be the way in which the nature of…


Book cover of The Cruellest Month

Krista Wallace Author Of Gatekeeper's Key

From Krista's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Fantasy writer Jazz singer Gran Lover of pie and single malt Scotch Reader of Fantasy, Mystery and Romance

Krista's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Krista Wallace Why did Krista love this book?

I found this book gripping and suspenseful; in short, I couldn’t put it down!

It begins with a séance in a haunted house. What a great way to start a murder mystery! The folks in this tight-knit community have interesting quirks and fascinating backgrounds, providing a host of possible perpetrators.

This is a masterful look into how people find reasons to grow suspicious of each other, and to treat each other less-than-kindly. Chief Inspector Gamache is having devastating problems of his own: someone in the organization is out to destroy his life.

Who can he trust? How can he solve this murder while watching his own back? My first Louise Penny book will not be my last. (I’ve already bought two more.)

By Louise Penny,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

It's Easter, and on a glorious spring day in peaceful Three Pines, someone waits for night to fall. They plan to raise the dead! When C. I. Gamache of the Surete du Quebec arrives the next morning, he faces an unusual crime scene. A seance in an old, abandoned house has gone horrifically wrong and someone lies frightened to death. For in idyllic Three Pines not all is as it seems. Toxic secrets lie buried, and something terrible has finally clawed its way out. And even Gamache has something to hide. One of his own team is preparing to betray…


Book cover of Doodle Devotions for Kids Softcover

Janae Dueck Author Of Coloring God's Love for Me: 100 Devotions to Inspire Young Hearts

From my list on coloring books from a faith-based art therapist.

Who am I?

I love suggesting these topics of coloring books because my clinical work involves using art, coloring, and creativity in a therapeutic setting. I am an art therapist working with children in a hospital setting and am trained in applying the arts to build coping skills for managing difficult emotions. As a Christian author, I like to integrate both scripture and art to allow big concepts to become more comprehendible for the younger reader. Growing up, I've always been a visual learner! Art accesses parts of the brain that reading cannot. So, I hope these recommendations and my book can be just the start of discovering the benefits of art. 

Janae's book list on coloring books from a faith-based art therapist

Janae Dueck Why did Janae love this book?

This devotional book is perfect for kids because they get to learn Bible stories through coloring! I believe the more a child is able to apply what they learn creatively, ideas become more concrete for them. The art a child creates can become memory cues for what is read. Personally, I love this devotional and think it offers kids a unique way of comprehending the Bible. Not only does it benefit children, but I believe adults can benefit from doodling while they read, too! We may be older, but the inner child in all of us is still there. So—if you're looking for a good faith-based devotional for your kids, I recommend a devotional that has some aspect of coloring in it!

By Nancy Taylor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Doodle Devotions for Kids Softcover as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A great way to get kids to dig deeper into their Bibles is to have them interact with its stories and lessons. Doodle Devotions for Kids by Nancy Taylor helps children do that through its 60 devotions accompanied by doodling activities. This collection of devos goes through the entire Bible while encouraging kids to respond in their own creative ways. Do as the author says, “Write all over this book!”

Designed to be appropriate for―and enjoyed by―both boys and girls, this devotional book featuring 152 pages and lots of fun illustrations would make a great gift for any kid in…


Book cover of The Easter Parade

Daniel Damiano Author Of The Woman in the Sun Hat

From Daniel's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Creative Tenacious Opinionated Hard-working Self-generating

Daniel's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Daniel Damiano Why did Daniel love this book?

Richard Yates' richly nuanced novel from 1976 also became one of my favorite novels upon reading it this year. 

Depicting the early childhood-through-midlife of Emily Grimes, Yates takes us on an uncompromising, unsettling, and moving journey, from Emily's imbalanced upbringing to the challenging relationships between her mother and older sister, as well as the men that enter in and out of her life, and how her search for self becomes somewhat obscured as a result of all, despite her obvious intelligence.

While Yates was primarily known for his first novel, Revolutionary Road, this is very much a work that should be required reading for any reader who truly appreciates mature literature and complex heroines. Rarely have I read such a work set in a domestic setting depicted so honestly. 

By Richard Yates,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Easter Parade as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In The Easter Parade, first published in 1976, we meet sisters Sarah and Emily Grimes when they are still the children of divorced parents. We observe the sisters over four decades, watching them grow into two very different women. Sarah is stable and stalwart, settling into an unhappy marriage. Emily is precocious and independent, struggling with one unsatisfactory love affair after another. Richard Yates's classic novel is about how both women struggle to overcome their tarnished family's past, and how both finally reach for some semblance of renewal.


Book cover of No Bunnies Here!

Natasha Wing Author Of The Legend of Lop-eared Larry

From my list on bunny books by a bunny lover.

Who am I?

I have a thing about bunnies! My first plush toy was a rabbit named Boing Boing and I had a pet lop-eared bunny named Br’er. The first book I wrote in my series was The Night Before Easter because I wanted to write a story for kids who love bunnies and Easter - like me! When I was a child I also liked to read books by Beatrix Potter and hope to one day visit her house in England.

Natasha's book list on bunny books by a bunny lover

Natasha Wing Why did Natasha love this book?

It’s a silly rabbit book! Kids will love that the bunnies are trying to disguise themselves from what they think is a hungry wolf. But it turns out the wolf isn’t looking for bunnies to eat. The lone wolf wants friends. Great read-aloud story! The illustrations – part art and part cartoonare bursting with energy and saturated color. Don’t forget to read the funny signs in the artwork as well.

By Tammi Sauer, Ross Burach (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked No Bunnies Here! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A laugh-filled, bunny-filled new picture book from author-illustrator dream team Tammi Sauer and Ross Burach, just in time for Easter baskets and spring celebrations.

From the author of Wordy Birdy and the illustrator of The Very Impatient Caterpillar comes a hilarious picture book about a super-sassy bunny who tries to save himself and his cotton-tailed pals from a wolf by conning him into thinking they are not bunnies, despite the fact that a.) they are very clearly bunnies and b.) more and more (and more!) bunnies keep showing up. How many bunnies are in this book? A LOT!

Young readers…


Book cover of The Easter Egg Artists

Pam Spremulli Author Of Letter Birds

From my list on for children with whimsical and fun Illustrations.

Who am I?

I am a Graphic Illustrator, Muralist, and Educator, serving as an adjunct professor at the Cleveland Institute of Art and I love birds! I was born and raised in the Chautauqua Lake Region of Western, NY and I find myself very much at home with our feathered friends. My passion for color, shape, and nature enables me to draw the viewer's eye to things that otherwise might go unnoticed. Letter Birds was created when my children were 5 and 7 and I would draw while they slept. When they awoke they would find a colorful drawing of a feathered friend along with a new letter to learn. My children continue to be my creative muses - even as teenagers!

Pam's book list on for children with whimsical and fun Illustrations

Pam Spremulli Why did Pam love this book?

This book touches the soul and imagination of all artists. Following a young (bunny) Artist as they make their mark within an adventurous creative family that travels the world. Each spread transports you to a world of chance where art brings together not only communities but families. An absolute joy for creative minds!

By Adrienne Adams,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Easter Egg Artists as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

The Abbotts, established Easter egg artists, let their son develop a style of his own when he shows interest in painting.


Book cover of Not a Happy Family

Patricia Hale Author Of Scar Tissue

From my list on suspense/crime with flawed detectives.

Who am I?

All of the books I’ve listed above have flawed characters. Characters that deal with emotional and/or moral dilemmas. The plots: murder, missing children, or runaway husbands are secondary to me. What I look for in a book and what I write about in my Cole and Callahan series, are characters with flaws. People who struggle with truth. Cops or investigators that hide or skew evidence because the truth would cause more harm than good. It’s the moral dilemma I want. The angst we all feel when we are faced with a particularly painful decision. That’s what real life is and that’s what brings a book and a character to life.

Patricia's book list on suspense/crime with flawed detectives

Patricia Hale Why did Patricia love this book?

Not A Happy Family is a Domestic Suspense novel. The Mertons have everything, money, a beautiful home, and plenty of vacations. So why, after Easter dinner with their three children are they found dead? The kids are distraught. Or are they? What childhood secrets do each of them carry and is one of them murderously vindictive? I come from a big family and always enjoy reading about dysfunctional families. Luckily, my own family was only semi-dysfunctional for the most part. Nothing I needed to kill my parents over.

By Shari Lapena,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Not a Happy Family as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

Another thrilling domestic suspense novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door

"Lapena is a master of manipulation. With her latest page-turning thriller... she is once again at the top of her game." -USA Today

"In this fast-paced, twisted family saga, Shari Lapena keeps you guessing until the very last page..." -Paula Hawkins

In this family, everyone is keeping secrets-even the dead.

Brecken Hill in upstate New York is an expensive place to live. You have to be rich to have a house there, and Fred and Sheila Merton…


Book cover of Bunny Finds Easter

Natasha Wing Author Of The Legend of Lop-eared Larry

From my list on bunny books by a bunny lover.

Who am I?

I have a thing about bunnies! My first plush toy was a rabbit named Boing Boing and I had a pet lop-eared bunny named Br’er. The first book I wrote in my series was The Night Before Easter because I wanted to write a story for kids who love bunnies and Easter - like me! When I was a child I also liked to read books by Beatrix Potter and hope to one day visit her house in England.

Natasha's book list on bunny books by a bunny lover

Natasha Wing Why did Natasha love this book?

Easter isn’t all about bunnies, baskets, and bonnets. This book will remind kids that Easter is a religious holiday and that along with egg hunts and other light-hearted traditions of Easter, that families also go to church. As a rhyming author, I appreciate rhyming stories, especially for this age group (0-4). Plus this smaller-sized board book fits perfectly in Easter baskets.

By Laura Sassi,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Easter may have many fun traditions, but Bunny wants to know:"What is Easter?"Little ones canenjoy learning the true meaning of Easter alongside Bunny,celebrating Jesus and his resurrection with Laura Sassi's sweet and rhyming text.

Easter is for coloring eggs, wearing a lovely bonnet, joining in an egg hunt, and attending church with family! But the most important thing about this holiest of seasonsis to celebrate and focus on Jesus. Children will be introduced to the meaning of Easter through colorful illustrations and playful rhymes.

Bunny Finds Easter encourages children, parents, and grandparents to:

Start a conversation about the true meaning…


Book cover of The Hunt

David Valdes Author Of Finding My Elf

From David's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Dad Cuban-american Optimist

David's 3 favorite reads in 2023

David Valdes Why did David love this book?

I love a mystery or thriller, a number of which climbed to the top of my pile this year. What they all have in common is rich characters in communities dense with secrets.

The ultimate example for me was The Hunt, in which a colorful cast of damaged working-class people are swept up into a thriller that revolves around the threat of a string of murders spanning twenty years in Arkansas.

Growing up poor in rural Maine, my landscape was different, but I recognize the hardscrabble lives and the insular nature of small-town life so well depicted in Ford’s novel.

The setting, the flawed queer protagonist and those who love her, and the thicket of possible suspects all combine for a fresh spin on the genre and a satisfyingly twisty story arc. 

By Kelly J. Ford,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

From the author of Real Bad Things and Cottonmouths, a Los Angeles Review Best Book of 2017, comes the darkly suspenseful tale of a small-town Easter tradition and its murderous secrets.

For seventeen years, a serial murderer has used the Presley, Arkansas, Annual Hunt for the Golden Egg to find prey. Or at least that's what some people believe. Others, like the town's devoted "Eggheads," relish the tradition and think the deaths are just unfortunate accidents. But for Nell Holcomb, the town's annual Hunt dredges up a particularly painful memory: her brother's death, long believed to be "the Hunter's" first…