The most recommended books about family

Who picked these books? Meet our 3,001 experts.

3,001 authors created a book list connected to family, and here are their favorite family books.
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What type of family book?


Expecting Better

By Emily Oster,

Book cover of Expecting Better

Alena Dillon Author Of My Body Is a Big Fat Temple: An Ordinary Story of Pregnancy and Early Motherhood

From the list on for expecting moms who want the truth.

Who am I?

There is a dearth of books that span the emotional journey into motherhood. An old adage directs authors to write the book they would like to read, so I kept that in mind as I began the journey myself. Throughout my pregnancy and postpartum experience, I was often surprised by perfectly ordinary occurrences that aren’t often discussed. There is a hush cast on anything that isn’t purely nurturing and romantic, which means that mothers who encounter unpleasantness are blindsided, and consider themselves aberrations. I wrote my book as honestly as possible to normalize the normal and to offer myself as a compatriot to those mothers. 

Alena's book list on for expecting moms who want the truth

Why did Alena love this book?

This has become a classic pregnancy book, and for good reason. Oster is an economist who reevaluates often faulty maternal health studies and presents her conclusions in an accessible and sometimes light-hearted style. This is the book for expecting moms who want to know the why of restrictions and recommendations, as well as their importance, in order to make the best decisions for themselves and their babies.

By Emily Oster,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Emily Oster is the non-judgmental girlfriend holding our hand and guiding us through pregnancy and motherhood. She has done the work to get us the hard facts in a soft, understandable way." -Amy Schumer

*Fully Revised and Updated for 2021*

What to Expect When You're Expecting meets Freakonomics: an award-winning economist disproves standard recommendations about pregnancy to empower women while they're expecting. From the author of Cribsheet and The Family Firm, a data-driven decision making guide to the early years of parenting

Pregnancy-unquestionably one of the most pro found, meaningful experiences of adulthood-can reduce otherwise intelligent women to, well, babies.…

The Last Letter

By Kathleen Shoop,

Book cover of The Last Letter

Lori M. Jones Author Of Renaissance of the Heart

From the list on that’ll make you turn the pages like a mother.

Who am I?

Of all of the jobs I’ve had in my lifetime (including writer!) no other job holds more importance than being a mom. These books not only appealed to me as a writer, but stirred something deep in me as a mother. These books play on every mother’s fears and insecurity. And, they made me view motherhood from a different perspective, asking, could I survive that? Would I have handled that differently? But mostly these books stuck with me long after I finished the last page, taught me to judge less, and grow my compassion muscle. These moms are forced to survive the unthinkable and emerge on the other side stronger. As strong as a mother.

Lori's book list on that’ll make you turn the pages like a mother

Why did Lori love this book?

Switching gears from the Domestic Suspense genre, I’d like to recommend a historical fiction gem. It’s been a while since I finished this first book in a series, but this story – and the mother of all mothers, Jeanie – has stuck with me. Her story is a constant reminder that womankind of the 1800s was made of steel and I’m not sure I would’ve survived back then. Jeanie’s life quickly turns from wealthy and having an esteemed reputation to losing it all. She’s then forced to follow her husband’s dreams of prairie life where Jeanie is forced to live off the land and faces the harshest of conditions, natural disasters, and the worst tragedy a mother can experience. (sidenote: follow this author on TikTok where she reads the real letters from Jeanie!)

By Kathleen Shoop,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

"Gripping historical fiction—A tale of two women finding meaning behind all that went wrong in their lives. A timeless tale of redemption with the best plot-twist at the end I've seen in a long, long time. Can't wait for book two!" New York
Times and USA Today bestselling author, Melissa Foster

Katherine wouldn't have believed it if she hadn't found the letter...

In the summer of 1905 Katherine Arthur's mother arrives on her doorstep, dying, forcing her to relive a past she wanted to forget. When Katherine was young, the Arthur family had been affluent city dwellers until shame sent…

The Railway Children

By Edith Nesbit,

Book cover of The Railway Children

Lucia Wilson Author Of The Adventures of Cedric the Bear

From the list on thought-provoking social themes for children.

Who am I?

There is nothing more gratifying when you are reading your own books to a group of children to see that they are eager to know what is going to happen next. My top priority is to create a story that is a page-turner. My second wish is to include social topics that provoke ideas and questions. After I read to a group of schoolchildren, I like to encourage them to discuss the themes in the story; the children are always keen to give their views. Nonetheless, adding social topics to my children’s books needs to evolve naturally; ultimately, for me, the story is king! 

Lucia's book list on thought-provoking social themes for children

Why did Lucia love this book?

The Railway Children is a rich family saga set in 1905 told from the perspective of the children, Bobbie, Phyllis, and Peter. They live a happy, comfortable life until their father is suddenly taken away by two police officers. The family is forced to move away and adapt to living in the countryside on a much-reduced income. The separation from their father is keenly felt by the children, whilst their mother hides her own distress to protect them. 

We eventually realise that an injustice has occurred, but how can the children hope to reunite with their father? The Railway might provide an answer. Edith Nesbit has created a warm and engaging novel where acts of kindness, sometimes misguided, are integral to the storytelling.

By Edith Nesbit,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

One of the most popular classics of all time, with a wonderful introduction by multi-million bestselling author Jacqueline Wilson.

When Father is taken away unexpectedly, Roberta, Peter, Phyllis and their mother have to leave their comfortable life in London to go and live in a small cottage in the country. The children seek solace in the nearby railway station, and make friends with Perks the Porter and the Station Master himself. Each day, Roberta, Peter and Phyllis run down the field to the railway track and wave at the passing London train, sending their love to Father. Little do they…


By Paul David Tripp,

Book cover of Suffering: Gospel Hope When Life Doesn't Make Sense

Sarah Walton Author Of Hope When It Hurts: Biblical Reflections to Help You Grasp God's Purpose in Your Suffering

From the list on finding hope and comfort in difficult times.

Who am I?

I believe the Bible is God’s Word, that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, and that he loves us. But after enduring years of physical, mental, and emotional pain, special needs in one of our children, two job losses, and a degenerative ankle, I’ve struggled to understand why he’s allowed it. Over the years, God has been teaching me that there is more to our suffering than meets the eye. And what we see as pointless, God promises to redeem and use for his good purposes. As I’ve grown to trust Jesus, he’s changed me, and given me comfort, hope, and joy in the midst of my sorrows. 

Sarah's book list on finding hope and comfort in difficult times

Why did Sarah love this book?

Sometimes life doesn’t go as we’d hoped or expected; sometimes it’s filled with layers of difficulty and struggle, and sometimes it’s flipped upside down with tragedy. And I’ve experienced all three. Out of nowhere, death, illness, job loss, etc, can change our lives and challenge our view of God, ourselves, and the world. But despite all the pain, confusion, and disappointment, we have hope.

Paul David Tripp wrote with personal experience about how we can learn to trust God in the midst of suffering. He’s helped me cling to God's promises in my trials, face my pain with honesty, and persevere with the hope of the gospel.

By Paul David Tripp,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Best-selling author Paul David Tripp weaves together his personal story, years of counseling experience, and biblical insights to help us in the midst of suffering, identifying 6 traps to avoid and 6 comforts to embrace.

Book cover of The Postman Always Rings Twice

G.E. Nordell Author Of Backlot Requiem: A Rick Walker Mystery

From the list on hardboiled noir detective mystery stories.

Who am I?

Among other things, I'm an existentialist. A well-constructed mystery novel is an existential puzzle given to the reader to solve at his/her leisure, and the noir sub-genre has the further subtext that the protagonistand the reader—are doomed in some way even if the solution is nailed. Romance novels are drivel and have no basis in reality, but noir and other types of mystery fiction reflect the way that the world works: you may solve this puzzle problem, but then you are left to a vast world that is rife with puzzles but without a coherent plot. The detective trudges on, achieves a kind of satisfaction, and then is thrust into the next crisis.

G.E.'s book list on hardboiled noir detective mystery stories

Why did G.E. love this book?

Watching bad people self-destruct is hard work, but author Cain makes sure that the bad people get what they deserve. A drifter takes a job at a roadside diner that is run by an old man and his beautiful and unhappy wife; the two youngsters begin a dangerous affair and then plot to kill the husband so that the girl inherits the property. But matters do not turn out as they planned. The novel has been adapted for film at least seven times, with the favorite being the 1946 movie starring Lana Turner.

By James M. Cain,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'Nobody has ever quite pulled it off the way Cain does, not Hemingway, and not even Raymond Chandler' Tom Wolfe

'It is no accident that movies based on three [of Cain's novels] helped to define the genre known as film noir' NEW YORK REVIEW OF BOOKS

'The most starkly elemental thing that has been written for years' EVENING STANDARD

The torrid story of Frank Chambers, the amoral drifter, Cora, the sullen and brooding wife, and Nick Papadakis, the amiable but inconvenient husband, has become a classic of its kind, and established Cain as a major novelist with a spare and…

Inside the O'Briens

By Lisa Genova,

Book cover of Inside the O'Briens

Brendan Gerad O'Brien Author Of Gallows Field

From Brendan's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Family man Avid reader Passionate walker Swimmer

Brendan's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Why did Brendan love this book?

Despite the unfortunate subject, this book was a joy to read.

Lisa Genova brilliantly captures the creeping confusion and unease when the family of a decorated Boston City cop notices his increasingly odd behavior, the unusual angry outbursts, the complaints that he was drunk on duty, and the sudden loss of balance.

It worries them enough to insist he gets a medical check-up. Their reaction when he’s diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease is beautifully described with compassion and dignity and an amazing insight into the four sibling’s individual emotions. Wallowing in the knowledge that each of them has a 50% chance of being stricken with Huntington’s disease, the siblings have different views about being tested for it.

Some don’t want to know, wishing to live their lives hoping it won’t catch up on them. The others prefer to know so they can brace themselves, living the life as best they can…

By Lisa Genova,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Inside the O'Briens as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times bestseller ▪ A Library Journal Best Books of 2015 Pick ▪ A St. Louis Post-Dispatch Best Books of 2015 Pick ▪A GoodReads Top Ten Fiction Book of 2015 ▪ A People Magazine Great Read

From New York Times bestselling author and neuroscientist Lisa Genova comes a “heartbreaking…very human novel” (Matthew Thomas, author of We Are Not Ourselves) that does for Huntington’s disease what her debut novel Still Alice did for Alzheimer’s.

Joe O’Brien is a forty-three-year-old police officer from the Irish Catholic neighborhood of Charlestown, Massachusetts. A devoted husband, proud father of four children in their…


By Ian Falconer,

Book cover of Olivia

Gibson Frazier Author Of Stop and Smell the Cookies

From the list on funny fables about mischief-makers.

Who am I?

As the father of a (currently) 11-year-old boy, and having been a boy once myself, I understand that mischief-makers can be a pain in the neck and drive adults crazy. But today’s little mischief-makers are tomorrow’s independent thinkers. And we cannot expect children to channel their rambunctious energies into positive outcomes without first giving them the tools to do so. That’s why I wrote Stop and Smell the Cookies, so that readers can actually take control before their emotions get the better of them. It’s also why I compiled this list. Perhaps, if the main characters in these stories had stopped and smelled the cookies, some of them might have avoided their literary fates. Enjoy!

Gibson's book list on funny fables about mischief-makers

Why did Gibson love this book?

Olivia has style and flair, just like all the great pigs. (Porky, Peppa, Piglet, Wilbur, and Babe, to name a few.) Whether inspired by the music of Maria Callas, the paintings of Degas or Pollack, or even just the sand at the beach, Olivia’s mischievous creativity manifests itself in art of her own, singular making. Her parents love her anyway. Fortunately, she loves her parents anyway too. 

By Ian Falconer,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Whether at home getting ready for the day, enjoying the beach, or at bedtime, Olivia is a feisty pig who has too much energy for her own good. A Caldecott Honor Book. 20,000 first printing.

The Time Bind

By Arlie Russell Hochschild,

Book cover of The Time Bind: When Work Becomes Home and Home Becomes Work

Mark Jabbour Author Of Election 2016: The Great Divide, the Great Debate

From Mark's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Independent Curious Straight-forward Educated Strong

Mark's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Why did Mark love this book?

The book gives insight into the beginnings of so many problem issues that face America today. Specifically, it discusses men without work, the male loneliness epidemic, joblessness, homelessness, depression, addiction, and suicide.

This book can help a reader understand why Trump won in 2016. Additionally, it can explain why he is still popular and may win again in 2024.

By Arlie Russell Hochschild,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A New York Times Notable Book

Book cover of Sunday Funday in Koreatown

Jess Hong Author Of Lovely

From the list on I wish existed when I was a kid.

Who am I?

Growing up Asian American, the lack of representation I felt was constant and palpable. I think often about what it would have meant and how beneficial it could have been had I been able to see myself in picture books as a child. This is a list of books I wish little me could have read growing up because when I read them now they speak to that same vulnerable space in me that I still carry. They are a balm to my heart and mind, making me feel connected to both myself and others that look like me and share similar experiences.

Jess' book list on I wish existed when I was a kid

Why did Jess love this book?

Growing up as a first-generation Korean American my heart ached with love to read this book. It truly celebrates Korean culture and its ties to family. Kim portrays our young protagonist Yoomi, a black and white cat experiencing something everyone has gone through—a bad day while highlighting some of the warmth and joyful things about Korean culture, my favorite topic being food. The end cap of the book features a recipe for kimbap. I love that she does this because growing up my mother would pack me kimbap for lunch and kids would immediately peg it as sushi. Little me would have felt so seen and loved by this book and I’m so happy it exists today.

By Aram Kim,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sunday Funday in Koreatown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Yoomi and Daddy are going to Koreatown today! This story celebrates family, resilience, and Korean culture.

Yoomi has planned the perfect Sunday! But the shirt she wants to wear is in the laundry. And she doesn't have the seaweed she needs for a kimbap breakfast.

So Yoomi wears another shirt and eats a different breakfast, and she and Daddy take a bus to Koreatown, where they read Korean books, eat Korean treats such as patbingsu and tteokbokki, and visit Grandma. Though Yoomi's perfect day is filled with mishaps and things don't always go her way, Yoomi learns the advantages of…

Book cover of Money and Marriage

Supriya Singh Author Of Domestic Economic Abuse: The Violence of Money

From the list on money, relationships and family violence.

Who am I?

I am a writer and a sociologist of money. I am passionate about money, relationships, and family violence, because I know from my research that talking about money opens up intimate conversations about the way people see themselves, their aspirations and hopes. Sometimes through hearing other people’s stories I have found mine. I realised while researching family violence that I too had suffered economic abuse. For me too economic abuse was ‘hidden in plain sight’. One of the most meaningful things for me is to help women and men overcome family violence and empower themselves to live with freedom.  

Supriya's book list on money, relationships and family violence

Why did Supriya love this book?

Jan Pahl’s work opened the ‘black box’ of the household for me, to examine how men and women in intimate relationships managed and controlled their money across cultures.

She set up a typology of separate, joint, and independent money management and control that became my starting point for researching money and families also cultures. Her work also started me thinking of the gender of money, that is how men and women use, think, and own money differently, particularly when spending on children and the home.  

By Jan Pahl,

Why should I read it?

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