Reading brings many benefits to people of all ages. Retired seniors who love books are lucky since their hobby will keep them engaged, help improve their memory, and provide them with mental stimulation every single day.
Of course, there are seniors who have never been avid readers, but the good news is that it’s never too late to pick up a book and read an entertaining story that will allow us to travel, without having to leave our most comfortable chair.
Here are 10 suggestions of good books for grandparents to read:
1. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
This short story follows the struggles of an old and lonely fisherman who is engaged in a battle with a giant marlin. This tale of courage, defeat and personal triumph is told with simplicity, and is sure to inspire seniors.
The Old Man and the Sea, which was written in 1952, is one of Ernest Hemingway’s most important books. It’s one of the best books for grandparents to read because the story touches on all aspects of life.
2. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
In this novel we meet Ove, a sad, lonely and grumpy old man who has been nicknamed “the bitter neighbour from hell” by his neighbours. His life will change after a couple with young children moves next door.
This is one of the best books for grandparents who enjoy funny and heartbreaking stories that are easy to read will love this book that shows us how powerful friendship between different generations can be.
3. Lost & Found by Brooke Davis
This is another humorous and heartbreaking novel in which Mille, a young girl, is abandoned by her mother in a department store. With the help of two seniors who, despite their differences, have a lot of things in common, she goes on a quest to find her mother.
This is a story where we learn that breaking a few rules just might be the key to happiness.
4. The Little Old Lady Who Broke All the Rules by Catharina Ingelman-Sundberg
Speaking of breaking rules, this novel follows a 79 year old woman who dreams of escaping her retirement home to go rob a bank. With the help of four of her friends, she begins rebelling against the rules.
This is a quirky and heartwarming story that teaches us that we are never too old to stand up for ourselves. It’s one of the greatest books for grandparents who still have ambitious dreams.
5. Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
This novel follows Maud, an old woman dealing with dementia. She is forgetting a lot of things, but she knows that her best friend Elizabeth has disappeared, and she will stop at nothing to solve this mystery.
The story is both funny and very moving, and it gives us an insight about what it can be like to live with dementia.
6. Life After Life by Jill McCorkle
In this novel, we get to know the residents, the staff and the neighbours of a retirement residence. We share some of their life discoveries, and we are reminded that magic can happen anywhere, anytime.
It’s easy to get attached to the characters presented in this touching story that is all about living, but also about facing death.
7. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
The story of this novel is set in 1962 in Mississippi, and follows two African-American women who work for white people and raise their children for them, as well as a young white woman who wants to write about a black maid.
The story is sad and humorous at the same time. It tackles the issue of racism while giving us some hope. This is one of the best books for grandparents of any race.
8. Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf
In this short but inspiring novel, two seniors, a man and a woman who have lost their wife and their husband, decide to fight their loneliness together and get to know each other better by spending their nights talking together.
This is a story about second chances, full of hope and positivity. It shows us that we are never too old to enjoy life and to bring some changes to our routine.
9. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
This memoir tells us the story of the author, a young neurosurgeon who is diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer, and has to confront his mortality while raising his child.
Paul Kalanithi died while he was writing this book, and he left us an inspiring lesson about what makes life worth living while it slowly fades away. This is a gut-wrenching, inspirational and unforgettable book.
10. Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson
This novel is set in a small village in the English countryside. Major Ernest Pettigrew, an opinionated and endearing retired man, lives a quiet life when he meets with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, a Pakistani shopkeeper.
This is a heartwarming and humorous love story in which a man who loves tradition learns how to stand against prejudice. This is one of the best books for grandparents who appreciate a good love story.