In honor of National Book Lover's Day, we’ve compiled a wonderful list of reads that celebrate senior life. From serious novels to short stories to laugh out loud comedies, these titles aim to inspire the adventurous spirit in all of us. Pick a new title, grab a cup of tea and read away!
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry: A Novel by Rachel Joyce
Harold Fry is a recent retiree living in a small English village. Trying to make peace with his past, Harold is compelled to deliver a letter to an old friend so that he can "save" her.
A friend known as Queenie writes to Harold telling she is in hospice and has penned her letter as a goodbye. Harold writes a return letter, but as he reaches the post, makes a last-minute decision to deliver his message to Queenie in person. Along the way, Harold meets many characters who reminisce about the past as he searches for a level of self-acceptance in senior life.
Tech savvy seniors might find humor in the mentions of the social media platforms Twitter and Facebook throughout the book.
The Hundred Year House by Rebecca Makkai
Old money meets grown up Nancy Drew mystery in this novel about the Devohrs family. A cross-generational saga that is told in reverse, if the secret of the Hundred Year House unfolds, the family will be turned on its head.
A Marxist daughter, an interfering mother, an out-of-work academic father stockpiling supplies for Y2K and a large oil painting of grandmother all reside in the Hundred Year House. Written with witty humor, the satirical narrative invokes a detective-spirit for the reader right from the first chapter. When husband, Doug decides to finish his novel and discovers that all he needs are files kept under lock and key by his wife, the story gets going. Get ready for a blast from the past as the story unravels the family secrets.
The Ladies of Covington Send Their Love by Joan Medlicott
Joan Medlicott says women over 65 can reinvent their lives and invite in adventure. The Ladies of Covington explores what this means in ways that might surprise readers!
The first book in Medlicott's The Ladies of Covington series tells the story of a group of older women who meeting in a Pennsylvania boardinghouse— each unhappy with their current situation. As an unexpected, but not entirely unwelcome, series of events begin to unfold, the ladies make their way to a farmhouse in North Carolina. Here, they are able to break free from the expectations that have been holding them back and create the lives they've always wanted to lead.
Medlicott’s story of self-discovery sends the message that senior life is about finding fulfillment and that we're never too "old" for a new adventure, to rewrite history or create a spontaneous and joyful future.
Don Quixote by Miguel De Cervantes, translated by Edith Grossman
Why not revisit a fun classic as it has been re-imagined for modern times with this 2005 translation by Edith Grossman. You may have read it in grade school and then again for fun, why not give it another go? A good classic is, after all, rewards rereading!
Ah, Don Quixote and his squire, Sancho Panza. If sly humor is what you're after in a classic, read-at-your own-pace book, Grossman's translation is full of the satiric wit that you loved when you first read the tale of the erstwhile knight. For those of you who read the story in the original Spanish, know that popular reviews single out Grossman's translation as particularly stellar!
Have a favorite title to add to our stories of senior life? Feel welcome to leave the name of your book for other readers.