100 Clean Books Still Worth Reading
Sometimes it is difficult finding a good, clean read that still has an interesting, adult plot and keeps you engaged for hundreds of pages. Here are a few of my all time, well-written favorites that I don’t hesitate recommending to even my most conservative friends!
How I Picked the Books
I LOVED all of these books. These are not necessarily for kids or squeaky clean. These books have adult themes, heart-breaking situations, some language and romance, but nothing gratuitous that doesn’t further the theme and overall important message of the story. I realize we all have a different tolerance. I did my best here, but I do understand that some of these books may still walk the line for certain readers. If you are uncomfortable, just stop reading and try something else.
P.S. I cannot even express how much I love reading on my Kindle Paper White (no, this is not sponsored!). No glare, doesn’t hurt my eyes or feel like I am reading from a screen, and no notifications or other distractions…plus perfect for travel. You can share a kindle account with 8 people, which makes the book costs a little more doable! If you are a reader, you will love it!
Click on each title below to read a summary and see if it is what you are in the mood for. Now, without further adieu, on to my favorite clean books!
FICTION YOU CAN’T MISS
These fiction books are captivating reads that would be great to read on your own or with a book club.
The Great Alone
Orphan Train (this one is a bit on the line. If you are very conservative or sensitive, skip it.)
The Orphan Keeper
Lilac Girls (content warning on this one, not as clean as some would like)
America’s First Daughter
Before We Were Yours
The Light Between Oceans
A Thousand Splendid Suns
And a few more for your list….
Sarah * All the Light we Cannot See * These is My Words * The Boys in the Boat * The Book Thief * Sara’s Key * The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet * The Forgotten Garden * Half Broke Horses * The Power of One * The Magic of Ordinary Days * The Rent Collector * Cry, the Beloved Country * The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society * The Chosen * My Sister’s Keeper * A Separate Peace * The Giver * The Secret Life of Bees * The Poisonwood Bible * The Invention of Wings * The Winter Sea * Still Alice * I Capture the Castle * The Alchemist * Once We Were Brothers * The 80 Dollar Champion * My Name is Resolute
NON-FICTION AND MEMOIRS
These books will make you think and won’t put you to sleep! Also great for book club!
I Like Me Anyway: Embracing Imperfection, Connection & Christ
When Breath Becomes Air
The Glass Castle
First They Killed My Father
I Am Malala
Left To Tell
Bread and Wine
A Woman Is No Man
And a few more for your list….
Elizabeth Smart: My Story * Being Mortal * Carry On, Warrior * A Million Miles in a Thousand Years * Life in a Jar * Unbroken * Girl Wash Your Face * 10 Great Souls I Want to meet in Heaven * A Simple Act of Gratitude * Heaven is Here * Outliers: The Story of Success * Nurture Shock * Beautiful Boy * Mountains Beyond Mountains * Night * The Last Lecture * The Hiding Place * Boys Adrift * The Year of Living Danishly* The Boys in the Boat * Essentialism * An Unseen Angel: A Mother’s Story of Faith, Hope, and Healing after Sandy Hook *
JUST FOR FUN
These clean books are a little lighter and include beach reads and chic-lit.
A Man Called Ove
Whistling In the Dark
Lizzy and Jane
Prayers for Sale
Saving CeeCee Honeycutt
The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen
The Goose Girl
The Lost Girls of Ireland
Seven Perfect Things
Open Road Summer * Blackmoore * When I Found You * The Mark of Royalty * Looking for Salvation at the Dairy Queen * The Actor and the Housewife * Very Valentine * The Truth about Forever * Garlic and Sapphires * Life Just Got Real * The Secret Journal of Brett Colton * Christmas Jars * The Book of A Thousand Days * The Samurai’s Garden * The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio * Secrets of a Charmed Life * The Wednesday Letters * Counting By 7s * Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand * Blue Castle * A Different Blue * The Bird and the Sword
And there you have it, 100 clean books still worth reading!
Looking for More?
I love reading and sharing the good books I find with you and your family. Check out my other lists like The Best Audiobooks for the Whole Family and The Best, Most Addictive Books for Teens.
Leave a Comment
Of course, feel free to ask a question or leave other favorites in the comments! Who doesn’t love good book recommendations?
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Thanks so much Brooke. I’ve read 3 of these books recommended from you in a previous post and loved them. Thanks for adding to the list of reads. I’m hoping you have a Christmas gift ideas post for boys in the 9-10 range planned in your near future, they’ve been so helpful in the past. (0:
Thank you so much Amber! I hope you love these just as much! And, YES, I am working on that gift list right now! Should be up in about a week!
If your doing Christmas gift lists, how about one for 16 year old boys and 28 year old daughter with baby 😉
I am publishing one next week that should give you some great ideas for both! I am doing another practical list for women that might be great for your daughter too. That one will come a little later!
Love this post! Can’t wait to try a few of these books. I always love some good book ideas whenever I’m in a rut! A few of my favorites are anything by Amy Harmon, but especially A Different Blue and The Bird and The Sword. I also just read The Blue Castle by the same author as Anne of Green Gables and it was lovely. Thanks again!
Thanks so much Cindy! Those sound great. I will add them to my “to-read” list!
Is it possible to print the list of the books?
You should be able to copy and past this into a word document. I should make a printable list though! I will give that a try when I have time :).
My book club enjoyed Edenbrooke very much!
I am so glad! It is one of my favorites!
Thank you so much for your thoughtful reviews. I continue to enjoy the books you recommend. Please keep up the good work.
Thank you, Brooke! Im never sure which book to take a chance on when I download from the library. I’m excited to read them! ??
This is the page I go to when I’m looking for a new book to read. This is it. Since I pinned this page on Pinterest, I’ve read about 20 of these titles and I’ve never been disappointed. Thank you for putting all of the best books in one place. I’ll let you know when I finish all of your suggestions… and I will.
This is the best! I am so happy you have loved them like I have. I plan on adding a few more titles this month. Can’t wait to see you finish them all…and if you have a favorite, please share!
how to thank you in italian
Thanks for this list! I have read many of them and recommended some for Book Club. Unfortunately, I cannot agree with you on Orphan Train being “clean.” Eek!..the nonstop foul language and an uncomfortable ‘scene’ made me regret having suggested it as a read for our book club. Provides good insight into this piece of history, but I wish I would’ve known ahead of time what I would encounter in the book, as I’ve always trusted your lists. The others on this list that I’ve read I’ve been so glad you recommended!
I am so sorry about that. I will put a little feedback on that one. It was for sure a more difficult and darker read.
I love and appreciate this list!!! Please keep adding to it. I just finished the Lilac Girls and America’s First Daughter and loved them both!!
I am so glad you enjoyed them!
Hope you find a few to love!
Just a heads up that Lilac Girls has a scene which quite descriptively depicts a girl getting raped within the first couple chapters. I was pretty surprised when this happened, since no explicit sexual content is generally what I think of as “clean”. Wanted to let others know in case this would be triggering.
Thanks for the comment. I will add a warning to that one.
Lilac girls is not clean. I started reading it based on this recommendation and it’s horrible.
So sorry we will make a note of that
Thanks for this list! I think I read through all of the books, but may have missed some…Anyways, here are my additions: I also love Little Women, Anne of Green Gables series, The Hollow Kingdom Trilogy (a childhood favorite that is my secret favorite series 😅). The Lord of the Rings is actually a great classic, also apparently the Hobbit is a must, but I haven’t gotten to that one yet!
Thank you so much
You are welcome!
I love this list. I’ve loved all the books on the list that I’ve already read so I know I can trust your judgment on the others. Thank you!
I’m so glad! Happy reading!
Thankyou for this article. I’ve always found non-fiction stuff boring and repetitive. I could only read a book like that for school. Sine I found Andy Lazris’s work, i am hooked and love his captivating writing style. Visit his website to buy best non fiction books to read 2021