Studio 5: Novels That Promote Gratitude

Today on Studio 5, we talked about books that help us appreciate the important things in life.

To see the segment, CLICK HERE.

blue dolphins

1. “Island of the Blue Dolphins” by Scott O’Dell

Out in the Pacific ocean there is an island. One day the people of the island leave and sail east. One girl is left behind. At first glance this is a survival story, but at its heart it’s a deep exploration of personal discovery. It really makes you grateful for everything and everyone you have.


2. “Bridge to Terabithia” by Katherine Paterson

This is one of my favorite books;  it stays with you forever. It’s a stunning story of friendship and imagination. Jess and Leslie are unlikely friends, but she ends up changing his life. And that’s what it’s about – the people in our lives who help us be who we are meant to be.

light we cannot see

3. “All the Light We Cannot See” by Anthony Doerr

This book came out earlier this year and is sweeping the book world. It’s so elegantly written. Though a World War II story, the major theme is how people, even in the worst circumstances, try to help each other, to lift each other up. And that’s a great message of unselfishness.

Snow Child

4. “The Snow Child” by Eowyn Ivey

Set in the stark, brutal, but beautiful Alaskan wilderness in the early 1900’s, this book is mystical and enchanting. A middle-aged couple leaves their comfortable home to settle on the Alaskan frontier. They long for a child. One night they make a snow child and the next morning it’s gone and there are footprints in the snow. This book makes you so grateful for your children, your spouse, and for your warm, modern home. It also makes you appreciate the beauty of the winter.

ordinary grace

5. “Ordinary Grace” by William Kent Krueger

This novel delves into the somber subject of death. It’s an exploration of loss, both natural and violent. It’s emotional, graceful, and spiritual. It will make you grateful for the people in your life and for the time you have together.

impatient with desire

6. “Impatient with Desire” by Gabrielle Burton

In the spring of 1864 Tamsyn Donner, her husband, George, and a company of pioneers headed west. We all know the terrible fate of this company. This book is told in Tamsyn’s perspective and it’s absolutely amazing. It looks deeply at the human soul faced with unthinkable tragedy. It’ll give you a new perspective on the history, but also a feeling of awe and gratitude for our ancestors.


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