My Favorite Tearjerkers by Caitlin Sammons
Sometimes, you just need a good cry. And there’s nothing I love more than an emotionally powerful story to bring on the waterworks. A good book brings me brief escape, but an excellent book traps me in its world and forces an emotional investment. I absolutely love when characters tug on my heartstrings and take me with them on their journey.
Here are my top 5 favorite tear-jerkers, and yes, I cried my eyes out at some point while reading each one. Note: I wouldn’t suggest reading all five in a row. I like to space these heavy, powerful novels with something light and fluffy in-between. But all of these are beautifully written and are guaranteed to make you emotional – in the best way possible.
Paolo Giordano’s debut novel is an emotional rollercoaster. As described in the book, “a prime number is a lonely thing. It can only be divided by itself or by one, and it never truly fits with another.” Giordano beautifully applies this principle to the relationship between his two main characters, Alice and Mattia. The development of their relationship makes the reader question what it means to be lonely and what it means to be in love – and if the two can ever coexist.
Keep your tissue box close to you for this one! John Green has created a beautiful, heartbreaking love story about two teenagers, Hazel and Augustus, who fall in love. Where does the heart break come in? Hazel has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. The Fault in Our Stars will make you laugh and cry – and the twists and turns of this story won’t let you put it down.
My Turkish hairdresser recommended this European bestseller to me, and I made sure to give her an extra big tip the next time I saw her. The novel contains two parallel stories – one set in the present day, the other in the 13th century – and she gracefully intertwines them. Each chapter reveals one of the “rules” of love, and each rule will stop to make you think about how it can be applied in your own life. Elif Shafak has created a beautiful masterpiece that delves into love and lost love – and how the forty rules apply to both.
There are two things you need to know about The Book Thief before you read it: 1. It’s about the Holocaust, 2. The narrator is Death. Now you can properly mentally prepare yourself. If you love books, Markus Zusak’s novel will make you remember why. This is a story about a German girl who steals books and shares them with the Jewish man in her basement, and the ability of novels to feed the soul. There is no way you can get through this one without shedding a few tears.
Time Traveler’s Wife won’t just tug at your heartstrings – it will yank on them. The story is unconventional in every sense –the chapters jump around chronologically, and time travel becomes an accepted reality that the reader won’t question twice after only a few pages. Set in Chicago, this is the story of Henry and Claire, and the twists and turns that test their enduring love. This novel will make you believe in fate and will melt your heart.
Are you crying yet? Don’t worry, you will be once you read one of these! What are your favorite tear-jerking books?
Caitlin Sammons is a writer and a reader who dreams of opening her own nonprofit one day. Currently, she works as a Community Coordinator at a food pantry in Chicago and spends the rest of her time writing for good causes and about the things she loves, like books! To contact Caitlin or see more of her work, go to caitlinsammons.com
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