I’ve done a post on my favorite “comfort food” tv shows , so here’s one on my favorite comfort food books series—even if the latter might only be comforting to me. I’ve been battling with my anxiety—the power outages aren’t helping—and again having trouble reading or watching anything. So after I finish my current book—hoping to have the post up in a week or two—I’m diving into Fan Service, a compilation of two of Gail Carriger’s novellas and a short story. After that I’m going to re-binge-read the Finishing School series. Once I’m back into the habit of reading, I hope it’ll come easier. On with the comfort reads!
1—Anything by Gail Carriger
As well as the aforementioned Finishing School Series, Ms. Carriger has penned in the same world several other series (which you can find reviewed on this site), and numerous novellas (which I need to pick up, minus the aforementioned Fan Service ones). I’ve also read and reviewed her SF/Cozy Mystery/Romance book, The 5th Gender. All these book series end happily, as do the individual books (minus a romantic subplot cliffhanger in the second book of the Parasol Protectorate). What’s more, they feature supportive friendships, healthy romances, and downright interesting worlds. Much recommended, especially with a cup of your favorite tea.
2—Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Series
These books always made me laugh, even in the depths of depression. I’m particularly fond of the Witches sub-series and the Watch sub-series. The Death sub-series is pretty awesome too, and contains one of my favorite lines of ever. There’s also a young adult series set in the world, the Tiffany Aching series, which is what I introduced my sister to Discworld with. These books informed much of who I am, and I love them.
Discworld starts out in the first few books skewering fantasy tropes but quickly evolves to skewer everything, in thoughtful and thought provoking ways. Pratchett had (sadly, he passed on a few years ago) a great eye for humanity in all its foibles and potential for greatness. That favorite line I mentioned—which is in Hogfather—is about humanity being where the falling angel meets the rising ape. That’s always stuck with me. I don’t know if other people would necessarily call the books “comforting” but it comforted me to know that the darkness doesn’t have to consume you.
3—The Vows and Honor Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey
I haven’t read these books in many years, but they’re still some of my favorites. Tarma and Kethry were my heroes growing up, because they survived and still managed to find good in the world. I wouldn’t really recommend anyone else going to these books looking for “comfort” though (there’s rape and trauma aplenty), but they were that to me. They let me know I could survive what was thrown at me. They were also the first place I encountered the term “asexual”, even if Tarma was so because of a Goddess-bound oath and magic, rather than born that way. It was still important to me, especially since I found these books at the start of puberty, and just having a way to identify that part of myself saved me a lot of trouble and confusion.