Reading is a delight in itself, but the joy is even sweeter when you’re reading a happy or uplifting book. There’s a time for crying over Me Before You, but the books that we’ve chosen are more likely to have you laughing and smiling. With so much darkness in the world today, it’s best to pair the good times with an equally good book. Here are a few of our favourites.

1. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

This autobiographical novel has since been made into a film, and follows Elizabeth Gilbert’s travels across the world. As she struggles to feel fulfilled in her everyday life, she takes off globe-trotting and discovers that the world is her oyster. With good food, new people and fascinating cultures to explore, Gilbert indulges in her wanderlust to find her happiness.

2. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Cath is a fangirl by nature – obsessed with a young adult book series, she dives into it’s world each time she feels uncomfortable. But when she moves to college and is slowly dragged out of her shell, she realises there can be more to life than fiction – sometimes real life can be good too.

3. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K Rowling

There’s plenty of sadness and heart ache in the Harry Potter series, but the first novel in the set is simply heart-warming. Having escaped his abusive uncle and aunt, Harry begins to see that life can be exciting and great – if you add a little magic. Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is so full of magic and beauty, that it overrules the darkness of Voldemort’s presence in his life.

4. Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

Willowdean Dickson is quite comfortable in her own body, no matter her size, but when a former jock captures her heart, she is amazed to see that her feelings are reciprocated. With her confidence dipping, she forces herself to find it again by entering a beauty pageant in her home town. She strives to prove that big is beautiful too, and maybe find love along the way.

5. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Maddy has never left the house. She’s lived her entire life in fear of the outside world, knowing that it’s toxic for her. She’s only ever known her mother and her nurse, but when a new boy moves in across the street, she finds herself unable to resist him. As they grow closer, Maddy begins to learn things about the outside world she never thought she would.

6. The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace

Starting out as a Tumblr sensation, Amanda Lovelace is now a published author of feminist poetry. Along with Milk and Honey, it’s one of the best known poetry collections from modern day. With a sequel on the way soon, it’s a must read.

7. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna doesn’t want to attend school in Paris, even if it is the most romantic city on earth. She’s got a boy back home, and a family, and a best friend she never dreamt she’d leave. But it turns out Paris isn’t so bad – a new set of friends, including the beautiful and charming Etienne, is about to cure her of her homesickness.

8. Double Bluff by Hayley Anderton

With self-published novels on the rise, novels such as these are beginning to get the credit they’re searching for. In this coming of age novel, Nick begins dating a girl to cover up that he’s gay. However, when he meets a young Irish boy who captures his heart, he begins to feel like maybe there’s nothing left to hide from.

9. Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield

Told in two intricately entwined stories, Afterworlds explores the story of a young writer, and the novel she’s written. As Darcey becomes acquainted with New York and the publishing scene, she delves into editing and rewriting her first novel. With odes to first love and fulfilling your dreams, it’s a book with very few sad moments.

10. The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks

There’s no denying that The Notebook is one of the saddest books of modern day, but it has a story so beautiful that people have been talking about it for years. After years apart, the love between two young people is burning brighter than ever, but with a wedding just weeks away, they may be forced to admit that their love can never be.