Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Books that Make You Cry

I'm a big fan of books that make you scream or cry or rip out pages. Any kind of emotion a book inspires makes me connected to the pages, and to me, that's worth more than an enjoyable book that leaves no impact.

So today, I'm devoting a post to books that made me cry.

We'll start off with Where the Red Fern Grows. If you've ever read this book and didn't cry, I fear you're the Tin Man. You have no heart. I had to reread the last chapter of Where the Red Fern Grows over and over again because my vision was too blurry to make out the words. Man, was that book sad. But it was great. When it comes to animals, I'm a complete blubbering fool. I cried from start to finish while I was watching Two Brothers, and that wasn't even that sad. I just have a soft spot. I can sit stone-faced while a character is killed off in a book or movie, but make it an animal and I'm off in a pool of tears. That probably makes me a horrible person, right? Oh well.

My Sister's Keeper. I cried harder at the end of this book than I did over the end of the movie. Even though the movie was obviously more visual, the words and plot of the book hit me harder. Drama, drama, drama.

The Outsiders. Stay Gold.

Before I Die by Jenny Donham. The ending was totally artistic and waaaaah-worthy.

Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson. Oh, boy. The worst kind of sadness is the kind that hits you as suddenly and unexpectedly as it does the character. This one hit.

The Knife of Never Letting Go. Ouch. This one was unexpected, too. It was a great book, and I'm very, very excited to read the sequel, The Ask and The Answer. But yikes. During this one specific part, I literally had to set the book down to walk away and cry in a corner. It was heart-wrenching. I'm wondering if anyone else had the same reaction to this part? I'm trying to refrain from spoilers, so it's hard to go into detail, but man did I cry.

So. What books made you Timberlake a river? Fess up.


  1. Great post! I have to admit that My Sister's Keeper had me bawling as did Before I Die (which I absolutely loved). Other books that really took a number on me would have to be A Time For Dancing, surprisingly the last Harry Potter book got me very emotional, and the The Last Song. I'm about to read The Time Traveler's Wife, I just watched the movie and cried really hard, so I've been warned that the book is going to be worse.

  2. I love this post! I am such a wuss when it comes to sad things in a book. Mostly if a character dies though. I have never actually cried because of a book though. I have gotten teary eyed. With The Kite Runner I KNEW I was going to cry so I quickly shut the book, walked out of the room, and distracted myself. I just had to take a break or I would cry like a baby. :'(
    Same thing with movies. If it's a DVD, I'll have to pause it and take a break. There are some that aren't even that sad but gosh it's like I'm a fountain all of a sudden.

    The books that have made me almost cry:
    The Kite Runner
    Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon by Marjorie Kellogg
    A Mango-Shaped Space by Wendy Mass <--I think you'll like that one.
    Secret Keeper by Mitali Perkins
    Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya

    I'll have to check out those books you mentioned that I haven't read. I love books that make me want to cry. I know, I'm such a masochist. It's just that I can remember these more than others. :}

  3. Gosh, lets see.

    Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
    A Few Demons More by Kim Harrison
    Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs
    13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher
    Prey by Rachel Vincent

    I think it's mainly when I get attached to characters and something happens.

  4. Is it horribly sad that most books make me cry - yeah that's kinda sad - The Mark did, Twilight did (the series), If I Stay did, soo many did - I really want to read Before I Die it looks awesome!

  5. A few years ago I read the Time Traveler's Wife and Oh Boy I cried a RIVER !!! Never happened after that. The book was good but broke my heart. I remember DH entering the bedroom and looking at me like I was the craziest person on the planet. All I could say was "you can't understand"... didn't reread it afterward, too painful.

  6. Anne of Green Gables and Rilla of Ingleside are two that get me every time.

  7. Most recently Shiver (I know. I know.) and The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian.

    My all-time epic cry book - The Road by Cormac McCarthy.

  8. ohh yes hmm The host made me cry also the hunger games

  9. Definitely Where the Red Fern Grows and My Sister's Keeper... some others are Charlotte's Web and parts of Harry Potter (like when Dumbledore died).

  10. Oh, thank you so much for this! These are books I'd really, really love to read. A tearjerker is amazing, once in a while. I love it when a book reaches out to me.

    Hmmmmmm, I actually don't remember the books in which I cried! I have a really bad memory right now...full of math since I'm supposed to be studying. But man...Oh yeah! The Host! That one got a tear out of me. New Moon did....that was waaay back. And I'm currently borrowing The Time Traveler's Wife from the library. Wowww, I cried so much at the theatre when I watched it. So I expect major tears from the book.


  11. Love this post idea!

    The Book Thief literally had be bawling by the end. It was heart-wrenching. But incredibly beautiful, nonetheless.

  12. Oh God. I'm not so sensible. Sometimes I cry, mostly while watching movies. Like, everytime I watch Titanic or A Walk to Remember (CLASSICS!). But a BOOK that made REALLY cry that I remember now was THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak. This is such an AMAZING book. I must confess I cried while reading New Moon by Stephenie Meyer, too. I THINK I ALMOST cried when I read Blue Moon by Alyson Noel, but I'm not sure. Hmm. I think that's all I remember.

  13. Every time I re-read Where the Red Fern Grows, I am determined to stop before the end so I don't cry, but I just can't leave it unfinished. The last time I was at my in-laws', so I had to go to bed early to cry in private! I agree about The Book Thief, also The Notebook.

  14. If I Stay
    The Hunger Games
    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

    All had my totally tearing up and thinking about the books days later.

  15. So, I haven't read the Knife of Never Letting Go or Catalyst, and Before I Die is hands down one of THE worse books I have ever read (and I HATED the ending) (although since joining the book blogging community, I'm thinking there must be something wrong with me, as everyone else seems to have loved this book), but Where the REd Fern Grows and the Outsiders both make me cry over and over and over again. Man, I love those books! And I definitely did some heavy duty sobbing while reading My Sister's Keeper.

    One book that I can read over and over and over again and that will make me cry EVERY time is Bridge to Terabithia.

  16. I think The Book Thief was the first book that made me truly cry. I was sobbing by the end.
    Also, The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray and Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta. I think those are the main ones.

  17. The first book that ever made me cry was Black Beauty by Anna Sewell. Another really old title that made me cry has a title that would never lead one to expect tears. It is They Loved to Laugh by Kathryn Worth (historical fiction civil war story). More recently, I cried when I read Before I Die but I think that it was because a former student of mine was in that exact situation and I was picturing her all the time I was reading it.

  18. Animals dying always make me cry! They're more helpless than humans, so it's understandable. I read Where the Red Fern grows when I was really little, so I don't remember crying. My dad will admit that he cried though. haha I cried when reading Harry Potter 7 and Dear John.

  19. Way too many to list all, but I finished Saving Francesca like an hour and a half ago and I cried in that one. :]

  20. I got choked up reading Where The Red Fern Grows but I didn't cry because I was in class, and I absolutely never cry in front of people. Same with The Giver. But more recently, like in the past year, when I'm reading in private, just about everything makes me cry. Like Before I Die and Impulse where real tear jerkers for me. Thirteen Reasons Why, Unwind, The Story Of A Girl, This Is What I want To Tell You, probably at least 4 of the Harry Potters, Tenderness, Hunger Games, Wicked Lovely, Ink Exchange, Burned, and a bunch of others that I can't even think of all have got at least a tear or two out of me. I think I've become more stone-heart the least couple of months though.

  21. THE BOOK THIEF made me cry buckets at the end.

    And IF I STAY made me sniffle a little, as well.

  22. The poem at the end of Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll, all about phantoms and everything fading.... sob sob

  23. THE JUNGLE!!!!

    Seriously, if you want to know what's worse than death then just read this book. I swear it is the most depressing thing! I'm not sure if I actually cried because, well, to be honest I don't cry a lot to begin with but it seriously made me depressed. It caused a lingering emotion of sadness that lasted longer than any tears.

    Other books to get my eyes watery or cause depression: The History of Love and Skylight Confessions

  24. I seek out books that make me cry. There are too many to list here, but recently it was If I Stay by Gayle Forman. If I Cry, I love the book. Unless I'm crying because it's so horrible, but that doesn't happen often. :]

  25. Man, it is hard to make me cry. Nonetheless, the books that have done it are:

    Where the Red Fern Grows
    How I Live Now
    by Meg Rosoff
    The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
    all of the last four Harry Potter books
    Bridge to Terabithia
    Season of Secrets by Sally Nicholls
    an as-yet unpublished ms that was picked up by another publisher

    and probably some others that I can't remember right now. Actually, probably a lot of others. But I stand by the statement that it's hard to make me cry.

  26. The Book Thief and If I Stay. Hands down. Once Was Lost and The Demon's Lexicon got me to tears, too. And I totally agree with you about My Sister's Keeper and Catalyst.

  27. and The Great Gatsby! How could I forget The Great Gatsby?!

  28. Where the Red Fern Grows for me too. Also, The Book Thief, Tangerine (Edward Bloor), and I know there's more, but I can't think of them at the moment.

  29. When I think of books that made me cry, I always think of The Amber Spyglass (3rd His Dark Materials book) and how I sobbed at the end. And even just thinking of the book makes me tear up a little!

  30. Awesome post! :)

    The best book that made me cry was undoubtedly Shiver. I freaking love that book! =D

    I have yet to read some of the books you listed so I'll be hunting for them! Oh and Charlotte's Web made me cry when I was 10.

    Nearing the end of Beautiful Creatures I almost cried. Unfortunately, I didn't cry when I read If I Stay and New Moon. =/

  31. Oh and Jonathon there's nothing wrong with crying over Shiver! ;)

    Brizmus, Bridge to Terabithia the movie made me bawl my eyes out. =(

  32. Great Post! A Thousand Splendid Suns had me bawling my eyes out - in public, on an NYC train...

  33. Odd Thomas for me. I cried yes I did.

  34. I agree wholeheartedly about "Where the Red Fern Grows"! That book can make me sob like a baby. And I did cry during a certain part in "The Knife of Never Letting Go" as well. Great post!

    Another book that always makes me cry is "A Little Princess".

  35. Hold Still by Nina LaCour.
    13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher.
    Various parts of Harry Potter.
    Bridge to Terabithia.

    It's the grief that gets to me - the characters' emotions seem to leak into mine.

  36. I'm ashamed to admit that I may have cried at the end of City Of Glass and somewhere in the middle of The Amber Spyglass. But those are the only books I have ever cried at. I mostly yell at books

  37. The most recent and the one I'll never forget is Prey by Rachel Vincent.

    What a heart breaking scene in that book! Love that series too.

  38. Lots of books make me cry, but Say Goodnight Grace made me cry so much I threw up.

  39. The Book Theif is such a great read and left me with tears flooding out. The Time Traveler's wife was another great tear jerker.

  40. I was searching for books to make me cry and came across this blog, tomorrow i am going to see if i find Where the Red Fern Grows.

    Suzanne Diary for Nicholas was the first book that made me cry hysterically. There was also The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks.

  41. Great post! All the Nicholas sparks books made me bawl like a baby Also The book theif made me cry (:

  42. Khaled Hosseini is the best at the art of writing so beautifully that you can't stop reading but making the story so heart-breaking that you feel like you can't go on. In both The Kite Rnner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, I cried my heart out, especially in the latter. The tales are so miserable and beautiful. I hate him and adore him for the wonders he's written. Also, Songmaster by Orson Scott Card is a tear-jerker.

  43. i amboslutely loved a thousand spleded suns, the power of 1, my sisters keeper, the lovely bones, before i die, should i stay, and before i fall.

  44. Hi everyone... no one mentioned this book... and it is the best i have ever read.

    made my cry for weeks :(

    it called "the bronze horseman" by pullina simons!

  45. the book "If I stay" by Gayle Forman made me cry so hard...well lets just say it was kind of embarrassing. And yes I know this is a realllly late post...almost a year late. haha.

  46. These were all sad but I would HIGHLY recommend them.
    •The Amber spyglass by Philip Pullman
    •Harry potter and the deathly hallows
    •love you hate you miss you (don't remember who it's by)
    •looking for Alaska by John green (dftba)
    •the shape of water (don't remember who it's by)
    •what happened to lani garver? (don't remember who it's by)

  47. Just finished The Elegance of the Hedgehog and I sobbed like my world ended.

    There's always that self conscious moment after you close a book you've been crying about... What am I doing??

    The Green Mile and Where the Fern Grows did as well.

    1. Same thing happened to me at the end of this book! I sobbed and sobbed. Barbery Muriel is a real gem.

  48. I usually don't cry at movies, but there are a lot of books that made me cry. Most of them are classics that I read when I was little, but I have been crying more and more at books lately. Here are the ones that I can remember:

    Harry Potters 4-7 (Oh my gosh, I saw the movie before I saw the book for all but the last one, but I cried at both, especially at Dumbledore's funeral. Should have kept it the movie!)

    Dancing in Cadillac Light (Can't believe no one's mentioned it!)

    Bridge To Terabithea

    Anne of Green Gables

    Black Beauty

    Maximum Ride 2 and 3 (Yes, James Patterson made me cry!)

    The Fellowship of The Ring (What? People die, I get sad!)

    The first book in the Red Rock Mysteries Series made me blubber like a baby!

    The Zion Covenant 1 and 2 are all that I have read, but I bawled and bawled and bawled!

    The Diary of Anne Frank

    The Final Problem (Yes, I cried at the death of Sherlock Holmes!)

    I think that the best writers are the ones that can bring a character to life so well, that it really feels as though you experience all of their adventures. When a character that you love dies, it makes you feel the grief as though you were really there with them throughout their life. When a character that has already suffered enough suffers even more, you feel like the suffering is your own. When a character loses all hope, you can't help but feel the same hopelessness. But the same is true for happy scenes! When the protagonist defeats the antagonist, it's a time to cheer along with them! When a mystery is cleared up,you feel the same satisfaction and relief. I would also mention the whole true love / breakup feelings, but romance isn't my thing. (By the way, if any romance tragedies were mentioned, and you couldn't believe that they weren't mentioned, that's why.) The point is, we, the readers, always experience the same emotions, go on the same adventures, and feel the same hardships as the characters that we know and love, and that's why we cry.
    Yeah, a thirteen year old girl can be deep!

  49. Oh wow, sooo many! But to name a few:
    "Kira-Kira"... I sobbed, and sobbed for hours after reading that book!
    "If I Stay".. A little teary at the end
    "A Corner of the Universe" is another that made me cry!

  50. "Water for Elephants". The ending was absolutely brilliant.

    Also, "Go Ask Alice" left me in tears. Especially the one paragraph epilogue - that was a shocker!

  51. Has anyone ever read The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold? That book had me crying throughout the whole thing.

  52. The ending of The Amber Spyglass is just so unbelievably impossibly heartbreaking. Just can't believe how sad it was; even thinking of it is making me emotional.

    The ending of The Road was quite deep too.

  53. Can't wait to read the books you've listed here. The only one I've read is My Sister's Keeper which is, indeed, a tear jerker and a half. Haven't watched the film as I can't see Diaz playing the mum convincingly. Anyway, my top tear jerkers are

    The Book Thief - left me blubbing on a bench on the London Underground. I was late for a dinner party and I just had to finish it.
    The Time Traveller's Wife - had me in floods, as did the film
    And, randomly perhaps, My Girl - the first book to ever leave me blubbing. And I was 9 at the time.

  54. I just finished the Book Thief for the 2nd time and all I can say it is embarrassing to read in public. I wasn't crying, I was hysterical.
    Time traveller's wife is also a favorite.

    It's a bit of a rarity but I strongly urge you to find it:

    Lonely boy by Hector Malot

  55. Awesome suggestions for books. Cheers guys.

    Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck leaves me in a depression stupor every time I read it. Have read a lot of sad books but it still claims my first prize. Gut-wrenchingly tragic combined with the brilliant writing of John Steinbeck. Can't beat it.

  56. I read Where The Red Fern Grows in 6th grade, and my teacher made us read the sad part while in class so I cried a river in front of the whole class. I would have much rather been on my own for that, because it kind of ruined the book for me, being self-conscious while reading. Other than that,
    -13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher
    -Looking For Alaska by John Green
    -The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
    all made me cry my heart out. One was while I was on a plane, which was slightly awkward.

  57. The Amber Spyglass had a terrible ending. After I finished reading that book, I immediately went online to look for fan made alternate endings.

  58. Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, and Everything to Gain by BARBARA TAYLOR BRADFORD

  59. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. period. Read it. This book stirred so much emotion in me it sent me looking for another book equally as moving! I googled "books that will make you cry" and found this blog!!

  60. If I remember right, there were only 3 books that made me cry: (1) Anna Sewell's Black Beauty, (2) John Grisham's The Testament, and (3) Elie Wiesel's Night. The last book was a haunting experience and perhaps the reason why I stopped reading books by the likes of Great Expectations.

  61. If you're a sucker for animals like me, then The Art of Racing in the Rain will have you bawling through the ENTIRE thing. I have never loved a book so much though. It was definitely worth the tears.

  62. If you're a sucker for animals like me, then The Art of Racing in the Rain will have you bawling through the ENTIRE thing. I have never loved a book so much though. It was definitely worth the tears.

  63. Hello,

    My sister's keeper made me cry and I hate the fact that they changed the movie's ending!! BTW, I've searched the books posted here and I'm looking forward in making myself cry... (I know that's weird!)

  64. Definitely agree with My Sister's Keeper and The Book Theif. I'm actually in the process of reading The Amber Spyglass, so hopefully that turns out well! Can't wait to delve into the suggestions here.

  65. Well I am not much into reading, but i can suggest a book titled 'I too had a love story' by Ravinder Singh. This is a true life story of the author and this is his his first book. I can say thatanyone i know who read this booked cried atleat for an hour after reading it including me. A must read for those in love and more for those who lost their love. It is an Indian book and you might not get it in bookstores and have to order online.

  66. Great post! I am looking forward to reading those books this summer vacation! :) For me, it's "Tuesdays with Morrie" and the Bible as well.

  67. Delirium by Lauren Oliver. It has a slow start but the end! Well, it just had me in tears. I turned over the last page and just started to wail like a child. Definitely worth the read!

  68. The Outsiders without a doubt
    When ponyboy kept denying johny
    Was dead and sayed his spiritwas still sleeping in the lot or smoking a cigirette on the corner
    I cried for like three days and i only read it once

    And also The Lovely Bones
    I cry every time i read the book and see the movie

  69. ATONEMENT by Ian McEwan. It had me in FLOODS :(
    Khaled Hosseini's books are also tear-jerkers.
    I'll admit, I had to hold back tears when i finished reading The Road by Cormac McCarthy because I was in a busy coffee shop :(

    Fantastic blog! And thanks for the suggestions everyone.... I see I have a lot of reading to do! :)

  70. One Day really made me cry buckets.
    Before I die is a real tear jerker

  71. Who Has Seen The Wind by W.O.Mitchel.

    Utterly beautiful and sad at the same time. So well written, the characters so alive, and all tied together perfectly at the end had me bawling out loud (thank God nobody was around). I'm still trying to sort out why.

  72. The Book Thief- Markus Zusak. Oh my God. RIP Rudy Steiner.

  73. Dancing on Broken Glass by Ka Hannock. You will have to keep tissues near by to read this one.

  74. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.
    If you do not cry after reading this John Green book something must be wrong because you must have not read something else.