10 Entertaining Novels That Will Put a Smile on Your Face

Posted on April 16, 2018

by April S

What are you in the mood to read right now? The weather is getting nicer, the sun is out more, so I’m guessing something a little lighter would be ideal. But how do you find books like this when you don’t know where to start? Sure, you can surf the internet and wade through all of those book lists you see popping up here, there and everywhere. Or, you could try using Novelist, which is a popular database available for free through your Library. One of my favorite features is the appeal mixer, which allows you to explore books based on the combination of appeal factors. Hopefully, using this method will help you find your next great read.

With the help of Novelist’s appeal mixer, I decided a selection of entertaining novels with an amusing tone and likeable characters sounded like a perfect mix.

What is an amusing tone?

Not necessarily laugh out loud funny, but these books are entertaining with light humor.

What are likable characters?

These characters engage readers and are flawed, but in an appealing or likeable way.

If you’re intrigued, then you’re sure to enjoy the selections below …

Entertaining Fiction and Mystery Novels with an Amusing Tone and Likable Characters

The Purloined Puzzle by Parnell Hall (A Puzzle Lady Mystery)

The Purloined Puzzle” by Parnell Hall

Agreeing to help an obnoxious teen solve a puzzle, amateur sleuth and crossword impresario Cora Felton discovers a blood-stained knife in the puzzle’s place before a body is discovered in the middle of Main Street, a case that is further complicated by her ex-husband’s real-estate scam.

Series: Puzzle Lady mysteries – Book 19

Genre: Cozy mystery

Appeal: Heartwarming, engaging and well-crafted dialogue

A time of love and tartan : a 44 Scotland Street novel / Alexander McCall Smith

A Time of Love and Tartan” by Alexander McCall Smith

When Pat accepts her narcissistic ex-boyfriend Bruces invitation for coffee, she has no idea of the complications in her romantic and professional life that will follow; meanwhile, Matthew, her boss at the art gallery, attracts the attention of the police after a misunderstanding at the local bookstore.

Series: 44 Scotland Street – Book 12.

Genre: Humorous stories

Appeal: Character driven, leisurely paced, heartwarming, upbeat and engaging

The Queen of Hearts by Kimmery Martin

The Queen of Hearts” by Kimmery Martin

Zadie Anson and Emma Colley, two doctors who have been best friends since medical school, find their bond tested by the return of a former colleague who unearths a secret one of them has been harboring for years.

Genre: Romance and domestic fiction

Appeal: Character driven, high drama, moving and engaging

The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg

The Story of Arthur Truluv” by Elizabeth Berg

Making daily visits to the grave of his beloved late wife, Arthur forges unexpected relationships with a nosy neighbor and a troubled teen who dubs him “Truluv” before the trio discovers healing and family together.

Genre: Coming of age stories and domestic fiction

Appeal: Life small towns, unlikely friendships, character driven, heartwarming, moving and engaging

The Run-Out Groove by Andrew Cartmel (The Vinyl Detective, book 2)

The Run-Out Groove” by Andrew Cartmel

The second exciting book in the brand-new series from Andrew Cartmel. When a mint copy of the final album by “Valerian” — England’s great lost rock band of the 1960s—surfaces in a charity shop, all hell breaks loose. Finding this record triggers a chain of events culminating in our hero learning the true fate of the singer Valerian, who died under equivocal circumstances just after—or was it just before?—the abduction of her two-year-old son.

Series: The Vinyl Detective – Book 2.

Genre: Mystery and suspense

Appeal: Fast paced, upbeat, engaging, richly detailed and quirky/likable characters

Seven Days of Us by Francesca Hornak

Seven Days of Us” by Francesca Hornak

Looking forward to a Christmas family reunion for the first time in years, the Birch family is upended by the news that their physician-activist daughter has been exposed to a foreign virus that forces the entire family into quarantine for a week also shaped by respective anxieties, past glory and a shocking secret.

Genre: Humorous and domestic fiction

Appeal: Family gatherings, amusing, engaging and flawed/likable characters

Sourdough by Robin Sloan

Sourdough” by Robin Sloan

Enduring a virtually solitary existence working for an ambitious software company, an exhausted coder is bequeathed a sourdough recipe from sibling bakers who are forced to close their shop, a gift that leads to a new vocation, a legal dispute and a venture into a secret market that fuses food with technology.

Genre: Humorous stories and domestic fiction

Appeal: Amusing, engaging, offbeat, witty and quirky/likable characters

Lala Pettibone's Act Two by Heidi Mastrogiovanni

Lala Pettibone’s Act Two” by Heidi Mastrogiovanni

Lala Pettibone is a forty-something widow who starts her life over again when a toxic wasteland forces her to move in with her aunt in Los Angeles where she meets a handsome veterinarian and starts transforming her rejected screenplay into a novel.

Genre: Romantic comedies

Appeal: Character driven, amusing, hopeful, upbeat, engaging and likable characters

Too Lucky to Live by Annie Hogsett

Too Lucky to Live” by Annie Hogsett

Allie saves Tom, a blind man, from being hit by a car and soon learns that he has won a large sum in the lottery, which prompts them to go on the run to escape from people looking to steal his money.

Series: Somebody’s Bound to Wind up Dead mysteries – Book 1

Genre: Mystery and thriller

Appeal: Intricately plotted, fast paced, amusing, romantic, suspenseful and quirky/likable characters

The Missing Guests of the Magic Grove Hotel by David Casarett

The Missing Guests of the Magic Grove Hotel” by David Casarett

Detective Wiriya Mookjai investigates after wealthy foreign travelers begin to go missing throughout Thailand after having brief stays at a mysterious resort, in the second novel of the series following “Murder at the House of Rooster Happiness.”

Series: Ethical Chiang Mai Detective Agency – Book 2

Genre: Mystery

Appeal: Intricately plotted, amusing, atmospheric, upbeat, engaging, richly detailed and quirky/likable characters

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