Top 11 Family Fiction Books About Family Life, Relationships and Lessons For 2023
In the woven tapestry of family fiction, we uncover the intricate patterns of love, lessons, and laughter that unite us all in the shared experience of humanity.
I’ll make it clear from the beginning, you don’t need a family to enjoy a good family fiction book. Whether you’re into something light for a sunny Sunday afternoon in a park or you want to bring back some good old memories from your childhood, family fiction books can make your day better.
There are lots of great titles out there, and I find it hard to pick just a few only, but I’ve done it… I think my recommendations are excellent for someone who wants a relaxing experience, as well as families.
They’re adventurous, full of chilled action and rich in plot twists, ideal! In some of the books I wanted to focus on older generations or at least how they lived in the 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s. Now let's see the top family life books.
What Are The Top Family Fiction Books?
Willie Mae's Son from Clinton Avenue, by Nathaniel Gawayne Sutton (2022)
Willie Mae's Son from Clinton Avenue is a Christian children's book that tells the true story of a poor kid from the inner city and his journey to becoming a successful man. The book emphasizes the importance of education not for the purpose of becoming rich, but to gain an understanding of the value of people over material things. The story is told from the perspective of the author, who shares how his cousins and uncle played a significant role in shaping his character and values.
Through this inspiring and heartwarming tale, readers are encouraged to appreciate the role of teachers in their lives and to cherish the support of family and friends. The book is a tribute to the author's first teacher, Willie Mae, who taught him not only academic subjects but also life lessons about perseverance and kindness. This book is a testament to the power of education and mentorship in shaping the future of our children.
Maame, by Jessica George (2023)
Maame is one of those family life books that will take you through all kinds of feelings and emotions. While the world has a series of different meanings, in this case, it refers to a woman. Now, the story follows Maddie, whose life could be a bit better.
She lives in London, and no matter how hard she tries, she just can’t find that perfect balance of life, work and happiness. If you put yourself in her shoes, it’s not the best scenario either… Her mother spends more time in Ghana than in the UK, but she’s still overbearing somehow.
Then, her father is not in the best condition… Suffering from Parkinson's, he's transforming, and Maddie has to be the main caretaker. But she also has a job and it's not great either, especially since her boss is a bit of a nightmare.
Anyway, Maddie’s finally ready to change something… The next time her mother returns from Ghana, she decides to start living and jump out. So said, so done… She starts sharing a flat, goes for drinks after work, pushes more in work and even starts dating online.
But at some point, tragedy strikes… I won’t give you too many spoilers, but all I can say is this is a heartwarming and lovely story about family, humor, love and friendships. It may feel a bit sad at times, but overall, I think it’s got a good feel-good aura.
What Happened to Ruthy Ramirez, by Claire Jimenez (2023)
You’re going to love this one, probably among my favorite family fiction books ever. Now, the story follows the so called Ramirez women, who live in Staten Island. The family is scared since one of them disappeared. Ruthy was only 13 when she simply vanished.
It's been 12 years, and the police are unaware of her whereabouts, no one knows anything.
But the family gets some hopes up one night, when the oldest sister, Jessica, watches a TV show. Catfight is one of those dodgy reality shows where people come to disclose their problematic family lives and end up fighting and arguing. One of the people there looks familiar…
Sure, her hair is red and her name is Ruby, but she has a beauty mark under the left eye and that mark looks extremely familiar.
The family is definitely not doing great, but the two sisters Jessica and Nina decide to drive where the show is hosted and find out more about that woman. When their mother Dolores finds out, she wants to join, and she also brings a friend, Irene.
I’ll let you discover the rest, but get ready for a beautiful story, a mix of drama, love, emotions, happy and sad moments altogether.
This Family, by Kate Sawyer (2023)
This is probably one of the most emotional family life books I’ve ever read and mainly because I find myself in many stories. It’s not just that, but the book is extremely well written and can certainly trigger a few emotions.
The story follows Mary, who’s managed to raise a family in her house. She has beautiful and well raised kids, as well as plenty of good memories. But now, it’s time for her to get married… And she’s going to do it in the same house.
Her extended family is fractured, though. There are all sorts of conflicts, people scattered everywhere and, well, lots of trouble whenever they come together. Pretty much like my own extended family… But anyway, Mary’s about to get married and she wants everyone there.
The book spreads over a whole day, and the action takes place in the cool English summer. Apart from all kinds of happenings, you’ll be introduced to memories from the past, so you can get a clue about who everyone is.
There’s joy, grief, happiness, stories, hope and, well, pretty much any emotion you can think of. It’s such an authentic book in terms of how it makes you feel that you just can’t go wrong with it.
The Garnett Girls, by Georgina Moore (2023)
Three girls, three completely different characters and three lives going in opposite directions. The story brings in their mother as well, which is just as unique. Now, this is one of those family fiction books that will surprise you with a new secret every few pages.
There are all sorts of responsibilities they need to deal with, while also keeping their secrets, of course.
Just like in real life, this book shows how far love can push you, and that's probably why I liked it so much. Love makes you do things that you wouldn't normally do. And each of these characters has a different approach to it.
Margo and Richard’s relationship failed. Now, she refuses to even mention his name. Her three daughters have their own things… Rachel wants to get to London, but she loves the family home too much. Imogen is pressured into starting a family, while Sasha is struggling between two different worlds.
This book raises a very important consideration, and that's what hit me… Can you escape your parents' mistakes? Will you ever be free of their mistakes? It's said we do what we see at home, and it's true, if you think about it. But then, there's room for more, and that's exactly what this book’s about.
Skandar and the Phantom Rider, by A.F. Steadman (2023)
I know, this is one of those family fiction books that can go in a different category, along with golems, orcs and elves, as well as stories that often make it to movies. Wrong! Sure, some of the creatures in it can take you there, but if you dig deeper, you’ll realize it’s a family book with a beautiful story.
Anyway, let me start with the story… Skandar has managed to train as a unicorn rider, which was his life goal. He and his friends are in their second year now, but a threat arises and aims to kill all wild unicorns. Everyone thought they’re immortal, but it looks like they can get killed.
It's part of a dark prophecy that seems to become a reality now.
Skandar’s sister is in the same boat. Kenna wants to join him in the attempt to save the island. The two embark on a family adventure of a lifetime. They'll discover a series of secrets about each other, as well as their relationship. They’ll bond and grow stronger, but will they manage to complete their mission?
Despite the Devil, by Shawna James (2020)
Stephanie is attracted to Andrew Simmons, a smart, tall, and gorgeous man who is very inclined to sports. The cherry on top was Andrew being interested in her too. As their relationship grows, Andrew’s past starts to haunt him. Andrew hoped that starting a family would help him move on, but the hope soon vanished when on every turn he makes, he sees his past chasing him down.
With the ugly decisions they have made before, Andrew and Stephanie could only wish that they could build a happy family together without having to worry about the repercussions of their past mistakes.
Will the two experience a happily ever after, or will their past prevent them from living peacefully together?
Recipe for a Perfect Wife, by Karma Brown (2019)
Despite having a profession in publicity, Alice Hale did not think twice of leaving it behind to become a writer and follow her husband in the outskirts of New York. But as soon as they arrived, she found herself alone in a big house. The story gets interesting when Alice finds an old cookbook, stacked away in a box in the house’s basement, which sparks her interest with the previous owner: A housewife back in the 1950s named Nellie Murdoch.
As Alice flips through the pages, she unravels the ominous side of Nellie’s life which includes her marriage and some unsent letters for her mother. With Nellie’s story increasing Alice’s anxiety upon the piling pressure of her own marriage, Alice then decides to be in full control of her life and hides a few secrets herself in order to protect her well-being.
What events will take place inside the Hale household?
The Great Alone, by Kristin Hannah (2018)
Coming home from the Vietnam War could change a man. Ernt Allbright, a former POW, had made a rash decision of moving his whole family to Alaska when his last job failed. Caught in her family's difficult state, thirteen-year-old Leni has hoped that coming to a new land will give them a chance at life.
The Allbright household thought that everything was going smoothly during the first few days in Alaska. However, the moment winter came, and darkness engulfed the peaceful land, everything went downhill.
As Ernt’s delicate mental health begins to worsen through the days, Cora, his wife, has realized that it is up to her to protect her family from the ugly truth behind Alaska’s enchanting beauty.
Open House, by Katie Sise (2020)
A great domestic thriller from the author of We Were Mothers.
A long time missing woman Emma McCullough, and her sister who couldn't accept the fact that she lost her sister. This tragic mystery shatters Haley life, but the first evidence after ten years finally found. The puzzle pieces slowly come together, to reveal the whole story.
If you enjoy mysteries and thrillers, this book may be a compelling read for you. The story explores themes of loss, grief, obsession, and the lengths people will go to uncover the truth. The author's use of vivid imagery and suspenseful storytelling can keep you on the edge of your seat and engaged in the plot.
This Is Not How It Ends, by Rochelle B. Weinstein (2020)
A contemporary friendship fiction.
The story begins with the meet of Charlotte and Philip, it seems they always know each other, there is a strong bond between them. But the relationship changes over time and Charlotte feels the feelings aren't the same on Philip's side.
When a tempest sweeps across Islamorada, astonishing disclosures test Charlotte's allegiances and overturn her existence. Compelled to reassess her past decisions and those still to come, Charlotte sets forth on a moving voyage of camaraderie.
Will she stuck in the past, or begin a new future?
These are some of my favorite family fiction books out there. You’ll notice they’re completely different from one another, and I find myself in all of them. I truly believe most families out there can recall certain memories similar to what they’ll have in these releases.
Families, conflicts, all kinds of happenings and feelings, tight families or broken families, we've all experienced such things to a certain level, and that's exactly why I believe everyone will find themselves in these books. And despite the drama sometimes, they’ll bring in some good feel-good vibes.
Check also our favorite women's fiction books.
My profession is online marketing and development (10+ years experience), check my latest mobile app called Upcoming or my Chrome extensions for ChatGPT. But my real passion is reading books both fiction and non-fiction. I have several favorite authors like James Redfield or Daniel Keyes. If I read a book I always want to find the best part of it, every book has its unique value.