Our gentle book display is one of the most popular displays in the fiction department of the library. A gentle book is one that does not contain sex, swearing, or extreme violence. Gentle books are found in all genres, from mystery to horror, romance to historical, scattered throughout the shelves. The library’s gentle book display helps readers easily find what they want.
There are a few tools we librarians use to help us find books to put on the gentle display. These methods will also help you to find gentle books in the stacks if you don’t find what you want on the gentle books display.
There are specific publishers that only publish gentle books. These include Bethany House, Covenant Communications, Tyndale Fiction, and Bonneville Books (an imprint of Cedar Fort Media & Publishing). To search by publisher in the library catalog, just enter the publisher’s name in quotations into the “Search Our Catalog” dialog box, then sort the results as you need.
Authors tend to stick to specific types of fiction in their writing. If you know one of the books an author has written is gentle, it is likely that all of their others will be as well. Some of the most popular gentle authors at the Orem Public Library include Sarah Eden, Beverly Lewis, and Lisa Wingate.
The blurb on the back cover or inside flap of a book can give quite a bit of information on the book’s content.
Common Sense Media
A good place to check for gentle books is the website Common Sense Media. Here, individuals post information about movies and books they have read, adding their suggestions for rating and age appropriateness. While the website focuses primarily on movies, it has a decent amount of books as well.
While there’s some truth to the old adage “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” book covers are designed in specific ways to appeal to different types of readers. Qualities that indicate a gentle book include idyllic scenery, a woman dressed in Victorian, pioneer, or Amish clothing, or paintings of quaint scenes.
“Gentle” isn’t really its own genre, since its qualities can be found across the spectrum of all types of books. However, some genres lend themselves particularly well to gentle books. Cozy mysteries in particular are very gentle. These are often a series with a topic that focuses on things like food, cats, libraries, gardening—or all of the above.
If you are still struggling to decide if a book you want to read is gentle, ask a librarian. We are here to help you find the perfect book!
Written by Nora (General Reference)