Wondering what cottagecore book to read next? We’ve got you covered.
Every spring, I gravitate towards cozy cottagecore books. I read gentle books that help me find joy in the world, that make me feel loved and happy to be alive, that remind me why I love soft spring rains and fresh fields of flowers.
I read most of these books on sunny mornings (when the birds were singing) and rainy afternoons (as droplets fell against my window pane). I drank lavender lemonade and nibbled on floral bread as I turned crisp pages. I fell for the atmosphere of these books deeply, fiercely, and intensely.
Here are ten atmospheric cottagecore books, from classics like Anne Of Green Gables to underrated gems like A Psalm For The Wild-Built.
Disclosure: Heads up, this post contains affiliate links, which means Passport To Eden may get a commission if you make an online purchase. Don’t feel pressured to buy anything. We still love that you’re here, reading our content (side note: we suggest getting a coffee or tea first because our blog posts tend to be long). You can read our full affiliate disclosure here to find out more.
Few cottagecore books are as immersive as Anne Of Green Gables. The story is simple: Anne Shirley, a chatty young orphan, finds a new, loving home with the Cuthbert family. You’ll see Anne grow up; watch her slowly mature.
Anne’s outlook on life makes L.M. Montgomery’s children’s classic so beloved. Anne romanticizes moments; she takes life by its wings and chooses to soar. She has the spirit of a daydreamer. She sees beauty in all things: poetry, Octobers, tomorrows. She lives and laughs and loves. She’s the kind of person you’d want to be friends with (or at least run through a field with). She has the best dialogue. She’s a character I love spending time with and revisiting.
The Rural Diaries
Once upon a time, Hilarie Burton (known for One Tree Hill, Grey’s Anatomy, and White Collar) left the madness of Hollywood – its volatility, its frenzy – for a different pace of life, one that embraced rural living. The Rural Diaries is her story, told in her own heartfelt, slightly dry, and no-nonsense voice. Burton and her husband (Jeffrey Dean Morgan of Walking Dead fame) bought a working farm in Rhinebeck, New York. At Mischief Farm, they rear highland cows and raise llamas. They make friends with baby donkeys, chickens, and ducks. That’s not to say Burton’s life is all rainbow-colored eggs and sunshine. The Rural Diaries opens wounds of grief and sadness, unbearable loss and pain (check the content warnings here). But it’s also hope-filled, resilient, and community-centered. The Rural Diaries has a whimsical tone, a Hallmark movie-like structure, and a candy-sweet glaze. In many ways, Burton’s memoir is a love story, a love letter to the little town of Rhinebeck, New York.
One of my favorite cottagecore books of all time, The Hobbit, makes my heart gently crave the world outside my comfort zone. Bilbo Baggins is a respectable, furry-footed creature averse to adventure, but he does have a side to him – a Tookish side that’s a little rebellious – that dreams of chasing experiences. When the Great Wizard Gandalf asks Bilbo to take part in an adventure, Bilbo is understandably hesitant. His life is charming and sweet, filled with food, cozy hobbies, and self-care. Then, at a certain point in the story, he does, in the words of Tolkien, “wish to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.” The descriptions of the lands that Bilbo sees make my heart so full. Middle-Earth is expansive and immersive. And Bilbo’s cottagecore soul makes this the perfect cozy read.
If you’re looking for cottagecore books filled with magic and fantasy, add Flowerheart to your reading list! Clara has a chaotic sort of flower magic. She struggles to control her powers. When she accidentally poisons her father (it’s a lot less dramatic than it sounds. Azaleas sprout from his chest), she has to go on a journey of coming to terms with her magic and her past. Catherine Bakewell does a brilliant job infusing mental health representation into this story. The vicious words Clara’s magic eggs at her were reminiscent of things I’ve heard my mind say when I struggled with catastrophizing thoughts. The conflict embedded in Flowerheart is very much all internal. While I did feel underwhelmed by the world-building and romance, I enjoyed the cottagecore atmosphere. Flowers, potion-making, and soft spring vibes make Flowerheart a fun young adult fantasy read.
This Poison Heart
This Poison Heart is the kind of dark cottagecore book you read in one sitting. Kalynn Bayron’s young adult series (This Wicked Fate out now) follows Briseis, a Brooklyn high school student who can make seeds into blooms with the touch of her fingertips. When Briseis’ aunt passes away, she finds herself in a new world of poisonous plants and brutal botanicals. This Poison Heart is more than just a reimagination of The Secret Garden; it’s an entirely new tale with gothic themes and a dark, twisted fairytale edge.
If you can forgive plotlessness, turn a blind eye to worlds that don’t quite make sense, and simply enjoy enchanting lyricism, Wild Beauty is for you. Wild Beauty may have the love curse of Practical Magic, but its strength is its language: flowery words that float across the page, lines that make you feel like you’re a bud in a garden, and paragraphs that swirl your senses. One of my favorite quotes (that encapsulates the book) is this, “Everything that had cursed them had made a home of this ground. It had grown tendrils and shoots. It had twisted and curled, and shot out thorns. They had to dig their hands in as deep as the earth would let them. They could not free themselves by deadheading flowers and crushing leaves. They would change nothing by picking flowers. They had to rip out their fate by the roots.” Let’s just say, Anna-Marie McLemore knows how to write a cottagecore story.
Tea Dragon Festival
Some of the most wholesome, charming cottagecore books take the shape of Kay O’Neill’s graphic novel trilogy. The Tea Dragon Festival is the second installment in the series. Rinn’s life has always had the warmth of tea dragons, but one day, Rinn stumbles upon a real dragon, Aedhan. A light spell of forest magic, sweet creatures, and a linear plotline gives Tea Dragon Festival some of the strongest narrative structuring of all the books. The art is beautiful too; it’s vibrant, vivid, and Ghibli-esque with bright blue skies and stunning scenes in thickets of trees.
The Forest Feast Road Trip
One of my favorite cottagecore cookbooks that I use every week is Erin Gleeson’s The Forest Feast Road Trip. Inside, you’ll find simple vegetarian recipes forged in California cottages, cabins, and beach homes. Gleeson’s California Grazing Board (prettied up with edible flowers), Rose Spritz, Floral Flatbread (a savory snack made with bell peppers and onions), Peach Breakfast Pops, and Lavender Shortbread are all peak cottagecore. Each dish is easy to prep (usually ten ingredients or less) and quick to make.
A Year In Provence
In A Year In Provence, Peter Mayle recounts his time moving to a two-century old farmhouse in France. In a lush, seductive setting, Mayle discovers that life moves in seasons, not moments. He learns; he grows. Alas, A Year In Provence has a tone that didn’t quite hit for me (at times, Mayle’s memoir comes across as disparaging). But I can’t deny that this is one of the best cottagecore books to read. It has the fixer-upper thread of Under The Tuscan Sun with more wit and humor. And oh, Provence! Nothing is more cottagecore.
A Psalm For The Wild-Built
A Psalm For The Wild-Built might be the coziest Sci-Fi I’ve ever read. Dex is a non-binary garden monk turned tea monk. They’re looking for something more in life. They’re searching. They’re seeking. One day, they meet a robot, Mosscap, who wants to understand “what do humans need?”. Dex and Mosscap’s story (and their conversations) is all quiet, introspective charm. A Psalm For The Wild-Built is a gentle book. There are moments – it’s so hard to describe – when I felt like the book was reaching out, with invisible hands, and hugging me.
Becky Chamber’s novella shares sage social commentary without ever feeling like a sermon. A Psalm For The Wild-Built is astute and sharply observant. It prods you to think while also feeling safe and comforting, like a warm blanket, making this short title one of the most underrated cottagecore books to read.
Did you enjoy this list of cottagecore books? What are your favorite cottagecore books? Let me know in the comments below!