Diane Chamberlain’s Favorite Books


During our recent conversation with Diane Chamberlain about her latest novel The Silent Sister, we asked for a list of her 10 favorite books. Here’s what Diane selected.

11 22 63What if you could go back in time and change the course of history? WHAT IF the watershed moment you could change was the JFK assassination?
11/22/63, the date that Kennedy was shot.
Jake Epping, a high school English teacher from Lisbon Falls, Maine, 2011, embarks on a fascinating journey back to 1958, from a world of mobile phones and iPods to a new world of Elvis and JFK, Plymouth Fury cars, and Lindy Hopping. There, he finds a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jake’s life.

The Fault in Our Stars

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.
Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning-author John Green’s most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.


The Thirteenth TaleAngelfield House stands abandoned and forgotten. It was once home to the March family: fascinating, manipulative Isabelle, brutal, dangerous Charlie, and the wild, untamed twins, Emmeline and Adeline. But Angelfield House hides a chilling secret which strikes at the very heart of each of them, tearing their lives apart.
Now Margaret Lea is investigating Angelfield’s past, and the mystery of the March family starts to unravel.
What has Angelfield been hiding? What is its connection with the enigmatic writer Vida Winter? And what is the secret that strikes at the heart of Margaret’s own, troubled life? As Margaret digs deeper, two parallel stories unfold, and the tale she uncovers sheds a disturbing light on her own life…

Ordinary GraceNew Bremen, Minnesota, 1961 — the Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were selling out at the soda counter of Halderson’s Drugstore, and “Hot Stuff “comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for 13-year-old Frank Drum, it was a grim summer in which death visited frequently and assumed many forms.
Accident. Nature. Suicide.
And murder.

The Glass CastleJeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to a dismal West Virginia mining town. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents’ betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.    

  Year of WondersWhen an infected bolt of cloth carries plague from London to an isolated village, a housemaid named Anna Frith emerges as an unlikely heroine and healer. Through Anna’s eyes, we follow the story of the fateful year of 1666 as she and her fellow villagers confront the spread of disease and superstition. As death reaches into every household and villagers turn from prayers to murderous witch-hunting, Anna must find the strength to confront the disintegration of her community and the lure of illicit love. As she struggles to survive and grow, a year of catastrophe becomes instead annus mirabilis, a “year of wonders.”  

  The End of Your Life Book ClubWhen Mary Anne Schwalbe was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, her publisher son Will accompanied her to her treatments. As they had all their lives, they discussed books and the end of your life book club was born. They read and re-read dozens of books, not just ‘great’ books but a huge range. Funny and poignant, The End of Your Life Book Club is moving and inspirational. The book spans 75 years, references locations all over the world, and deals with the biggest questions life has to offer as well as the biggest challenges human beings confront.    

  The Art of Racing in the RainEnzo knows he is different from other dogs: he thinks and feels in nearly human ways. He has educated himself by watching extensive television and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver. Through Denny, Enzo realizes that racing is a metaphor, that by applying the techniques a driver would apply on the race track, one can successfully navigate the ordeals and travails one encounters in life. Enzo relates the story of his human family, sharing their tragedies and triumphs. In the end, despite what he sees as his own limitations as a dog, Enzo comes through heroically to preserve the Swift family.    

  Where'd You Go BernBernadette Fox is notorious. To Elgie Branch, a Microsoft wunderkind, she’s his hilarious, volatile, talented, troubled wife. To fellow mothers at the school gate, she’s a menace. To design experts, she’s a revolutionary architect. And to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, quite simply, Mum. Then Bernadette disappears, and Bee must take a trip to the end of the earth to find her. Where’d You Go, Bernadette? is a compulsively readable, irresistibly written, deeply touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter’s place in the world.    

  Departure at DawnLawyer Atticus Finch defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee’s classic, Puliter Prize-winning novel: a black man charged with the rape of a white woman. Through the eyes of Atticus’s children, Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with rich humor and unanswering honesty the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s.          

Add Diane Chamberlain’s 10 Favorite Books to your bookshelf