47 Unexpectedly Sad Books That People Said Made Them Cry Cathartically

    Bring the tissues.

    We asked the BuzzFeed Community to tell us what book was so unexpectedly moving that it made them curl up and cathartically cry. Here are some of the most heart-wrenching recommendations.

    1. Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig

    2. My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman

    3. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

    4. Marley & Me by John Grogan

    5. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

    6. The Color Purple by Alice Walker

    7. Goodnight Mr. Tom by Michelle Magorian

    8. A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

    9. Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

    10. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

    11. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

    12. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

    13. The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien

    14. All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover

    15. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

    16. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

    17. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

    18. Just Kids by Patti Smith

    19. The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

    20. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

    21. Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin

    22. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson

    23. Frankly in Love by David Yoon

    24. Night by Elie Wiesel

    25. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

    26. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult

    "Bawled my eyes out and threw the book before I calmed down enough to finish it."


    Description from Bookshop: "Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate--a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister--and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves."

    27. Thirteen Doorways, Wolves Behind Them All by Laura Ruby

    28. Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo

    29. First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers by Loung Ung

    30. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruis Zafon

    "The writing is so melancholy and mysterious, yet beautiful. You can feel the weight of the mystery and the young boy who sets out to figure it out after visiting the Cemetery of Forgotten Books. The layers of subplot settle into you like a warm hug, and the magic of the writing truly has me sitting in silence for 10 minutes after I get done, waiting to be transported back. A magical work of art."


    Description from Bookshop: "Barcelona, 1945: A city slowly heals in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War, and Daniel, an antiquarian book dealer's son who mourns the loss of his mother, finds solace in a mysterious book entitled The Shadow of the Wind, by one Julián Carax. But when he sets out to find the author's other works, he makes a shocking discovery: Someone has been systematically destroying every copy of every book Carax has written. In fact, Daniel may have the last of Carax's books in existence. Soon Daniel's seemingly innocent quest opens a door into one of Barcelona's darkest secrets — an epic story of murder, madness, and doomed love."

    31. The Light of the World: A Memoir by Elizabeth Alexander

    32. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

    33. Tears of a Tiger by Sharon M. Draper

    "This book is the first of Sharon Draper BRILLIANT Hazelwood High trilogy, but you can absolutely read it on its own as long as you have tissues nearby. It's the most beautiful, tragic, and introspective story of about grief and guilt. Draper trusts readers to draw their own conclusions about Andy's actions, something she does beautifully in the last chapter especially."


    Description from Bookshop: "Tigers don't cry--or do they? After the death of his longtime friend and fellow Hazelwood Tiger in a car accident, Andy, the driver, blames himself and cannot get past his guilt and pain. While his other friends have managed to work through their grief and move on, Andy allows death to become the focus of his life. In the months that follow the accident, the lives of Andy and his friends are traced through a series of letters, articles, homework assignments, and dialogues, and it becomes clear that tigers do indeed need to cry."

    34. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls

    35. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

    36. Call Me by Your Name by André Aciman

    37. The Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer

    38. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

    39. The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

    40. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

    41. Homes: A Refugee Story by Abu Bakr al Rabeeah and Winnie Yeung

    42. Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

    43. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

    44. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

    45. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

    46. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer