Jane Austen is that way for me. Jeanne Birdsall's The Penderwicks books are that way for me. Anything by Hilary McKay works like that for me, and so do these three books:
I Capture the Castle by Dodi Smith (the author of 101 Dalmatians)
This really is a grown-up book, so read it for yourself first (it has offended some people I know and love, though it does not offend me), and if you are okay with it, give it to your teenage daughter.
Ahhhh. I love the narration, and I love the ending of this book. The best ending ever, although really, truly there should have been a sequel.
How many of you have read anything by L.M. Montgomery beyond the Anne books and the Emily books (If you haven't read the Emily books, you should definitely try them, especially if you love Anne of Green Gables)?
My favorite L.M. Montgomery novel, without question, is The Blue Castle. I think it's one of the best romances ever. It really is so good—if you like L.M. Montgomery at all, even just the Anne movies, give this book a try. Please. PLEASE!
Which brings me to my other favorite book I can re-read again and again. It is so hysterical, I weep while reading it. Definitely a lighter book than the one above:
Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons.Really, this is a book for grown-ups as well. Give it a try. You might not like it. You might. But if you enjoy British comedies in any form, I think you'll love it. Because I can't just write a post about grown-up books, I must tell you first of all, how much Mary loved The Unfortunate Son. She really, really loved it. Really, really. I hope you've given it a try. 12 and up.
And Calvin recently read, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh, and loved it too, and I skimmed through it again with him and remembered how well-written that book is. And interesting too! Definitely give it a try, or another look with your 3rd to 6th grader.