11 Fresh and Funny Fiction Books to Brighten Your Bookshelf

By Stephanie Brown

These witty reads will put a smile on your face. 

Whether you’re in the mood for a sidesplitting family dramedy, a wickedly funny satire, or a comical take on modern life, we’ve got you covered. Here are 11 funny books to refresh your to-read stack.

If We’re Being Honest

By Cat Shook

We begin our list of funny books at an unexpected place: a funeral. Luckily Cat Shook knows how to transform a dramatic setting into a wellspring of relatable family comedy. If We’re Being Honest follows the Williams family as they wrestle with the loss of their beloved patriarch, Gerry Williams. Family members from around the country travel to Eulalia, Georgia, to attend Gerry’s funeral. But things take quite a turn after Gerry’s lifelong best friend reveals their romantic relationship spanning decades. Just like that, everything flips, and the various Williams siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles scramble to reckon with the revelation and their own personal dramas of the heart. Author Mary Laura Philpott (Bomb Shelter: Love, Time, and Other Explosives) describes it as “varying levels of hilarious dysfunction, all wrapped around a core of love. I would have gladly kept turning a hundred more pages to follow these cousins.”

Vera Wong’s Unsolicited Advice for Murderers

By Jesse Q. Sutanto

Jesse Q. Sutanto charmed readers with her 2021 cozy mystery Dial A for Aunties. In Vera Wong’s Unsolicited Advice for Murderers, she delivers another thrilling comic caper.

When the titular Vera finds a dead man in the middle of her San Francisco tea shop, she decides that she’d do a better job solving the crime than the authorities. After all, nobody senses trouble like a caring mother. So she nabs the suspicious flash drive from the body and begins her investigation as an amateur detective. But as Vera’s search unfolds, she becomes increasingly worried that one of her cherished customers is the killer. Will she get to the bottom of the case — and if she does, will she have it in her heart to turn over the culprit?

The Mostly True Story of Tanner and Louise

By Colleen Oakley

College dropout Tanner Quimby is desperate for a place to live and in no rush to grow up. So she takes a job as a live-in caretaker for the elderly Louise Wilt, where the 21-year-old hopes to continue her routine of lounging around and playing video games. As the days go by, however, Tanner begins to suspect that her new charge may, in fact, be a world-class jewelry thief. Her suspicions are seemingly confirmed when Louise bursts into her room in the middle of the night and insists that they flee. So begins the rollicking adventure of two unlikely friends as they try to outrun their pasts and find a better future.

Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone

By Benjamin Stevenson

Fans of Knives Out films will cackle with glee at Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone, Benjamin Stevenson’s wily riff on Agatha Christie–style whodunits. The novel is set at a ski resort where the Cunningham clan has gathered for a reunion. They’re your typical family, save for the fact that each and every one of them is also a murderer. The best part about Stevenson’s narrative is that it’s not just a murder mystery but a funny book about murder mysteries, with a narrator who talks directly to the reader about the genre’s tropes, beats, and plot twists.

A Certain Hunger

By Chelsea G. Summers

Chelsea G. Summers’s bloody satire delights with its dark feminist humor, although it may turn you into a vegetarian. A Certain Hunger follows Dorothy Daniels, a meticulous food critic with a most discerning palate who also happens to be a psychopathic killer. Strong-stomached readers will eat up Summers’s roasting of foodie culture and gender roles. Come for the clever digs at haute cuisine and toxic masculinity, and stay for the author’s dazzling examination of power and female friendship.

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute

By Talia Hibbert

How would you like to compete in a wilderness endurance test with your ex–best friend? That’s exactly what happens in Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Talia Hibbert’s “sidesplittingly hilarious” (PopSugar) YA romcom that will entertain readers old and young. Celine, a conspiracy theory influencer, signs up to participate in a survival course in the woods — only to be paired with Bradley, a straight-A sports star who abandoned Celine for the cool kids’ table years ago. As the two are forced to rely on each other to best the competition, Celine and Bradley reconnect, possibly as something more than friends.

This Time Tomorrow

By Emma Straub

From Emma Straub, the New York Times bestselling author of All Adults Here, comes this wondrous time-travel tale of a daughter yearning to reconnect with her dad and find lasting happiness. On her 40th birthday, Alice discovers that she can travel back through the years and relive her 16th birthday simply by falling asleep in the vicinity of her childhood home. When she realizes she can change the present by making different choices in the past, Alice embarks on two quests: to prevent her dad from getting sick and to figure out what her happiest life looks like. Sweet, funny, and contemplative, This Time Tomorrow explores what’s truly important in life.


By Rachel Yoder

Rachel Yoder’s Nightbitch is a howlingly funny fairy tale that we highly recommend. The buzzy debut novel centers on a young mother who may or may not be turning into a dog. Blurring the lines between the paranormal and the psychological, this darkly fantastical narrative about gender, creation, and power is a must-read for anyone hungry for something a little bit different this spring.

Cleopatra and Frankenstein

By Coco Mellors

While the starting point of Coco Mellors’s movingly funny book about love is a meet-cute between two lovesick individuals, the narrative expands through time and different relationships to capture the full spectrum of human connection. Cleopatra and Frankenstein follows Cleo, a young British painter, and Frank, a successful ad exec in his mid-40s. Soon after falling for each other, the couple decide to get married. But their impulsive decision to wed sends ripples through their lives and the lives of the loved ones who surround them.

Romantic Comedy

By Curtis Sittenfeld

In her “smart, sophisticated, and fun” (Oprah Daily) new novel, bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld delivers an uproarious take on gender dynamics and the impossible promises made by romantic comedies. Romantic Comedy centers on Sally Milz, a sketch writer for the late-night comedy show The Night Owls. Frustrated by the mind-numbingly common phenomenon of average dudes dating glamorous and accomplished women, Sally pens a sketch skewering the romantic disparity. After all, such a pairing would never happen if the genders were reversed. But then pop sensation Noah Brewster signs on as the show’s next host — and sparks begin to fly between the desirable superstar and Sally. Sally knows romantic comedies are pure fantasy and that this is real life…but is the fairy tale coming true? A witty romcom deconstruction that doubles as a love letter to the genre, Romantic Comedy is a feel-good delight.

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