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The Nonfiction Guide

Have you ever scrolled through Amazon, trying to find the next right book?  Or how about shopping for a mom who’s a book lover and you find yourself stuck wondering what book to buy her?

Well, no worries, because I’m here to help a girlfriend out!

These are my recommended books for mom, picked by yours truly and some fellow  book lovers. Although I haven’t read all of the books listed below, asking other book lovers for advice gave me some great ideas for my own reading list! I hope you enjoy finding a new one for yours too!

Best Nonfiction Books for Mom

(Note: This blog post contains affiliate links.)

If Only It Were a Piece of Cake

By Christy Cabe

Christy is a truly talented author who helps women to feel less alone in their journey as a mother. Her book is the perfect blend of humor and insight, providing truly relatable mom-moments alongside wise Biblical advice. You will be refreshed and encouraged by her book. Although this  book is written for any woman, she shares many ‘mom struggles’ which is why I included it on my list for best books for moms!

“Are we done adding children to our family?” “Why do I feel discontent when I have all I ever wanted?” “How can I stop my irrational thoughts?” “Why do I struggle with Mom Guilt all the time?” “Is it okay to feel angry at God?” “Why do I feel so sad about this new season of my life?” “How can I learn to forgive others and myself?” “How can I stop comparing myself to others?” Life. If only it were a piece of cake! Instead, it’s difficult. Even good opportunities can bring struggles. But, just because life is tough doesn’t mean we shouldn’t still live it. And, maybe even find hope and joy amidst the grind. In If Only It Were a Piece of Cake, Christy Cabe shares openly about her struggles with worry, anxiety, and irrational thoughts, and offers tools and tips that help her deal with them. When guilt, regret, insecurity, and discontentment attack, she’ll show you how she strives to live without them—and how you can too! If you’ve encountered loss, lamenting, and anger, Christy walks beside you, sharing compassion, faith, and laughter. Then, there are chapters about new seasons, letting go, and moving forward, challenges for us all, but areas where we can grow and adjust. Perfect for personal application and group discussion, If Only It Were a Piece of Cake invites readers to join Christy as she serves up stories, camaraderie, and slices of hope. Life. If only it were a piece of cake!” (From Amazon)

Life Worth Living Journal

By Kristin Vanderlip

Although this isn’t a “book” by its true definition, this is a great journal with some guided  instructions at the beginning to help you make the most of your daily reflections. I included it on my list, because it would make a great gift for the reader who loves to journal!

The Life Worth Living journal is designed to help you evaluate your daily life–the challenges as well as the things you’re grateful for. It helps you take an inventory of your day by asking questions about physical health, hydration and energy level, as well as emotional health. It takes a well-balanced approach to the journaling practice, giving you space to share your struggles and emotions, while helping you see that daily reflection is a good practice to wholeness and healing.

“When the hard stuff of life hits, it can knock us off our feet in one swift motion or it can gradually build up until we feel unbearable weight pressing down upon us. One day we might wake up and it’s as though a vacuum has sucked the color right out of our life. We open our eyes and look around to find ourselves living like a stranger in a desolate, dreary landscape with our passions, hope, and sense of well-being disappearing too.

In this space, we can feel stunted and stuck. We can struggle with unhealthy thought patterns and challenging emotions that rise up seemingly against us. Our mental and emotional struggles can overwhelm us. We can become caught in cycles and repeating behaviors that don’t serve us well.

But, we long to discover life worth living right where we are (even if we’re somewhere we never thought we’d be). We’re ready for growth and transformation. But how?

Maybe this is you. And maybe you’ve even prayed and prayed for healing, transformation, change, or rescue, and you’re starting to doubt those will ever happen for you. You’re wrestling. You’re longing. You don’t know what to do next.

The Life Worth Living journal will offer you a tangible next step for your journey. It will enable you to reengage in your life and become an active participant in it. This journal will provide you with space, tools, and reflective questions to meet you where you are and help guide you in creating new paths and new growth for yourself.

Memory Making Mom

By Jessica Smartt

“What’s the solution to gaining the balanced, meaningful life you desire with your family? Create traditions that bring joy and significance. Popular “Smartter Each Day” blogger and mom of three, Jessica Smartt explains why memory-making is the puzzle piece that today’s families are longing for. She highlights the tradition-gifts kids need most with 300+ unique traditions including:

  • Food: Memories That Stick to Your Ribs
  • Holidays: Fall Bucket Lists, Crooked Christmas Trees, and Lingering Over Lent
  • Spontaneity: Let’s Go on an Adventure
  • Faith: Why You Need the Puzzle Box” (From Amazon)


By Paul Tripp

“What is your calling as a parent? In the midst of folding laundry, coordinating carpool schedules, and breaking up fights, many parents get lost. Feeling pressure to do everything “right” and raise up “good” children, it’s easy to lose sight of our ultimate purpose as parents in the quest for practical tips and guaranteed formulas.

In this life-giving book, Paul Tripp offers parents much more than a to-do list. Instead, he presents us with a big-picture view of God’s plan for us as parents. Outlining fourteen foundational principles centered on the gospel, he shows that we need more than the latest parenting strategy or list of techniques. Rather, we need the rescuing grace of God―grace that has the power to shape how we view everything we do as parents.

Freed from the burden of trying to manufacture life-change in our children’s hearts, we can embrace a grand perspective of parenting overflowing with vision, purpose, and joy.” (From Amazon)


Any of Sally Clarkson’s books for moms are winners, especially her Lifegiving Series (Lifegiving Home, Lifegiving Parent). But I especially enjoyed this book. If you have a child who is different in some way, you’ll appreciate Sally’s wisdom and approach to loving your children just the way they are.

“Nathan was different and Sally knew it. From his early childhood, Nathan was bursting with creativity and uncontainable energy, struggling not only with learning issues but also with anxiety and OCD. He saw the world through his own unique lens―one that often caused him to be labeled as “bad,” “troubled,” or someone in need of “fixing.”

Bravely choosing to listen to her motherly intuition rather than the loud voices of the world, Sally dared to believe that Nathan’s differences could be part of an intentional design from a loving Creator with a plan for his life.

Join Sally and Nathan as they share their stories from a personal perspective as mother and son. If you are in need of help and hope in your own journey with an outside-the-box child, or if you’re an adult trying to make sense of your differences, you’ll find deep insight, resonance, and encouragement in the pages of this book. Dare to love and nurture the “different” one in your life.” (From Amazon)


Ruth Chou Simmons

I was on Ruth’s book launch team and love her artwork and her writing. This is a beautiful picture book that combines Ruth’s paintings with devotional thoughts.

“GraceLaced is about more than pretty florals and fanciful brushwork—it’s about flourishing. With carefully crafted intention, this beautiful volume of 32 seasonal devotions from artist and author Ruth Chou Simons encourages readers in any circumstance to become deeply rooted in God’s faithful promises. GraceLaced extends a soul-stirring invitation to draw close to God while…

  • resting in who He is
  • rehearsing the truth He says about you
  • responding in faith to those truths
  • remembering His provision to sustain you, time and time again

More than 800 individual pieces of art came together in the crafting of this book, including dozens of new, hand-painted Scripture vignettes that Ruth is known for.” (From Amazon)

Grumpy Mom Takes a Holiday

“Most days motherhood often looks like bottomless piles of laundry; a sink full of dishes; sleepless nights; and unshowered, nonstop, endless days. If that’s all there is, then no wonder “Grumpy Mom” sometimes sneaks into your heart and home.

If you can relate, you’re in good company―Valerie Woerner gets it and has experienced Grumpy Mom more often than she’d care to admit. In Grumpy Mom Takes a Holiday, Valerie shares what she’s learned so far about sending Grumpy Mom packing and embracing a joyful, intentional motherhood that is so much better than you thought possible.

As you journey with Valerie, you’ll be inspired and equipped to find energy in the most unlikely places, pursue your own dreams, be set free from mom guilt, feel content despite unfinished to-do lists, spend purposeful time with God amid the daily chaos, and discover more joyous moments of motherhood.

So, take a holiday from Grumpy Mom, and enjoy life as the mom God made you to be.”(From Amazon)

The Fringe Hours by Jessica Turner

This book taught me how to find more time in my day for doing the things I love.

“Every woman has had this experience: you get to the end of the day and realize you did nothing for you. And if you go days, weeks, or even months in this cycle, you begin to feel like you have lost a bit of yourself.

While life is busy with a litany of must-dos—work, parenting, keeping house, grocery shopping, laundry and on and on—women do not have to push their own needs aside. Yet this is often what happens. There’s just no time, right? Wrong.

In this practical and liberating book, Jessica Turner empowers women to take back pockets of time they already have in their day in order to practice self-care and do the things they love.” (From Amazon)

Shiny Things: Mothering on Purpose in a World Full of Distractions

By Amanda Bacon and Anne-Renee Gumley

“What and who should get the best of us? And why is it so enticing to choose lesser things instead of lasting things? As moms we know the magnetic pull to steer away from what’s important and choose what feels irresistible in the moment. In Shiny Things, Amanda Bacon and Anne-Renee Gumley bring to light the distractions moms face every day.

Honoring God and loving our families are our highest priority, but sometimes we need help keeping them there. For all of us who find ourselves caught in the cycle of distraction but are looking for a way out, Shiny Things will help us:

  • identify the threat of distractions so we can learn to live with intention
  • resist the pull to be interrupted by non-essentials and focus on God and our priority people
  • purpose to live free from distraction with hearts turned Godward in all we do.” (From Amazon)

How to be a Happier Parent: Raising a Family, Having a Life, and Loving (Almost) Every Minute

By KJ Dell’Antonia

“An encouraging guide to helping parents find more happiness in their day-to-day family life, from the former lead editor of the New York TimesMotherlode blog.

In all the writing and reporting KJ Dell’Antonia has done on families over the years, one topic keeps coming up again and again: parents crave a greater sense of happiness in their daily lives. In this optimistic, solution-packed book, KJ asks: How can we change our family life so that it is full of the joy we’d always hoped for? Drawing from the latest research and interviews with families, KJ discovers that it’s possible to do more by doing less, and make our family life a refuge and pleasure, rather than another stress point in a hectic day. She focuses on nine common problem spots that cause parents the most grief, explores why they are hard, and offers small, doable, sometimes surprising steps you can take to make them better. Whether it’s getting everyone out the door on time in the morning or making sure chores and homework get done without another battle, How to Be a Happier Parentshows that having a family isn’t just about raising great kids and churning them out at destination: success. It’s about experiencing joy–real joy, the kind you look back on, look forward to, and live for–along the way.” (From Amazon)

More for Mom 

By Kristin Funston

“More for Mom will encourage women to stop believing the lie that more is needed from them, and start living with the truth that more is available for them.

With real-life talk, humor and convicting biblical truths, Kristin Funston helps hard working mamas to look at each day and each facet of their life to discover what happens when they believe God has more for them than what they think the world needs from them.

And what He has available is a whole and holy life, just waiting to be claimed–a salvation and day-to-day reality complete just as it is. The pieces of each mom’s life–the work life, mom life, social life, etc.–are mended together through Christ to complete her one whole life, set apart because of Him.” (From Amazon)

Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh

This is an old favorite of mine! Short and thoughtful. A great gift for the book lover who enjoys classics.

“In this inimitable, beloved classic—graceful, lucid and lyrical—Anne Morrow Lindbergh shares her meditations on youth and age; love and marriage; peace, solitude and contentment as she set them down during a brief vacation by the sea. Drawing inspiration from the shells on the shore, Lindbergh’s musings on the shape of a woman’s life bring new understanding to both men and women at any stage of life. A mother of five, an acclaimed writer and a pioneering aviator, Lindbergh casts an unsentimental eye on the trappings of modernity that threaten to overwhelm us: the time-saving gadgets that complicate rather than simplify, the multiple commitments that take us from our families. And by recording her thoughts during a brief escape from everyday demands, she helps readers find a space for contemplation and creativity within their own lives.” (From Amazon).


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