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What Was the First Book Ever Made?

books on gratitude

As far as historians know, and depending on what one means by “made,” the first book was either the Epic of Gilgamesh, the first bound copies of the Bible, or the Gutenberg Bible. Each marks a point in the development of books.

The Epic of Gilgamesh is the oldest-known written story that can be called a book. It was written in ancient Sumeria sometime prior to the 18th century B.C. on clay tablets. The first bound parchment books, or codices, were the Bibles of the early Christian church, like the 4th century A.D. Codex Vaticanus and the Codex Sinaiticus. Much later, in 1454 or 1455, Johann Gutenberg printed the first book on a moveable-type printing press: the Gutenberg Bible.


books on gratitude

Patricia Puentes

The 26 Most Anticipated Books of 2022

books on gratitude

We’ve already told you what’s new and exciting when it comes to movies , TV shows and video games in 2022. And since there’s a lot of 2022 ahead of us, let’s take an updated look at our selection of some of the year’s most anticipated books so that you keep adding titles to your “Want to Read” shelf on Goodreads. 

Since thrillers, mysteries, romance, YA offerings and science-fiction tend to be readers pleasers, we’ve included a bunch of those, as well as some historical fiction, memoirs and poetry.

Fiction Books That Have Already Debuted in 2022

books on gratitude

Fiona and Jane by Jean Chen Ho (January 4, 2022). The Taiwan-born and Southern California-raised Jean Chen Ho writes her debut novel with this tale of two young Taiwanese-American women and friends who grow up in Los Angeles and float in and out of each other’s lives when Fiona moves to New York. 

Daughter of the Moon Goddess by Sue Lynn Tan (January 11, 2022). Another debut novel on this list is from the Malaysia-born Sue Lynn Tan, who studied in London and France and lives in Hong Kong. The YA fantasy novel, which is the first part of a duology, tells the story of Xingyin. Her mother has been hiding her after she stole the elixir of immortality and was exiled. But when her magic manifests and is discovered, Xingyin needs to leave her mother and embark on a dangerous quest to save her. 

To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara (January 11, 2022). After the heartbreaking A Little Life , Hawaiian author Hanya Yanagihara returns with this novel that spans three centuries and is set in an alternate version of America in 1893, 1993 and 2093. The book offers “three different versions of the American experiment, about lovers, family, loss and the elusive promise of utopia,” according to Penguin Random House’s synopsis.

Reminders of Him by Colleen Hoover (January 18, 2022). Bestselling romance author Colleen Hoover returns with this story about Kenna, a woman who’s been in prison for five years and goes back home trying to reunite with her 4-year-old daughter. The task proves difficult, and her only link to her daughter is Ledger, a local bar owner. As the connection between the two of them grows stronger, Kenna must find a path to atone for her past.

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson (February 1, 2022). This historical fiction debut novel by Charmaine Wilkerson follows two siblings as their mother dies in present-day California, leaving them an unusual inheritance: a traditional Caribbean black cake made from a family recipe and a voice recording in which she talks about the past. The siblings could find their way back to each other, and to their mom, with this family history.

House of Sky and Breath (Crescent City #2) by Sarah J. Maas (February 15, 2022). You can always count on the prolific Sarah J. Maas to keep delivering 700-plus-page volumes every year. While she’s still at work with her A Court of Thorns and Roses long series, Maas returns now to Crescent City for a second installment in which Bryce and Hunt are trying to get back to normal after saving the city. But, of course, war is always looming.

Gwendy’s Final Task by Stephen King (February 15, 2022). And while we’re talking about prolific authors, let’s mention one of the most illustrious ones. Master of horror — and of posting cute photos of his doggie on Twitter — Stephen King proves once again in 2022 how much of a non-procrastinator he is. In his new novel, Gwendy is a novelist and rising political star confronted by her past. At 12, a stranger gave her a mysterious box. It offered treats but also destruction: None of its seven-colored buttons should be pushed. 

The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley (February 22, 2022). After the success of The Guest List — it received the Goodreads Choice Award in Mystery & Thriller last year — Lucy Foley returns with a new puzzle. Broke and alone, Jess asks her half-brother Ben if she could crash at his place for a bit. But when she gets to his Paris apartment, not only is Ben not there, but the place seems way nicer than what he could have afforded. With her brother missing, Jess starts questioning what may have happened and tries to find answers among the building’s neighbors. 

Gallant by V.E. Schwab (March 1, 2022). After the bestselling success of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue , V.E./Victoria Schwab returns with another fantasy proposal good for adults and YA audiences alike. In Gallant , Olivia only has her mother’s journal as a memento of her past. When she’s invited to Gallant, she feels at home there, even if no one was expecting her and half-formed ghouls are haunting the place. She wants to uncover what secrets the place holds.

The Recovery Agent by Janet Evanovich (March 22, 2022). After the success of the Stephanie Plum and Wicked series, bestselling author Janet Evanovich launches a promising new series. Gabriela Rose is a recovery agent hired by people and companies who want to recover all kinds of valuable things. But when she’s forced to work for her own family, Gabriela ends up in the jungles of Peru looking for the Ring of Solomon and the lost treasure of Cortez. The main problem is that her ex-husband, Rafer, is the one who has the map that could take her to the treasure. 

Time Is a Mother by Ocean Vuong (April 5, 2022). After his heart-wrenching epistolary novel On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous , the Vietnamese-American Ocean Vuong goes back to his origins with this poetry collection in which he searches for life after his mother’s death. “Vuong contends with personal loss, the meaning of family, and the cost of being the product of an American war in America,” reads the book’s synopsis.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel (April 5, 2022). If you, too, read Emily St. John Mandel’s post-apocalyptic and hopeful tale Station Eleven during the early months of the pandemic, you may want to know more about the Canadian author’s upcoming science-fiction work. In Sea of Tranquility , a detective in the black-skied Night City is hired to investigate an anomaly in the North American wilderness. He’ll discover a series of lives upended there. 

2022’s Most Anticipated Fiction Books

books on gratitude

Blind Spot by Paula Hawkins (April 14, 2022). After Paula Hawkins’ latest novel made it to Ask Media Group’s mystery-themed book club last year , we couldn’t leave her new work behind. Best friends Edie, Jake and Ryan see their world torn apart when Jake is brutally murdered and Ryan accused of it. Edie is devastated and alone, living in the remote house she shared with Jake. The problem is that somebody is watching…

Book Lovers by Emily Henry (May 3, 2022). Master of contemporary romance novels Emily Henry — she’s the author of the aptly titled Beach Read and People We Meet on Vacation — returns with this story about Nora, a literary agent whose life is books. When Nora decides to go away on vacation with her sister Libby, she keeps bumping into Charlie, a bookish editor she’s known for years who has never piqued her interest.

I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston (May 3, 2022). After One Last Stop and Red, White & Royal Blue, LGBTQ+ romance royal Casey McQuiston returns with this YA novel. In I Kissed Shara Wheeler , Chloe is vying for the valedictorian title at high school when her main rival, prom queen Shara Wheeler, kisses her and then proceeds to vanish. Chloe is not the only person Shara’s kissed. The three kissed-ones try to untangle the clues Shara’s left behind and find her.

The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-García (July 19, 2022). After Mexican Gothic and Velvet Was the Night , the Mexican-Canadian author Silvia Moreno-García returns to Gothic horror ingredients with this reimagining of The Island of Doctor Moreau set in 19th-century Mexico. 

We Deserve Monuments by Jas Hammonds (November 29, 2022). Here’s yet another YA offering with crossover appeal for any age with this debut novel by Jas Hammonds. Avery is a 17 year old forced to leave her life in D.C. and live at her terminally ill grandmother’s home in a small Southern town. She copes with her mother and grandmother’s constant arguments by finding friendship in Simone, her next-door neighbor, and Jade, the daughter of the town’s prominent family. The novel explores the racist history of the town and how it’s marked its residents while dedicating time to the coming of age of Avery and the romance that blossoms with Simone.

Memoirs and Nonfiction Books That Have Already Debuted in 2022

books on gratitude

Putting the Rabbit in the Hat by Brian Cox (January 18, 2022). Craving some more behind-the-scenes Succession drama after the controversial New Yorker profile on Jeremy Strong ? Maybe try this Brian Cox memoir. The actor who plays the patriarch and media mogul Logan Roy in the HBO hit recounts here his working-class childhood in Scotland all the way to his days on the Emmy-winning TV show about a very dysfunctional family.

The Lonely Hunter: Why the Search for Love Is Broken by Aimée Lutkin (February 8, 2022). The 30-something single writer Aimée Lutkin found herself surrounded by couples at a party. After being asked about her love life and arguing being alone could be the endgame, the author went on a search to try to answer some fundamental questions: Why is there so much pressure to be in a relationship? Why is everyone so uncomfortable around single people? Why does it seem like your real life can’t start until you meet The One? And is it possible to be single without being lonely? 

We Should All Be Feminists: A Guided Journal by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (March 1, 2022). After her 2014 essay “We Should All Be Feminists” , adapted from her TEDx Talk, Nigerian author and feminist icon Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie revisits her work with this Guided Journal . The journal is meant to encourage readers to define feminism in their own voices and tell their stories, as well as featuring prompts, quotes and important events in the history of feminism.

Burning Questions: Essays and Occasional Pieces 2004–2021 by Margaret Atwood (March 1, 2022). Why do people tell stories? What do zombies have to do with authoritarianism? How can we live on our planet? How much of yourself can you give away without evaporating? The Handmaid’s Tale author and feminist icon Margaret Atwood penned this series of essays trying to find the answers to these and other burning questions.

All the White Friends I Couldn’t Keep: Hope–And Hard Pills to Swallow–About Fighting for Black Lives by André Henry (March 22, 2022). “In this personal and thought-provoking book, Henry explores how the historical divides between Black people and non-Black people are expressed through our most mundane interactions, and why this struggle won’t be resolved through civil discourse, diversity hires, interracial relationships, or education,” reads Penguin Random House’s synopsis of this work by musician and writer André Henry.

2022’s Most Anticipated Memoirs and Nonfiction Books

books on gratitude

Finding Me: A Memoir by Viola Davis (April 26, 2022). Actress and producer Viola Davis gets personal with this memoir that covers her childhood days coming of age in Rhode Island and spans to her present day. The Academy Award-winning Black actress has not only dominated TV but has also managed to transition into an incredibly prestigious film career.

Paradise Falls: The True Story of an Environmental Catastrophe by Keith O’Brien (April 12, 2022). Journalist Keith O’Brien’s work of narrative reportage tells the story of Lois Gibbs and Luella Kenny, two mothers who, in the 1970s, exposed a toxic waste dumping site that was causing a public health crisis and polluting their neighborhood in Niagara Falls. It was uncovered that the city’s largest employer, Hooker Chemical, had been disposing of thousands of tons of toxic waste in the town’s canal.

Bi: The Hidden Culture, History, and Science of Bisexuality by Julia Shaw (June 28, 2022): Psychologist Julia Shaw takes a scientific approach to sexuality with this exploration of bisexuality. Shaw, who is bisexual herself, explores the complexities of the human sexual experience both from a personal and scientific perspective and writes about the invisibility of bisexuals in our society.

Under the Skin: The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation by Linda Villarosa (June 14, 2022). Linda Villarosa’s 2018 New York Times article “Why America’s Black Mothers and Babies Are in a Life-or-Death Crisis” exposed the flagrant racial disparities in the U.S. healthcare system when it comes to childbirth. With her new work, the author exposes the reasons why Black people in America “live sicker and die quicker” compared to white people.


books on gratitude

5+ Best Books on Gratitude + Oliver Sacks’ Gratitude Book

5 Best Books on Gratitude + Oliver Sacks’ Gratitude Book

In fact, if you type “gratitude” into Google Scholar, you’ll get about 1.32 million results!

Gratitude is a popular area of research not only because it is an inherently “positive” topic, but also because of the amazing potential benefits of gratitude.

Before you continue, we thought you might like to download our three Gratitude Exercises for free . These detailed, science-based exercises will help you or your clients connect to more positive emotions and enjoy the benefits of gratitude.

This Article Contains:

5 best books on gratitude, gratitude by oliver sacks – a short summary, 6 other suggested readings on gratitude, even more recommendations.

A regular practice of gratitude , or “attitude of gratitude” as some call it, can enhance your life in a multitude of ways, including:

This is just a sample of the many positive outcomes of a regular gratitude practice. To learn more, check out our piece on the potential benefits of gratitude .

If our recent fixation on gratitude has piqued your interest in the subject and left you wanting more, you’re in luck! There are several books on gratitude that range in tone from academic to intimate. Some of these books are fantastic resources for learning about the latest in gratitude research, while others provide a window into a personal journey to gratitude.

Whatever the basis of your interest in gratitude, you should find at least one or two of these books useful, informative, and engaging.

It’s hard to narrow down such a long list of books, but we did our best!

This list includes our top 5 favorite books on gratitude, in no particular order.

1. Words of Gratitude for Mind, Body, and Soul – Robert Emmons and Joanna Hill

Words of Gratitude for Mind, Body, and Soul by Robert Emmons and Joanna Hill

Words of Gratitude is written in the sweet spot of tones, comfortably in between academic and intimate. While the authors outline some of the major gratitude research, it is described with minimal jargon in clean and simple prose.

If you’re looking for a book that will work double duty, teaching you a few new things while also inspiring you to a gratitude-filled life, this is the book for you!

You can find it for purchase on Amazon .

2. The Psychology of Gratitude – Robert Emmons and Michael McCullough

The Psychology of Gratitude by Robert Emmons and Michael McCullough

The Psychology of Gratitude draws from multiple perspectives and borrows from multiple fields to put together a comprehensive backstory for this hot research topic. You will learn about the theories behind gratitude, including from an evolutionary perspective, from a moral viewpoint, and even with a focus on physiology.

This book can be described as a “must-have” for any current or future student of positive psychology , although readers with less of a background in positive psychology may want to start with the first book on our list.

You can find The Psychology of Gratitude on Amazon to read reviews or browse the purchase options.

3. Thanks! How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier – Robert Emmons

Thanks! How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier by Robert Emmons

The author weaves in a little bit of gratitude research, some perspective from literature, psychology, religion, and anthropology, and finishes it all with a call to action on cultivating gratitude.

This is a fantastic read for anyone who is looking to learn more about why gratitude can be such a life-changing addition, and how they can apply gratitude to their own life.

Thanks! is available for purchase from Amazon .

4. A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life – John Kralik

A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life

perhaps he would find life more manageable if he focused on what he did have rather than what he didn’t have.

He began his gratitude journey by setting a goal for himself: over the next year, he would write 365 thank-you notes, one per day. As he produced each handwritten note, he noticed profound changes occurring in his life. In A Simple Act of Gratitude , Kralik outlines a roadmap for anyone struggling to make similar changes in their life.

As the Amazon description says, “To read A Simple Act of Gratitude is to be changed.”

Find this book on Amazon .

5. The Gratitude Diaries: How a Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life – Janice Kaplan

The Gratitude Diaries: How a Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life by Janice Kaplan

Janice Kaplan, a journalist and the former Editor-in-Chief of Parade magazine, weaves academic research and evidence-based findings in with her own personal journey to present readers with an excellent reason to give gratitude a shot.

This book is an excellent choice for more casual readers interested in gratitude, as the tone is informal and accessible, but it also presents a message that everyone can benefit from receiving.

If you’d like to join Kaplan on her gratitude journey, you can find the book on Amazon .

Gratitude by Oliver Sacks

No list of books on gratitude would be complete without including Oliver Sacks.

Oliver Sacks was an extraordinary man, for many reasons. Not only was he a prolific author and respected neurologist, he was also a thoughtful and generous person who exuded a bright-eyed wonder and gratitude for life.

He made his mark with books like Awakenings (1983), The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat (1985), and Musicophilia (2007), but it may be his final essays, crafted with both a scientific pragmatism and an enthusiastic zest for life, that many of his fans and well-wishers will remember for years to come.

Sacks announced that he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer in January 2015 with a stirring and emotional essay in The New York Times . Towards the end, Sacks shares his current state with the following words:

I cannot pretend I am without fear. But my predominant feeling is one of gratitude.

This sentiment is a fitting one for Dr. Sacks and captures the essence of his final book. Gratitude is an ode to life, to love, to mortality, and to the unique pleasures and challenges that accompany being human.

The book is composed of four essays that were originally published in The New York Times , including the essay announcing his illness, complemented by words from his partner and a longtime collaborator as well as photographs from the last few years of his life.

Gratitude is a thought-provoking and heart-wrenching look at life, death, and everything in between, with a message encouraging the reader to be grateful for every second of it.

You can find the book on Amazon .

oliver sacks on gratitude positive psychology

Oliver Sacks was not a big name in gratitude research. He did not publish dozens of articles on gratitude or conduct random controlled experiments on gratitude. He didn’t make startling new discoveries or think up new academic theories about gratitude.

Sacks’ contribution to our understanding of gratitude was a result of how he lived his life: grateful for each moment. You can see it in his books, his essays, and in the photographs he left behind.

You can read about it in the book his partner published after his death, Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and Me.

You can hear it when reading his words aloud to yourself, words written with care and compassion for each patient-turned-subject.

Sacks did not just think about or write about gratitude, he lived it. He imbued his work with gratitude, and that gratitude shines through.

I heartily recommend any of Oliver Sacks’ books or essays. His writing is accessible, clear, and pleasantly free of jargon, considering his career in neuroscience.

This article from The Atlantic provides an excellent reading list for those curious about his work.

If each of these books is already on your bookshelf or if you’re looking for an even more comprehensive reading list on gratitude, you might want to give these books and articles a try:

1. The Little Book of Gratitude – Robert Emmons

The Little Book of Gratitude

It also includes an 8-week gratitude plan.

Available from Amazon .

2. Choosing Gratitude: Your Journey to Joy – Nancy Leigh DeMoss

Choosing Gratitude

It is taken from the popular ‘Revive our Hearts’ radio series, and challenges readers to live a life of intention and thankfulness for God and the blessings of others to discover true joy.

Available from  Amazon .

3. 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life – John Kralik

365 Thank Yous

4. Everyday Gratitude: Inspiration for Living Life as a Gift

Everyday Gratitude

It makes a perfect gift.

5. Attitudes of Gratitude: How to Give and Receive Joy Every Day of Your Life – M. J. Ryan

Attitudes of Gratitude: How to Give and Receive Joy Every Day of Your Life

It includes practical suggestions to enable readers to unlock the fullness of life.

6. Living in Gratitude: A Journey That Will Change Your Life – Angeles Arrien

Living in Gratitude

Bringing together teachings from social science, she presents a 12-month ‘gratitude plan’.

Enjoy your reading, and let us know if there are any other books on gratitude you recommend!

We hope you enjoyed reading this article. Don’t forget to download our three Gratitude Exercises for free .

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What our readers think.

the gratitude workbook review

Great post! Full The Gratitude Workbook Review here!

Faye Snider

Carol, I appreciate the detail and care of this blog. I am a clinical social worker/writer and write a bi-monthly blog “Gratitude is as Gratitude Does,” at I’m always on the lookout for new approaches, ways of thinking about the essentials of a gratitude process.


Thanks for the book suggestions and great articles you share; another work on the flip side is entitled “The Culture of Complaint” which has helped me understand how endemic in-gratitude is in our day.


I am looking for stories that highlight people who have had a life threatening experience whether from an illness, an accident or some other challenge. I want to know how they have. One to appreciate each and every day more than ever before. The purpose of this is to demonstrate how we should not take a minute for granted and be grateful for all of our blessings.


This website truly has all the ibformation I wanted concerning this subject and didn’tknow who to ask.

single girls

Sρot on with this writᥱ-up, I absoluteⅼy feel this website needs much mоre attеntion. І’ll prоbably be гeturning to read through more, thanks for the info!

Catarina Lino

Our pleasure, feel free to explore and share the word. Enjoy your reads 😉

Karen Keating

I’m grateful that gratitude can be cultivated. This is freedom for me. I always said that I’m not a naturally grateful person. I don’t have to be. Gratitude can be consciously generated. The ATTITUDES OF GRATITUDE has really helped me

This is awesome Karen, glad it helped you and I agree, it’s so great that we can cultivate a greater sense of gratitude intentionally. Thank you for your comment 😉


HELLO THERE can you give me a little bit of your time and answer these questions for me in 5-6 sentences each: 1) Other than your health explain to me what you are most grateful for. 2) Give me a specific example of suffering in the world that hits you hard. Thanks for your time!


Thank you very much for those titles, i have been looking every where for a book on gratitude but found none in my country bookshops in Uganda. so i have resorted to writing my own gratitude journal.

That’s very resourceful of you Rhoda, well done! We at PPP (as we lovingly call our platform) are proud of you!

Anne Kubitsky

You may want to learn about the Look for the Good Project: . 🙂

Thank you for this Anne, we’ll check it out!

Carol Gordon Ekster

To start kids on a nightly routine of gratitude, share the picture book, BEFORE I SLEEP: I SAY THANK YOU, Pauline Books and Media, 2015. Here’s the book trailer:

Awesome, thank you Carol!

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16 Popular Books on Gratitude, Thanks & Mindfulness

Updated 10/5/2022

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Laura Leavitt, MA in Rhetoric and Composition

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Gratitude is a state of mind, not just a feeling, and one of the nice things about being thankful is that it can lift your spirits. Everyone from spiritual leaders to self-help writers has noticed that something special happens to our perspective when we take the time to thank others.

Doing so can be a powerful way to improve your outlook and remember what is good, rather than just what isn’t going well.

Overview: Our Top Picks

Books on gratitude for adults.

Books on Gratitude for Children or Students

Jump ahead to these sections:

To keep gratitude in your mind, reading more books that emphasize the power of thankfulness can help. You also may find that reading books about gratitude with your children or grandchildren not only teaches them the attitudes that your family values. It also helps them focus on the positives in their lives.

Adults encounter many highs and lows in life. Some books help us notice the good over the bad so that we can truly reap the benefits of thankfulness.

1. The Little Book of Gratitude: Create a Life of Happiness and Wellbeing by Giving Thanks by Robert A. Emmons

books on gratitude

The Little Book of Gratitude is a simple, explanatory set of gratitude practices that can help you to find the positive aspects of each part of your life. Using strategies like creating a gratitude journal can be a proactive way to create the kinds of changes you want to see in your life.

View This Book on Amazon

2. Gratitude by Oliver Sacks

books on gratitude

A famous psychologist, Oliver Sacks became more and more philosophical throughout his life, combining his researched insights with his own wisdom.

He knew he had only a few months left to live. He chose to spend that time writing about the feelings of having had a successful, meaningful life rather than bemoaning the end of it. Gratitude   is a powerful meditation on the benefits of thankfulness.

3. BlessBack: Thank Those Who Shaped Your Life by Julie Saffrin

books on gratitude

Rather than a general attitude of thankfulness, BlessBack discusses how important it is to actually tell the special people in your life how grateful you are for them.

It combines research with practical advice to help you show people how much you appreciate them. Doing so helps your mood and makes them feel good at the same time. The idea that we should focus on the needs of others to feel appreciated ends up making the world more of a place we all want to live in.

4. Living in Gratitude: A Journey That Will Change Your Life by Angeles Arrien

books on gratitude

Living in Gratitude is an interdisciplinary exploration discussing how we can find the roots of what makes us ungrateful and work up from there to a feeling of real thankfulness.

Noticing how a lack of forgiveness for past slights and other trouble in our lives can cloud our capacity for gratitude, Arrien helps us find sources of joy and gratitude in every aspect of life.

5. 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life   by John Kralik

books on gratitude

Kralik’s story of choosing radical selflessness during a dark period in his life will inspire us all to focus on the positive and affirm those we love. This choice transformed his life and offers readers hope for changes in circumstances when they find ways to thank those who matter to them.

A Simple Act of Gratitude is written in simple and direct language, making it unusually approachable for people who aren’t always interested in reading.

6. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown

books on gratitude

Brené Brown has taught many lessons on how to be vulnerable in a world full of people who prefer to protect themselves. The Gifts of Imperfection reframes vulnerability as a gift we can be grateful for, where we notice that we are not perfect and use these moments as ways to connect more deeply to those around us.

Noticing our flaws and accepting them as part of the unique mix that makes us interesting can powerfully reframe a perfectionist mindset.

7. Choosing Gratitude: Your Journey to Joy by Nancy Leigh DeMoss

books on gratitude

Choosing Your Gratitude is a faith-based book that encourages thanking both God and others as a path to actual, lasting joy. It talks about how pursuing one’s agenda may lead to shorter-term happiness, but sustainable satisfaction and contentment are linked to being grateful for what one already has.

This mindful approach to one’s experience of the world can seep into your perspective on everything else, not just your faith experience.

8. Thanks a Thousand: A Gratitude Journey by A.J. Jacobs

books on gratitude

A.J. Jacobs is famous for taking on ambitious experiments and writing about them, and Thanks a Thousand is no different.

After realizing that hundreds of people contribute labor to getting his morning cup of coffee grown, roasted, and transported to him, he set out on a journey to thank every single one of them. His journey teaches him about many things, including how interconnected we all are.

Children have a range of levels of natural gratitude, but demonstrating the value of gratitude early through books can be a good way to motivate an attitude of thankfulness.

9. Thank You, Omu! by Oge Mora

books on gratitude

Exploring gratitude and generosity, Thank You, Omu! will inspire children to see how giving is often better and more satisfying than receiving.

It shows gratitude through the lens of Omu and her kindness to share cups of soup with the neighbors.

10. Thankful by Eileen Spinelli

books on gratitude

A story told in a poem, Thankful shows how different people find satisfaction and contentment in the positive but simple pleasures of their days. Readers can share their own gratitude ideas when reading this book together, increasing its impact.

11. Look and Be Grateful by Tomie dePaola

books on gratitude

Much of gratitude has to do with paying careful attention, stopping to appreciate what we could just blow past in our hurry to do the next thing.

Look and Be Grateful is a beautiful, nearly meditative book that offers the opportunity for children to slow down and see the things that inspire wonder in their nearby spaces. It's a great book to use as a calm-down routine.

12. The Thank You Book by Mo Willems

books on gratitude

Using an elephant and a pig, Mo Willems offers humor and conversation to show the ways we can express our gratitude and how it matters to those around us.

Children will love the silly and fun characters in The Thank You Book who they may have seen in other books.

13. Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes

books on gratitude

When we think of gratitude, we often think of Thanksgiving. One valuable way to introduce the holiday to young readers is through this illustrated explanation of the things we give thanks for during this time of year.

Reading Thanks for Thanksgiving , your child will grow to understand that the holiday is about much more than eating delicious food and family time.

14. Thank You Bear by Greg E. Foley

books on gratitude

For children who are not very old, a smaller board book-style story like Thank You Bear can serve as a nice introduction to gratitude and to understanding your friends and family well.

This book follows Bear as he carries a mystery box around, prompting children to want to get to the end of the story and see what is inside!

15. My Heart Fills with Happiness by Monique Gray Smith

books on gratitude

My Heart Fills with Happiness has exquisite drawings that reinforce the message that we should hold on tightly to the simple pleasures that bring us joy.

A child who is not in the best of moods could read this book and have a calm conversation about what brings them joy, even when they aren’t particularly happy. Learning to focus on the positive and return to oneself without staying upset or angry is an incredible skill to learn at a young age.

16. When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree by Jamie L.B. Deenihan

books on gratitude

When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree takes on the adage, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!” It contains wonderful lessons for how having to put in a little hard work can be its own reward, and how an activity or experience will often produce more satisfaction than just another toy or piece of electronics.

This book will help young readers see that they can be grateful even when things don’t go the way they were expecting.

Reading Our Way to an Attitude of Gratitude 

There are many ways to create more gratitude in your life: a reverse bucket list , for instance, can give you some perspective of all that you’ve experienced and the joys you’ve felt. Books on happiness might be of help, as well.

On the other hand, losing someone important to you or worrying about the future can be stressful feelings that cloud our feelings of gratitude. Well-made  documentaries about death and loss offer stories that help us feel less alone in our pain. 


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10 Books to Inspire Gratitude and Thankfulness

We know that being mindful and thankful for the present moment can have a lasting impact on our lives, but it can be difficult to tune out the many distractions and focus on what is most important to us. let this list be the guide you need to create a daily gratitude practice in your life. perfect as we get closer to the thanksgiving season, and all year round.

Gratitude Book Cover Picture

by Oliver Sacks

Hardcover $25.00, buy from other retailers:.

A Short Guide to a Happy Life Book Cover Picture

A Short Guide to a Happy Life

By anna quindlen, hardcover $16.00.

The Gifts of Imperfection: 10th Anniversary Edition Book Cover Picture

The Gifts of Imperfection: 10th Anniversary Edition

By brené brown.

Here for It Book Cover Picture

Here for It

By r. eric thomas, paperback $17.00.

I Want to Thank You Book Cover Picture

I Want to Thank You

By gina hamadey, hardcover $22.00.

The Book of Joy Journal Book Cover Picture

The Book of Joy Journal

By dalai lama , desmond tutu and douglas carlton abrams, hardcover $17.00.

Love for Imperfect Things Book Cover Picture

Love for Imperfect Things

By haemin sunim.

Celebrations Book Cover Picture


By maya angelou, hardcover $18.00.

Dusk, Night, Dawn Book Cover Picture

Dusk, Night, Dawn

By anne lamott, hardcover $20.00.

Devotions Book Cover Picture

by Mary Oliver

Paperback $20.00.

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11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

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In our continuous pursuit of happiness, one thing that people emphasize time and again is a feeling of gratitude. These days, the science behind gratitude and the general public are starting to get the idea that gratitude for things in life is actually a good thing. With life going by so fast, taking some time to slow down and express some gratitude is always nice.

In light of all this, I’ve gone out to look for some of the best books revolving around gratitude. These books do more than show us the benefits of gratitude. In fact, these books are able to help us bring a sense of fulfillment, purpose, and wellbeing to ourselves too.

Before diving into the list, here is the sort of criteria I looked for in books about gratitude. Considering how sizable the self-improvement industry is, you can use these criteria to determine other books beyond this list:

1. Words of Gratitude

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Written by Robert Emmons, he is one of the most influential professionals in gratitude research with several books and articles published on this topic. This book is written in sweet spots of many people, between academic areas and intimate ones as well.

If you’re looking for a book that has ample research but also explains itself in simple language, give this book a read.

Buy Words of Gratitude here.

2. The Psychology of Gratitude

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Another book that Robert Emmons worked on is The Psychology of Gratitude. He and Michael McCullough assembled this book for those looking to delve further into the theories, philosophies, and evidence surrounding gratitude overall.

This book pulls various perspectives and fields. It provides such an in-depth look into gratitude that many describe this as a necessary book if you’re ever planning to get into positive psychology. That said, you don’t need to have a background in it to understand this book.

Buy The Psychology of Gratitude here.

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

The last Emmons book I’ll talk about in this post is Thanks!. This calls back to the Words of Gratitude book he wrote where there is a bit of gratitude research while also giving different perspectives.

This book pulls from psychology, religion and anthropology before offering a call to action to cultivate gratitude in your life. The angle this book is taking is more along the lines of understanding how gratitude can create a life-changing addition to your life as well as tactics to use it in your life.

Buy Thanks! here.

4. A Simple Act of Gratitude

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Written by John Kralik, this memoir provides a personal look into gratitude and how it can change someone’s life. In this memoir, John Kralik talks about an all-time low point in his life to make it into a happy and flourishing life.

How he went about it was through the simple act of writing down thank-you notes to himself. After doing enough of those he had an epiphany:

“My life would become more manageable if I spent all my energy and focus on what I do have in my life rather than what I don’t have.”

That epiphany sent him on a journey where he devoted an entire year to writing 365 thank-you notes, once per day. Every time he did that he noticed profound changes in himself and wrote all about them in this book.

If you’re looking for a simple book to see gratitude in action, this is a great pick.

Buy A Simple Act of Gratitude here.

5. The Gratitude Diaries

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

A New York Times bestselling book has a mixture of the books discussed so far. The core focus of this book is revolving around one woman’s efforts to stick to her New Year’s resolution of being more grateful and optimistic – similar to John Kralik.

At the same time, the book delves into plenty of academic research and backs up findings with evidence-based findings like the Robert Emmons books.

This approach Janice Kaplan takes is nice as you’re getting the best of both worlds. All wrapped up in a book that you can casually read thanks to the informal and accessible tonne.

Buy The Gratitude Diaries here.

6. One Thousand Gifts

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Many great gratitude books stem from personal exploration as these help us to better understand gratitude. Ann Voskamp’s book – One Thousand Gifts – is no different as she shares her personal transformation around her new habit of writing down specifics of what she is thankful for. In the book, she refers to these as “gifts”.

She argues that jotting these down on a regular basis will allow us to notice the smaller details in our lives. Based on her own transformation, it’s hard to argue with that logic.

Buy One Thousand Gifts here.

7. Living Life As A Thank You

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Written by authors Nina Lesowitz and Mary Beth Sammons, this book drives home that whatever you’re given in life, even if it’s bad, saying thank you for these can change your life. This book provides a gratitude plan for those looking to delve into gratitude and also to help them understand how gratitude can improve the daily feelings of compassion, hope, and love.

Buy Living Life As A Thank You here.

8. The Little Book of Hygge

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Pronounced as Hoo-ga, the idea of Hygge has Danish origins. It loosely translates to a feeling of community, well-being and coziness. The author – Meik Wiking – writes about Hygge as a way to introduce this concept and how people can incorporate this into your life.

And it’s not like these are very difficult to achieve. According to Hygge, things like taking breaks, and being present are easy to do. They also aren’t that much of a stretch to the ideas and benefits that we get when expressing gratitude.

Buy The Little Book of Hygge here.

9. The Gifts of Imperfection

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

Brené Brown has written all kinds of books over the years on a variety of topics. One in her wheelhouse focuses on gratitude. To Brown, she outlines ten guideposts that are designed to inspire people to live a wholehearted and authentic life. She argues that by living your life in this way, it’s easier to accept, show compassion, and cultivate gratitude in your life.

Buy The Gifts of Imperfection here.

10. Everyday Gratitude

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

For those looking for quick bursts of information or something very easy to read, picking up a copy of Everyday Gratitude could be an option. The focus of this book is revolving around quotes from influential figures plus reflections and practices for viewing life as a gift. This is great for those who aren’t too keen on knowing the inner workings and want to experience gratitude first hand in a faster way.

But Everyday Gratitude here.

11. Gratitude

11 Gratitude Books To Remind You To Be Thankful Daily

The final book we’ll share is one written by Oliver Sacks titled Gratitude. Even though he didn’t do any research in the gratitude field, his essays and the multiple books he’s published since the early 1980s made their marks on many people.

Based on his essays and books it’s clear that Sacks was a man filled with gratitude. Even when he announced to people that he had terminal cancer in January 2015, he had this to say:

“I cannot pretend I am without fear. But my predominant feeling is one of gratitude.”

This book consists of four essays that were published in The New York Times – one of them being the essay where he announced his illness. This is complemented by his partner’s words and photographs of the last few years of his life.

If you’re looking for a thought-provoking and heart-wrenching book that looks at the entire cycle of life, this is your best option.

Buy Gratitude here.

Final Thoughts

In our fast-paced lives, it’s easy to lose ourselves or forget about feeling grateful in our lives. These books teach us and remind us to slow down and take notice of the small things in life.

Many of these books also stress why that is so important to do in the first place. For those looking to hope into the world of gratitude, you can’t go wrong with picking up any of these books.

Featured photo credit: Ales Me via

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Inside Of Happiness

10 Best Books On Gratitude and Finding Appreciation in Life

By: Author RachelJo

Posted on Last updated: October 20, 2022

Categories Self-Care , Self-Development

Share this! Thanks!

The first time I actually paid attention to the power of appreciation and got interested in some of the best books on gratitude was just 5 years ago when I almost died.

Now, don’t imagine some accident or misfortune happening to me. I was just 29 years old disappointed woman living in a foreign country and felt like a walking failure who didn’t want to… well, walk anymore. The details are personal, and I will leave them a secret. I was battling a deep depression and wasn’t seeing any chance of getting better, and that is something many people in similar situation experience.

At some point, I was ashamed to admit I had those thoughts, and most people in my life have no clue what I’ve been through.

Yet, I know.

And every time I think about that moment 5 years ago, the only things I remember are the gloomy grey day and the sharp turn on the road when I decided to hit my car in a lorry that was taking that turn.

The full story (and what stopped me from doing it) can be read on my other blog, where I share my tips on getting over depression and anxiety.

What you might be interested in is how gratitude could take a person out of deep depression and keep him away from it for good.

Because that is what happened.

Back then, 5 years ago, I decided that if I was going to live this life, I needed to have a pinch of curiosity for it. A short video by Gabrielle Bernstein convinced me I need a tiny notebook for gratitude, and these two things (curiosity for life and my gratitude journal ) took me on a wonderful journey to self-discovery and living the life I truly enjoy.

What is Gratitude?

woman reading a book on gratitude

I guess it might be a trivial question nowadays as we all know what gratitude is. Yet, we still need an extra explanation.

Books will tell you that gratitude is the simple feeling of thankfulness and appreciation we have towards someone for doing something that made us feel good in any possible way.

I’ve also found out that gratitude is a feeling of powerful blissfulness, wholeness , and the simplest step towards a happy life . Gratitude is the appreciation for having “enough” and the knowledge that “more is coming” daily.

Gratitude is like fresh air after staying in a room with no windows for days or maybe years (who counts them). I might be a bit worried as to why I did not realize earlier that gratitude was what I needed to live a life of hope and happiness. Yet, everyone’s journey is different, and I accept that I discovered it when the time was right.

Maybe the time is right for you too.

If you are on the journey of discovering Gratitude…

If you are inspired by gratitude and its immense powers, all you need is a piece of paper and the willingness to step out of your comfort zone and write the first three things that come to mind when you type “I am grateful for…”

And if you’d like to take your journey a step or two further, you also want to get yourself a few books that will keep you motivated and focused on Gratitude.

In this post, I’ve put together my personal recommendations on the best books on Gratitude, and I also announce which one I recommend the most (it might surprise you). More about this later.

Let’s check what your next Gratitude read should be.

10 Best Books on Gratitude

Best books on gratitude.

books on gratitude

Thanks!: How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier by Dr. Robert Emmons

Dr. Emmons is one of the leading figures of the positive psychology movement, and his book Thanks! takes on a little more scientific and a little bit more religious journey through gratitude.

I know it sounds a little bit confusing how religion and science intertwine together in this book, yet this is a very good read to start with if curious about gratitude.

Packed with thorough psychology research and how gratitude affects us on a deeper level, Thanks! promises to enrich your knowledge and won't leave you emotionless.

The one thing that seems to be a put-off is the shrinking of the idea of gratitude and the things you can be grateful for. Yet, it is still a great read to start with.

Rating: 3/5

books on gratitude

A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life by John Kralik

If you love a good story with a happy ending that is a little bit predictable yet inspiring and encouraging - this would be your best book on gratitude.

John Kralik's personal story is just like that of many other normal people who go on downhill and cannot find their way back. In the middle of a second divorce, on the edge of a financial bankrupt, losing connections with his children and dumped by his girlfriend... It sounds like a script of a low-budget romantic story.

Yet, things are turning around when John decides to send one handwritten thank-you note a day. He reaches out to old clients, friends from the college, past loves, and a year later, his life looks like nothing before.

Nothing unpredictable, yet so inspiring, and the most important thing is that it isn't a fantasy. Yes, gratitude transforms one's life because it transforms one's soul.

Rating: 5/5

Click here to listen for free on Audible

books on gratitude

Gratitude by Oliver Sacks

Four essays, four times expressing gratitude for life itself and four times emotionally exploring what we have - life, and what waits for us all - end of life.

Oliver Sacks was a neurologist, writer, lover of everything unordinary and had a way of showing a side of the world we usually choose to ignore.

His beautiful essays from the last year of his life are combined in Gratitude - probably his most praised and respected book on gratitude. It is a quick read, but you will want to read it again and again.

Tenderly, Sacks expresses gratitude for having the privilege to be alive. This book is comforting, touching, a little bit saddening, yet brilliant.

Click here to listen to it for free with Audible

books on gratitude

Chicken Soup for the Soul | Original Stories Plus 20 Bonus Stories for the Next 20 Years

Chicken Soup For The Soul is that inspirational book that will teach you how to be more human will give you hope and spark appreciation and deep gratitude for this world and its wonders.

For over 20 years on the market, this book is an absolute bestseller, and it's the one edition you cannot skip taking a look at. If you are searching for hope, for uplifting readings in the morning, excitement, and stories that bring tears into your eyes, this is the best book for you .

Even though it doesn't speak of gratitude directly, it will make you feel gratitude at all times.

Rating: 4/5

Click here to listen to it for free with Audible.

books on gratitude

Thanku: Poems of Gratitude by Miranda Paul and Marlena Myles

This is a tribute to gratitude through poerty. Enjoying and being appreciative for the little things in life is something you will understand easily, one poem at a time.

Contributors in this book of poems include Kimberly Bleaser, Cunthia Leitich Smith, Janice Scully, Jane Yolen and many others.

books on gratitude

The Gratitude Project: How the Science of Thankfulness Can Rewire Our Brains for Resilience, Optimism, and the Greater Good

One of the things that give me the most joy lately is that gratitude isn't seen as just a "feeling" by people anymore.

In fact, it's a part of scienced-based researches, and more and more, it's seen as a tool and a path to a healthier and happier life.

The Gratitude Project is a little bit scientific, a little bit dry to read, but a great resource of inspiration and knowledge on how appreciation in life changes life.

books on gratitude

Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment and Your Life(Book & CD)) by Jon Kabat-Zinn

He brought mindfulness to the mass and proved that we could improve clinical disorders such as depression and anxiety through it.

Jon Kabat-Zinn has been a practitioner of meditation, yoga, and mindfulness for over 30 years. His book is not on gratitude precisely, yet it gives you what you need o practice both mindfulness and gratitude every day.

I place this book in the list of best books on gratitude as it will get you to a level of comfort and mindful living, which drastically increases feelings of appreciation.

Ready to transform your life? Start with this book.

books on gratitude

Choosing Gratitude: Your Journey to Joy by Nancy Leigh DeMoss

Choosing Joy and Gratitude over ingratitude... Nancy DeMoss takes you on a journey through questioning the way you approach your days. Does "not being grateful" mean we unknowingly choose "ingratitude"?

I love the concept of this book as it states that indeed Gratitude is a choice, just as Joy and Happiness. And the only reason we decide (because we do) to unsee this is because we look in another direction.

Easy to read, calming and sweet.

books on gratitude

Just One Thing: Developing A Buddha Brain One Simple Practice at a Time by Rick Hanson

52 practices to invite mindfulness and gratitude into your life. This little book helps you focus on what truly matters in a Buddha-style manner backed up by neuroscience and seasoned with simplicity.

Just One Thing is exactly what you'd expect - just one thing at a time, at a day, or a glance. Take the book, open it on any chapter and do your thing. Contemplate. Reflect. Follow. Question.

books on gratitude

Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson, 20th Anniversary Edition by Mitch Albom

I will be forever fond of this book, and I will take my time convincing you why you need it in your life.

Leafing through the pages of this brilliant artwork, you cannot feel anything else but appreciation, gratitude, serenity, and awe of life itself.

It is my top choice on this list of books on gratitude, even if it's not dedicated to gratitude. And yet, it is.

A dying professor, his busy student, and a swirl of laughs and tears are waiting for you from page one. If you have that one person that you never manage to get enough of, if you have that teacher, parent, guide, mentor, friend, someone who never failed to shower with wisdom and love, then you know this book is for you.

Laughing at the misfortunes, teaching his last lesson, Morrie will liveforever in your heart and will become your teacher as well.

Based on a true story, Tuesdays With Morrie is one book every human being has to touch.

Click here to listen for free with Audible.

books on gratitude

Inspirational Books To Read In The Morning

Which one is going to be the best book on gratitude to you.

I hope you agree that whatever speaks to me might skip you and vice versa. Yet, these are some awesome book recommendations, and I am curious if you had a look through them and picked any.

Share in the comments below your thoughts on gratitude and its power in your life.

best gratitude books

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books on gratitude

An Attitude of Gratitude: 17 Books That Show Kids What It Means to Be Thankful

By dena mcmurdie.

My kids are shy around adults and often get too nervous to remember their manners until I remind them. They’ll murmur a quiet “thank you” and dash away. Insisting that my kids express gratitude for someone’s kindness is not a torture tactic I’ve thought up to make their lives more awkward (contrary to what they might think). Rather, gratitude helps us feel happier and get the most out of life. When my kids are feeling down, forget their manners, or need a reminder about all the good things they have, I read these books about gratitude with them.

Llama Llama Gives Thanks

Llama Llama Gives Thanks

by Anna Dewdney

In the wonderfully rhythmic style for which Anna Dewdney is known, the ever-popular Llama Llama learns to give thanks not just on Thanksgiving, but all year long. (Ages 0 – 3)

Otis Gives Thanks

Otis Gives Thanks

by Loren Long

Otis has so much to be grateful for — his home on the farm, the rain and sun that grow the crops, fun games and hard work, and most of all, friendship and love. A lovely introduction to developing an attitude of gratitude for toddlers and preschoolers. (Ages 0 – 3)

Thanks from the Very Hungry Caterpillar

Thanks from the Very Hungry Caterpillar

by Eric Carle

"Thanks for showing me ... to be KIND to every creature, to CARE for the trees and sky and oceans, to be curious, gentle, and BRAVE.” With brilliantly colored illustrations and a sweet message, this book is a beautiful way to show thanks to loved ones. (Ages 2 – 5)

Thank You Bear

Thank You Bear

by Greg Foley

One morning, Bear finds a little box. But what's inside? This charming mystery picture book sees many different colorfully-illustrated animals guess what's inside the box. But little readers won't find out what's really inside until the very last page. Throughout Bear's journey, he experiences a plethora of ever-changing emotions — from joy to uncertainty — including gratitude and thankfulness for a great friend. (Ages 2 - 5)

Thanksgiving Is for Giving Thanks!

Thanksgiving Is for Giving Thanks!

by Margaret Sutherland, illustrated by Sonja Lamut

This sweet picture book reminds children what Thanksgiving is really about: giving thanks! Read this with your little ones and encourage them to remember what it means to be grateful for everything they have — including a loving family. (Ages 3 - 5)

The Berenstain Bears Count Their Blessings

The Berenstain Bears Count Their Blessings

by Jan Berenstain and Stan Berenstain

My kids love the Berenstain Bears and hang on every word in their books. In this one, our favorite bear family prepares for a big storm. Brother and Sister are scared, but Mama and Papa remind them how safe and loved they are — a reminder for all of us to count our blessings. (Ages 3 – 7)

I Am Thankful

I Am Thankful

by Suzy Capozzi, illustrated by Eren Unten

In this cheerful story for early readers, a boy spends Thanksgiving Day thinking positively about the joy his life holds, even when things don’t go perfectly. (Ages 4 – 6)

Those Shoes

Those Shoes

by Maribeth Boelts, illustrated by Noah Z. Jones

Everyone at school has a pair of fancy high-top sneakers and Jeremy really wants a pair of his own. But what he needs, and what his grandmother can afford, are new boots for winter. A heartwarming story that teaches the value of selflessness and appreciating what one has. (Ages 5 – 8)

Thank You, Mr. Falker

Thank You, Mr. Falker

by Patricia Polacco

Autobiographical in nature, this delightful picture book reminds children to express gratitude to the wonderful teachers that spend so much time instructing, shaping, and encouraging them. (Ages 5 – 8)

My First Gratitude Journal

My First Gratitude Journal

by Creative Journals for Kids

Social scientists have been telling us for years that gratitude is a boon for our well-being, and performing “gratitude exercises” is even better. This sweet journal offers kids daily prompts for writing and drawing about what they’re grateful for — and it makes for a wonderful keepsake, too. (Grown-ups can also get in on the fun with Gretchen Rubin’s blissfully doable Happiness Project One-Sentence Journal .) (Ages 5 – 9)

Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?

Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?

by Dr. Seuss

The perfect pick-me-up, this book provides young readers with an optimistic outlook as Dr. Seuss, in all his signature rhyming, reminds them just how lucky they truly are. (Ages 5 - 9)

White Bird: A Wonder Story

White Bird: A Wonder Story

by R . J. Palacio

When Julian from the beloved Wonder world is assigned to write a school report about his family history, he interviews his grandmother, who tells him of growing up in France during WWII and receiving life-saving shelter from a boy she and her friends had previously snubbed. A poignant and beautiful graphic novel that inspires gratitude for friendship, forgiveness, and everyday heroism. (Ages 8 – 12)

When Stars Are Scattered

When Stars Are Scattered

by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed, illustrated by Victoria Jamieson and Iman Geddy

Another stirring graphic novel, When Stars Are Scattered follows the real-life story of two young Somali brothers coming of age in a refugee camp. The narrative doesn’t shy away from the difficulties and grief that Omar and Hassan share, but it also communicates their resilience through unspeakable hardship as well as their love and loyalty for each other. (Ages 8 – 12)

James and the Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach

by Roald Dahl, illustrated by Quentin Blake

You can never go wrong with Roald Dahl. His much-loved story of an orphaned boy — subjected to the whims of his two cruel aunts — who befriends seven magical bugs he meets inside an equally magical peach is an amusing parable for when your kiddo’s attitude is lacking in gratitude. (Ages 8 – 12)

Little Women

Little Women

by Louisa May Alcott

Remember the scene in Little Women where the rabble-rousing sisters trek through the snow to take their Christmas dinner to less fortunate neighbors? Even though their father is away at war and the family must make do with little, the young women — often inspired by gracious Beth — know they have everything they need in each other’s company. (Ages 8 – 12)

The Book Thief

The Book Thief

by Markus Zusak

Markus Zusak’s worldwide bestseller finds Liesel Meminger living with foster parents in Nazi-occupied Germany, where she befriends the young Jewish man that her foster parents are sheltering. While the world around them grows increasingly bleak, Max introduces Liesel to the life-saving power of words. Liesel’s efforts to bring lightness to Max’s life (including a heartwarming indoor snowball fight) is a meaningful reminder that even on our darkest days, there’s joy to be found when we’re together. (Young Adult)

Tiny Gratitudes

Tiny Gratitudes

by Brooke Rothshank

There’s no rule that says gratitude is only reserved for the big, exciting things in life — there’s plenty to be thankful for our in our day to day, like a delicious slice of cake or a purring cat on our lap. Tiny Gratitudes captures artist Brooke Rothshank’s own gratitude exercise as she spends a year celebrating the tiny pleasures of life. It’s an excellent reminder to slow down and pay attention. (Young Adult)

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in 2016 and updated in 2020.

The best books on the power of gratitude

Ivan Nossa Author Of The Power and Magic of Gratitude: Expand the vibration of your life and put wings to your journey

My journey of being an author has been a magical ride. I wrote my first book at 47 when nobody gave me credit about becoming a real author and later I left my good job to fulfill this dream and changed my life completely with a bit of thoughtlessness behavior, I must admit now if I look back. But it has been worthwhile. I wrote books on gratitude, forgiveness and love but my most famous book is The Power and Magic of Gratitude that became a bestseller in Italy. Since then I have been known for spreading the powerful message of Gratitude with countless meeting, conferences and events.

The Power and Magic of Gratitude: Expand the vibration of your life and put wings to your journey

By Ivan Nossa ,

Book cover of The Power and Magic of Gratitude: Expand the vibration of your life and put wings to your journey

What is my book about?

This book has been a bestseller in Italy where thousands of people have loved its simple but strong message and have learned to walk in life with this precious friend called gratitude. Ivan, once an entrepreneur, now dedicates his time to spread messages of gratitude, forgiveness, and love. He learned about gratitude when he was very little thanks to a genius idea his adoptive mother had. Back then he learned how to transform suffering into life gifts and see the magic in everyday life.

The author takes you through a fantastic journey, with a few obstacles but many gifts. Thanks to this book you will discover a miraculous higher energy vibration, the vibration of gratitude. If you let gratitude into your life you will soon witness how powerful it is. You will open your eyes to see the gifts in your daily life and your heart will open to receive them happily. Gratitude can transform your life forever, give it a chance.

The books I picked & why

Shepherd is reader supported. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through links on our website. This is how we fund this project for readers and authors ( learn more ).

Zero Limits: The Secret Hawaiian System for Wealth, Health, Peace, and More

By Joe Vitale , Ihaleakala Hew Len ,

Book cover of Zero Limits: The Secret Hawaiian System for Wealth, Health, Peace, and More

Why this book?

This book has opened many doors for me. It talks about ho’oponopono, an ancient Hawaian prayer/mantra. The story is about the author meeting this old doctor who healed an entire ward of a mental hospital by using this practice. He teaches the author about ho’oponopono and later this book has had the power to spread this wonderful tool around the world to millions of people.

The author's writing is so fluid and fascinating that is like reading a romance. Ho’oponopono is based on gratitude, forgiveness, and love. Since then I use ho’oponopono every day to find peace and healing.

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Zero Limits as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

What is this book about?

Praise For Zero Limits "This riveting book can awaken humanity. It reveals the simple power of four phrases to transform your life. It's all based in love by an author spreading love. You should get ten copies of it----one for you and nine to give away. It's that good." ---- Debbie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of The Dark Side of the Light Chasers "I love this book! I feel it will be the definitive personal-change/self-help book for at least a generation and viewed as a watershed event by historians. There is real potential for this book to start… show more.

A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life

By John Kralik ,

Book cover of A Simple Act of Gratitude: How Learning to Say Thank You Changed My Life

I can’t recommend enough writing thank you messages during your days to people you know, clients, and everyone that comes to your mind. And I thank the author for this precious idea.

1 author picked A Simple Act of Gratitude as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

Who in your life deserves thanks? What started out as an experiment- a quest to send 365 Thank You notes in a year- became a way of life for author John Kralik. After he hit rock bottom, the genuine effort of writing a brief note each day eased his anger, frustration, and sadness. This new focus on being grateful- even when it seemed there was little left to be thankful for- transformed his difficulties and fears as if by magic. Friendships grew bonds and finances improved. Expressing gratitude exposed the richness in his life, and the process can… show more.

By Rhonda Byrne ,

Book cover of The Secret

This book has helped me a lot changing my life by opening up my mind to the fact that I can do everything I wish to, I am much more powerful than what I think and I have the ability to fulfill my dreams. It might seem obvious but it is not for many of us. In fact, after reading this book I fulfilled a great dream of mine, becoming an author.

Even if this book talks mainly about the Law of Attraction, a fundamental part of this law is gratitude and its power to change our hearts and our look at life.

4 authors picked The Secret as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

The tenth anniversary edition of the book that changed lives in profound ways. In 2005, a groundbreaking feature-length movie revealed the great mystery of the universe -- The Secret. In 2006, Rhonda Byrne followed with a book that became a worldwide bestseller. Everything you have ever wanted - unlimited joy, health, money, relationships, love, youth - is now at your very fingertips. The Secret is an enigma that has existed throughout the history of mankind. It has been discovered, coveted, suppressed, hidden, lost, and recovered. It has been hunted down, stolen, and bought for vast sums of money. A number… show more.

On Gratitude

By Todd Aaron Jensen ,

Book cover of On Gratitude

This is a star-filled book where each celebrity shares what they are most thankful for. Among others, you can find stories by Alicia Keys, Jeff Bridges, Sheryl Crow, B.B. King, Francis Ford Coppola, Dave Grohl, Stan Lee, Forest Whitaker, Ringo Star, and many many more. I have found this reading very profound as you can see the humble side of these celebrities and how they are thankful for all the gifts they received along the way. Every story is different and some are really intriguing but the common point is they do not forget to be grateful and that is the main message they leave in the heart of readers.

1 author picked On Gratitude as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

What Are You Most Grateful For? Ricky Gervais says...Pajamas.I've started wearing pajamas out, because they're more comfortable than trousers. (Laughs) I started out with jeans, then went to sweatpants about ten years ago. Now it's just pajamas. I wore them to the White House. I've gone whole hog. Dolly Parton says...Humble Roots.I think being brought up dirt poor left with me with a feeling of what it was like to go without, so I can relate when people are having a hard time. In my case, being a songwriter, I'm able to write not only for and about myself, but… show more.

By Oliver Sacks ,

Book cover of Gratitude

Oliver Sacks is a famous psychologist who started to become more and more spiritual with age with the ability to combine his scientific approach to his wisdom. When he found out that he only had a few months to live he decided to spend his last time focusing on the good side of his life and the gift he received instead of focusing on sadness and desperation.

This book is the result of that period and is a fantastic journey through the benefits of gratitude and of being grateful.

2 authors picked Gratitude as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

Oliver Sacks died in August 2015 at his home in Greenwich Village, surrounded by his close friends and family. He was 82. He spent his final days doing what he loved: playing the piano, swimming, enjoying smoked salmon - and writing . . . As Dr Sacks looked back over his long, adventurous life his final thoughts were of gratitude. In a series of remarkable, beautifully written and uplifting meditations, in Gratitude Dr Sacks reflects on and gives thanks for a life well lived, and expresses his thoughts on growing old, facing terminal cancer and reaching the end. I cannot… show more.

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in gratitude, success in life, and terminal illnesses.

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about gratitude , success in life , and terminal illnesses .

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Think and Grow Rich , The ONE Thing , and Dispelling Wetiko if you like this list.

Book cover of Think and Grow Rich

Think and Grow Rich

By Napoleon Hill ,

Kelly Weaver Author Of Living Your Own Aloha: 5 Steps to Manifesting Your Dreams

From Kelly's list on manifesting and attracting your dreams and desires .

After reading this book, I realized that I was actually repelling wealth. In order to transform your reality, you need to reprogram your subconscious mind. What you think becomes reality. The author teaches specific principles but it is up to the reader to apply them. You’ll need to write daily goals and affirm them aloud daily. My copy is full of highlights, notes, and annotations. There are too many nuggets of wisdom to mention. If you want to attract abundance in your life, this is the first book you need to read!

9 authors picked Think and Grow Rich as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

The ONE Thing

By Gary Keller , Jay Papasan ,

John Lamerton Author Of Big Ideas... For Small Businesses: Simple, Practical Tools and Tactics to Help Your Small Business Grow

From John's list on ambitious, lifestyle business owners .

I used to think I was Plymouth's answer to Richard Branson – running 12 different businesses – selling everything from mobile phone insurance to serviced office rental, private villas rentals to car breakdown cover, online betting to affiliate software tools – until I read The ONE Thing , and realised I wasn't a business owner: I was a juggler – and not a very good one at that!

After reading  The ONE Thing , I stopped doing a dozen things for a dozen businesses, and started doing one  thing for one  business – and, as you'll read in my book, it was a game changer!

3 authors picked The ONE Thing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

YOU WANT LESS. You want fewer distractions and less on your plate. The daily barrage of e-mails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract you and stress you out. The simultaneous demands of work and family are taking a toll. And what's the cost? Second-rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paychecks, fewer promotions-and lots of stress. AND YOU WANT MORE. You want more productivity from your work. More income for a better lifestyle. You want more satisfaction from life, and more time for yourself, your family, and your friends. NOW YOU CAN HAVE BOTH-LESS AND MORE. In The ONE Thing, you'll learn… show more.

Dispelling Wetiko

By Paul Levy ,

Colin R. Turner Author Of F-Day: The Second Dawn Of Man

From Colin's list on to alter your world view .

As someone who campaigns for a better way to operate spaceship Earth, Dispelling Wetiko was the precise slap in the face I needed to break free from the spell that has captured so many would-be change-makers like myself. It’s so easy to look around and point the finger at those who benefit most from the world’s problems as being the cause agents when nothing could be further from the truth. 

It is our collective hopes, our weaknesses, and our fears – multiplied in their billions – that create the super-structure that billionaires enjoy. Levy defines this as a collective psychosis of humanity that wreaks havoc on the world around us – a psychosis that we must face down before we can hope to defeat it.

1 author picked Dispelling Wetiko as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it .

There is a contagious psychospiritual disease of the soul, a parasite of the mind, that is currently being acted out en masse on the world stage via a collective psychosis of titanic proportions. This mind-virus—which Native Americans have called "wetiko"—covertly operates through the unconscious blind spots in the human psyche, rendering people oblivious to their own madness and compelling them to act against their own best interests. Drawing on insights from Jungian psychology, shamanism, alchemy, spiritual wisdom traditions, and personal experience, author Paul Levy shows us that hidden within the venom of wetiko is its own antidote, which once recognized… show more.

Topics are things like World War 1, dinosaurs, grief, or jazz. We will add genres in 2022 .

Such a Little While

The Best Kids’ Books About Gratitude in 2023

The Best Kids Books About Gratitude in 2021 by Such a Little While

Wondering what the best kids’ books about gratitude are in 2023?

Whether browsing for a Thanksgiving seasonal read or looking to instill the practice of gratitude in your child’s day-to-day , this list has you covered!

We’ll delve into the best kids’ books about gratitude for:

books on gratitude

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, which is an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to .  Please see my  disclosure  for more details.

What is Gratitude?

Gratitude is the practice of choosing to focus on the positives in life and being thankful for them.

“…it’s an affirmation of goodness . We affirm that there are good things in the world, gifts, and benefits we’ve received… We recognize that the sources of this goodness are outside of ourselves … We acknowledge that other people…gave us many gifts, big and small, to help us achieve the goodness in our lives.” Robert Emmons, Gratitude Expert & Researcher

Best Kids Books About Gratitude: Gratitude Tree Activity Printable Template by Such a Little While

Why Teach Kids Gratitude?

Research shows that individuals who practice gratitude tend to have increased levels of happiness.

Amazingly, this link between gratitude and happiness has been found in children as young as five years old !

Furthermore, one study found that parents who practiced gratitude themselves AND selected gratitude-related activities for their children were more likely to have kids who expressed gratitude and thankfulness.

books on gratitude

The Best Kids’ Books About Gratitude

Finding a book that’s a match for your child’s developmental level can make all the difference when striving to spark authentic gratitude!

Best kids’ books about gratitude for toddlers & preschoolers

You are my happy by hoda kotb (illustrated by suzie mason).

books on gratitude

One of the best ways to instill gratitude in young children is modeling it ourselves!

You Are My Happy is a simple story told from a mama/papa bear’s perspective, finding joy in all the small details of day-to-day life with their little one.

It’s a quick read with vibrant colors and illustrations that will engage the youngest of readers.

Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson & Jane Chapman

books on gratitude

Bear wants to prepare a big feast, but his cupboard is bare. Luckily, his friends all chip in to make the day special. Bear not only is grateful but realizes he can also contribute in an unexpected way!

Bear S a ys Thanks is a beautiful picture book with whimsical characters. Although this book doesn’t specifically address the Thanksgiving holiday, it gives off major seasonal vibes!

The Thankful Book by Todd Parr

books on gratitude

With Todd Parr’s classic colorful and unique illustrations, The Thankful Book quickly grabs the attention of young readers.

This simple introduction to gratitude helps children identify things to be grateful for in their day-to-day. From our hair to hands to hugs and holidays, readers will realize that gratitude can be found anywhere we look for it!

The Thankful Book is written with some light-hearted kids’ humor that had my 3-year-old belly laughing!

Best kids’ books about gratitude for early elementary students

Last stop on market street by matt de la pena (illustrated by christian robinson).

books on gratitude

CJ spends his Sunday riding the public bus with his Nana. Nana inspires CJ to embrace a spirit of gratitude and look for the positive… even when faced with some of life’s greatest obstacles.

Last Stop on Market Street broaches additional critical subjects with young readers, including empathy , diversity, disabilities, and economic hardship.

The Thank You Letter by Jane Cabrera

books on gratitude

Although Jane didn’t receive her top-choice birthday gift, she has a blast writing thank you notes to her friends and family! After mailing her letters, Jane’s gratitude and positive spirit come back to her full circle!

The Thank You Letter is the perfect selection for early elementary students who are learning to write their own thank you notes.

The best part? The Thank You Letter includes 13 simple thank you note examples to inspire future letter writers!

Best books about gratitude for upper elementary students

Don’t say a word, mama by joe hayes (illustrated by esau andrade valencia).

books on gratitude

Rosa and Blanca are two sisters who grow up with a deep appreciation for each other as well as for their mother.

The family’s generosity towards one another takes a comedic turn, emphasizing how gratitude and abundant joy often go hand in hand!

Don’t Say a Word, Mama is a bilingual text (English and Spanish) and ideal for delving into topics such as gratitude, kindness , and culture.

Thanks a Million , Poems by Nikki Grimes (Illustrated by Cozbi A. Cabrera)

books on gratitude

Thanks a Million is a rich collection of gratitude-driven poems that delve into a wide range of life challenges (e.g., school struggles, friendship, family matters, grief and loss, homelessness, and disabilities).

Each poem is written from a different child’s perspective with diverse illustrations. Note: Some of the poems in Thanks a Million contain spiritual/religious references.

The Last Thing You Need to Know About Teaching Gratitude

Reading is a profoundly impactful teaching tool for laying a foundation for gratitude in kids!

To take this life lesson a step further, consider supplementing your book selections with engaging follow-up activities.

This way, your child or students can apply their knowledge of gratitude and begin making personal connections to their own lives.

This step is essential for making gratitude a daily practice for kids (so they can reap all of the natural, joyful benefits!)

Gratitude Activities for Kids

Kids’ gratitude tree activity (printable template) by such a little while.

This 8-page print-at-home gratitude tree activity by Such a Little While is a great way to continue your conversation on gratitude!

Best Kids Books About Gratitude: Gratitude Tree Activity Printable Templates: 2 Size options to accommodate diverse ages and skill sets!

Such a Little While’s Gratitude Tree Activity for Kids Includes:

Best Kids Books About Gratitude by Such a Little While

A Heartfelt Thank You

‘P iglet  noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of  Gratitude .'” A.A. Milne, author of Winnie the Pooh

Whether you’re a parent, caregiver, loved one, or educator, I’m grateful for YOU taking the time to explore my favorite kids’ books about gratitude!

I invite you to continue your journey with the Such a Little While Circle of Support below to receive exclusive free positive parenting and social/emotional development resources.

You’ve got this!

Best Kids Books About Gratitude: with love & kindness, Tana

Join our Circle of Support!

We’d love to have you in our positive parenting community! You’ll receive the Such a Little While email newsletter, bonus content, and access to exclusive discounts.

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