#5OnMyTBR: Small Towns…

Hello Mondays, welcome back to #5OnMyTBR, a meme created by the wonderful E @ The Local Bee Hunter’s Nook. This bookish meme gets us to dig even further into our TBRs by simply posting about five books on our TBR! You can learn more about it here or in the post announcing it. You can find the full list of prompts (past and future) at the end of this post!

This week’s prompt is: Small Town.

I love stories set in small towns, but my mind was initially drawing straight blanks for this 😂 In mysteries and horrors, this setting is so perfect for creating that eerie closeted vibe with the strange people and lore. In romances, it’s perfect for showing that close-knit and loving community, and all those warm vibes. I don’t know what it is about small towns but they just work for me! After a bit of a deep dive into my Kindle TBR and Goodreads TBR, I managed to come up with five books that are set in small towns that I’m really looking forward to reading, hopefully soon!


Book cover: That Swoony Feeling

I’m single… so single it’s painful.
Yup, ladies, Brig Knightly–that’s me–is still a lonely bachelor, stumbling through the streets of Port Snow, looking for the girl he’s supposed to end up with.

That is until my brother, Rogan, presents me with the opportunity of a lifetime. The Summer of Love, a secret pen pal program in Port Snow is looking for applicants and I’m the perfect fit.

I couldn’t sign up fast enough.
I found myself quickly falling in love with a pair of red lips at the bottom of a letter. Just like in the movies…
Life could not have been better, that was until I started hanging out with Ruth Barber. Starting a new business right next to my shop, I found myself gravitating toward her. Her smile, her humor… her tea sandwiches.

My attraction for Ruth came in full force, leaving me dazed, confused, and *ahem* excited. As new feelings for two women come to a screeching halt, I have to figure out who to choose. But when I discover my pen pal is Ruth, it might be too late. All I want in life is to experience that swoony feeling… but I think I might have just missed my chance.

I love this series so much and it’s set in a quaint little seaside town that I want to move to ASAP!


Book cover: Beartown

People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. Their junior ice hockey team is about to compete in the national semi-finals, and they actually have a shot at winning. All the hopes and dreams of this place now rest on the shoulders of a handful of teenage boys.

Being responsible for the hopes of an entire town is a heavy burden, and the semi-final match is the catalyst for a violent act that will leave a young girl traumatized and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made and, like ripples on a pond, they travel through all of Beartown, leaving no resident unaffected.

Beartown explores the hopes that bring a small community together, the secrets that tear it apart, and the courage it takes for an individual to go against the grain. In this story of a small forest town, Fredrik Backman has found the entire world.

Beartown is probably one of the most hyped books in the last two years and I’ve been avoiding it like the plague cos I’m worried I won’t feel the same!


Book cover: Wild at Heart

Calla Fletcher returns to Toronto a different person, struggling to find direction and still very much in love with the rugged bush pilot she left behind. When Jonah arrives on her doorstep with a proposition she can’t dismiss, she takes the leap and rushes back to Alaska to begin their exciting future together.

But Calla soon learns that even the best intentions can lead to broken promises, and that compromise comes with a hefty price—a log cabin in interior rural Alaska that feels as isolating as the western tundra.

With Jonah gone more than he’s home, one neighbor who insists on transforming her into a true Alaskan, and another who seems more likely to shoot her than come to her aid, Calla grapples with forging her own path. In a world with roaming wildlife that has her constantly watching over her shoulder and harsh conditions that stretch far beyond the cold, dark, winter months, just stepping outside her front door can be daunting.

This is not the future Calla had in mind, leaving her to fear that perhaps she is doomed to follow in her mother’s fleeing footsteps after all. 

I’m surprised I still haven’t read this yet since I was wildly anticipating it, but… I think it’s set in rural Alaska? Hello, very isolated small-town vibes 😂


Book cover: Virgin River

Wanted: Midwife/nurse practitioner in Virgin River, population six hundred. Make a difference against a backdrop of towering California redwoods and crystal clear rivers. Rent-free cabin included.

When the recently widowed Melinda Monroe sees this ad, she quickly decides that the remote mountain town of Virgin River might be the perfect place to escape her heartache, and to reenergize the nursing career she loves. But her high hopes are dashed within an hour of arriving—the cabin is a dump, the roads are treacherous and the local doctor wants nothing to do with her. Realizing she’s made a huge mistake, Mel decides to leave town the following morning.

But a tiny baby abandoned on a front porch changes her plans…and former marine Jack Sheridan cements them into place.

When I binged this show on Netflix last year, I had no idea that it was a book first, but the show 100% sucked me in! I found out not too long ago that it was originally a book so I immediately added it!

no exit

Book cover: No Exit

A kidnapped little girl locked in a stranger’s van. No help for miles. What would you do?

On her way to Utah to see her dying mother, college student Darby Thorne gets caught in a fierce blizzard in the mountains of Colorado. With the roads impassable, she’s forced to wait out the storm at a remote highway rest stop. Inside are some vending machines, a coffee maker, and four complete strangers.

Desperate to find a signal to call home, Darby goes back out into the storm . . . and makes a horrifying discovery. In the back of the van parked next to her car, a little girl is locked in an animal crate.

Who is the child? Why has she been taken? And how can Darby save her? There is no cell phone reception, no telephone, and no way out. One of her fellow travelers is a kidnapper. But which one?

Trapped in an increasingly dangerous situation, with a child’s life and her own on the line, Darby must find a way to break the girl out of the van and escape. But who can she trust?

Lol @ myself because I’ve wanted to read this thriller for a while now but of course, two years later it’s still on my TBR! I’ve heard some mixed reviews about this one but I’m still keen to try it!



  • 07 Dec 2020 — Small Town
  • 14 Dec 2020 — Animals
  • 21 Dec 2020 — Winter Celebrations
  • 28 Dec 2020 — ‘Planned To Read In 2020’

Do you like books set in small towns? What are some of your favourites books set in small towns? Have you read or do you plan to read any of the books on my list?

31 thoughts on “#5OnMyTBR: Small Towns…

    • I’m a sucker for the Getting Lucky series 😂 I just want to move there pls? LOL I do love The Simple Wild although I still have to read the two other books in the series. Just waiting on my copies to come in and I can’t wait to have them on my shelves 😍


    • I put it off originally because I was worried I wouldn’t like it as much as The Simple Wild 😂 But now I’m putting it off because I’m waiting for my physical copies to arrive! Haha I can’t wait to dive in though. Calla and Jonah are 🥰

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oooh! I would love to have physical copies, too! I just finished Forever Wild this morning. Loved it! Enjoy!! ❤️❤️


  1. OH MY GOSH…. Don’t avoid Beartown!!! It’s sooo good!! I know the feeling but It’s my second favorite by him! It takes a little bit to get into but it’s absolutely worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha I know… I know! I’ve been told that so many times, Leslie! I tend to struggle with Scandi authors for some reason though. Like I just have a hard time connecting as much? But everyone and their mums seem to love that book so I will definitely read it at some point! 😅 Which is your fave by him? Ove?

      Liked by 1 person

      • I get that.. sometimes his books take a little bit to get into but omg.. so worth it. Have you read anything by him? Definitely, give him a chance!! He’s one of my favorite authors. Yes, Ove is definitely my favorite!! 🙂


  2. I keep hearing so much about Bear Town. I think I need to pick that one up this winter. And gah! I just saw another review of No Exit. It looks so creepy. I will have to add that to my TBR. Great list!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Same here! The hype is serious about Beartown (and Ove and basically all of Backman’s books?) but I’m quite nervous about picking it up! Haha I hope you enjoy it though if you read it soon 🙂


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