Life After How I Met Your Mother: 7 Novels Of Friendship, Love, And Fate


If you loved How I Met Your Mother, you’re going to want to read these 7 books.

1. The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer

Hilarious, touching, insightful, this All-American novel follows a cast of characters whose bonds formed in youth endure into adulthood–through career disappointment, romantic disaffection and inevitable loss. Swap McLaren’s for summer camp, keep the inside jokes and the “the gang” identity. This is the book to read as you nurse your finale-induced wounds.

2. And Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris

Perhaps no one has captured the mix of futility and family created by the weird phenomena of the American workplace better than Ferris, whose eccentric characters are at turns kind, capricious, and pitiable–just like our colleagues and friends (and the creators of the shows we watch).

3. The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. by Adelle Waldman

Part Ted, part Barney, Nate is both hopeful and hopeless, and the chaos of his romances, the attention-deficit of his affections, will feel familiar to any man and any woman who has tried to understand him. If you’ve ever wondered how a man can be good-hearted and deeply selfish simultaneously (or if you’ve wondered the same about the writers of television), this book calls your name.

4. Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson

Forget the romantic youths; love might be better when you’re old, battered and wounded, yet still trying to believe in love and a better world. A widower falls in love with the most unexpected of women, but has to navigate a social order that refuses to understand them. Clever in that British manner, totally alive, this novel will make you believe in the kind of proper ending TV writers sometimes refuse to give us.

5. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

It had to make this list. (Doesn’t it make every list?)

A truly fate-driven love story about how love can save us but can’t protect us from inevitable endings. You’ll still be thinking about Hazel and Augustus long after you’ve finished reading this novel.

Say no more; just read.


6. The Group by Mary McCarthy

Classics can sometimes do us good; they’re reminders that our lives aren’t that different from the generations that preceded us. McCarthy’s novel is of her time and of ours too; a story of 8 Vassar girls and the winding paths that lead them together, and apart, and into the lives they choose to make. None of them would have accepted a blue french horn, but you’ll like them anyway.

7. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

From first encounter to final page, these two young people are the kind any television writer would dream of putting on the screen, but that no television writer could be trusted with. Starkly human, every page feels real, the way that only first loves and lasting loves can. Picture a young Ted and Tracy when you read of El and Park–and by page 50 you’ll feel less like hunting down Craig and Carter.

Crushed after the season finale? Get more HIMYM with our new Thought Catalog Book here.

featured image – Amazon/How I Met Your Mother