Birds are singing, bees are buzzing, temperatures are rising, and book stacks (or is it daffodils?) are blooming. Spring is here! I’ve been soaking up books like sun rays, developing intimate connections with characters brought to life by authors’ imaginations. This season’s reads are as compelling as they are captivating and as timely as they are timeless. I’ve rounded up four of my favorites that you just might want to accompany you on a weekend getaway or afternoon excursion. Have a book that you think I should add to my list? Tell me about it in the comments section below!
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue — V.E. Schwab
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • USA TODAY BESTSELLER • NATIONAL INDIE BESTSELLER • THE WASHINGTON POST BESTSELLER • BOOK OF THE YEAR (2020) FINALIST
What is a person, if not the marks they leave behind?
A young woman is cursed to be forgotten — her name escaping her tongue; her face erased from the memory of everyone she meets; her identity as transient as the fading sun. Freedom, it turns out, comes at a cost, and Addie LaRue will stop at nothing to regain her sense of belonging. Hailed as a tour de force, this book tore through me like a strong wind and left me in its wake begging for another storm.
Watch an interview with the author.
Such a Fun Age — Kiley Reid
Winner of the African American Literary Award • an instant new york times BESTSELLER • longlisted for the 2020 book prize • A best book of THE year: the WASHINGTON POSt, chicago tribune, & more
And people like that think that it says something good about them, that they’re so brave and unique that they would even dare to date black women.
Kiley Reid’s debut novel bravely tackles race and privilege, exposing the disturbing truths that can underlie our best intentions. With a rawness that evokes both outrage and empathy, this story of two women whose seemingly separate lives are about to slowly unravel had me transfixed. Applauded as a “searing debut for our times,” Such a Fun Age paints a striking portrait of how far we’ve come in our race toward equality and how far we’ve yet to go.
Listen to a sample.
Know My Name — Chanel Miller
instant NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography • A best book of THE year: the New york times book review, the WASHINGTON POSt, & more• BOOK OF THE YEAR (2020) FINALIST
I am a victim, I have no qualms with this word, only with the idea that it is all that I am.
In 2019, the woman who had been raped on Stanford’s campus 4 years earlier known only as Emily Doe relinquished her anonymity, one of many steps in reclaiming the identity of which she’d been violently stripped. Through her stunning courage and refusal to be dismissed by a system that protects perpetrators and preys on the most vulnerable, Chanel Miller gave voice to millions of assault victims who had been silenced and shamed. A must-read, this memoir is an extraordinary testament to the light that can emerge from profound darkness and the redemptive power of words.
Read the author’s victim impact statement that instantly went viral.
Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows — Bali Kaur Jaswal
Reese Witherspoon’s book club pick • INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER
Her purpose came into sharp focus. Fiery-eyed and indignant, they would pen their stories for the whole world to read.
What happens when you mix a group of Punjabi widows with a creative writing course gone awry? The answer will surprise and delight you in Balli Kaur Jaswal’s latest novel. Don’t be fooled by the title — beneath the comedic mishaps that set the plot in motion and the erotic stories born of the widows’ imaginations lies an honest portrayal of a world in which failing to maintain one’s honor has stark consequences. While navigating some heavy themes, Jaswal skillfully sheds light on the healing power of friendship and the resilience of the human spirit.
Check out all of Reese’s Book Club picks.
Next Up: The Beauty in Breaking — Michele Harper
A New York Times Bestseller • A New York Times Notable Book • As seen/heard on Fresh Air, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, NBC Nightly News, MSNBC, Weekend Edition, and more
God breaks the heart again and again and again until it stays open.
FROM THE PUBLISHER:
The Beauty in Breaking is the poignant true story of Harper’s journey toward self-healing. Each of the patients Harper writes about taught her something important about recuperation and recovery. How to let go of fear even when the future is murky: How to tell the truth when it’s simpler to overlook it. How to understand that compassion isn’t the same as justice. As she shines a light on the systemic disenfranchisement of the patients she treats as they struggle to maintain their health and dignity, Harper comes to understand the importance of allowing ourselves to make peace with the past as we draw support from the present. In this hopeful, moving, and beautiful book, she passes along the precious, necessary lessons that she has learned as a daughter, a woman, and a physician.
Listen to a sample.