I received awesome feedback after posting the last book recommendation. Thank you! Then I came up with an idea. I am a voracious reader with a huge library (pictured above is one of many bookshelves, sigh!) at home. Since I love books so much, I will write weekly book recommendations or small reviews every Thursday. Why? Because I want you to read. And of course head over to your local bookstore and purchase some books.
Today I want to share some of my favorite memoirs…
How to Stay Married by Harrison Scott Key. I spent an entire weekend clutching this book to my chest. I even read it in the car. Harrison is hilarious but also introspective, repentant and clear-eyed about why his wife ended up cheating on him and how they tried to reconcile, repeatedly. I laughed out loud, while also rethinking all my past relationships. I will read anything he writes from now on.
The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett: This novel follows light-skinned Black twin sisters who grow up to live in two very different worlds — one white, one Black. I could not get off the couch reading this book and read it past sunset.
The Girls of Summer by Katie Bishop. This escapist thrill is a coming-of-age story meets midlife malaise, in Greece! Who knew that was the perfect combination?! With two timelines in one woman’s life — her teenage summer of love and intrigue in Greece with a much older man who has suspicious friends, and then later as an older woman in a humdrum marriage — the reader is catapulted back and forth between the Greek islands and London, between passion and feeling stuck. My favorite part — aside from the plot, which unfolds in a delicious, heart-pounding way — are the quieter lines about the lives not lived. There’s a soulfulness to the whole story.
Hope by Andrew Ridker. This dark comedy had me laughing out loud in recognition of some of the characters. It follows the Greenspan family in Brookline, Massachusetts, and what happens when the cardiologist dad is forced out of his profession after falsifying blood samples. A perfect read.
Everything All at Once by Steph Catudal. The way Steph writes, even about ordinary things, takes my breath away. But her life story — her brother’s childhood cancer, her father’s early death from lung cancer, and the cancer that comes for her beloved endurance-athlete husband — is incredibly powerful. The details she describes, the slivers of pain, and her inquiry into faith is just different from other memoirs. It’s so real and gratifying.
My son (10 years-old) looked over my shoulder while I wrote this article. “Mom, this is great but you also need a kids book recommendation section! Right on! So here it goes:
My son loves books by David Walliams. The books are for children ages 7-12 and super funny which actually makes my son want to read. Walliams’ books are also great to read aloud to your child (which I still do almost every night!)
Are you ready to meet the worst parents ever? Sure, some parents are embarrassing – but they’re nothing on this lot. These ten tales of the world’s most spectacularly silly mums and deliriously dads will leave you rocking with laughter. Pinch your nose for Peter Pong, the man with the stinkiest feet in the world… and of course, Supermum! (that’s me!)
What books do you recommend? I’d love to hear…