Spring is finally here in Fairfield County (at least I think it is – c’mon Mother Nature!) and it’s time to break out the books for a sunny spring weekend on the back porch. Or at least listen to a book on Audible while you do dishes and laundry and listen to the kids argue over who was playing with the Lego first. Let’s be real!
Lately I have been listening to a lot of audio books instead of reading an actual paper book. I can do it anywhere at any time and I don’t fall asleep like I do when my eyes are moving across a book page at the end of the day. Below I am sharing some great books that I have read over the past few months that I hope you will enjoy. Additionally, I am including some great titles that are on my to read list. Let’s get reading!
Books I am recommending:
Small Great Things: A Novel by Jodi Piccoult
This story was one of those kinds of books that is not only a page turner but challenges your beliefs. It is a story about the tragic loss of an infant told from the perspectives of the father, the nurse who treated the infant and her the nurse’s lawyer. All have vastly different perspectives and beliefs on life and right versus wrong. I highly recommend listening to the audio version of this book in order to really hear each character’s voice.
Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
A “self help” book it may be, but Rachel Hollis takes the realness to another level here. She is an author and entrepreneur, and a mom of four who has a lot of life experiences to share! This book offers her tips on life, marriage, parenting, and how to believe in yourself more in order to make the most out of your life. Each chapter starts with a lie she used to tell herself and goes on to prove it wrong. It’s a great read that you can come back to again and again.
Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debby Irving
This book was recommended to me by a friend. She picked it up after being accused of racism by a patient. Yikes! Many people’s worst nightmare. Instead of hiding from the idea, she read this book and couldn’t put it down. It’s a non-fiction book about the author’s journey in life as a white woman. Finally seeing what privileges she has because of her whiteness took years to discover, but she is well on her way now. In the current culture of political correctness versus non-correctness, this book helps the reader to see how we can have helpful and meaningful conversations about race, equality, diversity and inclusion. My favorite part is that she ends each chapter with a “question for you to consider” that really forces you to think about your part in this conversation.
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
If you haven’t read this New York Times Bestseller and Amazon’s “Best Novel of 2017” yet, what are you waiting for?! This is a story about two mothers whose lives become entangled as boss/employee, family friends and neighbors. The lengths that they will both go to in order to protect their children and the things that they believe to be true will ultimately cost them greatly. It’s a must read!
You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
Another book from the self-development category, this book is an honest and quick –witted look at how to take better care of yourself better and how to create the life you want to live. The author created short chapters that have snarky titles like “I know you are but what am I?” and “Fear is for suckers,” and uses anecdotes and experiences to give advice to the reader about improving his or her life. Her writing is logical and realistic. This is a book that I find that I go back to again and again.
Unqualified by Ana Faris
I will start off by saying that I was never a huge Ana Faris fan before I read this book. In my mind, she was most famous for Scary Movie and being married to Chris Pratt. However, I got the idea to read this book when I saw some other moms posting about it on social media saying how charming and funny it was. I’m glad I listened to them and picked this one up. It’s a memoir type book that offers up some self-help tips and advice with a strong dose of reality and comedy thrown in. Ana is a mom first in her own life, and that is a consistent theme throughout the book. She keeps it real in this book, especially when it comes to the parenting talk. Also not to be missed – Ana’s weekly podcast by the same title.
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
A new take on the classic love triangle, An American Marriage tells the story of Roy and Celestial. After being married only one year, Roy is convicted of a murder he did not commit and sent to prison for 12 years. The story tells about the connection between the main characters and how it dissipates over time. Five years into the sentence, Celestial is finding love and comfort in her childhood best friend, Andre, when Roy is suddenly released early and ready to come back to his life as it was. What unfolds is a real and honest look at love, friendship and loss. One of the best books of the year – another must read!
Books I can’t wait to read next:
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
This book is a little bit older, but because of my love for her second novel (see above), I feel compelled to read the book that made the author so well known in the first place. Not to mention the fact that it was voted “Book of the Year” by Amazon in 2014. This is a story based around a Chinese American family living in Ohio in the 1970’s. When the middle child, Lydia, is found dead, the crumbling of their family life begins. It deals with different cultural expectations, parent/child relationships, marriage issues and the length that parents will go to to manage the grief they feel when they lose a child. If you need me, I’ll be on the couch reading this page turner!
The Recovering: Intoxication And Its Aftermath by Leslie Jamison
This memoir was an instant NYT Bestseller, but it gets mixed reviews from the readers on Amazon and Goodreads. That makes me want to read it even more! It’s part her story and part history of addiction and recovery. I don’t know a single person who hasn’t been touched by addiction in one way or another. A book about addiction and recovery can only deepen my personal understanding of the struggles of those around me who are going through it.
I Liked My Life by Abby Fabiaschi
This book caught my eye on Goodreads.com after I noted that I had finished another book. It tells the story of Maddy, a wife and mother who seems to have the perfect life until she commits suicide. Her death leaves her husband and daughter shattered and confused, and from the other side, Maddy does her best to control and soothe their grief. This plot seems so intriguing to me. The struggle of wanting to leave your life behind but yet caring so deeply about the loved ones you have left. This one is definitely on my must read list!