Posted by Alicia Sell
Fall is the perfect season to curl up on the couch with a cup of hot tea and a good book. Here is a picture Randall took of me reading on the couch just the other day. My hair happened to be looking spectacular.
Just kidding! This is how I assume I look reading, just in sweatpants.
Anywho… I thought I would share some of the books I have read over the past few months that I thought you might enjoy. Fair warning – some of these are a little nerdy but I think there is enough of a mix here that I hope you all find something to enjoy. I won’t bore you with a summary of each book but I have linked to the Amazon copy where a summary is available. However, as a librarian, I highly encourage you to check these out from your local library (they even loan e-books for free). I will give you a simple 1 through 5 star rating and share with you my highly biased opinion on each book, so take it for what it is worth.
Have you read any of these? Let me know what you thought about it in the comments section. Do you have a favorite book that isn’t on the list? Let me know, because I am always looking for favorite books to add to my reading list. Can’t read books because you have kids? I get it – been there, done that. Keep reading those magazine articles and know that in just a few short years you can read full, adult books again. I promise!
Fall Reading List
The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer (Autobiography)
I have to say I was a little bit skeptical about this book because I have always thought of Amy Schumer as too brash for my taste, but I did not stop laughing from the moment I picked it up. Believe me, she is still brash but her insights into incredibly awkward or difficult situations are spot on. Surprisingly, she also has some inspiring words for ladies about being confident in who we are and what we believe. I read through this in two days.
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (Fiction)
I can’t wait till this book becomes a movie. And I am pretty sure if it becomes a movie it will win Oscars – it is that good. This story about two sisters and their harrowing bravery during War II made me ugly cry on the airplane while I was reading it. It is full of suspense that makes it impossible to put down. If you don’t read any other books on this list, this is a must read.
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Fiction)
This is another book set in World War II and is told through the eyes of a little girl who is completely blind. This book was a slow start and I almost didn’t make it past the first 50 pages, but once I did I was glad I stuck with it because it was very suspenseful and, similarly to the Nightingale, reminds us that no one is safe from the horrors of war and its lingering impact. There is a good reason why it won the Pulitzer Prize.
Brooklyn: A Novel by Colm Toibin (Fiction)
This is a great coming of age story about a young Irish woman sent to America for opportunities. It is an easy read, but I made the mistake of watching the movie before I finished the book and I ended up liking the movie better, which rarely happens. The book goes into greater character development than the movie does, but it can be slow at times. If you don’t have time to read it, see the movie.
The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom (Fiction)
*** 3 Stars
This story of slavery is told from the perspective of a young white child who served as an indentured servant to a family in the Antebellum South. She lived in the kitchen house with some of the house slaves, and the slave’s experiences are shared through her eyes, as well as from the perspective of the slave who was forced to raise the girl. While the story is engaging, it ultimately left me feeling unsatisfied.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot (Nonfiction)
I will not lie to you that there is a lot of medical information in this one, but Skloot has presented it in a way that makes it easy to read and completely engaging. The story of Henrietta Lacks and the legacy that she unknowingly and unwillingly left for all of us to benefit from is remarkable. Her story calls into question medical ethics and patient rights. A lot of the cures that have been discovered for major diseases were made possible in part because of Henrietta’s immortal cells, and it is worth honoring her memory and the unfortunate story of how her cells came to be.
The Witch’s Daughter by Paula Brackston (Fiction)
While this was an easy read, I don’t know that it was entirely worth my time. I kept thinking something would happen, and then it just ended up being the same events just told in a different time period. And I knew how the story would end by the third chapter. So, if you want a light read, this is a good one to pick up. Otherwise, try something different.
The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls (Autobiography)
This is another book that I can’t wait till it becomes a movie. It is a must read. Jeanette Walls’ memoir about her unpredictable and chaotic upbringing left me laughing, crying and feeling furious all at the same time. Her story is remarkable. I highly recommend it.
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