my fall/winter book list: part 1

17 Sep

I realize that I am setting myself up for failure with the length of my desired fall / winter reading list. But I can’t help it! There are so many books I’ve been wanting to read. I figure if I read half of them, I’d be happy. I’ve decided to split my list into two posts to make it more digestible. So here goes…the first seven books I’d like to read this fall/winter.

I’d love to hear what you guys are reading too….maybe I’ll add to my list! ha.

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng


Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet . . . So begins the story of this exquisite debut novel, about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother’s bright blue eyes and her father’s jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue—in Marilyn’s case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James’s case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the center of every party.

When Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos, forcing them to confront the long-kept secrets that have been slowly pulling them apart. James, consumed by guilt, sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage. Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to find a responsible party, no matter what the cost. Lydia’s older brother, Nathan, is certain that the neighborhood bad boy Jack is somehow involved. But it’s the youngest of the family—Hannah—who observes far more than anyone realizes and who may be the only one who knows the truth about what happened.

The Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll


As a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, Ani FaNelli endured a shocking, public humiliation that left her desperate to reinvent herself. Now, with a glamorous job, expensive wardrobe, and handsome blue blood fiancé, she’s this close to living the perfect life she’s worked so hard to achieve.

But Ani has a secret.

There’s something else buried in her past that still haunts her, something private and painful that threatens to bubble to the surface and destroy everything.

With a singular voice and twists you won’t see coming, Luckiest Girl Alive explores the unbearable pressure that so many women feel to “have it all” and introduces a heroine whose sharp edges and cutthroat ambition have been protecting a scandalous truth, and a heart that’s bigger than it first appears.

The question remains: will breaking her silence destroy all that she has worked for—or, will it at long last, set Ani free?

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff


Fates and Furies is a literary masterpiece that defies expectation. A dazzling examination of a marriage, it is also a portrait of creative partnership written by one of the best writers of her generation.

Every story has two sides. Every relationship has two perspectives. And sometimes, it turns out, the key to a great marriage is not its truths but its secrets. At the core of this rich, expansive, layered novel, Lauren Groff presents the story of one such marriage over the course of twenty-four years.

At age twenty-two, Lotto and Mathilde are tall, glamorous, madly in love, and destined for greatness. A decade later, their marriage is still the envy of their friends, but with an electric thrill we understand that things are even more complicated and remarkable than they have seemed. With stunning revelations and multiple threads, and in prose that is vibrantly alive and original, Groff delivers a deeply satisfying novel about love, art, creativity, and power that is unlike anything that has come before it. Profound, surprising, propulsive, and emotionally riveting, it stirs both the mind and the heart.

Their eyes were watching God by Zora Neale Hurston


When Janie, at sixteen, is caught kissing shiftless Johnny Taylor, her grandmother swiftly marries her off to an old man with sixty acres. Janie endures two stifling marriages before meeting the man of her dreams, who offers not diamonds, but a packet of flowering seeds …

‘For me, THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD is one of the very greatest American novels of the 20th century. It is so lyrical it should be sentimental; it is so passionate it should be overwrought, but it is instead a rigorous, convincing and dazzling piece of prose, as emotionally satisfying as it is impressive. There is no novel I love more.’ Zadie Smith

We should all be feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


What does “feminism” mean today? That is the question at the heart of We Should All Be Feminists, a personal, eloquently-argued essay—adapted from her much-viewed Tedx talk of the same name—by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the award-winning author of Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun. With humor and levity, here Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century—one rooted in inclusion and awareness. She shines a light not only on blatant discrimination, but also the more insidious, institutional behaviors that marginalize women around the world, in order to help readers of all walks of life better understand the often masked realities of sexual politics. Throughout, she draws extensively on her own experiences—in the U.S., in her native Nigeria, and abroad—offering an artfully nuanced explanation of why the gender divide is harmful for women and men, alike. Argued in the same observant, witty and clever prose that has made Adichie a bestselling novelist, here is one remarkable author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman today—and an of-the-moment rallying cry for why we should all be feminists.

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr


From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert


Readers of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration and empowerment from Elizabeth Gilbert’s books for years. Now this beloved author digs deep into her own generative process to share her wisdom and unique perspective about creativity. With profound empathy and radiant generosity, she offers potent insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She asks us to embrace our curiosity and let go of needless suffering. She shows us how to tackle what we most love, and how to face down what we most fear. She discusses the attitudes, approaches, and habits we need in order to live our most creative lives. Balancing between soulful spirituality and cheerful pragmatism, Gilbert encourages us to uncover the “strange jewels” that are hidden within each of us. Whether we are looking to write a book, make art, find new ways to address challenges in our work, embark on a dream long deferred, or simply infuse our everyday lives with more mindfulness and passion, Big Magic cracks open a world of wonder and joy.



9 Responses to “my fall/winter book list: part 1”

  1. righteousbruin9 September 17, 2015 at 4:55 pm #

    Great selections: I am also going to get “All The Light…..”, as a follow-up to “The Book Thief”.

  2. Louise September 17, 2015 at 5:38 pm #

    I just finished The Luckiest Girl Alive. Not comfortable reading – Ani is a tough character – but it really sucks you in. I’m balancing that out now with Brene Brown’s new book 🙂

  3. amelie88 September 17, 2015 at 7:59 pm #

    Just finished The Goldfinch by Donna Tart. It is a LONG book but a very good read and well written. A young boy loses his mom in a terrorist like attack in NYC (not WTC, a fictional one) and ends up living with a rich Park Avenue family for a time. He ends up becoming obsessed with this painting his mother loved and kind of accidentally steals it… and it sets him down a dangerous path. I could have done without the ending which dragged on for 40 pages too long but aside from that it was good.

    Also read The Luminaries recently by by Eleanor Catton, a New Zealand author. The story takes place in NZ in Hokitika, a gold mining town (I didn’t even know NZ had a gold rush). Murder, kidnapping, intrigue bring a group of them together who are all strangely linked by a series of events. It was another LONG book made even more confusing because there are so many characters (there is a character guide map at the beginning of the book) and it uses the signs of the zodiac to plot the book. I liked it but did get lost with all the characters for a bit.

    About to start reading Yes please by Amy Poehler which I’m excited about.

  4. liz September 17, 2015 at 10:26 pm #

    I believe that I just added all of those books to my list! 🙂

  5. hunting for bliss September 18, 2015 at 6:46 am #

    I have been listening to Gilbert’s Big Magic podcast and I really enjoy it! I envy your reading list!! I just don’t have the time right now…. But someday I will tackle it 😉

  6. Shauna841505 September 18, 2015 at 1:47 pm #

    Wow I haven’t read any of these! I don’t have any particulars on my fall reading list, whatever I can find at the resale store for cheap! I did just purchase Go Set a Watchman (full price, which I NEVER do), and I was extremely disappointed. I thought it was horrible. Maybe I had too much expectation since TKAM is one of my favorite novels. If you want a light, fun read, I would suggest Where’d You Go Bernadette. It was pretty good, in a weird way. 🙂

  7. Carrie September 19, 2015 at 6:07 am #

    All The Light was amazing! Everything I Never Told You was good. Best Books I’ve read this year are We Were Liars, My Sunshine Away and Life After Life.And The Girl on the Train is a must

  8. Diane @ Life of Di. September 21, 2015 at 4:46 am #

    ‘Everything I Never Told You’ is on my list, too! I’ve heard good things but I’ve also heard it’s depressing so I may put it off until I’m in the mood for a more mellow read. Also, I’m looking forward to reading ‘All the Light We Cannot See’! I’ve picked it up a couple of times and couldn’t get past the first thirty pages but I had someone tell me to keep pushing through – that I’d love it!

    As for a recommendation – The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo or The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah (waaay different than I expected it to be!)


  1. currently… | - October 19, 2015

    […] I got so many books going right now. My goal to read all these (& these) books by the end of the year has turned me into a reading machine (it has also set me […]

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