We know, we know. It's barely December, and yet we're already digging into January books. Why? To set you up for New Year New Reading List success, obviously. For starters: The gals behind
The Financial Diet have a forthcoming guide to getting good with money. So if you've resolved to start saving, and spending, more smartly in 2018, we suggest pre-ordering ASAP.
Or perhaps you're looking for an incisive feminist perspective to kick things off? We've got you covered on that front, too. Or rather, the breathtaking Morgan Jerkins does, with her essay collection
This Will Be My Undoing, a must-read examination of what it means to be a Black woman in America right now. If fiction is more your jam, Leni Dumas' Red Clocks is the dystopian heir apparent novel of The Handmaid's Tale, and will definitely rev you up for the #resistance. On a more supernatural, spooky front: The Hazel Wood is the number one story we can't wait to be cooped up with some snowy day, followed directly by Our Lady of the Prairie.
The Financial Diet: A Total Beginner's Guide to Getting Good with Money By Chelsea Fagan and Lauren Ver Hage Maybe you have a savings account and a 401K; maybe your credit is somewhere in the "excellent" zone and you're paying off your credit cards at the month... But if you still don't feel like you're making the best decisions with your dollars — well, then this is the book your should gift yourself. File this one under: brass tacks, immediately useful advice you can actually implement no matter what you're working with, from two women who truly get it. Your future self will someday thank your present self for this good reading decision. Out January 2
Heart Spring Mountain By Robin MacArthur In August 2011, Tropical Storm Irene whipped through Vale's small Vermont hometown — and in the aftermath of the flooding, her mom, Bonnie, is nowhere to be found. Despite their estrangement, Vale packs up her life in New Orleans and goes home to join the search effort. What she finds when she gets there is a place that is at once familiar and unrecognizable — and a family secret that has deeper roots than she could have ever imagined. Out January 9
Everything Here Is Beautiful By Mira T. Lee When Miranda and Lucia lose their mother, Lucia begins to hear voices, and older sister Miranda knows it's up to her to bring her sibling back into the real world. But Lucia can't be contained: Before anyone can stop her, she gets married, then leaves that man for a lover, has a baby, moves countries, shakes up her entire life. Ultimately, Lucia's mental illness brings her crashing back down to Earth, and Miranda — who has finally found peace in her own life — must confront a difficult question: At what point do sisterly bonds break — and how far should one sister go to save the other from herself? Out January 16
Neon In Daylight By Hermione Hoby Set in the dog days of an unbearable heat wave in New York City, this story follows Kate, a young Englishwoman cat sitting in Manhattan, while also trying to figure out her future. She has a boyfriend back home, but her love affair with the city is starting to swirl: The siren song of crowded club and bars are irresistible — as are two strangers who will change the course of her life forever. Out January 9
Red Clocks By Leni Zumas It's a story that's frighteningly easy to imagine: Abortion has become illegal once again in America. Doctors are banned from performing in-vitro fertilization. A Personhood Amendment has endowed embryos with the right liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and above all else, life. In a small Oregon town, five women are forced to navigate the confines of this new world, in a novel that is like The Handmaid's Tale for the new millennium, that both terrifies and lays bare the strength and resilience of women. Out January 16
The Milk Lady of Bangalore: An Unexpected Adventure By Shoba Narayan Narayan, a writer and cookbook author, lived in Manhattan for years. But when she moves back to Bangalore to be with her family she finds herself suddenly befriending the "milk lady," who sells her fresh dairy every day. The two bond, and eventually Narayan agrees to buy her friend a brand new cow — so they set off together looking for the perfect one. This lovely, lighthearted novel is a journey through cultural mores and female friendship, as well as a look at the spiritual and historical part that cows play in India; an easy read that you can't help but love. Out January 23
Our Lady of the Prairie By Thisbe Nessen Phillipa Maakestad barely recognizes her life anymore. A long-married professor, she finds herself having falling for a colleague during a semester spent teaching at another college; when she returns from Ohio to Iowa, she's thrust into the mix of her difficult daughter's madcap wedding — complete with a maniac mother-in-law, a (soon-t0-be ex) husband who wants his revenge, and a literal tornado on top of everything else. So how does Phillipa make it through? By burning. Shit. Down. Brazen, sexy, and whip smart: We adored this ode to the power and spirit of feisty midwestern women. Out January 23
The Hazel Wood By Melissa Albert Alice is 17 and, alongside her mother, has spent most of her life on the road, trying to stay a step ahead of the bad luck that seems to follow them everywhere. But when her grandmother, a reclusive writer of frightening fairytales, dies, Alice's mother vanishes, stolen away by a supernatural force and taken to the the fantastical world where those stories are set. To get her mom back, Alice is forced to seek out her grandmother's cultish fans and venture to the family manor, where she learns that the twisted tales go deeper than she ever could have known. Out January 30
Swearing Is Good for You: The Amazing Science of Bad Language By Emma Byrne All those times you had to fork over a quarter for swearing as a kid, and it turns out foul language was good for your brain after all! (Take that, mom.) Byrne's witty popular science books digs into the history of colorful language, it s evolved, and why swearing has been shown to reduce physical pain, decrease anxiety, prevent violence, and generally help people cooperate with one another. Our one-line review? Shit, this book is fascinating. Out January 23
This Will Be My Undoing By Morgan Jerkins At a moment where the market seems almost overwhelmed with feminist manifestas, Jerkin's book is truly a standout must read. Whether she's writing about Black female sexuality, Sailor Moon, or what it means to date a man who "doesn't see color," her insights cut deep and can't help but pave new roads in a reader's mind. Her essays are full of revelations and cathartic moments, and at the heart of every subject she tackles is a pulsing question: What does it mean to be a black woman in the world today? The answer is complicated, but what's clear is that This Will Be My Undoing should be required reading for the world we live in now. Out January 30
Flight Season By Marie Marquardt (Yep, we're early on this one — but trust us, for good reason!) The first time TJ Carvalho met Vivi Flannigan was the only time that she'd completely lost control of her life — and she wants to forget all about it. But when Vivi returns home during her first year of college and they both wind up working in the heart ward of a university hospital, the pair is forced together whether they like it or not. Their task: Keeping an eye on Ángel, a feisty patient in their hospital hall. But it turns out Vivi and TJ have much more to learn from the dying man than they ever could have imagined. Out February 20
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