I get asked for book recommendations quite a bit.
On average I would say it happens about twice a week, but that’s less than the times where I give out entirely unsolicited recommendations which is about five times a week.
In fact, if we’ve ever managed to get through a conversation without me saying “oh by the way I’ve read this really good book” and insisting that you write it down or shoving a copy into your hand before you leave my house, then maybe we’re not really friends.
Some people bake cakes. Others throw dinner parties. I suggest books.
Anyway if you’ve read something I’ve recommended before and liked that, there’s a chance you’ll like these too.
And if you hated whatever I said you’d like then…you’re welcome, and I’ve also done a post with podcasts that will improve your terrible commute, so if you’re in the market for timekillers but don’t trust my taste in literature, go there.
Annnd if we follow each other on Twitter then you probably recommended one of these to me, so there’s probably nothing new here for you. You are my guide.
1. The Girls – Emma Cline
Accurately sums up teenage angst, cannot comment on whether it accurately sums up murderous cults.
2. Girls on Fire – Robin Wasserman
More angsty teenagers with vaguely relatable feelings doing weird stuff. Grim but readable.
3. SweetBitter – Stephanie Danler
Early 20s girl moves to New York, works in restaurant, does a lot of drugs. Kept reading, wasn’t totally sure why but I liked it.
4. Wolf Border – Sarah Hall
Woman takes job introducing wolves to the Lake District. Made me want a more interesting job and also a pack of wolves.
5. The Shepherd’s Life – James Rebanks
Never had “biographical account of what it’s like to be a shepherd in the Lake District” on my must-read list either, but suggest you put it on yours.
6. Open – Andre Agassi
If you’ve got even the slightest interest in tennis and extremely famous people, Agassi’s your man. Two words: Barbara. Streisand.
7. Make Your Home Among Strangers – Jennine Capo Crucet
Cuban girl from Miami goes to a decent university, leaves her family behind. Cultural differences ensue.
8. Department of Speculation – Jenny Offill
Probably don’t read this if you’re newly married. Everyone else: you’re good.
9. Euphoria – Lily King
Three anthropologists living among a tribe in Papua New Guinea. Apparently this is based on Margaret Mead but I didn’t know who she was before reading it. This book is very excellent.
10. We Were Liars – E. Lockhart
A story about kids, and a dysfunctional family, who get together every summer. Not especially cheery, but which of these books are?
11. This is the Story of a Happy Marriage – Ann Patchett
Essays on writing, love and life. Good for commuting because you can nail through one between stops.