With the weather now chillier than ever across the country, it’s time to cozy up on a comfy couch, get in your jammies and indulge in some of the best fiction and non-fiction the season has to offer.
From compelling non-fiction and memoirs, to page-turning fiction, you have the perfect excuse to stay indoors this winter with a good book and sip some delicious hot chocolate — or even a sweet rosé. It might not be Wine Club, but who’s looking?
“Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood” by Trevor Noah
When Trevor Noah was first introduced as the new host of The Daily Show, he was only known in Africa and parts of the world as an established comedian. But his unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of the Comedy Central show began with a criminal act: his birth. Born to a white father and a black mother, Noah lived in seclusion for much of his childhood as the union forged was punishable by five years in prison. Bound by his mother’s extreme and often absurd measures to hide him, Born a Crime is the story of Noah growing up restless and struggling to find himself in a world where he wasn’t supposed to exist. Compelling and inspiring, Noah weaves together a humorous portrait of a boy making his way in a broken world armed with his sense of humor and mother’s unconditional love. Smart and comically sublime, Noah brilliantly illuminates the dark, ruthless period of South African history too that we must not forget.
“Two by Two” by Nicholas Sparks
No book club is complete without a read from Nicholas Sparks — you know, the author responsible for making us cry while picturing Ryan Gosling in The Notebook? Sparks is back with another potential tearjerker thanks to his latest, Two by Two. But the novel is much more that the gushy romance we’re used to. Exploring the world of single parenting, Sparks returns with an emotionally powerful story of unconditional love and the challenges we face in relationships. Character, Russell Green appears to have it all: a beautiful wife, an adorable daughter and a great job, but in a matter of months, Green finds his life is turned upside down and no one is more surprised than him. Soon, Sparks’ protagonist embarks on a journey that involves risks, but rewards as well.
“The Princess Diarist” by Carrie Fisher
It’s hard to believe Carrie Fisher is no longer with us, but this memoir serves as a real gift for all that loved and admired her. The Princess Diarist is Fisher’s last intimate and revealing recollection of what happened on the famous and beloved set of Star Wars. With essays that are intimate, hilarious and honest, this revealing and sweet collection of stories was curated from journals the star kept during the filming of the three George Lucas classics. Complete with plaintive love poems, unbridled musings highlighting her youthful naiveté, it’s the best part of Fisher — vulnerable, insightful, yet incredibly witty. Another beautiful thing about her lovable memoir is how “LOL” it really is amidst the introspective value, and how many quotes are going to be reader favorites.
“The Perfect Girl: A Novel” by Gilly Macmillan
Wonderfully addictive, this psychological thriller features intricate plots and in-depth characters, while satisfying lovers of Girl on the Train and Gone Girl. Zoe was a musical sensation as a child, but at the age of 17, she was imprisoned for a tragic accident that left three classmates dead. After serving time, Zoe is moving on but during the night of her first performance back, she discovers her mother has mysteriously died. Attempting to piece it all together, Zoe fights hard for a second chance without letting go of what she knew. The Perfect Girl is a carefully weaved exploration of a teenage mind burned by brilliance and secrets she cannot share.
Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm and Confidence
We are living in a world that is constantly on the hunt for happiness, but as Dr. Rick Hanson proves in his latest user-friendly toolkit, happiness is nothing more than a science and makes all the difference if cultivated efficiently. As a master of his craft, Hanson shows us through countless research over the years and personal anecdotes how to expand on our feelings with effective strategies to increase joy through brain-based steps that are both easily accessible and pleasurable. Happiness not only opens discussion for what it truly means in our lives, but feeds vitality to the human spirit with doable ways to awaken our own well-being.