As a mom, I’ve read countless parenting books. I’m well-versed on baby sleep, cooking healthy meals, discipline, raising well-balanced kids, and simplicity parenting. My bookshelves have become oversaturated with child-rearing books, and I simply cannot remember the last time I read something that had nothing to do with work or kids.
As a child and young adult, I read voraciously. I loved going into bookstores (remember them?) and getting lost in the possibilities of different worlds waiting to be discovered. Somewhere along the line, I stopped getting lost in other worlds, as my world became increasingly busier and more demanding.
This summer, I’m ready to get lost again. I’m becoming adamant about curating a more well-rounded reading list and making it a priority to read books that appeal to my imagination. Since my book inventory is a bit lopsided in the motherhood arena, I’ve asked my fellow Everymom editors for a little help.
We’ve rounded up some amazing binge-worthy books that are on the top of our summer reading list — check them out below!
This is an exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio and what happens when the prodigal daughter’s body is found in the local lake. Author Celeste Ng uncovers how the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is ultimately destroyed, tumbling them into chaos.
In the spring of 2016, through a genealogy website to which she had whimsically submitted her DNA for analysis, Dani Shapiro received the stunning news that her father was not her biological father.
Inheritance is a book about secrets — secrets within families, kept out of shame or self-protectiveness; secrets we keep from one another in the name of love.
In this personal, eloquently-argued essay — adapted from the much-admired TEDx talk of the same name — Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century, one rooted in inclusion and awareness.
Leo Gursky taps his radiator each evening to let his upstairs neighbor know he’s still alive. But it wasn’t always like this. In the Polish village of his youth, he fell in love and wrote a book. Sixty years later and half a world away, fourteen-year-old Alma, who was named after a character in that book, undertakes an adventure to find her namesake and save her family.
This gripping novel is set in the 1950s and revolves around a young woman named Kya Clark, who is from extremely rural North Carolina. Known by others as the Marsh Girl, she lives alone in nature — but the draw of other people, and specifically love, brings her into contact with the greater world.
Kaling shares her ongoing journey to find contentment and excitement in her adult life, whether it’s falling in love at work, seeking new friendships in lonely places, attempting to be the first person in history to lose weight without any behavior modification whatsoever, or most important, believing that you have a place in Hollywood when you’re constantly reminded that no one looks like you.
Essayist Kimberly Harrington’s gives readers unfiltered take on the poetic and funny world of motherhood, womanhood, and humanhood, not necessarily in that order.
Nora Ephron shares her ups and downs in a candid, hilarious look at women who are getting older and are dealing with the tribulations of maintenance, menopause, empty nests, and life itself.
Anna Fox lives alone — a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times, and spying on her neighbors. Then, the Russells move into the house across the way, and one night Anna sees something she shouldn’t.
This is a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. It explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, and the ferocious pull of motherhood.
When you are done getting lost in the written word, don’t forget to find a local “free library” book exchange, so they can be enjoyed by others.