Summer is one of the rare times each year that I have time to read for pleasure, and this year I am taking full advantage with these new books, all by women authors. It’s such a diverse group of writers, offering diverse perspectives and themes, and wow, I really can’t wait to dive in.
And while our virtual parenting book club is offering tons of great titles for for parents, with live Facebook chats to accompany them, these books are amazing whether you have kids of any age — or no kids at all. (Hey there, cool aunts! We see you!)
Whether you like fluffy love stories, exquisite food writing, of life-affirming memoirs, this list of great new summer books released over the past few months should have you covered.
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Golden Child by Claire Adam
I was floored last year when I read A Place for Us by Fatima Fahreen Mirza, and I haven’t stopped recommending it since. So I was thrilled to discover that Golden Child is the second release from Sara Jessica Parker’s own imprint at Hogarth. It turns out the actress is as good at picking out books as Carrie was at picking out stilettos. (Hello, lover!) This book’s a little dark, but if it’s anything like her first title, it will be a literary showstopper.
City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
City of Girls is a novel about a woman going after what she wants, consequences be damned. It may sound like a very 2019 theme, but this novel is set in the 1940s, which is what makes the protagonist’s decisions so interesting. Elizabeth Gilbert already proved that she’s a world-class novelist with The Signature of all Things, so even if you weren’t the biggest fan of Eat, Pray, Love, you might want to give her fiction a try if you’re looking for some new summer books by women.
The Stationery Shop by Marian Kamali
Our editor Kate just started this romance novel. and she’s already loving it. The Stationery Shop starts out as a traditional love story — with all the frothy, can’t-sleep-at-night feelings — but later is turned upside down by an uprising in the lovers’ city of Tehran. The violence separates the young married couple, but they reunite later in an unexpected way.
I’m Fine and Neither are You by Camille Pagán
Do you have someone in your life who’s unimaginably, jealousy-inducingly perfect? Yeah, me too. And so does the main character in I’m Fine and Neither Are You by Camille Pagán. Yet the novel unfolds, it becomes clear that even perfect people — like the mom with the perpetually immaculate house — have secrets of their own to hide. If you like funny, raw writing and family intrigue, definitely give this one a whirl.
Save Me the Plums by Ruth Reichl
If you adore Ruth Reichl’s food writing and many wonderful memoirs — or, have yet to discover them — you’re in for a delicious treat. This memoir follows Ruth’s journey from food-crazed kid to editor of Gourmet magazine, to laid-off home chef. I just love that the prose in Save Me the Plums is as delectable as her food reviews, making it hard to put down. Reichl’s enthusiasm for both food and the writing it inspires is truly infectious; be sure you have some tasty treats to accompany this read.
The Unwinding of the Miracle by Julie Yip-Williams
Author Julie Yip-Williams was never supposed to survive past childhood. But after defying the odds for decades, misfortune caught up with her in the form of a terminal illness — this time when she had her own young children to care for. The Unwinding of the Miracle speaks to the timeless truth that the dying are the often ones who truly know how to live. And if we listen (or read) closely, we can learn how, too.
A Woman is No Man by Etaf Rum
A Woman is No Man traces the story of two generations of Palestinian-American women as their own powerful desires scrape against their family traditions like arranged marriage and the imperative to bear male children. If you have just a rudimentary familiarity with the Palestinian culture, it will surely eave you with greater empathy and understanding. This is just a beautifully written debut novel from Rum, and it’s sure to be the first of many from her.
Top image: Rachel Lees via Unsplash