206: Find Perfect Books for the Season with Our Winter and Holiday Book Recommendations
In this seasonal episode, Jen, Sara, and Ashley are sharing some of their recent favorite reads that would be perfect for holiday reading picks! Our recommendations include Sarah Morganthaler’s Mistletoe and Mr. Right, Sophie Cousens’s This Time Next Year, and Jasmine Guillory’s Royal Holiday. We end the episode by sharing our favorite seasonal drinks for our Give Me One!
Sara - Melissa de la Cruz’s Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe (Amazon)
Our Winter and Holiday Reading Recommendations
See Jen's book review of Sophie Cousens’s This Time Next Year from Instagram!
Mentioned in Episode
Give Me One - A Favorite Seasonal Drink
Listen in to hear what each of us would choose as a favorite seasonal drink, and be sure to share your personal favorites with us on Monday on Instagram when we share our Give Me One post!
(A note to our readers: click on the hashtags above to see our other blog posts with the same hashtag.)
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Ashley was reading . . .
Helen Hoang’s The Heart Principle (Amazon | Bookshop.org)
"A woman struggling with burnout learns to embrace the unexpected—and the man she enlists to help her—in this new New York Times bestselling romance by Helen Hoang.
"When violinist Anna Sun accidentally achieves career success with a viral YouTube video, she finds herself incapacitated and burned out from her attempts to replicate that moment. And when her longtime boyfriend announces he wants an open relationship before making a final commitment, a hurt and angry Anna decides that if he wants an open relationship, then she does, too. Translation: She's going to embark on a string of one-night stands. The more unacceptable the men, the better.
"That’s where tattooed, motorcycle-riding Quan Diep comes in. Their first attempt at a one-night stand fails, as does their second, and their third, because being with Quan is more than sex—he accepts Anna on an unconditional level that she herself has just started to understand. However, when tragedy strikes Anna’s family she takes on a role that she is ill-suited for, until the burden of expectations threatens to destroy her. Anna and Quan have to fight for their chance at love, but to do that, they also have to fight for themselves."
Jen was reading . . .
Les Payne’s The Dead Are Arising: The Life of Malcolm X (Amazon | Bookshop.org)
"An epic, award-winning biography of Malcolm X that draws on hundreds of hours of personal interviews and rewrites much of the known narrative.
"Les Payne, the renowned Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative journalist, embarked in 1990 on a nearly thirty-year-long quest to create an unprecedented portrait of Malcolm X, one that would separate fact from fiction. The result is this historic, National Book Award–winning biography, which interweaves previously unknown details of Malcolm X’s life―from harrowing Depression-era vignettes to a moment-by-moment retelling of the 1965 assassination―into an extraordinary account that contextualizes Malcolm X’s life against the wider currents of American history. Bookended by essays from Tamara Payne, Payne’s daughter and primary researcher, who heroically completed the biography after her father’s death in 2018, The Dead Are Arising affirms the centrality of Malcolm X to the African American freedom struggle."
Sara was reading . . .
Melissa de la Cruz’s Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe (Amazon)
"Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe from New York Times bestselling author, Melissa de la Cruz, is a sweet, sexy and hilarious gender-swapping, genre-satisfying re-telling, set in contemporary America and featuring one snooty Miss Darcy.
"Darcy Fitzwilliam is 29, beautiful, successful, and brilliant. She dates hedge funders and basketball stars and is never without her three cellphones―one for work, one for play, and one to throw at her assistant (just kidding). Darcy’s never fallen in love, never has time for anyone else’s drama, and never goes home for Christmas if she can help it. But when her mother falls ill, she comes home to Pemberley, Ohio, to spend the season with her family.
"Her parents throw their annual Christmas bash, where she meets one Luke Bennet, the smart, sardonic slacker son of their neighbor. Luke is 32-years-old and has never left home. He’s a carpenter and makes beautiful furniture, and is content with his simple life. He comes from a family of five brothers, each one less ambitious than the other. When Darcy and Luke fall into bed after too many eggnogs, Darcy thinks it’s just another one night stand. But why can’t she stop thinking of Luke? What is it about him? And can she fall in love, or will her pride and his prejudice against big-city girls stand in their way?"
Our Winter and Holiday Reading Recommendations
Ashley recommended . . .
Sarah Morganthaler’s Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Amazon | Bookshop.org)
"How the moose (almost) stole Christmas.
"Lana Montgomery is everything the quirky small town of Moose Springs, Alaska can't stand: a rich socialite with dreams of changing things for the better. But Lana's determined to prove that she belongs...even if it means trading her stilettos for snow boots and tracking one of the town's hairiest Christmas mysteries: the Santa Moose, an antlered Grinch hell-bent on destroying every bit of holiday cheer (and tinsel) it can sink its teeth into.
"And really...how hard could it be?
"The last few years have been tough on Rick Harding, and it's not getting any easier now that his dream girl's back in town. When Lana accidentally tranquilizes him instead of the Santa Moose, it's clear she needs help, fast...and this could be his chance to finally catch her eye. It's an all-out Christmas war, but if they can nab that darn moose before it destroys the town, Rick and Lana might finally find a place where they both belong...together."
Jen recommended . . .
Sophie Cousens’s This Time Next Year (Amazon | Bookshop.org)
"Their lives began together, but their worlds couldn't be more different. After thirty years of missed connections, they're about to meet again...
"Minnie Cooper knows two things with certainty: that her New Year's birthday is unlucky, and that it's all because of Quinn Hamilton, a man she's never met. Their mothers gave birth to them at the same hospital just after midnight on New Year's Day, but Quinn was given the cash prize for being the first baby born in London in 1990--and the name Minnie was meant to have, as well. With luck like that, it's no wonder each of her birthdays has been more of a disaster than the one before.
"When Minnie unexpectedly runs into Quinn at a New Year's party on their mutual thirtieth birthday, she sees only more evidence that fortune has continued to favor him. The gorgeous, charming business owner truly seems to have it all--while Minnie's on the brink of losing her pie-making company and her home. But if Quinn and Minnie are from different worlds, why do they keep bumping into each other? And why is it that each fraught encounter leaves them both wanting more?
"A moving, joyful love story, This Time Next Year explores the way fate leads us to the people we least expect--no matter what the odds."
Sara recommended . . .
Jasmine Guillory’s Royal Holiday (Amazon | Bookshop.org)
"Vivian Forest has been out of the country a grand total of one time, so when she gets the chance to tag along on her daughter Maddie’s work trip to England to style a royal family member, she can’t refuse. She’s excited to spend the holidays taking in the magnificent British sights, but what she doesn’t expect is to become instantly attracted to a certain private secretary, his charming accent, and unyielding formality.
"Malcolm Hudson has worked for the Queen for years and has never given a personal, private tour—until now. He is intrigued by Vivian the moment he meets her and finds himself making excuses just to spend time with her. When flirtatious banter turns into a kiss under the mistletoe, things snowball into a full-on fling.
"Despite a ticking timer on their holiday romance, they are completely fine with ending their short, steamy affair come New Year’s Day...or are they?"
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