1. Chasing Slow by Erin Loechner I'm deep into the Christian blogger game and I'll be the first to admit it. I'm quick to order the books these women put out because I enjoy their blogs and because they usually have pretty good covers. That being said, I am often disappointed by how the blogger's voice can fall flat on page. This was not the case with Erin Loechner's book. I read the whole book in an afternoon, totally drawn into her life, her struggles, and ultimately the beauty that came from learning to live differently. Plan on ordering a copy for your mom and best friend.
2. Mastering the Art of French Eating by Ann Mah Food memoirs are all I want to read in the dead of winter. If they simultaneously cater to my French obsession, I'm all in. If you find yourself picking out cafes and placing reservations the moment you book plane tickets, food memoirs are for you. This one in particular pairs recipes with a linear account of Ann Mah's time apart from her husband in Paris. It's rich, easy to pick up at any point, and a treat.
3. Scratch: Writers, Money, and the Art of Making a Living by Manjula Martin I ordered this book the day it was released, eager to read. Scratch is a sort of exposè/essay collection hybrid. While it won't exactly have you underlining passages and posting parts of its text on Instagram, it's a good book. The topic of money in the world of writing is one that is typically avoided and maybe if it was more commonplace of a conversation, could benefit writers and their work.
4. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel When I was in a fiction slump recently, I turned to my favorite podcast What Should I Read Next (more on my obession later.) Many of the guests interviewed spoke of Station Eleven as one of their top fiction picks. Dystopian fiction is hardly a genre I've spent much time in, thanks to an extreme Hunger Games moment circa 2008, but decided to give the book a chance. The speed was my favorite part of this book. In a sea of weighty non fiction, it was refreshing to be swept up by a plot until I couldn't put it down.
5. Bender by Dean Young Another recommendation brought to you by Beaverdale Books. When it comes to book recommendations, I'm always a fan, but specifically with poetry. The genre feels so deeply personal that when someone endorses a collection of poems, I am sure to pick it up. I don't know where to begin with this book, other than to start it over and reread it.