There are so many good books out this year, it’s really hard to know which book to buy. While the best seller’s list is certainly a good place to start, (women 45+ are the biggest group of book readers) the list does include men’s choices (their taste doesn’t always match ours!) and younger demographics. We’ve culled the list to give you what we’ve found our readers have enjoyed, and also, a good variety from travel to historical fiction. Enjoy!
10 Books Every Woman Should Read in 2020
Dame Traveler: Live the Spirit of Adventure by Nastasia Yakoub | Travel
With the world shut down from COVID-19, arm-chair travelers will love this visual feast. Dame Traveler is a must-have for every woman who loves to see or day-dreams about seeing the world! It’s full of breathtaking photos by women travelers and stories from women contributors. There are more than 200 absolutely stunning pictures, most published for the first time, and full of bite-size tips and tricks to make your travels safe and fun. It’s also a great gift for a friend! Follow @dametraveler for “the female travel community” which started in 2014 with practical ideas and safety tips for women travelers.
Joy at Work by Marie Kondo and Scott Sonenshein| Career
Everyone is watching Marie Kondo’s “Tidying Up” series on Netflix where families instantly change their lives by “decluttering” their homes. Now, Marie Kondo’s Joy at Work shows anyone how to organize their workplace which results in becoming more productive at your office. She teamed up with an organizational psychologist, Scott Sonenshein, to bring the tools and mindsets you need to rid the clutter that’s been piling up on your desk, clogging your calendar and infiltrating your social networks. All this can be easily applied to any aspect of life, from your home to your career, and will help you feel JOY!
Magnolia Table, Volume 2 by Joann Gaines | Cookbook
This cookbook joins Magnolia Table, Volume 1 on the New York Times Best Seller List. Both books are beautifully photographed and filled with dishes you’ll want to bring into your home and both are collections of recipes for GATHERINGS, focusing on families. Magnolia Table, Volume 2 brings 145 new recipes from Joann’s home, the Magnolia Table Restaurant and their new coffee shop, Magnolia Press. Magnolia Story, the book, grew from the popular HGTV series “Fixer Upper” started in 2014 with husband, Chip. The success of Magnolia comes from the Gaines’s warmth and passion they have for family.
Miss Austen by Gill Hornby | Historical Fiction
Based on a real-life literary mystery, Miss Austen re-imagines the relationship between Jane Austen and her older sister Cassandra. This wonderfully complex novel delves into why Cassandra burned a treasure trove of letters written by her sister, Jane. Twenty-three years after the death of her famous sister, Cassandra is searching for Jane’s old letters in her duty to locate and burn any evidence that might compromise Jane’s reputation. The cache of family letters is found and Cassandra re-reads them. As she recalls her youth and her relationship with her brilliant yet complex sister, she pieces together buried truths about Jane’s life and her own. The choice: Protect Jane’s reputation? Or leave the letters to go unguarded into posterity.
The Gift of Forgiveness by Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt | Self-Improvement
The inspiration for writing this book was Pratt’s own story of forgiving a life long friend. She had therapy twice a week about her conflicted feelings, spoke with to priests and pastors, but felt no relief. When she realized that The Gift of Forgiveness was for herself and not for her friend, it was a complete breakthrough. Then all the anger and resentment that she carried around for so long was released and she let go of it. To learn from others who had struggled with forgiveness, Pratt interviewed twenty-two people to share their inspiring stories about how they were able to forgive what seemed to be unforgivable.
You Are Not Alone by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen | Mystery
This psychological thriller is about a woman who witnesses someone commit suicide in the New York Subway, then she tries to infiltrate the dead woman’s life. This woman’s desperate loneliness shows us the shocking lengths she will go through to be accepted by the rich, beautiful, and successful “in-crowd”. You Are Not Alone is the third New York Times Best Seller from authors Hendricks and Pekkanen. Their partnership is expert at creating a story with twists and turns that you don’t see coming and their style reveals just enough of what is beneath the surface story to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Take Me Apart by Sara Sligar | Crime
This slow-burn suspense mystery is a fascinating story told through a series of 27-year-old diary entries, personal letters and documents that belonged to a famous woman artist. The book’s writing style is expressive and smart with the chapters alternating between the present day with Kate, an archivist, who is organizing the letters, and documents to preserve as a university library collection; and 27 years before with the celebrated artist’s life and her suicide or murder. Take Me Apart deals creatively with strong women, mental health issues, abuse, violence, and the nature of obsession with a unique feminine twist.
This is Big: How the Founder of Weight Watchers Changed the World by Marisa Meltzer | Health
This outstanding book weaves the 2020 diet life of author, Marisa Meltzer, with the biography of Jean Nideth and Weight Watchers of 1963. Few people realize that Weight Watchers was started by one woman, Jean Nideth from Brooklyn. It quickly became a multimillion-dollar business. As part of Meltzer’s research, she joined a WW Studio (Weight Watchers Weekly Meetings rebranded/reimagined) for a year and lost 20 pounds. Throughout the whole book, you see the contrasts of today’s relentless focus on being thin with 57 years ago when being fat showed you were successful and had more than enough to eat.
LADY CLEMENTINE by Marie Benedict | Historical Fiction
This is the story of Winston Churchill’s wife, the great woman behind the great man. The writing style of LADY CLEMENTINE is so believable that it reads more like an autobiography instead of a novel. Clementine is portrayed as an intriguing spirit, a very intelligent and strong woman, with a mind of her own on the politics of England and the world at large. She deals with the ups and downs of political life, bearing five children, and running a large household on a tight budget. The book ends with World War II when Clementine is just sixty years old, which leaves you wanting to read Lady Clementine Book Two, 1945-1977.
All Adults Here by Emma Straub | Family Saga
How much do you think your parents influenced your childhood? With humor and insight, All Adults Here will entertain you as one mother shares her perspective of what went right and what went wrong with her own family. She watches as the children keep getting older but never quite old enough to make the right decisions and do the right things with their lives. This is a heartfelt story about family dynamics, forgiveness, and the unavoidable effects we have on those we love. All Adults Here affirms the value of family and community no matter what strife rises up within them.
Check out more Sandy’s Selections here. Wanting to connect with other readers or authors? Share your love of books with an online book club or find a new podcast here.