This March, Jenna Bush Hager chose "Groundskeeping" by Lee Cole as the Read With Jenna book club pick. If you fell in love with this book, Cole has five recommendations for you to try next.
"In Country" Bobbie Ann Mason
In rural Kentucky, Samantha "Sam" Hughes is about to graduate from high school. She lives with her uncle Emmett, a Vietnam veteran, after her own father was killed in the same war. While she grapples with not knowing her father, she falls in love with Tom, a fellow veteran and friend of Emmett's. But Sam's understanding of the war clashes with Emmett and Tom's private memories of the horrible things they witnessed. Mason's debut novel is about love, loss and the wounds of war.
"Normal People" Sally Rooney
Connell and Marianne have nearly nothing in common except for the small town they grew up in. Yet something life-changing happens when the two strike up an electrifying conversation for the first time.
After high school, both students head to Dublin to study at Trinity College. They are continually drawn back together at the university, despite existing in different social circles. Their inexplicable bond is tested as each of them veers off course. As things get tough, they discover how far they are willing to go for one another.
This romance novel beautifully explores the dynamics of young love, class and the power a single relationship can hold in one's life.
"Writers and Lovers" Lily King
Casey Peabody, is at a moment in her life when she must face her future head-on and make decisions about what she really wants in both her career and love life. After the unexpected death of her beloved mother, Casey moves back to her old college stomping grounds in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she is forced to reckon with the fact that she isn't where she wants to be in her early 30s.
"Commonwealth" Ann Patchett
What started with a kiss on a Sunday afternoon, turns into the dissolution of Bert Cousins and Beverly Keating's separate marriages and the joining of two families. When decades later, Frannie Keating shares the story of her mom and step-father's romance with her lover, legendary author Leon Posen, he takes it and writes a bestselling book about the family. When the story is no longer theirs to control, the siblings are forced to deal with the loss, guilt and loyalty they feel for one another.
Told over five decades, Commonwealth is about the repercussions of a chance romantic encounter that irrevocably changes the lives of two families for decades to come.
"Atonement" Ian McEwan
When Briony Tallis, 13, witnesses a flirtatious moment shared between her older sister Cecilia and the son of a servant, Robbie Turner, her innocent childhood eyes misinterpret what she has witnessed. This misunderstanding sets off a chain of events with repercussions that ripple through the years.
Set in 1935 and continuing through World War II, this book is about guilt, forgiveness, the power of love and the chaos of war.
For more book recommendations, check out:
- Jenna Bush Hager selects Kentucky-based love story for March 2022 book club pick
- Jenna announces the latest chapter of her book club: A new production company!
- All of Jenna Bush Hager's book club picks
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