On The Today Show, Emma Straub recommended 5 Books to Read if You Enjoyed All Adults Here, Jenna Bush Hager’s Book Club for May. Emma Straub’s latest novel is a warm, funny and keenly perceptive book about the lifecycle of one family — as the kids become parents, grandchildren become teenagers, and a matriarch confronts the legacy of her mistakes.
Jenna calls the book “bright, colorful, witty and funny,” commending its exploration of the theme of family and forgiveness. In her own words, “In a time when all we want is hope, it’s a beautiful book to reach for.” Whether you’re at your house or your the beach, it’s the perfect summer read!
If you’ve finished All Adults Here and you’re looking for another colorful book, Emma Straub has five recommendations for you!
1. Separation Anxiety by Laura Zigman- This hilarious novel about a wife and mother whose life is unraveling and the well-intentioned but increasingly disastrous steps she takes to course-correct her relationships, her career, and her belief in herself.
2. We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry- This book follows the 1989 Danvers High School Falcons field hockey team, who will do anything to make it to the state finals — even if it means tapping into some devilishly dark powers. The Falcons prove to be wily, original, and bold, flaunting society’s stale notions of femininity in order to find their glorious true selves through the crucible of team sport and, more importantly, friendship.
3. Afterlife by Julia Alverez- The story of a literature professor trying to rediscover who she is after the sudden death of her husband; even as a series of family and political jolts force her to ask what we owe those in crisis in our families, biological or otherwise.
4. The Fixed Stars by Molly Wizenberg- At the age 36, while serving on a jury, author Molly Wizenberg found herself drawn to a female attorney she hardly knew. Married to a man for nearly a decade and mother to a toddler, Wizenberg tried to return to her life as she knew it, but something inside her had changed irrevocably. Instead, she would discover that the trajectory of our lives is rarely as smooth or as logical as we’d like to believe.
5. The Catherine House by Elizabeth Thomas- Catherine House is a school of higher learning like no other. For those lucky few selected, tuition, room, and board are free–but acceptance comes with a price. Students are required to give the House three years, summers included, completely removed from the outside world. But the House’s strange protocols soon make this refuge feel increasingly like a gilded prison.