15 New Releases to Add To Your Summer Reading List

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…to be reading.

Is there anything better than sitting on the beach or poolside with a great book? (Or if you’re in my stage of life, sneaking outside during naptime to read!)

Here are 15 new books to pick up this summer. Get those library holds ready!

1. City of Girls

by Elizabeth Gilbert

“In 1940, nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris has just been kicked out of Vassar College, owing to her lackluster freshman-year performance. Her affluent parents send her to Manhattan to live with her Aunt Peg, who owns a flamboyant, crumbling midtown theater called the Lily Playhouse. There Vivian is introduced to an entire cosmos of unconventional and charismatic characters, from the fun-chasing showgirls to a sexy male actor, a grand-dame actress, a lady-killer writer, and no-nonsense stage manager. But when Vivian makes a personal mistake that results in professional scandal, it turns her new world upside down in ways that it will take her years to fully understand. Ultimately, though, it leads her to a new understanding of the kind of life she craves – and the kind of freedom it takes to pursue it. It will also lead to the love of her life, a love that stands out from all the rest.”

 

2. With the Fire on High

by Elizabeth Acevedo

“Ever since she got pregnant freshman year, Emoni Santiago’s life has been about making the tough decisions—doing what has to be done for her daughter and her abuela. The one place she can let all that go is in the kitchen, where she adds a little something magical to everything she cooks, turning her food into straight-up goodness.

Even though she dreams of working as a chef after she graduates, Emoni knows that it’s not worth her time to pursue the impossible. Yet despite the rules she thinks she has to play by, once Emoni starts cooking, her only choice is to let her talent break free.”

 

3. The Stationery Shop

by Marjan Kamali

“Roya is a dreamy, idealistic teenager living in 1953 Tehran who, amidst the political upheaval of the time, finds a literary oasis in kindly Mr. Fakhri’s neighborhood book and stationery shop. She always feels safe in his dusty store, overflowing with fountain pens, shiny ink bottles, and thick pads of soft writing paper.

When Mr. Fakhri, with a keen instinct for a budding romance, introduces Roya to his other favorite customer—handsome Bahman, who has a burning passion for justice and a love for Rumi’s poetry—she loses her heart at once. And, as their romance blossoms, the modest little stationery shop remains their favorite place in all of Tehran.

A few short months later, on the eve of their marriage, Roya agrees to meet Bahman at the town square, but suddenly, violence erupts—a result of the coup d’etat that forever changes their country’s future. In the chaos, Bahman never shows. For weeks, Roya tries desperately to contact him, but her efforts are fruitless. With a sorrowful heart, she resigns herself to never seeing him again.

Until, more than sixty years later, an accident of fate leads her back to Bahman and offers her a chance to ask him the questions that have haunted her for more than half a century: Why did he leave? Where did he go? How was he able to forget her?”

 

4. The Nickel Boys

by Colson Whitehead

(*Coming July 16, 2019)

“As the Civil Rights movement begins to reach the black enclave of Frenchtown in segregated Tallahassee, Elwood Curtis takes the words of Dr. Martin Luther King to heart: He is “as good as anyone.” Abandoned by his parents, but kept on the straight and narrow by his grandmother, Elwood is about to enroll in the local black college. But for a black boy in the Jim Crow South of the early 1960s, one innocent mistake is enough to destroy the future. Elwood is sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, whose mission statement says it provides “physical, intellectual and moral training” so the delinquent boys in their charge can become “honorable and honest men.”…The tension between Elwood’s ideals and Turner’s skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades. Formed in the crucible of the evils Jim Crow wrought, the boys’ fates will be determined by what they endured at the Nickel Academy. Based on the real story of a reform school in Florida that operated for one hundred and eleven years and warped the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative that showcases a great American novelist writing at the height of his powers.”

5. Mrs. Everything

by Jennifer Weiner

“Jo and Bethie Kaufman were born into a world full of promise. Growing up in 1950s Detroit, they live in a perfect “Dick and Jane” house, where their roles in the family are clearly defined. Jo is the tomboy, the bookish rebel with a passion to make the world more fair; Bethie is the pretty, feminine good girl, a would-be star who enjoys the power her beauty confers and dreams of a traditional life.

But the truth ends up looking different from what the girls imagined. Jo and Bethie survive traumas and tragedies. As their lives unfold against the background of free love and Vietnam, Woodstock and women’s lib, Bethie becomes an adventure-loving wild child who dives headlong into the counterculture and is up for anything (except settling down). Meanwhile, Jo becomes a proper young mother in Connecticut, a witness to the changing world instead of a participant. Neither woman inhabits the world she dreams of, nor has a life that feels authentic or brings her joy. Is it too late for the women to finally stake a claim on happily ever after?”

 

6. Lost Roses

by Martha Hall Kelly

“The million-copy bestseller Lilac Girls introduced the real-life heroine Caroline Ferriday. Now Lost Roses, set a generation earlier and also inspired by true events, features Caroline’s mother, Eliza, and follows three equally indomitable women from St. Petersburg to Paris under the shadow of World War I.”

7. Rough Magic: Riding the World’s Lonelinest Horse Race

by Lara Prior-Palmer

“At the age of nineteen, Lara Prior-Palmer discovered a website devoted to “the world’s longest, toughest horse race”―an annual competition of endurance and skill that involves dozens of riders racing a series of twenty-five wild ponies across 1,000 kilometers of Mongolian grassland. On a whim, she decided to enter the race. As she boarded a plane to East Asia, she was utterly unprepared for what awaited her.

Riders often spend years preparing to compete in the Mongol Derby, a course that re-creates the horse messenger system developed by Genghis Khan, and many fail to finish. Prior-Palmer had no formal training. She was driven by her own restlessness, stubbornness, and a lifelong love of horses. She raced for ten days through extreme heat and terrifying storms, catching a few hours of sleep where she could at the homes of nomadic families. Battling bouts of illness and dehydration, exhaustion and bruising falls, she decided she had nothing to lose. Each dawn she rode out again on a fresh horse, scrambling up mountains, swimming through rivers, crossing woodlands and wetlands, arid dunes and open steppe, as American television crews chased her in their jeeps.”

 

8. The Bride Test

by Helen Hoang

“From the critically acclaimed author of The Kiss Quotient comes a romantic novel about love that crosses international borders and all boundaries of the heart…Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions—like grief. And love. He thinks he’s defective. His family knows better—that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride.
As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down, thinking this could be the break her family needs…”

9. The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters

by Balli Kaur Jaswal

“The British-born Punjabi Shergill sisters—Rajni, Jezmeen, and Shirnia—were never close and barely got along growing up, and now as adults, have grown even further apart. Rajni, a school principal is a stickler for order. Jezmeen, a thirty-year-old struggling actress, fears her big break may never come. Shirina, the peacemaking “good” sister married into wealth and enjoys a picture-perfect life.

On her deathbed, their mother voices one last wish: that her daughters will make a pilgrimage together to the Golden Temple in Amritsar to carry out her final rites. After a trip to India with her mother long ago, Rajni vowed never to return. But she’s always been a dutiful daughter, and cannot, even now, refuse her mother’s request. Jezmeen has just been publicly fired from her television job, so the trip to India is a welcome break to help her pick up the pieces of her broken career. Shirina’s in-laws are pushing her to make a pivotal decision about her married life; time away will help her decide whether to meekly obey, or to bravely stand up for herself for the first time.

Arriving in India, these sisters will make unexpected discoveries about themselves, their mother, and their lives—and learn the real story behind the trip Rajni took with their Mother long ago—a momentous journey that resulted in Mum never being able to return to India again.”

10. Chances Are…

by Richard Russo

(*Coming July 30, 2019)

“From the Pulitzer Prize-winning Richard Russo–in his first stand-alone novel in a decade–comes a new revelation: a gripping story about the abiding yet complex power of friendship.

One beautiful September day, three sixty-six-year old men convene on Martha’s Vineyard, friends ever since meeting in college circa the sixties. They couldn’t have been more different then, or even today–Lincoln’s a commercial real estate broker, Teddy a tiny-press publisher, and Mickey a musician beyond his rockin’ age. But each man holds his own secrets, in addition to the monumental mystery that none of them has ever stopped puzzling over since a Memorial Day weekend right here on the Vineyard in 1971. Now, more than forty years later, as this new weekend unfolds, three lives and that of a significant other are displayed in their entirety while the distant past confounds the present like a relentless squall of surprise and discovery. Shot through with Russo’s trademark comedy and humanity, Chances Are . . .also introduces a new level of suspense and menace that will quicken the reader’s heartbeat throughout this absorbing saga of how friendship’s bonds are every bit as constricting and rewarding as those of family or any other community.”

 

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11. Summer of ’69 

by Elin Hilderbrand

Summer of '69 by [Hilderbrand, Elin]“Welcome to the most tumultuous summer of the twentieth century. It’s 1969, and for the Levin family, the times they are a-changing. Every year the children have looked forward to spending the summer at their grandmother’s historic home in downtown Nantucket. But like so much else in America, nothing is the same: Blair, the oldest sister, is marooned in Boston, pregnant with twins and unable to travel. Middle sister Kirby, caught up in the thrilling vortex of civil rights protests and determined to be independent, takes a summer job on Martha’s Vineyard. Only-son Tiger is an infantry soldier, recently deployed to Vietnam. Thirteen-year-old Jessie suddenly feels like an only child, marooned in the house with her out-of-touch grandmother and her worried mother, each of them hiding a troubling secret. As the summer heats up, Ted Kennedy sinks a car in Chappaquiddick, man flies to the moon, and Jessie and her family experience their own dramatic upheavals along with the rest of the country.”

12. Ayesha At Last

by Uzma Jalaluddin

“A modern-day Muslim Pride and Prejudice for a new generation of love.

Ayesha Shamsi has a lot going on. Her dreams of being a poet have been set aside for a teaching job so she can pay off her debts to her wealthy uncle. She lives with her boisterous Muslim family and is always being reminded that her flighty younger cousin, Hafsa, is close to rejecting her one hundredth marriage proposal. Though Ayesha is lonely, she doesn’t want an arranged marriage. Then she meets Khalid, who is just as smart and handsome as he is conservative and judgmental. She is irritatingly attracted to someone who looks down on her choices and who dresses like he belongs in the seventh century.

When a surprise engagement is announced between Khalid and Hafsa, Ayesha is torn between how she feels about the straightforward Khalid and the unsettling new gossip she hears about his family. Looking into the rumors, she finds she has to deal with not only what she discovers about Khalid, but also the truth she realizes about herself.”

13. The Farm

by Joanne Ramos

“Nestled in New York’s Hudson Valley is a luxury retreat boasting every amenity: organic meals, personal fitness trainers, daily massages—and all of it for free. In fact, you’re paid big money to stay here—more than you’ve ever dreamed of. The catch? For nine months, you cannot leave the grounds, your movements are monitored, and you are cut off from your former life while you dedicate yourself to the task of producing the perfect baby. For someone else.

Jane, an immigrant from the Philippines, is in desperate search of a better future when she commits to being a “Host” at Golden Oaks—or the Farm, as residents call it. But now pregnant, fragile, consumed with worry for her family, Jane is determined to reconnect with her life outside. Yet she cannot leave the Farm or she will lose the life-changing fee she’ll receive on the delivery of her child.

Gripping, provocative, heartbreaking, The Farm pushes to the extremes our thinking on motherhood, money, and merit and raises crucial questions about the trade-offs women will make to fortify their futures and the futures of those they love.”

14. The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

by Kim Michele Richardson

“The hardscrabble folks of Troublesome Creek have to scrap for everything―everything except books, that is.  Thanks to Roosevelt’s Kentucky Pack Horse Library Project, Troublesome’s got its very own  traveling librarian, Cussy Mary Carter. 

Cussy’s not only a book woman, however,  she’s also the last of her kind, her skin a shade of blue unlike most anyone else. Not everyone is keen on Cussy’s family or the Library Project, and a Blue is often blamed for any whiff of trouble.  If Cussy wants to bring the joy of books to the hill folks, she’s going to have to confront prejudice as old as the Appalachias and suspicion as deep as the holler. 

Inspired by the true blue-skinned people of Kentucky and the brave and dedicated Kentucky Pack Horse library service of the 1930s, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek is a story of raw courage,  fierce strength, and one woman’s belief that books can carry us anywhere ― even back home.”

15. The Wedding Party

by Jasmine Guillory

(*Coming July 16th)

“The new exhilarating romance from The New York Times bestselling author of The Proposal! Maddie and Theo have two things in common: 1. Alexa is their best friend
2. They hate each otherAfter an “oops, we made a mistake” night together, neither one can stop thinking about the other. With Alexa’s wedding rapidly approaching, Maddie and Theo both share bridal party responsibilities that require more interaction with each other than they’re comfortable with. Underneath the sharp barbs they toss at each other is a simmering attraction that won’t fade…But as with any engagement with a nemesis, there are unspoken rules that must be abided by. First and foremost, don’t fall in love.”

If you’re looking for bookish ideas for you and your family this summer, subscribe to A Bookish Home and follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

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Ep. 33: Crystal King, Author of The Chef’s Secret

This week I’m sharing an interview with Crystal King, author of The Chef’s Secret, a novel that will transport you to Renaissance Rome. History, romance, food, and a mystery that will keep you turning the pages late into the night–this book has it all.

 

The Chef's Secret by Crystal King

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

 

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Books Mentioned On This Episode:

The Chef’s Secret

Companion Cookbook

The Feast of Sorrow

The Stationery Shop

To learn more about Crystal King you can visit her website CrystalKing.com. There you will also find links to follow her on social media.

If you’re enjoying the podcast, please share it with a friend and be sure to subscribe. If you could also take a moment to rate and review A Bookish Home on iTunes to help people find the show, I’d be so grateful.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on your favorite social media @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase something through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

What I’ve Been Reading…

Lately I’ve had the best of bookish problems. My nightstand and living room are overflowing with books I can’t wait to read.

Library holds that I’ve been pining for for ages are coming in all at once and I’m also reading so many wonderful books for upcoming podcast episodes.

Here are a few kidlit and adult books I’ve really enjoyed lately…

 

The Great Believers

by Rebecca Makkai

The Great Believers

I was fortunate enough to hear Rebecca Makkai speak at a writer’s conference called Muse and the Marketplace, here in Boston. I love when writers talk about the journey from there to here and talked about carving out time on weekends to write her first novel at Starbucks. She’d have to pump for days in advance to make that time happen and also remind herself that this wasn’t a silly hobby. Fast forward a few years and this completely absorbing, heartbreaking book about the AIDS epidemic in Chicago is a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award finalist. This is truly one of the best books of adult fiction I’ve read in a long time and it’s one that I’ll be thinking about for years to come.

“In 1985, Yale Tishman, the development director for an art gallery in Chicago, is about to pull off an amazing coup, bringing in an extraordinary collection of 1920s paintings as a gift to the gallery. Yet as his career begins to flourish, the carnage of the AIDS epidemic grows around him. One by one, his friends are dying and after his friend Nico’s funeral, the virus circles closer and closer to Yale himself. Soon the only person he has left is Fiona, Nico’s little sister.

Thirty years later, Fiona is in Paris tracking down her estranged daughter who disappeared into a cult. While staying with an old friend, a famous photographer who documented the Chicago crisis, she finds herself finally grappling with the devastating ways AIDS affected her life and her relationship with her daughter. The two intertwining stories take us through the heartbreak of the eighties and the chaos of the modern world, as both Yale and Fiona struggle to find goodness in the midst of disaster.”

 

 

The Artful Year: Celebrating the Seasons & Holidays With Crafts & Recipes

by Jean Van’t Hul

I love this book of arts and craft ideas from the creator of the blog, The Artful Parent. If you’re looking for a bit of inspiration, this book will have you breaking out the art supplies with your little ones in no time. The photography is also beautiful and I love that the ideas are divided into seasons.

“Celebrating the seasons and holidays is a wonderful opportunity to embrace creativity together as a family. It’s also a fun way to decorate, prepare for, and learn about the holidays we celebrate. In The Artful Year, you’ll find art activites, crafts, recipes, and more to help make each season special. By doing so, your family will create memories and mementos, you’ll develop creative growth in your children and yourself, and you’ll have lots of fun! The book includes.

 

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The Next Great Paulie Fink

by Ali Benjamin

I was a huge fan of Ali Benjamin’s first book, The Thing About Jellyfish so I was thrilled to see that she had a new one coming out. Ali captures that middle grade voice and the dynamics between kids so well in this quirky, thought-provoking read. I’m really looking forward to having Ali Benjamin on the podcast to discuss her creative process and writing journey.

Stay tuned for an upcoming episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast with author Ali Benjamin.

“When Caitlyn Breen begins her disorienting new life at the rural Mitchell School–where the students take care of real live goats and study long-dead philosophers, and where there are only ten other students in the entire seventh grade–it seems like nobody can stop talking about some kid named Paulie Fink.

Depending on whom you ask, Paulie was either a hilarious class clown, a relentless troublemaker, a hapless klutz, or an evil genius. One thing’s for sure, though: The kid was totally legendary. Now he’s disappeared, and Caitlyn finds herself leading a reality-show-style competition to find the school’s next great Paulie Fink. With each challenge, Caitlyn struggles to understand a person she never met…but it’s what she discovers about herself that most surprises her.

Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli

Words by Kyo Maclear, illustrated by Julie Morstad

From the first pages, the rich, vibrant illustrations in this picture book completely grabbed me. I looked up the illustrator and realized that it’s no wonder. Julie Morstad is also the artist behind several other books whose illustrations I adored– House of Dreams: The Life of L.M. Montgomery, How To, Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova, and When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons. If you’re looking for a captivating read aloud about an inspiring woman in history, look no further.

A dazzling picture book biography of one of the world’s most influential designers, Elsa Schiaparelli.

By the 1930s Elsa Schiaparelli had captivated the fashion world in Paris, but before that, she was a little girl in Rome who didn’t feel pretty at all. Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli is the enchanting story for young readers of how a young girl used her imagination and emerged from plain to extraordinary.”

 

 

 

Nature All Around: Trees

by Pamela Hickman, illustrated by Carolyn Gavin

Cover image for Nature all around. Trees

I love this new children’s nonfiction title. I’m trying to be more outdoorsy with my toddler and we often go “say hello” to the different trees in our yard. This is the perfect book to read together and then try to identify nearby trees, learn about some different types, and explain some of the science behind the changes we witness from season to season.

“This comprehensive and beautifully illustrated introduction to trees and the important role they play is part of the essential Nature All Around series. The book first explores the parts of trees, their life cycles, the difference between deciduous and evergreen trees, leaf types and the processes of photosynthesis and respiration. Then it takes readers through a year in the life cycle of trees, describing what happens during each of the four seasons. Readers will discover the many ways trees are vital to the environment and how various animals can share one tree as a home.”

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

by Bill Martin Jr., illustrated by Eric Carle

This is a book that has really grown on me as a parent. At first, I didn’t see what the fuss was about, but watching how much my toddler adores it, I’ve come around. It’s the perfect book for little ones to gain some confidence “reading” aloud to you, with it’s simple sing-songsy text and bright, bold illustrations.

“A big happy frog, a plump purple cat, a handsome blue horse, and a soft yellow duck–all parade across the pages of this delightful book. Children will immediately respond to Eric Carle’s flat, boldly colored collages. Combined with Bill Martin’s singsong text, they create unforgettable images of these endearing animals.”

 

What have you been reading? Leave a note in the comments or let me know on your favorite social media @ABookishHome.

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Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you make a purchase through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

Ep. 32: Elise Hooper, Author of Learning to See

This week I’m sharing an interview with Elise Hooper, author of Learning to See: A Novel of Dorothea Lange, the Woman Who Revealed the Real America. This is an inspiring historical fiction novel that will sweep you up into the life of an unforgettable, pioneering woman.

Learning to See: A Novel of Dorothea Lange, the Woman Who Revealed the Real America by [Hooper, Elise]

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

 

Books Mentioned On This Episode:

Learning to See: A Novel of Dorothea Lange, the Woman Who Revealed the Real America

A Life Beyond Limits

Impounded

The Other Alcott

Daisy Jones and the Six

To learn more about Elise Hooper you can visit her website Elisehooper.com. You can also follow her on Instagram @elisehooper.

 

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If you’re enjoying the podcast, please share it with a friend and be sure to subscribe. If you could also take a moment to rate and review A Bookish Home on iTunes to help people find the show, I’d be so grateful.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on your favorite social media @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase something through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

Five Books to Read Aloud On Father’s Day

Father’s Day is coming up Sunday June 16, 2019. If you’re looking for a gifts for the dads in your life, why not give a dad-themed picture book?

This makes an especially sweet present from a child who can then snuggle up with dad and read.

You could also borrow some of these picture books from the library and read them leading up to Father’s Day.

Five Picture Books that Celebrate Fathers:

1. Dad By My Side

by Soosh

Author and illustrator, Soosh, portrays this father/daughter pair with so much love and affection as they play games, snuggle, have puppet shows, chase monsters, and more. I particularly love the pages where they “try new things” (sewing the daughter a dress) and keep in touch when the dad is away by singing lullabies on the phone. This is a book that has become a bedtime staple for our family and I bet the dads and kids in your life will enjoy it as well. To see more of Soosh’s illustrations and read about her inspiration for the book, check out, “Artist’s Tender Illustrations Show The Kind Of Father She Wishes She’d Had”.

“Whether they’re playing make-believe, making you smile, or warding off monsters under the bed, dads are always there when you need them. Debut picture book artist Soosh celebrates fathers with a gorgeously illustrated and moving story about the parent-child bond…

These illustrations now come together in a universally relatable story of familial love for parents and children to share.”

2. Daddy Hugs

by Karen Katz

Karen Katz’s board books are always a hit in our house. This sweet counting book is perfect for Father’s Day or any night at bedtime.

“Daddy loves to give Baby hugs to say “I love you!”

Now Baby and Daddy can cuddle and count along with this hug-and-read book perfect for Baby’s teeny, tiny hands.

 

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3. My Dad Loves Me!

by Marianne Richmond

This sweet board book touches on all the way dads show their love and spend time together, from “My dad teaches me” to “My dad kisses me”. Adorable animal illustrations accompany each page (“My dad hangs out with me” with pictures of a monkey dad and baby). Perfect for babies and toddlers to share with their fathers.

My dad protects me.
My dad naps with me.
My dad teaches me.

Featuring adorable illustrations from Marianne Richmond, My Dad Loves Me! illustrates all the ways a dad shows his love to his children! Kids can relive their best times with Dad every day!”

4. My Daddy Rules the World: Poems About Fathers

by Hope Anita Smith

This is a wonderful collection of poems that kids will enjoy cozying up with their dads and reading. The poems celebrate the many experiences of fathers and children with love and humor–from breakfast together, to writing letters to a daddy that is far away, to playing catch and reading together.

A picture book of poems that celebrate fathers from a two-time Coretta Scott King Honor–winning poet.

Who is your hero? Who’s your best friend?
Who says he loves you again and again?
Daddy!

Told through the voice of a child, Anita Hope Smith’s My Daddy Rules the World collection of poems celebrates everyday displays of fatherly love, from guitar lessons and wrestling matches to bedtime stories, haircuts in the kitchen, and cuddling in bed. These heartwarming poems, together with bold folk-art-inspired images, capture the strength and beauty of the relationship between father and child.

 

5. Because I’m Your Dad

by Ahmet Zappa

This is a sweet, funny story about a monster dad sharing the kind of father he plans to be–from making mud forts in the backyard, to going to all the soccer games (even the far away ones), missing school for travel adventures, and more.

“Because I’m your dad, you can have spaghetti for breakfast, French toast for dinner, and rocky road ice cream in the bathtub.

In a text that’s both playful and loving, a father expresses his hopes and dreams for a one-of-a-kind relationship with his child. Whimsical monster characters bring the silly and sweet scenes to life and keep the book universal. The book’s ending, a moving tribute to the author’s father, guarantees intergenerational appeal.

Because I’m your dad, I will do all of these things for you and more . . .
because that’s what my dad did for me.”

What are your favorite books to celebrate Father’s Day? Leave a note in the comments or let me know on your favorite social media @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you make a purchase through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

10 Author Events Coming to the Boston Area in June

Are you in the Boston area and looking for a bookish event to add to your calendar?

These are just some of the fabulous authors coming to bookstores and libraries in the Boston area next month. Some of these events require tickets so be sure to book your spot soon!

Not in the Boston area? This list is still a great way to find a book to add to your TBR list and get to the top of the library holds list. And be sure to check the events calendars for your local libraries and bookstores.

Chris Van Dusen

“Every porcine wonder was once a piglet! Celebrate the joy of a new arrival with this endearing picture-book prequel to the New York Times best-selling Mercy Watson series.

Mr. Watson and Mrs. Watson live ordinary lives. Sometimes their lives feel a bit too ordinary. Sometimes they wish something different would happen. And one day it does, when someone unpredictable finds her way to their front door. In a delightful origin story for the star of the Mercy Watson series, a tiny piglet brings love (and chaos) to Deckawoo Drive — and the Watsons’ lives will never be the same.”

For more information visit the event website.

Rajani LaRocca

Midsummer’s Mayhem

“Please join us on Sunday, June 2 at 3pm, when Rajani LaRocca launches her middle grade novel, Midsummer’s Mayhem!

Rajani LaRocca was born in Bangalore, India, and immigrated to the US with her parents when she was a baby. She grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, graduated from Harvard with both a BA and an MD, and has worked as a primary care physician since 2001. She lives in Concord with her family.”

 

“An Unlikely Story is hosting a launch party like no other, with not one but TWO beloved authors! Jenna Blum will launch the paperback of The Lost Family in conversations with New York Times bestselling author Jane Green, who will be introducing her latest novel, The Friends We Keep. Please join us to celebrate—and bring your book clubs! Appetizers and cocktails from both books will be served.

Ticketing information to come!”

For more information and tickets visit the event website.

Sarah Dessen

“Legendary YA author Sarah Dessen will be here to discuss and sign her new book, THE REST OF OUR STORY, a big-hearted, sweeping novel about a girl who reconnects with a part of her family she hasn’t known since she was a little girl – and falls in love, all over the course of a magical summer. 

Ticketing information will be announced soon!”

For more information and for tickets visit the event website.

Jennifer Weiner

“From Jennifer Weiner, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Who Do You Love and In Her Shoes, comes a smart, thoughtful, and timely exploration of two sisters’ lives from the 1950s to the present as they struggle to find their places—and be true to themselves—in a rapidly evolving world. Mrs. Everything is an ambitious, richly textured journey through history—and herstory—as these two sisters navigate a changing America over the course of their lives.”

For more information and for tickets visit the event website.

Scott Magoon

Linus the Little Yellow Pencil

“Scott Magoon will be visiting to read, draw and present his new picture book LINUS THE LITTLE YELLOW PENCIL.

Linus and his eraser, Ernie, don’t always see eye to eye. But with the family art show drawing near, these two will have to sharpen their collaboration to make something neither one could do on their own!

This ode to art by the illustrator of Spoon and Chopsticks points out the power of sharing the creative process and sticking with it.”

For more information visit the event website.

Meg Medina

“Listening to a good author speak is like riding a bike—you never forget! An Unlikely Story welcomes middle-grade author Meg Medina to talk about her 2019 Newbery award-winning book, MERCI SUAREZ CHANGES GEARS. In the book, sixth-grader Merci is trying to balance feeling alone at her private school and feeling confused at home about the strange changes in her grandfather’s behavior. At the event, Meg will talk about her thoughtful coming-of-age novel, answer audience questions, and sign books.”

For more information and to register visit the event website. 

Author Dinner Party with Whitney Scharer, Marjan Kamali, and Grace Talusan

Age of Light, The Stationary Shop, and The Body Papers

 

“We invite you to join The Silver Unicorn Bookstore and three local authors for a unique celebration of food and fiction at Orange Door Kitchen. Novelists Marjan Kamali, Grace Talusan and Whitney Scharer will sit down with guests for a delicious meal inspired by their recently published works and then linger over coffee for book signing and more conversation.

MENU:

ONE // The Body Papers // Lumpia Shanghai (Filipino egg roll) with sweet and sour dipping sauce

TWO // Age of Light // Moules Mariniere with smoked paprika, tomato and feta

THREE // The Stationary Shop // Persian Spiced Chicken with jeweled rice

FOUR // Rose Cardamom Avocado Ice Cream with cinnamon pastry

Tickets include a copy of the novel of your choice plus non-alcoholic beverages and a four-course meal prepared by Orange Door Kitchen. All three novels and alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase.”

For more information and to purchase tickets visit the event website.

Stay tuned for a summer reading preview episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast with Paul Swydan, owner of Silver Unicorn Books in Acton, MA.

 

 

What I’ve Been Reading…

The weather has been warming up in the Boston area which means it’s finally time to enjoy lots of reading time out on my porch. It’s my favorite spot to cozy up with a book–add an iced coffee and you’ve got the best way to spend nap time.

Here are a few of the books I’ve been enjoying lately…

 

I’m Fine And Neither Are You

by Camille Pagán

I have to thank Laura Vanderkam (author of Juliet’s School of Possibilities) for this recommendation. I know a book is good when this nervous flyer is completely absorbed at the airport and all through the flight. Fans of What Alice Forgot will enjoy reading about Jenny’s journey as she tries to make some big changes in her life and marriage.

“Wife. Mother. Breadwinner. Penelope Ruiz-Kar is doing it all—and barely keeping it together. Meanwhile, her best friend, Jenny Sweet, appears to be sailing through life. As close as the two women are, Jenny’s passionate marriage, pristine house, and ultra-polite child stand in stark contrast to Penelope’s underemployed husband, Sanjay, their unruly brood, and the daily grind she calls a career.

Then a shocking tragedy reveals that Jenny’s life is far from perfect. Reeling, Penelope vows to stop keeping the peace and finally deal with the issues in her relationship. So she and Sanjay agree to a radical proposal: both will write a list of changes they want each other to make—then commit to complete and total honesty.

What seems like a smart idea quickly spirals out of control, revealing new rifts and even deeper secrets. As Penelope stares down the possible implosion of her marriage, she must ask herself: When it comes to love, is honesty really the best policy?”

 

 

Tiny Hot Dogs: A Memoir in Small Bites

by Mary Giuliani

Sometimes you’re just in the mood to sink into a good memoir. If you’re lucky, you have one on hand that’s equal doses funny and inspiring. (Bonus points if food is involved). That’s certainly the case with Tiny Hot Dogs  and I’m really looking forward to getting to chat with Mary Giuliani soon for an episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast.

“From awkward schoolgirl to Caterer to the Stars, Mary Giuliani weaves together a collection of hilarious memories, from professional growing pains to her long journey to motherhood, never losing her sense of humor and her love for everyone’s favorite party food, pigs in a blanket.

Mary’s utterly unremarkable childhood was everything she didn’t want: hailing from a deeply loving yet overprotective Italian family in an all-Jewish enclave on Long Island. All she wanted was to fit in (be Jewish) and become famous (specifically a cast member on Saturday Night Live). With an easy, natural storytelling sensibility, Mary shares her journey from a cosseted childhood home to the stage and finally to the party, accidentally landing what she now refers to as “the breakthrough role of a lifetime” catering to a glittery list of stars she once hoped to be part of herself.

Fresh, personal, and full of Mary’s humorous, self-deprecating, and can-do attitude against all odds, you’ll want to see where each shiny silver tray of hors d’oeuvres takes her next. You never know when the humble hot dog will be a crucial ingredient in the recipe for success, in building a business or simply making life more delicious.”

 

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New Kid

by Jerry Craft

I’m always looking for great graphic novels to add to my TBR list. I know in my school library we could hardly shelve a graphic novel before it was eagerly picked up by another student. This school story will hook kids that don’t normally gravitate toward graphic novels as well, but who love engaging, funny realistic fiction. A thought-provoking book that would lead to great discussions in classrooms or book clubs–New Kid is also a must-read for parents and teachers. Stay tuned for an upcoming episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast with author Jerry Craft.

“Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.

As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds—and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself?”

Poetree 

written by Shauna LaVoy Reynolds, illustrated by Shahrzad Maydani

In this perfect book for spring, a young girl shares her love of poetry with a tree. Poetree (love this title!) would make a wonderful classroom read aloud during a poetry unit or a sweet bedtime story to share with your little one. The soft pastel illustrations will make you want to slow down and savor this one.

“A girl writes a poem to a tree, but then is surprised when the tree writes back in this wondrous and warm picture book about friendship, nature, and the power of poetry.

The snow has melted, the buttercups are blooming, and Sylvia celebrates winter’s end by writing a poem. She ties her poem to a birch tree, hoping that it doesn’t count as littering if it makes the world more beautiful. But when she returns, a new poem is waiting for her. Could the tree really be writing back? Sylvia decides to test her theory, and so begins a heartwarming poetic correspondence…as well as an unexpected new friendship.

Lyrical and sweetly satisfying, Poetree is about finding beauty in the world around you, and new friends in unlikely places.”

 

 

 

I Am Sam-I-Am

based on Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham

Do you have a young Dr. Seuss fan in your home? My toddler can’t get enough Seuss–we even had a Dr. Seuss themed party recently for her 2nd birthday. In particular, Green Eggs and Ham is a favorite. This board book (which tells the story from Sam perspective) was one of her gifts and it’s a hit. We’re hearing a lot of “More Sam-I-Am please!” around our house.

In this sweet, sturdy board book, Sam-I-Am shares the story of how he persuades his friend to try green eggs and ham. (What’s Sam’s secret? He never stops trying, of course!) Written in rhymed verse, this funny board book is an ideal introduction to the story for toddlers and preschoolers too young for the classic Beginner Book. Now everyone in the family–even pre-readers–can share in the fun and learn a valuable life lesson about trying new things!

Anne’s Alphabet and Anne’s Feelings Board Books

by Kelly Hill

I’m in love with this series and was excited to see two new additions! The embroidered illustrations are so beautiful and detailed and how can Anne of Green Gables fans not love pages like “P is for puffed sleeves” and “Anne is in the depths of despair”? Perfect for little kindred spirits–my toddler asks to read them over and over again.

I’m looking forward to having Kelly Hill on the podcast to chat about these lovely board books. Stay tuned for that episode.

 

What have you been reading? Leave a note in the comments or let me know on your favorite social media @ABookishHome.

Have you subscribed to A Bookish Home yet? Sign up to receive an email every time there is a new post or podcast episode.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you make a purchase through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

Ep. 30: Claire Handscombe, Author of Unscripted

This week my guest is Claire Handscombe, author of the new book Unscripted and host of The Britlit Podcast. Unscripted is the perfect next read for fans of One Day in December by Josie Silver and One Day by David Nicholls.

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Books Mentioned On This Episode:

Unscripted

One Day in December

One Day

The Hunting Party

Anatomy of a Scandal

Becoming

 

To learn more about Claire Handscombe you can visit her website http://clairehandscombe.com. You can also listen to The Brit Lit podcast.

 

 

If you’re enjoying the podcast, please share it with a friend and be sure to subscribe. If you could also take a moment to rate and review A Bookish Home on iTunes to help people find the show, I’d be so grateful.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase something through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

 

 

10 Author Events Coming to the Boston Area in May

 

Are you in the Boston area and looking for a bookish event to add to your calendar?

Here are some of the authors coming to bookstores and libraries in the Boston area this month.

Be sure to check your local library and bookstore’s event calendar to see what author events are coming to your community.

Not in the Boston area? This list is still a great way to find a book to add to your TBR list!

An Evening With Author Martha Hall Kelly

Lost Roses

Lost Roses

Pico Iyer

Image result for autumn light book

From one of our most astute observers of human nature, a far-reaching exploration of Japanese history and culture and a moving meditation on impermanence, mortality, and grief. Iyer leads us through the year following his father-in-law’s death, and as the maple leaves begin to redden and the heat begins to soften, Iyer offers us a singular view of Japan, in the season that reminds us to take nothing for granted.

For more information visit the event website.

Get Cozi - it's free!

 

Lynda Mullaly Hunt

An Unlikely Story invites readers to a book party for the new release from Lynda Mullaly Hunt, author of the New York Times bestseller, FISH IN A TREE! In a celebration with the author herself, there will be activity booths and raffles, and Lynda will speak about her new book, SHOUTING AT THE RAIN. A soft and sweet story, SHOUTING AT THE RAIN tells of weather-loving Delsie’s adventures around Cape Cod with a new friend as she discovers the true meaning of family and friendship.

For more information and to order tickets visit the event website.

So You Want to Write a Children’s Book?

 

 

Join the Boston Authors Club and authors Nancy Tupper Ling, Padma Venkatraman, Susan Lynn Meyer and host Peter H. Reynolds for a lively and informative discussion on writing and publishing children’s literature of all genres! Located at The Blue Bunny Bookstore. Free and open to all!

For more information visit the event website.

 

Hayley Barrett

As the weather is warming up, our Saturday Morning Story Time is the perfect destination for a family morning walk! Hayley Barrett will be reading her debut picture book, Babymoon.

Inside the cozy house, a baby has arrived! The world is eager to meet the newcomer, but there will be time enough for that later. Right now, the family is on its babymoon: cocooning, connecting, learning, and muddling through each new concern.
While the term “babymoon” is often used to refer to a parents’ getaway before the birth of a child, it was originally coined by midwives to describe days like these: at home with a newborn, with the world held at bay and the wonder of a new family constellation unfolding. Paired with warm and winsome illustrations by Juana Martinez-Neal, Hayley Barrett’s lyrical ode to these tender first days will resonate with new families everywhere.

Hayley Barrett says that fond memories of her own days spent nesting and cocooning with her husband and each of their newborns inspired her to write Babymoon. She lives in eastern Massachusetts

For more information visit the event website.

Toni Buzzeo

From a very young age, Sue Hendrickson was meant to find things: lost coins, perfume bottles, even hidden treasure. Her endless curiosity eventually led to her career in diving and paleontology, where she would continue to find things big and small. In 1990, at a dig in South Dakota, Sue made her biggest discovery to date: Sue the T. rex, the largest and most complete T. rex skeleton ever unearthed. Named in Sue’s honor, Sue the T. rex would be placed on permanent exhibition at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. When Sue Found Sue inspires readers to take a closer look at the world around them and to never lose their brave, adventurous spirits. 

Toni Buzzeo is the author of the Caldecott Honor Book and New York Times bestseller One Cool Friend and many other books for children. She lives in Arlington, Massachusetts.

For more information visit the event website.

 

Jeffrey S. Cramer

Solid Seasons: The Friendship of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson Cover ImagePlease join us on Sunday, May 19 at 3pm, when local author Jeffrey S. Cramer returns to the Bookshop with his new book, Solid Seasons: The Friendship of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Jeffrey S. Cramer is the editor of Walden: A Fully Annotated Edition, winner of a 2004 National Outdoor Book Award, and The Quotable Thoreau, recipient of an Umhoefer Prize for Achievement in Humanities. In 2017, Cramer was the historical consultant for the Ken Burns–produced documentary Walden, created for the Walden Pond State Reservation during the Thoreau Bicentennial. Cramer is the curator of collections at the Walden Woods Project’s Thoreau Institute Library. He lives in Maynard.

 

Ep. 29: Laura Vanderkam, Author of Juliet’s School of Possibilities

One of my favorite authors, Laura Vanderkam, returns to the podcast this week to discuss her new book, Juliet’s School of Possibilities, which is a time management fable. Laura is the author of several other time management and productivity books, including Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done as well as I Know How She Does It, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, and 168 Hours. Laura’s work has appeared in publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, and Fortune. She is the host of the podcast Before Breakfast and the co-host, with Sarah Hart-Unger, of the podcast Best of Both Worlds. She lives outside Philadelphia with her husband and four children, and blogs at LauraVanderkam.com.

Juliet's School of Possibilities: A Little Story About the Power of Priorities by [Vanderkam, Laura]

I am always on board for a new title by Laura Vanderkam. Her books have completely changed the way I approach managing my time and I can’t recommend them highly enough. When I heard that her next book was a fable, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but it completely exceeded my expectations. Juliet’s School of Possibilities has the feel of a novel, while also imparting key aspects of Vanderkam’s time management philosophy.

Since it is a quick, enjoyable read, this is a perfect book to dip your toe into Vanderkam’s work and finish feeling motivated to make some changes. It would also be perfect to read as a staff and then discuss.

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Shownotes:

You can visit Laura Vanderkam’s website at lauravanderkam.com.

Juliet’s School of Possibilities 

I highly recommend Laura Vanderkam’s podcasts:  Best of Both Worlds and Before Breakfast.

Other Laura Vanderkam Titles:

Off the Clock

I Know How She Does It

168 Hours

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Laura’s Recommended Read:

I’m Fine And Neither Are You

If you’re enjoying the podcast, be sure to subscribe and rate and review on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts. Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Note: Affiliate links are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase something through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!