Books Recommendations by Category – Peanut Butter Fingers


Hey friends!! I’m coming at you today with a blog post that focuses on one of my favorite things — BOOKS!

I know a bunch of you out there are fellow book worms and I always say I get some of my best book recommendations from your comments, DMs and emails. Thank you for taking the time to share your favorite reads with me!

I frequently highlight books I’ve read and loved in my weekly roundup of favorites on on the blog on Fridays but I know they can easily get lost in the mix of other blogs posts. One of my goals for the blog in 2022 is to revamp it a bit so it’s easier to find old content (you know you have a problem when you use Google to find blog content rather than your own blog’s search bar) but in the meantime, I wanted to roundup a bunch of books I’ve loved in one place. In this post, I’ve categorized them so you can easily find books that might interest you based on the kind of book you’re hoping to read. (Please note I also try to keep the Books page of my Amazon shop up-to-date with recent reads I’ve enjoyed.)

I tried to keep this list semi-limited so it wasn’t a million words long and filled with a million books but that was admittedly hard to do, especially in certain categories I personally love (I’m looking at you, historical fiction).

As always, I welcome your book recommendations and encourage you to share any recent reads you’ve read and loved in the comments section so we can all benefit from your recommendations!

Happy reading!

Book Recommendations By Category

For Those Who Love Historical Fiction

 


 

  • The Alice Network by Kate Quinn (While this novel is historical fiction, The Alice Network was very real and I was fascinated to learn more about the lives of women spies and their incredible bravery during World War I. The book follows the lives of Eve Gardinier, a bright but unassuming woman recruited to be a spy during World War I, and Charlie St. Clair, a pregnant college student holding onto hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared from Nazi-occupied France during World War II, might still be alive.)
  • The Other Einstein by Marie Benedict (Mileva Maric was the brilliant physicist whose determination and intelligence helped her find her way out of Serbia and into all-male university classrooms in Switzerland. Though her presence at the university was met with skepticism and even disdain, she caught the eye of fellow student Albert Einstein and despite Mileva’s initial reluctance, a relationship formed based on a passion for knowledge, mathematics and physics and “bohemian” ways.)
  • The German Midwife by Mandy Robotham (Anke Hoff is a prisoner held captive in a concentration camp whose skills as a midwife catch the attention of prominent members of the Nazi party. Anke is taken away from the camp when she is selected to be the midwife for Eva Braun, the woman believed to be pregnant with Hitler’s child.)
  • Meet Me In Monaco by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb (Set in the 1950s, Meet Me in Monaco takes place in the middle of the paparazzi mayhem surrounding the wedding of 26-year-old actress Grace Kelly to Prince Rainier. Though Grace Kelly is a focal point of the story, we see glimpses of the soon-to-be princess through the lens — literally — of James, a photographer sent to capture images of Grace Kelly during her visit to Cannes during the famous film festival where she first met the prince and the woman who immediately catches his eye, Sophie, an ambitious but struggling perfumer whose chance meeting with Grace strikes up a life-long friendship.)
  • The Gown by Jennifer Robson (Three different women are connected to each other by the wedding gown worn by Queen Elizabeth II on her wedding day nearly 70 years ago.)
  • The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott (This book centers around Doctor Zhivago and is inspired by the true story of the CIA’s plot to get the novel in the hands of Soviet Russia where no one would publish the novel by Boris Pasternak. The novel follows the life of Pasternak’s mistress and muse, Olga Ivinskaya, who inspired Zhivago’s heroine, Lara, and was sent to the Gulag for being an “accomplice” to Pasternak. It also offers a glimpse into the lives of two secretaries-turned-spies at the CIA and their assignment to smuggle Doctor Zhivago out of the USSR.)
  • The Lions of Fifth Avenue by Fiona Davis (The book flip-flops back and forth from the past to the present as it follows the lives of two women whose lives are somehow connected. Laura Lyons, an aspiring journalist is married to the superintendent of the New York Public Library in 1913 and Sadie Donovan, a curator at the New York Public Library, is determined to get to the bottom of the books, manuscripts and notes that continue to disappear from the library in 1993.)
  • The Winemaker’s Wife by Kristin Harmel (Set in Champagne, France in 1940, the book follows the lives of two women, Inès, a young woman recently married to the owner of a prominent champagne house, Maison Chauveau, and Céline, the half-Jewish wife of Chaveau’s head winemaker. When Inès married Michel, she never could’ve envisioned what would come: The German occupation and with it a life filled with fear, deceit, secrets and, ultimately, decisions that will impact the lives of those she loves forever.)
  • Carnegie’s Maid by Marie Benedict (Clara Kelley is a smart, ambitious Irish immigrant who recently came to America with the hope of securing employment that would allow her to send money back to help her family struggling in Ireland. Luck is on her side as she steps onto American soil and she finds herself serving as a lady’s maid to the mother of Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish-American industrialist and increasingly wealthy businessman. As the story unfolds, Clara becomes increasingly close to Andrew and a relationship develops that carries more than just feelings.)

For Those Who Love Creative Page-Turners

 


 

  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid (Monique Grant, a talented but relatively unknown young writer, is selected by iconic actress Evelyn Hugo to write her biography. It’s the opportunity of a lifetime and one Monique is determined to do well. As Evelyn begins to tell her story to Monique, we learn all about her life, including the details behind her marriages and secret loves. The book is filled with scandal in a way that doesn’t feel cheap or cheesy.)
  • Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid (This book is written through a series of interviews with an iconic band from the 1970s. It follows the band from their beginning days to the split that followed their Grammy win. The characters are captivating, the “interviews” are thought-provoking, humorous at times and incredibly interesting.)
  • The Violets of March by Sarah Jio (Emily Wilson, a recently divorced young woman, books a flight to visit her Aunt Bee to spend the month of March on Bainbridge Island in Washington. While there, Emily begins reading a diary written much like a novel from the 1940s that she finds in the nightstand of one of the guest rooms in her aunt’s house. She becomes completely immersed in the story of Esther and her complicated and tumultuous love life, noticing parallels between Esther’s story and the things going on around her on the island. Emily finds herself constantly wondering how Esther’s life intertwines with her own.)

For Those Who Love Suspense

 


 

  • The Last Flight by Julie Clark (This book was a whirlwind! Two women who happen to cross paths in the airport make a last-minute decision to swap plane tickets and their lives are changed forever.)
  • The Lying Game by Ruth Ware (A “lying game” created by four boarding school friends proves more than they bargained for when life-changing consequences arise. A text that reads “I need you” brings the friends — now grown women — back together and their lies continue to haunt them.)
  • The Girl From Widow Hills by (A solid “who done it” book that makes you second guess yourself and various characters in a novel.)
  • The President is Missing by Bill Clinton and James Patterson (A threat on the United States looms over the head of the President. As the story unfolds, a traitor in the cabinet is revealed and the President must do his best to protect his country from the most serious form of cyberterrorism while simultaneously questioning those around him as he tries to figure out who he can trust within the White House.)
  • The First Patient by Michael Palmer (A political and medical mystery! The book follows Dr. Gabe Singleton as he begins to suspects that the failing health of the President of the United States may not be attributed to natural causes. Gabe soon finds himself searching for answers, a process that proves more challenging and life-threatening than he ever imagined.)
  • Final Girls by Riley Sager (Quincy Carpenter managed to survive a brutal massacre that killed five of her friends when she was on a weekend trip to a cabin in the woods in college. Dubbed one of three “Final Girls,” one of three women who survived horrific killings when others did not, Quincy is trying her best to lead a normal life. Then Lisa, one of the three Final Girls, is found dead and Sam, the other Final Girl, shows up on Quincy’s doorstep. Quincy’s life is turned upside down again. This book includes twist after twist and there was not one dull moment in the whole thing!)
  • The Banker’s Wife by Cristina Alger (A private plane with only two passengers takes off for Geneva and completely drops off the radar. Its remains are later located in the Alps and the widow of Matthew Werner, a private banker for Swiss United, an offshore bank with shady practices and an ever shadier client list, is informed of the crash. Annabel Werner is shocked and heartbroken but her feelings of devastation are quickly accompanied by questions that lead her to determine her husband’s death was no accident. At the same time Annabel finds herself searching for answers, Marina Tourneau, a driven journalist engaged to Grant Ellis, the son of presidential hopeful James Ellis, agrees to help her boss on a story that results in the murder of her boss only days later. The story involves digging into the client list at Swiss United, the very bank where Matthew Werner worked before his death, and Marina quickly uncovers information that could destroy the lives of some of the most powerful men in the world, including some she may soon call family.)

For Those Who Love Easy, Breezy Reads

 


 

  • One Day in December by Josie Silver (The wintery version of a beach read! Laurie feels the most intense jolt of love when she sees a man from her seat on a bus window in the middle of winter. She feels frozen but also battles the intense urge to get off the bus when the man locks eyes with her… and then it’s too late and the bus rolls on. A year passes with Laurie looking for her beloved bus guy until one day her best friend Sarah introduces Laurie to her new boyfriend, Jack. Laurie cannot believe it when the new boyfriend Laurie’s heard Sarah rave about also happens to be the very man Laurie fell in love with at first sight from her bus seat one year earlier. One Day in December follows the next 10 years of Laurie and Jack’s lives through fierce friendship, heartbreak, missed opportunities, growth and change as they strive to find happiness.)
  • Matchmaking for Beginners by Maddie Dawson (Marnie MacGraw recently became engaged to Noah, a man she’s convinced will give her the ordinarily wonderful life she’s always wanted. When Marnie’s marriage explodes after only two weeks, she’s left devastated and blindsided when she learns she’s inherited her ex-fiancé’s seemingly crazy great-aunt Blix’s Brooklyn townhouse after Blix passes away.)
  • A Hundred Summers by Beatriz Williams (Lily Dane returns to the seaside town where she summered for generations, only to find her former best friend, Budgie, and former fiancé, Nick, now married to each other, will be spending the summer in Seaview as well. The book flip flops from the past – when Lily and Nick first met and fell deeply in love – to the present, a time filled with secrets and scandal.)
  • In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren (Perfectly charming and reads like a holiday Hallmark movie… but a little steamier! A woman in her mid-20s finds herself re-living the days before Christmas with various outcomes.)

For Those Who Love Thought-Provoking Novels

 


 

  • The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett (A captivating story about identical twins Desire and Stella Vignes, two women who grew up together in a small Black community that largely favored light-skinned Black people. Their lives were deeply connected until, at the age of 16, they ran away together and eventually separated when Stella makes the decision to secretly live her life as a white woman and marries a white man.)
  • In Five Years by Rebecca Serle (I initially thought this book was going to be a love story — and it is in some ways — but it’s not at all a traditional one and is filled with thought-provoking moments that stuck with me and left me tossing and turning in bed long after I finished reading.)
  • The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Dare (One of the best books I read last year. Adunni, a brave and resilient 14-year-old Nigerian girl has lost her mother and is sold by her father to a local man in the village to become the third wife in his household. Before she passed, Adunni’s mother encouraged her sharp mind and told her the key to having control over her future and making a difference in the world is education which would give her a “louding voice.”)
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens (Kya Clark, an intelligent and resilient girl knows to locals as the “Marsh Girl,” is mysterious and elusive. Kya grew up in the marshland of North Carolina with an abusive family and eventually survives on her own at an incredibly young age thanks to her knowledge of the marsh she calls home and her resourcefulness. Used to living on her own, Kya is surprised when she finds herself intrigued by two local men as she grows up and opens herself up to love and heartache, despite her natural inclination to remain isolated from others. After one of the men, Chase Andrews, is found dead, locals immediately begin to suspect the “Marsh Girl.”)
  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones (Celestial and Roy are successful newlyweds living in Atlanta, whose lives are ripped apart when Roy is falsely accused of a crime and sent to prison. The book follows their relationship as they struggle to keep their marriage in tact through Roy’s incarceration and Celestial’s desire to continue to live her life.)
  • Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger (40-year-old Frank Drum looks back on his life during the summer when he was 13 years old. It was a summer marked by tragedy and death several times over but it was a summer that shaped Frank and taught him valuable lessons that would last a lifetime. It’s a captivating story and an emotional read full of poignant words I found myself jotting down because I didn’t want to forget them.)

For Those Who Love Novels with a Gossip Girl Vibe

 


 

  • American Royals by Katharine McGee (American Royals follows the royal family of America, as the author creates an alternate universe where a monarchy rules America and the royal family is packed with drama. From an all-to-perfect princess set to be queen with a secret that could threaten the crown to forbidden romances and betrayal, American Royals is an intriguing read that made me feel like I was curling up on the couch to watch a guilty-pleasure TV show.)
  • Majesty by Katharine McGee (The sequel to American Royals!)
  • All These Beautiful Strangers by Elizabeth Klefoth (Rich, beautiful teenagers, secret clubs, boarding school, backstabbing, disappearing people and mystery!)
  • Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé (Two Niveus Academy high school students, Devon Richards and Chiamaka Adebayo, the two only two Black students at the school, were recently selected as senior class prefects, a coveted honor given only to a select few. With bright futures seemingly within their grasp, Chiamaka and Devon have high hopes for the year ahead until an anonymous texter named “Aces” begins sending secrets to the entire school… secrets that could turn their lives upside down and ruin their collegiate dreams.)

Questions of the Day

What genre do you find yourself gravitating to again and again when you’re looking for a new book to read?

Do you have any recent book recommendations to share?



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