What to Read Now

Now that the kids are back on schedule and (hopefully) the new routine is going smoothly, we can take a breath and get ourselves sorted. Add “READ” to the top of the “me” agenda. It’s good for the soul! And this fall, there are many well-received books that seem worthy of our precious time. Subject matter for the latest batch of books is serious — immigration struggles is a popular topic, child abuse, lost campaigns — but a nice antidote from summer’s light “beach” novels. Here, we put together a list of books that piqued our interest and we are adding them to our Kindle queues and nightstand stacks. Let us know what you think! And we’d love your recommendations!

Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue This book covers the spectrum of heavy subject matter — immigration, financial crises, stresses of marriage and parenting, race, and class. The story of a Cameroonian couple struggling with the realities of the “American dream” and if and when to give up on it, is beautifully written and certainly worthy of Oprah’s stamp of approval.

 

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng A captivating story set in the wealthy American enclave of Shaker Heights, Ohio. The plots twists and turns after one family’s house burns down and the renters in their nearby (but less desirably-located) apartment disappear.

 

My Absolute Darling: A Novel by Gabriel Tallent A survivalist tale that captivates, saddens and is often extremely disturbing and uncomfortable to read. Yet, it is hard to stop turning the page. One can’t help rooting for 14-year-old Turtle, the brave protagonist of this rich, intricate, moving book — the young Tallent’s debut.

 

The Leavers: A Novel by Lisa Ko A Chinese girl wants more than her rural village in China allows and to be a good (single) mother to her baby — but finds those goals are often at odds. Immigration difficulties steer her onto an unexpected path, which diverges with her young son. A touching story that questions what a child needs most.

 

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee Deemed one of the best books of the year and long listed for prestigious literary awards, Pachinko showcases author Lee’s gift for storytelling. In this “page-turning saga”, according to Amazon, “four generations of a poor Korean immigrant family fight to control their destiny in 20th-century Japan, exiled from a home they never knew.”

 

What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton How what was perceived to be a sure thing by some, failed and shocked the world. The autobiographical inside look into Hilary Clinton’s losing presidential run.

 

Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel by Jesmyn Ward An emotional journey through America’s Deep South by National Book Award winner Ward. Poverty, drugs, death, prison are the challenges along the way. But one woman’s bond with her family offers a ray of hope.

 

A Legacy of Spies: A Novel by John Le Carré Mystery buffs and fans of this well-known spy novelist, will be clamoring to read his latest thriller — 25 years after his last book — in one sitting, no doubt. He resurrects old characters, whose cold-war pasts come back to haunt them.

 

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid A finalist for the Man Booker Prize, Exit West imagines a world in civil war in which a young couple are desperate to flee. Potential escape is found by stepping through a fantastical door to the future but the risks are high.

 

Let us know what you think — and your vote for the Hong Kong Moms Book Club selection! Happy reading!

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