The Island Sisters is Micki Berthelot Morency’s debut novel. Told from the perspective of four women from the islands of Haiti, St. Thomas, and Guam, it is a story of life-long friendship held together by an unbreakable bond. When the four women meet at college, they discover their shared pasts and form a friendship that sees them through difficult marriages, motherhood, and much more.
The Thread Collectors is a collaborative novel written by authors Shaunna Edwards and Alyson Richman. Loosely based on the authors’ family histories, the novel tells the story of two women working to support the Union effort during the Civil War. As the novel progresses, the women (a black woman in the South and a Jewish woman in the North) work to aid the Union effort through sewing and later discover how their stories are intertwined.
The Maid is Nita Prose’s debut novel. This cozy mystery set in a hotel is sure to appeal to fans of Agatha Christie.
Featuring a neurodivergent main character, the novel follows Molly, the hotel maid, as she’s suspected of murder and tries to clear her name. The entire hotel staff is full of friend and foe, and in a Clue-like mystery, Molly must determine where each person lies.
Sarton Award-Winning author Debra Thomas’ second novel, Josie and Vic is an examination of the sibling relationship after years and distance have caused separation.
When siblings Josie and Vic are forced back together after tragedy, the door for reconciliation begins to open. Forgiveness, and ultimately hope, slowly follow as the characters cope with their pasts and work to heal fractured relationships.
The Last Thing He Told Me is Laura Dave’s latest thriller that begins when Hannah receives the last thing her husband will ever tell her–Protect her.
A twisty thriller that takes Hannah through Owen’s unexpected past, the novel is also unexpectedly about who we chose to call family and the lengths we go to protect the ones we love.
Once We Were Home is Jennifer Rosner’s newest novel. Her first, The Yellow Bird Sings, was a National Jewish Book Award Finalist.
Once We Were Home is beautiful, moving story about the Jewish children who were displaced during the Holocaust and never returned to family, it is a little-explored area of WWII fiction. Delving into the definition of family, identity and heritage, and ultimately themes of forgiveness and peace, there is plenty to talk about for your book club.
It Ends with Us and It Starts with Us are Colleen Hoover’s most popular books (outside of Verity). The novels are a duology featuring the same set of characters. If you are wondering which novel to read first, the series actually starts with It Ends with Us, then continues to book two, It Starts with Us.
I’ve provided book club questions and delicious food ideas for It Ends with Us and It Starts with Us and I have a special recipe for you! So if you are looking for book club ideas and more, keep reading!
Code Name Edelweiss is Stephanie Landsem’s newest novel about the rise of Nazi influence in 1930s Hollywood and one man’s mission to curtail the efforts.
Based on true events, the novel follows Leon Lewis (the real man behind the fight against Hitler in Hollywood) and one of his fictionalized spies.
If you love WWII fiction, you’ll likely love this historical spy novel based on events that occurred on American soil (an unusual setting for WWII fiction!). The tie-in to old Hollywood is also fun and interesting!
The Vibrant Years is Sonali Dev’s newest novel and the first book from Mindy Kaling’s new imprint Mindy’s Book Studio. Yes, that Mindy Kaling. It’s a rom-com about three generations of Indian-American women navigating the throes of love. Insert one Millennial genius trying to code a revolutionary dating app. Add in two begrudging research assistants in her strong-willed, gorgeous grandmother and her career-stunted, timid mother. Top it off with a series of…unfortunate dates. And you have The Vibrant Years.
Most book clubs will know Madeline Martin from The Last Bookshop in London and, with The Librarian Spy, she has delivered another WWII novel centered around book lovers. The novel follows two women – one in Nazi occupied France who works at a newspaper for the Resistance and an American librarian in war-neutral Lisbon who collects war propaganda in hopes of finding coded messages.
Embers on the Wind is Lisa Williamson Rosenberg’s latest work of fiction. Tackling the interwoven stories of many generations of black women, Rosenberg spins a tale of complex emotion, especially regarding heritage. The tone and style of the novel reminded me of Toni Morrison or Alice Walker. And Rosenberg echoed those authors in raising questions about heritage, race, identity and more. (A large portion of the novel takes place at a house once used by the Underground Railroad).
The Call of the Wrens is a dual timeline story following two women who join the Wrens (the nickname for the Women’s Royal Naval Service). The first timeline follows the first group of Wrens in WWI and the second timeline follows the second group in WWII. As their stories intersect, the reader learns about these brave groups of women who served Britain in many capacities during the world wars. Interwoven in both timelines are two unforgettable love stories, friendships between brave women, and characters who battle their own internal enemies even while serving bravely during the war.
Touted by many as a gothic mystery, Ashton Hall has gothic vibes as well as a mystery, but I didn’t feel like that was the center story. To me, it read very closely in feel and theme to The Mystery of Mrs. Christie. While that novel also features a mystery, its core was about women’s rights and independence. I felt the same can be said of Ashton Hall.
Noue Kirwan’s debut, Long Past Summer, is a fantastic second chance romance story that some readers have called Sweet Home Alabama for Black girls.
The novel alternates between the main characters’ past and their present. As Cameron and Mikaela fall in love the summer after high school graduation, their current, separate lives collide once more when Mikaela’s firm represents Cameron, a successful photographer, in a lawsuit over a photo that happens to feature Mikaela all those years ago.
The Invincible Miss Cust is Penny Haw’s first historical women’s fiction novel, but I hope it isn’t her last. The novel follows Aleen Cust as she grows up in Britain and ultimately becomes Britain’s first woman veterinary surgeon.
Aleen Cust defied seemingly insurmountable odds from both society and her own family in order to study in the field, practice, and finally become the first licensed woman veterinary surgeon in Britain.