The other morning, I got an email from Goodreads: it’s time to vote for the best books of the year, and I was like, what??? Not yet, surely.
Yes. Because it’s November. And the year is drawing to a close. Which means that my sad little Goodreads challenge has gone neglected. I’m five books behind schedule, and I see little chance that I’ll make my goal this year.
Once upon a time, before I had Gus, I was encouraged that I would get some fun reading done while nursing. That babies sleep a lot, so obviously I could catch up on some reading while Gus napped, or demurely tap my way through a book on my Kindle, held over his shoulder, while he nursed. This was before I had a baby who insisted I walk him around the house while nursing. This was before I felt the powerless drop into dozing whenever I woke to nurse him in the middle of the night. This was before I understood the intense time crunch that happens when your baby finally goes down for a nap. DO ALL THE THINGS RIGHT NOW. (And then you sign up for NaBloPoMo, and that feeling gets even more bonkers.)
So rather than feel frustrated by all the books I haven’t read this year, I thought I’d compose a little starter TBR pile right here, a sampling of books from this year that I look forward to reading when my baby lets me. Whenever that may be.
- Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson. I loved Brown Girl Dreaming, and I’m excited to read Another Brooklyn, a coming of age novel set in Brooklyn.
- The Artists’ and Writers’ Cookbook. The original Artists’ and Writers’ Cookbook came out in 1961 and featured recipes from authors like Marianne Moore and Harper Lee. The revamped collection includes essays and recipes by Anthony Doerr, Julia Alvarez, Aimee Bender, and more. This is such a blending of my favorite worlds, and I cannot wait to read it.
- Swimming Lessons by Claire Fuller. After her mother’s disappearance twelve years ago, Flora returns home to take care of her aging father and decides to solve the mystery of where her mother went. The path to that answer is hidden in clues in the thousands of books in her parents’ home, making this a literary goose chase for a family’s sense of resolution.
- Lumberjanes Vol. 4: My love for the Lumberjanes comics is steady and true. I love those hard-core lady types, and I can’t wait to spend an hour catching up with them.
- Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler. Coming-of-age + NY restaurant scene = I need to read this book.
- Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple. I love, love, loved Where’d You Go, Bernadette?, so I’ve been looking forward to Maria Semple’s next book.
- Something New by Lucy Knisely. Knisely’s graphic memoirs have always delighted me, and I love her Instagram feed (her baby is about two months older than Gus, so her cartoons about motherhood are a fun way to see what’s up ahead). But this book is about her wedding, which will be totally fun.
- Lab Girl by Hope Jahren. Girls and science: I’m so looking forward to reading this and so hoping that my mom brain can handle science.
So, here’s to next year, To Be Read List.