One of my goals this year has been to diversify my reading. As I've spent the last 17 years homeschooling anywhere from 1-4 kids, I would probably class my reading choices as 60-70% prereading or reading at my kids' level and maybe 30% for myself. I haven't hated it! And I don't plan to give up reading middle grade or YA books anytime soon, as far as I know. They are just too fun and it's such a great way to have discussions about harder topics with my kids at their level when there's a need.
That said, I'm also a little squeamish about diving into adult fiction. I've been burnt many times with a book recommendation that is not for me and it usually boils down to the fact that it's content I'm uncomfortable reading whether for extreme language, open door bedroom scenes that I don't want or need to be privy to, violence, etc. It just seems to stick with me. Thank you, vivid imagination.
However, there are GOOD adult fiction books out there and I'm slowly growing a to-be-read list that will keep me busy for a while if I need ideas. I've found a few new kindred (reading) spirits on Instagram and if they make a suggestion, I save it.
Here's a list of a few that I'm looking forward to investigating:
- The Dry by Jane Harper (a mystery series set in Australia)
- Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz (I just finished this one and it was good. I'd rate it PG-13 for language and situations that are more adult. I have made a note to look for the sequel to this one when it comes out this fall.)
- Brandon Sanderson has been raved to me by the 6th grade girls in the homeschool group that we are a part of. I'm not sure really what level the book is - maybe YA? - but I've got one of his books here on the shelf from the library and I've promised to check him out. These are the same girls that have gotten me hooked on the Keeper of the Lost Cities series by Shannon Messenger. I'm up to book 5 (or 6?) in the series and thankfully they each come with a long wait time at the library so I have to pace myself. Each book clocks in around 6-700 pages so they are a commitment!
- The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles. Paris, libraries and WWII. This is definitely in my wheelhouse.
- The Nature of Fragile Things by Susan Meissner. I've been recommended Susan Meissner multiple times so maybe this is one of hers I will get to.
- Middlemarch by George Eliot. I'm reading this one next month with a group of women on Instagram and am looking forward to the accountability to get through this monster of a book.
- A Study In Scarlet Women (The Lady Sherlock Series) by Sherry Thomas
- Winter Garden by Kristen Hannah. I've never read a Kristen Hannah book and so I started with one set in winter. However, I have on good authority from several folks that I absolutely must read her book Nightingale, so a used copy of that one is winging it's way to me.
- Six of Crows. I read the Grisha trilogy last year and enjoyed it overall. This book has a series coming out on Netflix and it seems like I'll either really like this or it will be too gruesome for me.
- The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates which I know nothing about!
- And lastly, I'm currently working my way through The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson. It is an extremely dense historical work of what is referred to as the great migration - when Black Americans travelled from the south to the north to escape Jim Crow laws that continued to exist well after the Civil War. It's eye-opening and excellent but it's not something that I can sit down to read for hours like a relaxing piece of fiction. Some sections are heart-breaking and I for sure have to set it aside every now and then for a breather.