16 Books You Should Read Right Now!

If you’re a New Orleans mom looking for great book recommendations, we have you covered. Whether you are taking a road trip with kids from New Orleans or headed to a nearby beach for just a day, many of us love to bring a good book with us. Whether it’s the one book we think you should stop what you’re doing to read, or a list of the best beach books we’ve read recently … we love to talk literature! And psssst. Most of our book recommendations are affiliate links.

16 Books You Should Read Right Now!

I love to read. After my boys go to bed, I pour a glass of wine, grab my Kindle, and settle on the sofa with a blanket. (I’m 41, but I may as well be 71.) The dog curls up next to me, and I fall into another world. So far this year, I’ve finished 52 books, and I’m here to share a few of my favorites with you.

Of course, my tastes might not be the same as yours. While I enjoy reading the latest literary sensation, if it’s too pretentious, I have no qualms about closing it and starting something else instead. (Thank goodness for the library’s digital collections!) And I’ve been known to read the odd Danielle Steele novel, if only because they’re all the same and the literary equivalent of mashed potatoes.

Not all of the books mentioned here are new. Because I check them out from the library, sometimes I have to wait a while before I can get a new book. In the meantime, there are plenty of older gems out there!

If you love to talk books, here is a great list of the best books from 2020 (a good read is always a good read), as well highly recommended summer reading for moms.

A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg (see also Delancey by Molly Wizenberg)

If there’s one thing in life I love, it’s eating. If there’s another thing, it’s laughing. After discovering that the blogger Orangette also hosted a comedy podcast about food called Spilled Milk, I devoured the show’s archives. Not long after,  I moved on to her two memoirs about food (the former) and the restaurant she opened with her husband (the latter.)

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld

A modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice. Need I say more? Yes, you can picture Colin Firth in the Darcy role as you read it. I know I did.

The Lake House by Kate Morton

A bit of a tidy ending, but a nicely engrossing novel, and set in England, which is always a bonus for me.

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Why wasn’t this book around when I was 16? I have to confess that though I read it this year, it was for the third time, not the first. (I decided re-reads do count when I’m keeping track.) Anyway, if it doesn’t have you in tears at the end as well as exceedingly grateful you’re a grown adult, you are a robot.

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

More YA (young adult) fiction. I think I was drawn to this because the characters are twins, but it was a fantastic read. The story flips between the perspective of the two siblings, one at 13 (Noah), and the other at 16 (Jude.) Totally engrossing.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

I’m not usually one for sci-fi, but I’d heard a lot about this one, so decided to pick it up. You’ll never look at Virtual Reality the same after reading this book.

The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin

I’m also not usually one for vampire novels (okay fine I read Twilight, just to see what the fuss was about) but my husband urged me to read it. This novel is the third in a trilogy and by far my favorite of the three. I’m sorry to say, you’re going to have to get through the first 1500 pages of the two prior books before you can get to this one, but I promise, it’ll be worth it.

What She Knew by Gilly MacMillan (see also The Widow by Fiona Barton, The Passenger by Lisa Lutz, Everything She Forgot by Lisa Ballantyne)

What these books have in common: suspense, female main characters, a blurb on the cover how it’s the next “Gone Girl.” Good reads, but I have to break them up with fluff like…

The Very Picture of You by Isabel Wolff

Takes place in London, check. Portrait artist falls in love with the subject she’s painting, check. Sure, it’s predictable, but it’s fun and a nice foil to the darker psychological thrillers.

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

I wasn’t sure I was going to get into this, but I decided to give it a try after a friend mentioned it. This is the memoir of a female scientist, and it’s fantastic. You will never look at trees the same way, and you’ll fall a little in love with Bill. (You’ll see what I mean.)

After You by Jojo Moyes

I actually love all of Jojo Moyes’ books, but this is the only one I’ve read so far this year, so to be fair, I’m not including the others. But it’s a sequel to Me Before You, so definitely read that first. And then read the rest of her books. I love that they’re not all the same (I’m looking at you Danielle.)

Dust off your library cards, and enjoy the rest of your summer engrossed in a few of the novels I’ve listed. Share a favorite you’ve read recently in the comments!

Pam Kocke
My name is Pam, and I live in Algiers Point with my husband George and my identical triplets Linus, Oliver, and Miles. I work from home as a Happiness Engineer for Automattic. I enjoy reading and photography and sewing (and blogging!)


  1. I LOVE posts like this – it makes reading even more fun to hear from a fellow book lover whether the latest titles are worth the hype. Thanks for sharing your recommendations.

  2. You should try “Absolutely True Lies” by Rachel Stuhler. An every-woman gets the job of a lifetime ghost writer for a Hannah Montana character. Celebrity, love triangle, Rome, humor, and a fast read. You’ll love it!!

  3. I just finished “Wine and War: The French, the Nazis, and the Battle for France’s Greatest Treasure.” Definitely a great read.

    I’m just coming off a 2016 reading challenge. Do you have any you recommend for 2017?


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