Five Star Book Recommendations

During quarantine, I challenged myself to pick up a new hobby to fill my time. My goal for 2020 was to read more, so I figured that this was the perfect opportunity to start. I used to always struggle to pick a book to read, which is always what held me back. The pressure to pick a great book to hook me into a new hobby of reading was daunting, so I looked to friends to recommend some of their favorites. I learned that I really enjoy going into books blindly and choosing them solely on recommendations. Here are some fiction and nonfiction books that got me to really enjoy reading.



1. The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn

This is the book that initially sparked my love for reading and has recently been adapted to a movie. A psychological thriller, the novel follows the life of an agoraphobic woman psychologist who, when gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn’t have seen at her new neighbor’s house. Or was it imagined? Make time to read this novel as you won’t want to put it down! 


2. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Now a series on Hulu, this book touches on several important issues such as race, adoption, identity, and sex. This novel follows two families and the secrets they each hold. Is the Richardson family as perfect as they make themselves out to be? 


3. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Another thriller, Gone Girl follows a married couple where the wife goes missing on their 5th wedding anniversary. Nick, the husband, acts weird, but did he really kill her? I mean she did fund the opening of his bar…  



1. Educated by Tara Westover

This memoir written by Tara Westover follows her life growing up in a survivalist family. Isolated from society, she lacked formal education and was forbade from seeing doctors. After teaching herself math and grammar, she was admitted to Brigham Young University where she learned about important historical events for the first time. Her coming-of-age story challenges family loyalty and change in perspectives.


2. Know My Name by Chanel Miller

Know My Name is a memoir written by Chanel Miller.  Channel Miller, formerly known as Emily Doe in the notorious Brock Turner case, shares her story of trauma, isolation, and shame following sexual assault at Stanford. She discusses the hard nights, lingering impact of sexual assault, and the criminal justice system that protects predators over victims. A heavy read, but a story of resilience and pain that allowed her to reclaim her identity and provide courage to many other sexual assault survivors to come forward.


3. Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez

This non-fiction book is very statistic heavy but eye opening on how sexism literally built our world. With the world being made for men, women suffer in many ways. The gender data gap is rooted in government policy, medical research, urban planning and just about every other corner of society. This book illustrates how women are left behind in many areas, which in turn affects their health and well-being. Half the population is systematically ignored and discriminated against in many areas of research. An incredibly phenomenal, frustrating, powerful read that will provide you a new perspective on the world.