Book Club Recommendations

Book Club Recommendations

Book Club Recommendations

Some times my book club considers it challenging to find thoughtful, discussable books. Does your book club face that dilemma?

Often after finishing a book, I think: This would make a great book club selection. Usually, I base this opinion on the discussion possibilities and thoughtful themes or relevant issues.

See this post I wrote all about starting and organizing a book club.

If it would be helpful, here’s a list of books I’ve read that I can confidently recommend for my book club or yours (most suggestions are made with women in mind). The list is also heavily weighted toward historical fiction because I spend most of my reading hours in this genre. I hope you find this list a useful resource in choosing your next read!

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Grouped by Star Rating (in no particular order) and by Genre (Titles are Amazon affiliate links or links to my reviews):

Historical Fiction

The Last Train to Key West by Chanel Cleeton 5 Stars (4.5)

The Last Train to London by Meg Waite Clayton 5 Stars (4.5)

The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri 5 Stars (4.5)

Ribbons of Scarlet by Kate Quinn et al. 5 Stars

The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali 5 Stars (4.5)

Lovely War by Julie Berry 5 Stars (4.5)

Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain (light histfic/mystery) 5 Stars (4.5)

The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys (YA) 5 Stars

The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek 5+ Stars

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd 5+ Stars

Cilka’s Journey by Heather Morros 5 Stars

The Gown by Jennifer Robson 5 Stars

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi 5 Stars

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom 5 Stars

Beantown Girls by Jane Healey 5 Stars

The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor 5 Stars

The Map of Salt and Stars by Zeyn Joukhadar 5 Stars

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys 5 Stars

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer (and Netflix movie) 5 Stars

News of the World by Paulette Jiles 5 Stars

America’s First Daughter or My Dear Hamilton by Stephanie Dray (both) 5 Stars

Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor 5 Stars

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter 5 Stars

From Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon 5 Stars

The Librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe 5 Stars

Paper Hearts by Meg Wiviott 5 Stars

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom 5 Stars

Learning to See by Elise Hooper 5 Stars

Paper Hearts by Meg Wiviott (YA free verse) 5 Stars

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (plus the movie) 5 Stars

*     *     *

The Jane Austen Society by Natalie Jenner 4 Stars

The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate 4 Stars

The Things we Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer 4 Stars

The Women of the Copper Country by Mary Doria Russell 4 Stars

The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke 4 Stars

If You Want to Make God Laugh 4 Stars

The Huntress by Kate Quinn 4 Stars

Where the Lost Wander by Amy Harmon 4 Stars

Code Name Helene by Ariel Lawhon 4.5 Stars

Hum If You Don’t Know the Words by Bianca Marais 4.5 Stars

Lady Clementine by Marie Benedict 4 Stars

Woman 99 by Greer Mccallister 4 Stars

We Hope For Better Things by Erin Bartels 4 Stars

Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris 4 Stars

The Wartime Sisters by Lynda Cohen Loigman 4 Stars

Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan 4 Stars

The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff 4 Stars

The Lieutenant’s Nurse or Island of Sweet Pies and Soldiers or Red Sky Over Hawaii  by Sara Ackerman (each) 4 Stars

And They Called It Camelot by Stephanie Marie Thornton 4 Stars

A Fall of Marigolds or As Bright as Heaven by Susan Meissner (both) 4 Stars

The Secret Keeper or The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (both) 4 Stars

The Pearl That Broke Its Shell by Nadia Hashimi 4 Stars

The Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff 4 Stars

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See 4 Stars

The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See 4 Stars

The Baker’s Secret by Stephen P. Kiernan 4 Stars

Chilbury Ladies’ Choir by Jennifer Ryan 4 Stars

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate 4 Stars

The Beautiful Strangers or The Way of Beauty by Camille Di Maio (both) 4 Stars

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford 4 Stars

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr 4 Stars

The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah 4 Stars 

Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini 4 Stars

Literary Fiction

The Dearly Beloved by Cara Wall 5+ Stars

Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane 5 Stars

Virgil Wander (5 stars) or Peace Like a River (4 Stars) by Leif Enger

Light Women’s Fiction

The Printed Letter Bookshop by Katherine Reay 4.5 Stars

This Won’t End Well by Camille Pagán 4 Stars

The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland 4 Stars

Meet Me in Monaco (romantic histfic) by H. Gaynor and H. Webb 4 Stars

Glory Road by Lauren K. Denton 4 Stars

How to Find Love in a Bookshop by Veronica Henry 4 Stars

The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters by Balli Kaur Jaswal 4 Stars

The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce 4 Stars

*     *     *

Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center 3 Stars

The Late Bloomers’ Club by Louise Miller 3 Stars

The Summer House by Lauren K Denton 3.5 Stars

General Fiction

The Scent Keeper by Erica Bauermeister 5 Stars

Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane 5 Stars

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens 5 Stars

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce 5 Stars

Beartown by Fredrik Backman 5 Stars

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman 5 Stars

Castle of Water by Duane Hucklebridge 5 Stars

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (plus the movie) 5 Stars

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng 5 Stars

The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce 5 Stars

The Lost For Words Bookshop by Stephanie Butland 5 Stars

*     *     *

Hard Cider by Barbara Stark-Nemon 4 Stars

Eden by Jeanne McWilliams Blasberg 4 Stars

The Library of Lost and Found by Phaedra Patrick 4 Stars

Meet Me At the Museum by Anne Youngson 4 Stars

The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery (classic) 4 Stars

The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood 4 Stars

Still Alice by Lisa Genova (plus the movie) 4 Stars

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin 4 Stars

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah 4 Stars

The Cactus by Sarah Haywood 4 Stars

The Secret of Clouds by Alyson Richman 4 Stars

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo (YA) 4.5 Stars


Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain 5 Stars (4.5)

The Dry or Force of Nature by Jane Harper (both) 4 Stars

Miracle Creek by Angie Kim 4 Stars

Searching For Sylvie Lee by Jean Kwok 4 Stars

The Vanished Bride 4 Stars

Light Science Fiction

The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker 4 Stars

The Dream Daughter by Diane Chamberlain 4 Stars


The Girl With the Louding Voice by Abi Daré 5 Stars

The Stationery Shop by Marjan Kamali 5 Stars (4.5)

A Place For Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza 5+ Stars

The Map of Salt and Stars by Zeyn Joukhadar 5 Stars

The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas 5 Stars

*     *     *

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson 4 Stars

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann 4 Stars

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones 4 Stars

The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray 4 Stars

Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda 4 Stars

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson 4 Stars

With the fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo 4 Stars

Non Fiction

The Only Plane in the Sky by Garrett M. Graff 5 Stars

Leadership: In Turbulent Times by Doris Kearns Goodwin 4 Stars

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson 4 Stars

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann 4 Stars


Finding Chika by Mitch Albom 5 Stars

The Girl With Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee 5 Stars

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb 5 Stars (memoir, self help)

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand (plus the movie) 5 Stars
(this is actually biography but I think of it as memoir because the author interviewed Louis Zamporini)

In Pieces by Sally Field 5 Stars

*     *     *

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson 4 Stars

Tell Me More by Kelly Corrigan 4 Stars

Born a Crime by Trevor Noah 4 Stars

Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance 4 Stars

Educated by Tara Westover 4 Stars

Wait Till Next Year by Doris Kearns Goodwin 4 Stars

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (plus the movie) 4.5 Stars


I rarely read thrillers or suspense, so I have only two titles to offer in suspense. Fortunately, Nicki at The Secret Library Book Blog came to the rescue with some other titles. (I have not read any of her titles, so reading the reviews is recommended) THANK YOU Nicki!

 The River by Peter Heller 4.5 Stars

Sea Wife by Amity Gaige 4 Stars

*     *     *
(from Nicki)

Watching You by Lisa Jewell

Need to Know by Karen Cleveland

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald

Let’s Discuss!

Do you have a book we can add to this list? What has been your favorite book that your book club has discussed? Please let me know if you choose a book from this list for your book club and how it was received.

Happy Reading Book Buddies!

“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke

“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes

“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection! Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us to understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text

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***Blogs posts may contain affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I can earn a small percentage of your purchase price.

Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.

Book Cover and author photo are credited to Amazon or an author’s (or publisher’s) website.