book club picks for fall

Curl up with fall book club picks

In Living by Angela Amman1 Comment

Book club picks for even the most indecisive book clubs

Spike your apple cider and settle in for a fantastic book club discussion this month. November book club picks get in the autumn spirit with everything from books about the supernatural to stories about dysfunctional families that will leave you feeling a little better about the upcoming holiday stress.

book club picks

Stay awake at night with suspense stories

The Returned by Jason Mott gives a family a second chance at the life they imagined, when an older couple finds their eight-year-old son on their doorstep — a son they’d come to terms with losing many, many years ago (Barnes & Noble, $14). Jacob isn’t the only one who has returned, and families find themselves curious about what seems to be a miracle, even as events bring the world around them into chaos. If it sounds familiar, you may have seen the television series based on the novel, which premiered this fall.

The Hunger Games Trilogy isn’t supernatural, but the landscape of Panem offers a lot to fear in Mockingjay, the third novel in Suzanne Collins’ iconic books (Barnes & Noble, $8). Katniss Everdeen didn’t expect to be alive after she’s thrust into the Hunger Games for the second time. She made it through the worst the games could throw at her, only to find something worse looming outside of the arena.

The action-packed book is rife with political commentary, as Katniss realizes the role she needs to play in District 13’s rebellion against the Capitol. If you’ve already read the trilogy, re-read it before Mockingjay, Part 1 comes to theaters this month. Fans are already trying to guess at which point the movie will end, with the second part slated to come out in 2015.

book club picks
All families have their own brand of dysfunction

Your family’s summer vacations might not have the advantage of a private island, but E. Lockhart shows even the most privileged families have their issues inWe Were Liars (Barnes & Noble, $12). When Cadence returns to her mother’s summer home, after a summer spent with her dad in Europe and with a spotty case of amnesia arising from an accident that happened her last summer on the island, everything is different.

Her beloved cousins — and a close friend of the family who shares a rocky, romantic past with Cadence — won’t even spend time with their grandfather, or “the aunts”, at the family patriarch’s estate. Cadence struggles to reclaim her memory, and the secrets she might have learned about her family prior to her accident. A quick, mesmerizing read, We Were Liars will appeal to readers who love young adult lit — and readers who will love it after reading Lockhart’s novel.

If your book club loved This is Where I Leave Youmine definitely did! — you’ll love Jonathan Tropper’s One Last Thing Before I Go (Barnes & Noble, $11). Silver’s fractured family is about to get even more complicated. His ex-wife is getting re-married, and even Silver can’t quite decide to hate her new man, and his daughter announces her pregnancy on the cusp of her enrollment at an Ivy League school. Tropper does family dysfunction in the best possible way — couching heartbreak and cringe-worthy moments in the humor that makes families bearable.

book club picks for fall

Get empowered with a new memoir

Amy Poehler is the kind of mom you’d love to have in your book club. Funny, intelligent, and not afraid to laugh at herself, she gives off the impression that she’d be a fabulous addition to your wine-drinking, book-reading, belly-laughing, girls’ nights in. Since she’s not exactly easy to contact, you’ll have to make due with Yes Please (Barnes & Noble, $18). Like you might expect, Yes Please isn’t simply your typical memoir: there are lists, haikus, and stories running the gamut from her childhood to frank discussions about when she’s made a mess of things — and I don’t mean her kitchen.

If you don’t have a book club at the moment, consider our five tips for starting a book club

What are you reading this November?

Meet the Author | Angela Amman

Angela Amman is a short story and essay writer. Collecting her family's stories is a gift-in-progress for her daughter and son, and she blogs at Playing with Words, capturing the craziness and beauty that weave together to create something extraordinary. As the co-director of Listen To Your Mother Metro Detroit, Angela is thrilled to bring others' stories to the stage and to celebrate the magic of words, storytelling, and the courage to share that magic with an audience. When she should be sleeping, she works on her latest short story collection. Her writing has been featured on Mamalode, Peacock Journal, and Scary Mommy. Her personal essays and short stories have appeared in her collection, Nothing Goes Away, and various anthologies.


  1. I really liked This Is Where I Leave You so I may need to pick up this other book by him. Also, MUST read Amy’s book and We Were Liars sounds good too! Thanks for the recs!

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