Grown-Up Reads

The Best Grown-Up Reads of April 2018

by Jennie Yabroff

Photo credit: jayk7, Moment Open/Getty Images

April brings the promise of warmer weather, buds on the trees, and the possibility of a really great April Fool’s Day joke (toothpaste-stuffed Oreos, anyone?). Take a break from preparing your taxes — or filing for an extension — and taking your summer clothes out of storage to enjoy one of this month’s many enticing new books. If the weather cooperates, you might even be able to read it in the park.

  • The Female Persuasion

    by Meg Wolitzer

    The word mentor is both a noun and a verb, but its definition is hazy: What does it mean to be a mentor? Is it always good to have one? Beloved novelist Meg Wolitzer’s latest book explores the mentor-mentee relationship between Greer, an ambitious, driven, and talented young woman, and the older feminist icon who takes Greer under her wing. A great read for anyone who has thought, “I wish I could be her” about a powerful figure who seems to have it all.
    (On Sale: 4/3/18)

  • My American Dream: A Life of Love, Family, and Food

    by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich

    Before there was Mario, there was Lidia, the nonna of Italian cooking whose warm and inviting approach in the kitchen has made her a mainstay of public television for years and spawned several cookbooks. In this memoir, Bastianich writes about her eventful past fleeing communists in Yugoslavia-occupied Italy, spending two years in a refugee camp, and finally coming to America, where she started working in restaurants at the age of 12. Read this to be inspired, both in life and in the kitchen.
    (On Sale: 4/3/18)

  • No One Ever Asked

    by Katie Ganshert

    In this timely novel based on an endlessly sensitive subject, Ganshert describes the tensions that arise when two schools — one affluent, one impoverished — merge their students. Three characters are caught in the conflict, all with high personal stakes that enable Ganshert to explore this controversial, often incendiary subject from all sides with compassion. Read it for the well-drawn characters, the thought-provoking premise, and the unexpected ending.
    (On Sale: 4/3/18)

  • After Anna

    by Lisa Scottoline

    In Lisa Scottoline’s latest domestic thriller, a second chance at happiness turns out to be the beginning of a terrifying new life. When Maggie is reunited with Anna, the daughter she hasn’t seen since she was a baby, Maggie thinks her happy ending has finally arrived. But Anna isn’t at all who Maggie thinks she is, and her appearance in Maggie’s life causes her to realize she doesn’t know anyone as well as she thought — least of all her husband, who may be hiding a dark and violent secret. This one will have you wondering how well you can really know your family.
    (On Sale: 4/10/18)

  • How to Raise Kind Kids: And Get Respect, Gratitude, and a Happier Family in the Bargain

    by Thomas Lickona

    We tell our kids not to hit, or tease, or call each other names, because it isn’t nice. But what does it actually mean to be a nice person? And how do we raise our kids to be kind, compassionate, thoughtful human beings? In this book, developmental psychologist Lickona offers concrete ideas for imbuing your young ones with empathy and graciousness. They’ll thank you for it later, and you’ll thank yourself for it right away.
    (On Sale: 4/10/18)

  • A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out

    by Sally Franson

    Everyone has their price in this whip-smart comedy about what happens when personal integrity meets an offer it can’t refuse. Casey is a PR exec who loves her life of turning people into brands — except for when that nagging voice reminds her of her first true love: literature. When Casey embarks on a campaign to get her literary heroes to sign on with her agency and shill for everything from granola to stretch pants, she must question the true meaning of integrity, love, and whether it's possible to sell out while remaining true to yourself.
    (On Sale: 4/10/18)

  • Natural Causes: An Epidemic of Wellness, the Certainty of Dying, and Killing Ourselves to Live Longer

    by Barbara Ehrenreich

    Immortality is easy, right? If we just exercise all the time, meditate for hours, remember to be mindful, go to the doctor, eat kale, take vitamins, and wear expensive sunscreen, we’ll live forever. Not only is this myth of eternal life untrue, Natural Causes asserts, it’s making us miserable in the finite time we do have. Applying the same penetrating fact-based approach she took in her past bestsellers on poverty, breast cancer, and the search for happiness, Ehrenreich argues that aging is inevitable, and we should enjoy the time we have rather than drive ourselves crazy trying to extend it.
    (On Sale: 4/10/18)

  • Brown

    by Kevin Young

    This collection of poems from the new poetry editor of The New Yorker explores brownness in all its contexts, from John Brown’s body to Brown vs. the Topeka Board of Education. In 32 poems, some intended to be spoken aloud, the writer considers brownness — and blackness — from every angle, turning the experience of race in America over and over in his hands, then describing what he sees in elegant, spare lines. A book for poetry lovers and social activists alike.
    (On Sale: 4/17/18)

  • The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After

    by Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil

    Wamariya fled the Rwandan massacre and spent years as a refugee in Africa, literally fighting for her life on a daily basis. When she came to America with her sister, Claire, her struggle for daily survival was over, but a new fight had just begun. In this poignant memoir, Wamariya questions what it means to be a victim, what it means to be a survivor, and what we actually mean when we talk about the “American dream.” A book to change the way you think about war, childhood, and resilience forever.
    (On Sale: 4/24/18)

  • You Think It, I’ll Say It: Stories

    by Curtis Sittenfeld

    This collection marks Sittenfeld’s first foray into short fiction, and each of its ten stories is a treat. The bestselling author of Prep and American Wife stays true to her socially incisive, funny-yet-heartbreaking style as she chronicles the high hopes and quiet heartbreaks, dreams, and betrayals of a group of characters who together represent the fractured, fractious, but somehow still optimistic American landscape. A great read for anyone who loves stories about people, flaws and all.
    (On Sale: 4/24/18)

What other new books would you recommend for April? Let us know in the comments below!