6 Books to Read Right Now + 3 Tips for Making Time to Read

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Calling all readers! Here’s a list of 6 excellent reads and my own book-worm tested tips for finding time in our busy days to read.

Here are 6 books you should read right now:

Something Scary

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara:  YIKES! I had to read this one with the lights on. It’s so scary because these murders actually happened, but this book is also part memoir, and its brilliant, funny writer died her own tragic death while writing. Come for the horror story; stay for the masterfully crafted research; linger for the book’s sad circumstances.

Poetry

Wade in the Water by Tracy K. Smith: I know what you’re thinking. POETRY? I haven’t read poetry since that one unit in high school or that English class in college I actually never read anything for. Samesies. But! Smith is the poet laureate of the United States, and this book is lovely. Her poems are both historical and personal, and they’re easy to understand and appreciate, even if it’s been ages since you cracked the spine of a chapbook. 

Something Funny

Other People’s Houses by Abbi Waxman: Light! Fluffy! Deeply engaging. I loved this story of a mom and her friends in the ‘burbs because I am a mom in the burbs! And I always wonder what’s going on behind other people’s closed doors. What can I say? I am nosy like that.

A Memoir

Educated by Tara Westover: If you have a book club, this is a perfect title to read with friends because parts of this true story are so unbelievable, you need to help each other pick your jaws up off the floor. Westover is a wonderful writer, and her vivid memories of a harrowing childhood will leave you breathless.

A Masterpiece

The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai. Ok. I read a lot. This year, I am on track to break 200 books, and I have read over 780 in the last 5 years. And this book? Might be the best thing I have ever read. This story will make you laugh. You will fall in love with the characters, and you will cry. A lot.  This book is set in Chicago in the 1980’s at the outset of the AIDS epidemic and also in current-day Paris. It’s a total page-turner, but I had to force myself to slow down and savor every perfectly chosen word. Read this one, and then tell me what you thought!

Something for Parents

How to Be a Happier Parent by KJ Dell’Antonia: This book is BRILLIANT. It’s smart and funny, full of good research and advice from the writer’s own experience as a mom of 4. I have already implemented some of her smooth morning tips with great success. Read this one—you won’t be sorry!

You are busy; I know. You have a house and kids and responsibilities. You have TV shows to watch and podcasts to stay caught up with and Instagram feeds to scroll. I do, too. If you want to read a book, though, I bet you can make time.

Tips for carving out reading time:

  • Read when you would stare at your phone. I carry a huge purse and usually have a library book in it, but my mom takes a loaded iPad everywhere she wants to read, and lots of my friends read books on their phones.  Making your book portable lets you squeeze in a few pages wherever you happen to be.
  • Try an audiobook instead. I LOVE being read to and often listen to books on CD in my car or to library books on my phone through the library’s Overdrive app. If you are not a total cheapskate like me, you could also get your audiobooks from Audible.
  • Hold yourself accountable for logging reading hours. It’s hard to find time to read when no one is making us, so find some external accountability. Join Goodreads, and set a yearly reading challenge. Join a book club. Heck, start a book club. I also find that having library books with firm deadlines helps me make sure I am reading, and setting up a weekly time to go to the library keeps me on top of my holds list.

I’d love to hear about any excellent books you have read lately. Follow me on Goodreads to get all of my current recs. 

Happy reading!

Sarah Jedd has a Ph.D. in communication arts from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches and studies the rhetoric of Planned Parenthood. Sarah has 5 (F I V E) children: teens Harry and Jack, elementary schoolers Cooper and Dorothy, and sweet baby Minnie, born in August 2020. Sarah blogs about being a mom of many at harrytimes.com and overshares on IG as @sarahjedd. Sarah, her husband, and their kids live in Verona with the world's laziest dog.

4 COMMENTS

  1. I love this post, Sarah! I’m an avid reader as well – such an important part of who I am. From your list above I read I’ll Be Gone in the Dark and did the audiobook of Educated. Loved them both. I also love Goodreads – I will connect with you there. 🙂

  2. I live just a few miles from where the GSK was arrested and I LOVED I’ll Be Gone in the Dark! But I also totally slept with the lights on a couple nights afterwards. Do you know about the Libby app? It’s an e-reader app that links to your library card and can do both ebooks and audiobooks. It’s super easy and intuitive

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