The HMB Team’s 2017 Book Recommendations

I love to read.  Some of my earliest memories involve running into the tiny bookstore at our mall and begging my mom to buy me “just one more book.”  The bookworm in me evolved from Berenstain Bears to Sweet Valley Twins – and beyond.  I think a good book is an escape from reality and a way to unwind after a long day.

Becoming a mom brought on a different reading dynamic for me – from endless hours of reading on my Kindle while nursing a tiny baby to reading board books to a toddler and now a Kindergartener excitedly bringing home library books from school.  I love the bonding time a good book can bring with me and my kids.  But as a mom, I think it’s also very important to make time for a book just for me.

We understand that mom life is busy and searching for a good book takes precious time and energy, both of which are in short supply these days.  With that in mind, the HMB Team has pooled together our favorite books we’ve read in 2017.  Some are old and others are new releases.  They cover various genres.  We’ve even included links {just hover the title} and info, so there are no excuses, mama!

The HMB Team's 2017 Book Recommendations | Houston Moms Blog

Too Late by Colleen Hoover

Contributor Recommendation :: Heather

Synopsis :: “Sloan will go through hell and back for her little brother. And she does, every single night.  Forced to remain in a relationship with the dangerous and corrupt Asa Jackson, Sloan will do whatever it takes to make sure her brother has what he needs.” {See more at Goodreads.}

The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle

Contributor Recommendation :: Brittney

Synopsis :: “Iris and Will’s marriage is as close to perfect as it can be: a large house in a nice Atlanta neighborhood, rewarding careers and the excitement of trying for their first baby. But on the morning Will leaves for a business trip to Orlando, Iris’s happy world comes to an abrupt halt. Another plane headed for Seattle has crashed into a field, killing everyone on board, and according to the airline, Will was one of the passengers on this plane.” {See more at Goodreads.}

The Blood of the Lamb by Peter De Vries

Contributor Recommendation :: Jennifer

Synopsis :: “The most poignant of all De Vries’s novels, The Blood of the Lamb is also the most autobiographical. It follows the life of Don Wanderhop from his childhood in an immigrant Calvinist family living in Chicago in the 1950s through the loss of a brother, his faith, his wife, and finally his daughter-a tragedy drawn directly from De Vries’s own life. Despite its foundation in misfortune, The Blood of the Lamb offers glimpses of the comic sensibility for which De Vries was famous. Engaging directly with the reader in a manner that buttresses the personal intimacy of the story, De Vries writes with a powerful blend of grief, love, wit, and fury.” {See more at Goodreads.}

In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume

Contributor Recommendation :: Kelly

Synopsis :: “In 1987, Miri Ammerman returns to her hometown of Elizabeth, New Jersey, to attend a commemoration of the worst year of her life.  Thirty-five years earlier, when Miri was fifteen, and in love for the first time, a succession of airplanes fell from the sky, leaving a community reeling. Against this backdrop of actual events that Blume experienced in the early 1950s, when airline travel was new and exciting and everyone dreamed of going somewhere, Judy Blume imagines and weaves together a haunting story of three generations of families, friends, and strangers, whose lives are profoundly changed by these disasters.” {See more at Goodreads.}

In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

Contributor Recommendation :: Chelsea

Synopsis :: In a dark, dark wood  Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since Nora walked out of school one day and never went back. There was a dark, dark house Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen do arrives. Is this a chance for Nora to finally put her past behind her? And in the dark, dark house there was a dark, dark room  But something goes wrong. Very wrong.  And in the dark, dark room…. Some things can’t stay secret for ever.” {See more at Goodreads.}

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

Contributor Recommendation :: Erica AND Elizabeth {It’s that good!}

Synopsis :: “Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene? {See more at Goodreads.}

Theft By Finding: Diaries 1977-2002 by David Sedaris

Contributor Recommendation :: Anita

Synopsis :: “For forty years, David Sedaris has kept a diary in which he records everything that captures his attention-overheard comments, salacious gossip, soap opera plot twists, secrets confided by total strangers. These observations are the source code for his finest work, and through them he has honed his cunning, surprising sentences.” {See more at Goodreads.}

His Word Alone by Summer Lacy

Contributor Recommendation :: Andrea

Synopsis :: “After years of exploring every Bible study available in an effort to understand Scripture, Summer was awakened to the discouraging reality she knew more about the authors of her ever-present Bible studies than she did the Holy Author of the Bible. She decided it was time to put down her Bible studies and begin reading the actual Bible. Fueled by a passion for sharing the wonders of Scripture with women in all phases of life, Summer issues a call in His Word Alone to Bible study girls everywhere to put away their Bible studies and pick up the Bible. Summer is thoroughly convinced of God’s ability to use His word to meet us each individually, and assures us that we are each capable, able, and called to be in His word. Whether you are a seasoned Bible study girl yourself, or just beginning to explore the Bible, His Word Alone equips, guides, and encourages you to dig into the grit, grime, and endless beauty of Scripture with your very own hands. {See more at Goodreads.}

It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

Contributor Recommendation :: Tiffanie

Synopsis :: “With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.” {See more at Goodreads.}

Tyrannosaur Canyon by Douglas Preston

Contributor Recommendation :: Jaime

Synopsis :: “A moon rock missing for thirty years…Five buckets of blood-soaked sand found in a New Mexico canyon…A scientist with ambition enough to kill…A monk who will redeem the world…A dark agency with a deadly mission…The greatest scientific discovery of all time…What fire bolt from the galactic dark shattered the Earth eons ago, and now hides in that remote cleft in the southwest U.S. known as Tyrannosaur Canyon?{See more at Goodreads.}

Bad Mommy by Tarryn Fisher

Contributor Recommendation :: Heather

Synopsis :: “When Fig Coxbury buys a house on West Barrett Street, it’s not because she likes the neighborhood, or even because she likes the house. It’s because everything she desires is next door: The husband, the child, and the life that belongs to someone else.” {See more at Amazon.}

Anything is Possible by Elizabeth Strout

Contributor Recommendation :: Kathleen

Synopsis :: Here are two sisters: one trades self-respect for a wealthy husband while the other finds in the pages of a book a kindred spirit who changes her life. The janitor at the local school has his faith tested in an encounter with an isolated man he has come to help; a grown daughter longs for mother love even as she comes to accept her mother’s happiness in a foreign country; and the adult Lucy Barton (the heroine of My Name Is Lucy Barton) returns to visit her siblings after seventeen years of absence.” {See more at Goodreads.}

Wonder by R. J. Palacio

Contributor Recommendation :: Laura

Synopsis :: “August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?” {See more at Goodreads.}

Joan of Arc by Mark Twain

Contributor Recommendation :: Jennifer

Synopsis :: “I like Joan of Arc best of all my books; and it is the best; I know it perfectly well. And besides, it furnished me seven times the pleasure afforded me by any of the others; twelve years of preparation, and two years of writing. The others needed no preparation and got none.” – Mark Twain

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Contributor Recommendation :: Kristine

Synopsis :: “The narrator, a communist double agent, is a ‘man of two minds,’ a half-French, half-Vietnamese army captain who arranges to come to America after the Fall of Saigon, and while building a new life with other Vietnamese refugees in Los Angeles is secretly reporting back to his communist superiors in Vietnam.” {See more at Goodreads.}

One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Contributor Recommendation :: Chelsea

Synopsis :: “From the author of Maybe in Another Life—named a People Magazine pick and a “Best Book of the Summer” by Glamour and USA Today—comes a breathtaking new love story about a woman unexpectedly forced to choose between the husband she has long thought dead and the fiancé who has finally brought her back to life.” {See more at Goodreads.}

Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer

Contributor Recommendation :: Jenn

Synopsis :: “Unfolding over four tumultuous weeks in present-day Washington, D.C., Here I Am is the story of a fracturing family in a moment of crisis. As Jacob and Julia Bloch and their three sons are forced to confront the distances between the lives they think they want and the lives they are living, a catastrophic earthquake sets in motion a quickly escalating conflict in the Middle East. At stake is the meaning of home – and the fundamental question of how much aliveness one can bear.{See more at Goodreads.}

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

Contributor Recommendation :: Kathleen

Synopsis :: “A tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that, despite its profound flaws, gave the author the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.” {See more at Goodreads.}

Everything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale

Contributor Recommendation :: Brittney

Synopsis :: “Sous chef Aimee Tierney has the perfect recipe for the perfect life: marry her childhood sweetheart, raise a family, and buy out her parents’ restaurant. But when her fiancé, James Donato, vanishes in a boating accident, her well-baked future is swept out to sea. Instead of walking down the aisle on their wedding day, Aimee is at James’s funeral—a funeral that leaves her more unsettled than at peace.” {See more at Goodreads.}

The Sunshine Sisters by Jane Green

Contributor Recommendation :: Tiffanie

Synopsis :: “Ronni Sunshine left London for Hollywood to become a beautiful, charismatic star of the silver screen. But at home, she was a narcissistic, disinterested mother who alienated her three daughters…” {See more at Goodreads.}

Your turn!  What’s the best book you read in 2017?



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