Jenna Bush Hager recommends 6 books on family and love
Jenna Bush Hager, a Today show co-anchor and best-selling author, hosts Today's book club, Read With Jenna. Hager's new memoir, Everything Beautiful in Its Time, pays fond tribute to her grandparents, Barbara and President George H.W. Bush.
Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez (1985).
The perfect book to read now, as we think about what love might mean in the time of coronavirus. It's an epic love story filled with the poetic words of Gabriel García Márquez. I plan to reread it this fall!
The Comeback by Ella Berman (2020).
This compulsively readable novel ended my pandemic dry spell. It opens with a flashback before returning to the present and the current life of a onetime teen movie star who disappeared at the height of her career. This book will give readers their fix of both gossip and intellectual stimulation — and it was my Read With Jenna pick for August.
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara (2015).
A capacious coming-of-age tale about heartbreak, friendship, and the journey to escape our past, this novel and its characters consumed me.
Charlotte's Web by E.B. White (1952).
I read Charlotte's Web to my daughter Mila and we wept together, moved not only by the friendship between Wilbur and Charlotte but also by E.B. White's wonderful writing. I'm not sure there has ever been a more beautiful passage written than "The crickets felt it was their duty to warn everybody that summertime cannot last forever. Even on the most beautiful days in the whole year — the days when summer is changing into autumn — the crickets spread the rumor of sadness and change."
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones (2018).
This story taught me so much about what it means to love and to be loved. An American Marriage is an intimate portrayal of a young African-American couple whose marriage is tested when the husband is accused of a crime he didn't commit.
Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi (2020).
Gifty is a character I wish I could sit down and have dinner with. She struggles with her family's history of mental illness and addiction and copes by studying the brain in a quest to understand what she has suffered. My September Read With Jenna pick wraps science, faith, and family into a poignant story.
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