Shelf Life: 5 Must-Reads from Belletrist Book Club

December 28, 2017

Remember way back in the beginning of 2017 when you were going to read so many books this year?

If you followed through, congrats. But if you’re like us, maybe that particular resolution didn’t quite come true (see also: barre class). The good news? The year isn’t over just yet, and this is the perfect week to cozy up with a good read.

We weren’t sure where to begin, so we asked Karah Preiss of Belletrist what’s topping her reading list these days. She and actress Emma Roberts started the online book club in the spring, and each month, the pair chooses a woman-authored book to feature.

“We wanted to create a community that is representative of women who like to read, and everything that falls under that lifestyle—the authors, the conversations, and the bookstores,” says Karah. “We wanted to provide this space where you can feel as though you’re part of something bigger.”

Here, Karah recommends five of her favorites—and we recommend clearing some space on your bookshelf.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
This is one of Emma’s favorite books of all time. It takes place twenty years after a mysterious virus wreaks havoc on North America, and follows a young actress in a traveling Shakespeare company. The story is as suspenseful as it is philosophical, and is ultimately a story about ways humanity can survive anything. Believe us, it’s a page-turner.”

Marlena by Julie Buntin
“We love Marlena because it’s a real portrait of a year-long friendship between teenage girls, and exposes how difficult it is to stay true to oneself at that age. It’s also a murder mystery, as it opens with a death of one of the characters—that’s all we can say. We’re not giving anything away—you’ll have to read it!”

The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy
“A must-read for fans of memoir and long-form journalism. Ariel Levy’s memoir details her life from growing up in Larchmont, NY to becoming a prolific New Yorker writer. The book culminates in her honest description of dealing with a traumatic loss in her 40s while traveling on assignment in Mongolia. It examines the flip side of contentment, which is confronting the inevitability of choosing how you want your life to be.”

The Outsiders (50th Anniversary Edition) by S.E. Hinton
“It’s hard to find a high school graduate who hasn’t read The Outsiders, but for those who haven’t—and those who have, but haven’t in a while—this year’s 50th anniversary edition is a worthwhile addition to your bookshelf. This edition of the book includes a ton of exclusive content ranging from original set photography from the iconic Francis Ford Coppola adaptation, a gallery of international cover art, and photos from S.E. Hinton’s original collection.”

Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion
“Originally published in 1968, Slouching Towards Bethlehem is essential reading for any aspiring writer or reader. The book is a collection of essays written by Joan Didion over the course of the 1960s, covering a wide range of then-current topics with a focus on California and the counter-culture. This is a book to be read and re-read many times and at various points in one’s life.”

In need of a read? Shop our book collection here.