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FIRST Book Club: 7 Feel-Great Reads You’ll Love for March 29th – April 4th

Welcome, literature lovers, to the FIRST for Women weekly book club!

Here at FIRST for Women, when we’re not hard at work bringing you stories about health, nutrition, beauty and lifestyle, we like to kick back with a good book.

We know firsthand that reading provides relief from stress, improves brain health and ushers in more joy. So we rounded up our editors’ seven top picks for March 29th – April 4th, 2024. from romance, suspense, humor, magical realism and more. Read on for our FIRST book club picks!

We’d also love to hear what books you’re reading this month and how they made you feel!

Romance: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me

by Mariana Zapata

The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata (FIRST BOOK CLUB)

“I’m not really an avid sports fan, but there’s just something about a sports romance that I can always get behind,” says Raquel Lekic, FIRST Editorial Assistant. “And this book is the ultimate slow-burn love story. I could not put it down!” Vanessa is the personal assistant to the gruff, handsome pro football player Aiden Graves. One day, she finally works up the courage to quit and pursue her own dreams. So she’s shocked when Aiden comes crawling back. Now, he’s asking Vanessa to do him a favor of epic — and slightly illegal — proportions. “Mariana Zapata has the magic touch when it comes to romance,” says Raquel, “and this book now holds a top spot among my favorites!” (Avon, 2023)

Suspense: The Lost Van Gogh

by Jonathan Santlofer

The Lost Van Gogh by Jonathan Santlofer (FIRST BOOK CLUB)
Sourcebooks Landmark

“My late grandmother was a huge art lover, and I still remember the first time she showed me the vibrant, swirling hues of Van Gogh when I was a kid,” recalls Kristina Mastrocola, FIRST Senior Editor. “This novel brought all those memories back!” When art student Alex Verde buys a simple painting at an antiques store, she’s stunned to discover a long-lost self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh beneath it. She and her boyfriend, Luke, are soon swept into a dangerous world of art theft as they travel to France and the Netherlands to uncover the truth behind the painting. Says Kristina, “I was transported by this story that weaves together the sobering lessons of history with the power of hope embodied in the best works of art.” (Sourcebooks Landmark, 2024)

Family Saga: The Young of Other Animals 

by Chris Cander

The Young of Other Animals by Chris Cander (first book club)
Little A

“My book club chose this novel for our latest read,” says Carey Ostergard, FIRST Executive Editor. “And I was immediately hooked by this gripping story about mothers, daughters and the secrets that sometimes come between them.” It’s 1989 and Mayree and Paula are a distant mother-and-daughter duo who have been separated by grief after the death of Mayree’s husband. As Mayree struggles with an unknown future, Paula is grappling with the loss of the father she loved. One day, after Paula attends a party, she narrowly avoids an assault and tells her mother about it. Mayree’s first reaction is disbelief, but as more details unravel, it becomes evident that someone is out to get them. Soon, Paula faces new threats, and then old family secrets begin to surface. Together, Paula and Mayree must summon strength and hope to save the relationship they never quite realized they’d lost. Says Carey, “Thought-provoking and suspenseful, this story stuck with me long after the last page!” (Little A, 2024

Cozy Mystery: A Fatal Groove

by Olivia Blacke

A Fatal Groove By: Olivia Blacke (First book club)
St. Martin's Paperbacks

“I love spending Saturdays finding treasures at my local flea market — especially vinyl records,” shares Lauren Blum, FIRST Associate Editor. “So I had to give this record-themed cozy mystery a read!” Sisters Juni, Tansy and Maggie — owners­ of the Sip & Spin Records vinyl record and coffee shop — bring their music and sips to the spring Bluebonnet Festival. But when the mayor drops dead after drinking their coffee, they must find the killer to clear their names. Says Lauren, “Full of twists and turns, this was a delightful caper!” (St. Martin’s, 2023)

Humor: The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties

by Jesse Q. Sutanto

The Good, the Bad, and the Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto (FIRST book club

“Last week I had a long flight and I needed a book to keep me entertained,” says Melissa D’Agnese, FIRST Senior Editor. “This had me laughing out loud!” After their honeymoon, Meddy Chan and her husband, Nathan, arrive in Jakarta to spend Chinese New Year with her family. What follows is a hysterical series of antics featuring Meddy’s four aunties, rival criminal families and a twisty mystery. “This is the third book in Jesse Q. Sutanto’s Aunties series and it’s such a fun ride!” (Berkley, 2024)

Magical Realism: Expiration Dates

by Rebecca Serle

expiration dates by rebecca serle (first book club)
Atria Books

“I prefer romance over fantasy books, but this story combined both in a magical way,” says Patty Bontekoe, FIRST Executive Editor. Every time she starts dating, Daphne finds a slip of paper with her love interest’s name and a number on it: the amount of time they’ll date. After years of notes, she finally gets one with only a name — no number. Is he the one? “Daphne’s love note mystery kept me reading all night,” says Patty, “and finding out about the secret she’s keeping added to the allure!” (Atria, 2024)

Literary Fiction: Fleishman Is in Trouble

by Taffy Brodesser-Akner

fleishman is in trouble by taffy brodesser-akner (FIRST book club)
Random House

“A good friend kept recommending this novel — which was recently turned into a Hulu miniseries by the same name, starring Claire Danes — and it exceeded my expectations,” says Abbey Bender, FIRST Digital Editor. Wealthy doctor Toby Fleishman’s perfect life is turned upside down after a messy divorce — and his ex-wife’s subsequent disappearance, leading him to realize he didn’t know her as well as he thought. Says Abbey, “The writing is witty and alternates between laugh-out-loud funny and surprisingly poignant.” (Random House, 2019)

For more FIRST Book Club picks:

FIRST Book Club: 7 Feel-Great Reads You’ll Love For March 22nd – March 28th

FIRST Book Club: 7 Feel-Great Reads You’ll Love For March 2024

FIRST Book Club: 7 Feel-Great Reads You’ll Love For February 2024

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