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They’re in! Let’s see what all the celebrity book clubs have selected for March 2022.
Celebrity book clubs are so big now. Their selections will oftentimes hit the New York Times Bestsellers list. So book lovers do pay close attention to what they select.
In the past, I’ve mainly followed Reese’s Book Club, Read with Jenna from the Today Show and Good Morning America’s Book Club. But there are actually several more to consider as well! It honestly feels like a new celebrity book club pops up every month.
I decided it would be fun to write up each selection at the beginning of the month, along with my thoughts. If you’re followed them in the past, you know some picks are amazing and some are questionable.
Here they are!
Reese’s Book Club
The Club by Ellery Lloyd
Reese’s Book Club has selected The Club by Ellery Lloyd, which is a murder mystery set in the exclusive world of celebrity clubs. Here’s the synopsis:
Everyone’s Dying to Join . . .
The Home Group is a glamorous collection of celebrity members’ clubs dotted across the globe, where the rich and famous can party hard and then crash out in its five-star suites, far from the prying eyes of fans and the media.
The most spectacular of all is Island Home—a closely-guarded, ultraluxurious resort, just off the English coast—and its three-day launch party is easily the most coveted A-list invite of the decade.
But behind the scenes, tensions are at breaking point: the ambitious and expensive project has pushed the Home Group’s CEO and his long-suffering team to their absolute limits. All of them have something to hide—and that’s before the beautiful people with their own ugly secrets even set foot on the island.
As tempers fray and behavior worsens, as things get more sinister by the hour and the body count piles up, some of Island Home’s members will begin to wish they’d never made the guest list.
Because at this club, if your name’s on the list, you’re not getting out.
Initial thoughts: On the surface, that sounds interesting. Also, there’s probably some irony there that a celebrity picks a book about celebrities. But to be honest, I’m not super excited as I’m concerned it might get into ridiculous psychological thriller arena. Don’t get me wrong, some psychological thrillers are good but many are repetitive. That said, I’m still going to read it as I did recently receive an ARC.
Read with Jenna
Groundskeeping by Lee Cole
While Reese selects all kinds of genres, Jenna from the Today Show tends to stick with literary fiction. Her latest pick is Groundskeeping by Lee Cole. This story follows two people from very different backgrounds as they navigate love during a complicated time in America’s history. Here’s the synopsis:
In the run-up to the 2016 election, Owen Callahan, an aspiring writer, moves back to Kentucky to live with his Trump-supporting uncle and grandfather. Eager to clean up his act after wasting time and potential in his early twenties, he takes a job as a groundskeeper at a small local college, in exchange for which he is permitted to take a writing course.
Here he meets Alma Hazdic, a writer in residence who seems to have everything that Owen lacks—a prestigious position, an Ivy League education, success as a writer. They begin a secret relationship, and as they grow closer, Alma—who comes from a liberal family of Bosnian immigrants—struggles to understand Owen’s fraught relationship with family and home.
Exquisitely written; expertly crafted; dazzling in its precision, restraint, and depth of feeling, Groundskeeping is a novel of haunting power and grace from a prodigiously gifted young writer.
Initial thoughts: Ok, this is an interesting choice from Jenna—especially with such a focus on politics. But then again, she does tend to pick novels with a message from time to time. I’m quite curious about this one.
GMA Book Club
The Love of My Life by Rosie Walsh
The Love of My Life by Rosie Walsh is a thriller about some dark secrets that are about to come to light. Here’s the synopsis:
Emma loves her husband Leo and their young daughter Ruby: she’d do anything for them. But almost everything she’s told them about herself is a lie.
And she might just have got away with it, if it weren’t for her husband’s job. Leo is an obituary writer; Emma a well-known marine biologist. When she suffers a serious illness, Leo copes by doing what he knows best – researching and writing about his wife’s life. But as he starts to unravel the truth, he discovers the woman he loves doesn’t really exist. Even her name isn’t real.
When the very darkest moments of Emma’s past finally emerge, she must somehow prove to Leo that she really is the woman he always thought she was . . .
But first, she must tell him about the other love of her life.
Initial thoughts: This synopsis is intriguing! Quick and to the point—it does reveal just enough to make you question what the secrets are but not too much that you can guess what will happen.
Audacious Book Club (Roxane Gay)
How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu
Writer Roxane Gay has selected How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu for her Audacious Book Club. This story follows a cast of intricately linked characters over hundreds of years as humanity struggles to rebuild itself in the aftermath of a climate plague. Here’s the synopsis:
In 2030, a grieving archeologist arrives in the Arctic Circle to continue the work of his recently deceased daughter at the Batagaika Crater, where researchers are studying long-buried secrets now revealed in melting permafrost, including the perfectly preserved remains of a girl who appears to have died of an ancient virus.
Once unleashed, the Arctic plague will reshape life on Earth for generations to come, quickly traversing the globe, forcing humanity to devise a myriad of moving and inventive ways to embrace possibility in the face of tragedy. In a theme park designed for terminally ill children, a cynical employee falls in love with a mother desperate to hold on to her infected son. A heartbroken scientist searching for a cure finds a second chance at fatherhood when one of his test subjects—a pig—develops the capacity for human speech. A widowed painter and her teenaged granddaughter embark on a cosmic quest to locate a new home planet.
From funerary skyscrapers to hotels for the dead to interstellar starships, Sequoia Nagamatsu takes readers on a wildly original and compassionate journey, spanning continents, centuries, and even celestial bodies to tell a story about the resilience of the human spirit, our infinite capacity to dream, and the connective threads that tie us all together in the universe.
Initial thoughts: I’ve had my eye on this one for a while and I think it sounds engaging and will no doubt be very impactful.
Read with Marie Claire
The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley
Read with Marie Claire selected The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley. The author behind Reese’s June 2020 Book Club Pick The Guest List returns with a new locked room mystery, which is set in a Paris apartment. Here’s the synopsis:
Jess needs a fresh start. She’s broke and alone, and she’s just left her job under less than ideal circumstances. Her half-brother Ben didn’t sound thrilled when she asked if she could crash with him for a bit, but he didn’t say no, and surely everything will look better from Paris. Only when she shows up – to find a very nice apartment, could Ben really have afforded this? – he’s not there.
The longer Ben stays missing, the more Jess starts to dig into her brother’s situation, and the more questions she has. Ben’s neighbors are an eclectic bunch, and not particularly friendly. Jess may have come to Paris to escape her past, but it’s starting to look like it’s Ben’s future that’s in question.
The socialite – The nice guy – The alcoholic – The girl on the verge – The concierge
Everyone’s a neighbor. Everyone’s a suspect. And everyone knows something they’re not telling.
Initial thoughts: I’m a big fan of Lucy Foley’s novels so I’m all in on this one! In fact, I selected it as a must-read book club pick for 2022. I think she writes fascinating mysteries that also serve as character studies as well.
Barnes & Noble
One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle
One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle is a magical realism story about the bond between mother and daughter. Also, the setting is the best—Amalfi Coast. Here’s the synopsis:
When Katy’s mother dies, she is left reeling. Carol wasn’t just Katy’s mom, but her best friend and first phone call. She had all the answers and now, when Katy needs her the most, she is gone. To make matters worse, their planned mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: to Positano, the magical town where Carol spent the summer right before she met Katy’s father. Katy has been waiting years for Carol to take her, and now she is faced with embarking on the adventure alone.
But as soon as she steps foot on the Amalfi Coast, Katy begins to feel her mother’s spirit. Buoyed by the stunning waters, beautiful cliffsides, delightful residents, and, of course, delectable food, Katy feels herself coming back to life.
And then Carol appears—in the flesh, healthy, sun-tanned, and thirty years old. Katy doesn’t understand what is happening, or how—all she can focus on is that she has somehow, impossibly, gotten her mother back. Over the course of one Italian summer, Katy gets to know Carol, not as her mother, but as the young woman before her. She is not exactly who Katy imagined she might be, however, and soon Katy must reconcile the mother who knew everything with the young woman who does not yet have a clue.
Rebecca Serle’s next great love story is here, and this time it’s between a mother and a daughter. With her signature “heartbreaking, redemptive, and authentic” (Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author) prose, Serle has crafted a transcendent novel about how we move on after loss, and how the people we love never truly leave us.
Initial thoughts: This is another book on my huge book list list for 2022 so you know I’m all about it! I am actually currently reading it and I’m really enjoying it. It’s one of those books that will stick with me for a long time.
Let me know which book you’re planning to read!