Our Favorite Books

Anxious People
by Fredrick Backman

"This story is about a lot of things, but mostly about idiots."

This is one of the first lines of Anxious People, and it hooked me from the start. Anxious People is about an apartment-showing-turned-hostage-situation and all the people involved, from the pregnant young couple and agreeable old woman to the hapless bank robber who put them in the situation and the reluctant father-son police team investigating the aftermath. It's a funny, relatable, and deeply compassionate look at why people are The Way That They Are and whether they can change.

Katie's Pick

Red, White & Royal Blue
by Casey McQuiston

It's a modern-day fairy tale in every sense of the word modern. This book will have you on the edge of your seat in excitement, and usually the good kind. It is laugh out loud funny, even as it deals with very real issues Alex and Henry face. We could not stop talking about this book - even messaging each other our reactions as things happened.

But believe me - we have a lot more to say about this one. At least an episode's worth (maybe two).

Bailey & Katie's Pick

by Tracy Deonn

Wow. Just wow. Until I read Legendborn, I had been struggling to find YA fantasy that I genuinely enjoyed, for a variety of reasons. But Tracy Deonn knocks it out of the park with this book. She is self-proclaimed fantasy lover, and it shows in her novel. I'm obsessed with it.

Legendborn follows Bree Matthews as she navigates loss, love, and understanding a world she didn't even know existed when she arrived on UNC's campus. She must find her place in this modern world, even as she learns more about her family's past.

Bailey's Pick

The Blade Itself
by Joe Abercrombie

The First Law series is one of my favorite series and a go to recommendation. It has everything: huge fantasy world, a dash of magic, and everyone's favorite morally gray characters. Each time I pick up this series I am immersed in the struggle, and each time I close the book, I feel a sense of loss for having to leave.

Joe Abercrombie weaves a complicated tale of power, both political and individual, and blurs the line between who we think of as "good" and "bad."

Bailey's Pick

The Invisible Life of
Addie LaRue
by V.E. Schwab

Addie LaRue just wanted more time to find a life that fulfilled her. She got way more time than she bargained for, but every gift comes at a cost.

This book intrigues you from the start, and you feel like you have to stick around to find out more about Addie and how she got where she was. I (Bailey) spent a surprising amount of time guessing who was up to what while genuinely enjoying the experiences of the characters.

Bailey & Katie's Pick

The Last Time I Lied
by Riley Sager

I (Katie) am too scared to watch horror movies but am a thriller novel junkie (I'm not saying it makes sense). As a connoisseur of all things tense and scary (but only on paper [but actually only as audiobooks]), I can usually see the Big Reveal coming a mile away.

The Last Time I Lied was able to keep me guessing without becoming farcical and gave memorable, satisfying endings to both the present and past mysteries. I still find myself thinking about it years after my first read.

Katie's Pick