10 Great Books to Read by December


While our summer was full of family adventures and road trips, this Fall I’m looking forward to getting cozy and catching up on some reading. There are few things more relaxing to me than wrapping myself up in a blanket with a warm cup of coffee in one hand and a great book in the other.

Every year, I make a goal to read at least two books per month. This often times becomes difficult due to competing priorities. However, this time I’m forcing myself to put down my phone and replace scrolling through my Instagram feed with indulging in a few great books I plan on reading by December. I’m definitely guilty of using my phone too much so I’m giving myself some tech-free relaxation time.

I like reading different genres depending on my mood and interest so I usually have a few books going at the same time. Before bed, I may not necessarily be in the mood to read about World War II, however, a female-centric book is right up my ally. I’m currently finishing up Brittany Hennessy’s Influencer and How to Get Shit Done by Erin Falconer and I’m SO excited to start Unbroken.

Over the past few months, I’ve slowly been adding books to my Amazon cart as they come up in conversation with friends. I thought I would share the books I plan to read this Fall, in case you’re also looking for your next literary escape. If you have any books on your reading list, please share them below! I’m always looking for great book recommendations.

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

I’m so looking forward to read this book and anticipate myself getting lost between the pages of this World War II novel. It is the story of the remarkable life of Louis Zamperini, who ran in the 1936 Olympics. When WWII broke out, he enlisted in Army Air Corps and in May 1943, went out on a mission to find a pilot whose plane had gone down. Zamperini’s plan suffered mechanical failure and crashed into the Pacific ocean. He survived 47 days on a raft until he was then captured by the Japanese navy and sent to a POW camp. At the POW camp, he was targeted by a violent prison commander who inflicted physical and psychological torture on him. It’s an extraordinary story. Have you read it yet?

The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel

Sticking to the World War II theme, Edsel tells the story of the Monuments Men whose job was to travel to war zones and identify historic sites that needed to be preserved. They also investigated Nazi looting and located priceless works of art that were stolen by Hitler. These were civilians who worked undercover to spy on the Nazis. There have been many stories told of WWII but this one offers a unique angle.

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

This book is considered one of the great Russian novels ever written. As a child of the Soviet Union circa 1986, i’ve always been fascinated by Russian culture. This book has been on my reading list probably since high school but I’m committed to reading it by December.

Influencer by Brittany Hennessy

I found myself reading this book like it was a text book and I was cramming for a next-day final. I took notes as I was reading it and have several pages bookmarked for future reference! I’m actually considering reading it again in case I missed anything the first time around. For any bloggers or brands, this is a must-read if you want to become educated on influencer marketing from both perspectives.

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

I’ve heard this one is hard to put down. I watched the HBO series first and naturally needed more. Based on some friends’ recommendations, this seems like the type of book I could get lost in. I’m forcing myself to read it before I watch season 2 of the show! Have you seen the first season?

How to Get Shit Done by Erin Falconer

Women do too much! This is not exactly a shocker, however I learned some great tips on prioritizing and being more realistic about my goals. I consider this a must read for everyone who answers “busy” when a friend asks how they’re doing. I also like the idea of achieving three goals at one time rather than twenty, which is my typical to-do list. Read this if you’re trying to do too much and desperately need to prioritize.

Red Notice by Bill Browder

I started listening to Stay Tuned with Preet during my morning commute a few months ago and was instantly fascinated with one episode in particular. Have you seen the one with Bill Browder, Putin’s worst enemy? It’s insightful and very timely. Bill Browder was at one point the largest foreign investor in Russia. His hedge fund, Hermitage Capital Management, was destroyed by the Russian government. You’ll have to listen to the podcast or read the book to find out the reason.

The book also chronicles the murder of Bill Browder’s tax attorney, Sergei Magnitsky, who was murdered in prison after uncovering a $230 million fraud committed by Russian government officials in an attempt to implicate Bill Browder. Magnitsky was brutally tortured in prison. He eventually died before the age of 40 from medical neglect, torture, and abuse when he was deathly ill. Browder devoted his life to getting justice for Sergei and campaigning to expose Russian’s corruption and human rights abuses. He was instrumental in passing the Magnitsky Act of 2012, which issues sanctions against Russian officials suspected of human rights abuses, freezes their assets and bars them from entering the United States. It’s an incredible story. I recommend listening to the two interviews with Preet Bharara and Bill Browder here and then reading the book.

The White Album by Joan Didion

I love a collection of essays and this one is no exception. Didion describes the key events and themes of the 1960s and its politics. This will be my first foray into the work of Joan Didion. Have you read her books?

Work Party by Jaclyn Johnson

I can already tell I’m going to get some great tips for self-improvement from this book by Create & Cultivate founder, Jaclyn Johnson. From an entrepreneurship perspective, I’m excited to see what I can apply to the blog.

Girl Logic by Iliza Shlesinger

If you’re a girl, you will find yourself somewhere in the pages of this book. I personally found it comforting that I’m not the only one who thinks the way I do. I found it to be uplifting, relatable and FUNNY.

What’s on your list? Have you read any of the books below? 

Credits: Photo by Shelby I Location: Lokal Hotel 

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