Whether she’s on-screen in Big Little Lies, posting #shelfies on Instagram, or producing movies based on her favorite books, Reese Witherspoon has become a trusted icon in the book world. After many successful bookstagram posts, Reese decided to start her own book club. And since Reese’s fans get stories in different mediums, she’s even partnered with Audible to bring all of her choices to the audiobook streaming platform. While curating a book club can be a challenging task, Reese’s picks are always a hit. Here are the books she’s featured (so far).
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
This book’s been a favorite of many since it came out, so it comes as no surprise that it would be Reese’s first pick—she even optioned the film rights. Eleanor’s a bit of a recluse, living alone in an apartment in Scotland and spending her weekends drinking vodka by herself. Everything starts to change when she meets coworker Raymond and begins to see that life can be more fun when you’re not alone.
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The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Reese’s second pick, The Alice Network, shifted to a different genre: historical fiction. Taking place during both World War I and World War II, this novel brings together two very different women as they begin a mission to find the truth behind a missing person.
The Lying Game by Ruth Ware
Reese frequently posts thrillers on her Instagram, so it stands to reason that she picked one for her book club. This thriller centers around four friends from boarding school—Fatima, Thea, Isa, and Kate—who were once inseparable and known for playing the Lying Game. The game comes back to haunt them years later with a simple text from Kate that reads, “I need you.”
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
Reese is already set to star in the television adaptation of this book alongside Kerry Washington, so it comes as no surprise she picked this book when it debuted. Artist Mia and her daughter, Pearl, think they’re finally finding their permanent home when they move to Shaker Heights, Ohio. As Pearl befriends the Richardson siblings, their mother becomes intrigued with Mia and makes it her mission to discover the backstory Mia’s been hiding.
The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman
A prequel to Practical Magic, this novel follows the Owens, who have believed love is a curse ever since Maria Owens was charged with witchery in 1620. In 1960s New York City, everything’s beginning to change, and Susana Owens realizes her own children have something special of their own. While she tries to make rules to keep them away from love and magic, a visit to their aunt in Massachusetts allows the children to uncover family secrets and begin their journey to ending the family curse.
This is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett
We love that Reese includes memoir picks in her book club, like this one from State of Wonder author Ann Patchett. This book follows Ann’s life from her childhood to her first—unhappy—marriage, through her present-day as a writer and her much happier second marriage.
The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine
Amber Patterson is tired of her boring life; she’d rather be more like gorgeous Daphne Parrish, her town’s resident socialite and philanthropist. Amber decides the best way to change her own circumstances is to befriend Daphne, take advantage of her kindness, and try to take her place. While her plan begins to come together, something in Amber’s past comes back and risks it all falling apart.
Braving the Wilderness by Brené Brown
After starring in the adaptation of Wild, we can understand why Reese would pick this book about going into the wilderness to find yourself. Brené Brown’s latest explores how our culture demands perfection and pleasing others, and how people can overcome that feeling in order to be their true selves.
The Light We Lost by Jill Santopolo
We were excited to see Reese choose a romantic pick for the month of February. Lucy and Gabe meet as seniors in Columbia on a life-changing day: September 11, 2001. The events of the day bring the two together, and instills in both a need to spend their lives helping others. Their relationship seems perfect—until the careers that meant so much to them threaten to pull them apart, setting them on a journey to find what really matters in life.
Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal
This pick was a welcomed spicy turn for the book club. Nikki’s trying to live the modern life in West London, distancing herself from her family’s traditional Sikh community. When her father passes away, leaving her family with an emotional and financial gap, she decides to take a job teaching creative writing in a mostly Punjabi community. While at first the women think they’re learning English literacy, they find a book of sexy stories, and Nikki uses the opportunity to encourage the women to share their own stories.
Happiness by Heather Harpham
World-traveling California girl Heather and intellectual homebody Brian have an opposites-attract relationship, but it goes awry when Heather becomes pregnant while Brian doesn’t want a child. This memoir follows Heather as she has the baby alone, only to immediately find out that her newborn, Gracie, is very sick. On hearing about the illness, Brian joins Heather, and the two must figure out what they’re willing to do to keep their child alive.
You Think It, I’ll Say It by Curtis Sittenfeld
As with some of Reese’s other favorite picks, she’s already bought the rights to this title for another exciting TV adaptation. Curtis Sittenfeld‘s story collection centers around themes of real women who aren’t afraid to express themselves, whether at work or at home. While each story’s quite different, you’ll leave the collection feeling like you just had a long chat with a close friend.
Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman
Documentary filmmaker Erin and her new husband, Mark, are excited to finally set out on their romantic honeymoon in Bora Bora. While out scuba diving, the two find more than they bargained for in the water, and must decide whether to speak out or conceal it.
Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton
Always keeping her picks timely, Reese chose the perfect summer read, Next Year in Havana, for July. The book follows two women: freelance writer Marisol, living in Miami in 2017, and her grandmother, Elisa, who fled Havana during the revolution. When Marisol visits Havana for the first time to scatter Elisa’s ashes, she discovers long-hidden family secrets and falls for a man with some secrets of his own.
Still Lives by Maria Hummel
Reese has shared many pictures while reading thrillers, and for her final pick of the summer she picked this chilly novel that takes place in the Los Angeles art world. A new exhibit featuring the artist in self-portraits of famously murdered women is about to open—but the artist never shows up to her own gala. As time passes and she still cannot be found, everyone in the art world becomes a suspect.
Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
When discussing this pick on her official book club website, Reese said, “I didn’t want this story to end!” which is enough endorsement for us. Kya Clark is known in her area of North Carolina as “Marsh Girl” since she has lived alone in the marsh since she was a young girl. While there are rumors swirling about what kind of person she is—some even suspecting her of being the one behind a local murder—Kya could not be more different from what people say, and only wants the chance to be loved.
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