Reading Group Center




What to Read After Your Latest Streaming Obsession

What to Read After Your Latest Streaming Obsession

We don’t know about you, but we at the Reading Group Center are all too familiar with that horrible feeling when instead of seeing “Next Episode in 4 . . . 3 . . . 2 . . . 1” all of a sudden something new and random is about to play. Whether our favorite show has ended or is in between seasons or we just need to wait until the next episode airs in seven days that feeling of not knowing what to do next can be harrowing. What are we going to do without the characters that we feel we’ve come to know personally? How are we going to cope with not knowing what happens next? Fortunately, we find solace in our usual place: books!

We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorites to help fill the void left when you run out of episodes to stream. We hope you enjoy!


If you’re obsessed with:

TestamentsThe Handmaid’s Tale
Check out The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

You’ve seen what happens to Elisabeth Moss in seasons two and three, but if you’ve ever wondered WWMAD (What Would Margaret Atwood Do?) your answer is finally here!

“A fast, immersive narrative that’s as propulsive as it is melodramatic.” —The New York Times

When the van door slammed on Offred’s future at the end of The Handmaid’s Tale, readers had no way of telling what lay ahead for her—freedom, prison, or death.  Margaret Atwood’s sequel picks up the story fifteen years after Offred stepped into the unknown, with the explosive testaments of three female narrators from Gilead.

Buy the book


Never MeetingShrill
Check out We Are Never Meeting in Real Life. by Samantha Irby

If “Pool” was your favorite episode of season one, you’re in luck! Episode writer Samantha Irby has a couple of books to hold you over until season two.

“Samantha Irby is my favorite living writer. Actually, I’ll throw in the dead ones too. Screw you, Herman Melville.” —Lindy West, author of Shrill 

Whether Samantha Irby is talking about how her difficult childhood has led to a problem in making “adult” budgets; explaining why she should be the new Bachelorette (she’s “35-ish, but could easily pass for 60-something”); detailing a disastrous pilgrimage-slash-romantic-vacation to Nashville to scatter her estranged father’s ashes; sharing awkward sexual encounters; or dispensing advice on how to navigate friendships with former drinking buddies who are now suburban moms (hang in there for the Costco loot!); she’s as deft at poking fun at the ghosts of her past self as she is at capturing powerful emotional truths.

Also, check out her uproarious first collection of essays, Meaty.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book


VeronicaVeronica Mars
Check out Veronica Mars: The Thousand Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham

Did you wonder what Veronica was up to between the feature film and season four? She was solving crimes in Neptune, of course!

Ten years after graduating from high school, Veronica Mars is back in the land of sun, sand, crime, and corruption. She’s traded in her law degree for her old private investigating license, struggling to keep Mars Investigations afloat on the scant cash earned by catching cheating spouses until she can score her first big case. When a girl disappears from a party, Veronica is called in to investigate. But this is no simple missing persons case; the house the girl vanished from belongs to a man with serious criminal ties, and soon Veronica is plunged into a dangerous underworld of drugs and organized crime. And when a major break in the investigation has a shocking connection to Veronica’s past, the case hits closer to home than she ever imagined.

Also, check out the second book in the series, Veronica Mars: Mr. Kiss and Tell.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book


Love YouBoJack Horseman
Check out Someone Who Will Love You in All Your Damaged Glory by Raphael Bob-Waksberg

While you’re anxiously awaiting season six, why not indulge in series creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg’s fabulously off-beat collection of short stories?

Written with all the scathing dark humor that is a hallmark of BoJack Horseman, Raphael Bob-Waksberg’s stories will make you laugh, weep, and shiver in uncomfortably delicious recognition. Equally at home with the surreal and the painfully relatable (and both at once), Bob-Waksberg delivers a killer combination of humor, romance, whimsy, cultural commentary, and crushing emotional vulnerability.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book


AnastasiaThe Last Czars
Check out I Was Anastasia by Ariel Lawhon

We know it’s difficult to get enough of the Romanovs, especially Anastasia!

“Engrossing. . . . Readers may already know how Anna’s story ended, but the book’s historical detail and clever structure will bewitch them into forgetting.” —People

An enthralling feat of historical suspense that unravels the extraordinary twists and turns in Anna Anderson’s fifty-year battle to be recognized as Anastasia Romanov. Is she the Russian grand duchess or the thief of another woman’s legacy?

Read an excerpt | Get the reader’s guide | Buy the book


Central ParkWhen They See Us
Check out The Central Park Five by Sarah Burns

If you want to go deeper into the Central Park jogger case, this is a must-read!

“Burns’s gripping tale may serve as an allegory for some of the most pressing criminal justice issues of our time.” –The New York Times Book Review

In this spellbinding account of the real facts of the Central Park jogger case, Sarah Burns powerfully reexamines this historic case and its aftermath for the first time since the young men’s convictions were overturned, telling, at last, the full story of one of New York’s most legendary crimes.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book


BONUS: Because the book is (in our opinion) always better than the miniseries, check out the books on which these popular streaming shows were based:

SweetbitterSweetbitter by Stephanie Danler

“Outstanding.” —The New York Times Book Review

The bestselling novel about a young woman’s coming-of-age, set against the glitzy, grimy backdrop of New York’s most elite restaurants.

Read an excerpt | Get the reader’s guide | Buy the book

 

 

CatchCatch-22 by Joseph Heller

“Bitterly funny . . . A dazzling performance.” —The New York Times

One of the funniest books ever written, Joseph Heller’s masterpiece about a bomber squadron in the Second World War’s Italian theater features a gallery of magnificently strange characters seething with comic energy.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book

 

 

PerfumePerfume by Patrick Suskind

“Remarkable.” —The New York Times

An acclaimed bestseller and international sensation, Patrick Suskind’s classic novel provokes a terrifying examination of what happens when one man’s indulgence in his greatest passion—his sense of smell—leads to murder.

Read an excerpt | Get the reader’s guide | Buy the book

 
 

Hot ZoneThe Hot Zone by Richard Preston

“Popular science writing at its best and the year’s most infectious page-turner.”
People

The bestselling landmark account of the first emergence of the Ebola virus. Shocking, frightening, and impossible to ignore, The Hot Zone proves that truth really is scarier than fiction.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book

 

LoomingThe Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright

“Deeply researched . . . immaculately crafted.” —The Wall Street Journal

The bestselling, Pulitzer Prize–winning account of the history of 9/11 spanning five decades. Packed with detailed information and a deep historical perspective, The Looming Tower is the definitive history of the long road to September 11.

Read an excerpt | Buy the book