Ashley's Picks

I am mostly a reader of literary and contemporary fiction.  I sprinkle in non-fiction, memoirs, thrillers and historical fiction.  I read over 100 books annually and these are some of my favorites over the past year.  

City Under One Roof By Iris Yamashita Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593336670
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Berkley - January 10th, 2023

I found the setting of this book to be so, so interesting. It's based on a real-life town in which all of the residents live in the same big building. Most of the businesses are in the building as well. It makes for a great setting in which a murder takes place...truly locked room.

Shark Heart: A Love Story By Emily Habeck Cover Image
ISBN: 9781668006504
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: S&S/ Marysue Rucci Books - June 4th, 2024

My favorite book of 2023. Stay with me here...a newly married man finds out that he's turning into a great white shark. Weird? Yes. A beautiful metaphor for what it means to mourn a relationship that has entered a different phase? Yes, yes, yes. Seriously an amazing read.

Rodham: A Novel By Curtis Sittenfeld Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399590931
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - June 1st, 2021

This is my favorite, favorite author. And this book is so's speculative fiction about what would have happened if Hillary Rodham had chosen her career over marrying Bill. It's so crazy to think about this personal decision rippling through the country's political path. 

Kill Show: A True Crime Novel By Daniel Sweren-Becker Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063321403
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Harper - October 3rd, 2023

Told in oral history format, this is a fictional book about a true crime reality show. Not only will this have you turning the pages furiously, it will also have you reading some passages over and over. There's some really insightful reflections on our society's obsession with true crime.

Migrations: A Novel By Charlotte McConaghy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250204035
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Flatiron Books - July 6th, 2021

We read this for our monthly Fiction Book Club and had a great discussion about all of the nuances this book contained. It's about a woman who finds her way on to a fishing boat so that she can follow the last of the arctic terns on their migration. But she's also running away from some stuff in her life. The writing (especially the nature writing) is beautiful and the plot is compelling.

Why We Can't Sleep: Women's New Midlife Crisis By Ada Calhoun Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802148575
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Grove Press - January 19th, 2021

I think this should be required reading for Gen X women in mid-life. I have never felt so seen before in a book. It explained why I might feel the way I do in this phase; and it helped me feel not so alone there.

Marrying the Ketchups: A novel (Vintage Contemporaries) By Jennifer Close Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593081389
Availability: In Store Now!
Published: Vintage - April 25th, 2023

When the owner of a Chicago restaurant dies, his family must come together to decide how to proceed.  The characters are complex and loveable. As someone who worked in the service industry and actually had to marry ketchups, I loved the metaphor in the title...what it means to give to others while still holding on to yourself.