Aside from Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” dessert is my favorite part of the holidays (if anyone from my family is reading this, sorry and I promise I love you more than dessert). While I love my grandma’s schnecken and my cousin’s Oreo cheesecake bars, pie takes the cake for me in the holiday dessert realm. And what better way is there to take a break from the family drama than with a slice and a good book?
Although I can’t offer any recipes, I can offer you a book recommendation from 2020’s new releases for wherever you fall on the pie spectrum.
I couldn’t not
start with the holiday heavy-hitter. If pumpkin’s your go-to slice, I get it. You’re a traditionalist and love a comforting read to accompany your dessert. To warm the soul during the colder months, turn to Terry McMillan’s It’s Not All Downhill From Here
. These spunky ladies and their friendships will leave you hopeful and excited for a future where we can fully embrace our friends again.
You root for the underdog and you’re always ready to stand your ground during a “Pumpkin vs. Sweet Potato” debate. You also like to stir the pot(ato) for the drama. When you want to take a break from one of the lighter holiday arguments, Susie Yang’s White Ivy
is the perfect source of fictional drama. Both a love triangle and a coming-of-age story, White Ivy is also a glimpse into the dark side of a woman who yearns for success at any cost. I wouldn’t recommend eating while reading this to avoid accidentally choking from gasping at the multiple plot twists.
If pecan is your favorite, word on the street is that you’re a total sweetheart and Beach Read
by Emily Henry is sure to satisfy that sweet tooth. Novelist Augustus Everett and romance writer January Andrews are polar opposites. When they’re both struck with writer’s block, they take on a summer-long challenge of swapping genres. Surely nothing can come from these two embarking on rom-com worthy field trips for “research,” right?
I live year-round in what my partner calls “Jimmy Buffett shirts.” I choose to look like I’m willing to jam out to “Margaritaville” at all times, so I feel you. I miss summer too. If you’re looking for a fun read to cope with the dark, gray days of winter, Leigh Stein’s Self Care
delves into the sunshine-y lives of influencers working in the wellness industry and exposes the world behind the filter. You’ll devour this story faster than the lifespan of an Instagram Story.
You, my blueberry reader, are in your element. Not in the pumpkin or apple kind of fall-frenzy way, but in the way it’s finally acceptable to wear all black and listen to Bon Iver nonstop. The Only Good Indians
by Stephen Graham Jones is a perfect dark tale for you. Jones’s literary horror follows four men from the Blackfeet Nation who find themselves at violent odds with an entity bent on revenging a taboo they committed years earlier.
You’re bright and bubbly with a bit of a tangy kick. Shoutout to you and your personality for providing the rest of us with some joy to get through 2020. Fluffy meringue meets tangy lemon in Aiden Thomas’s Cemetery Boys
. Determined to prove his worth to his family, Yadriel accidentally summons the ghost of Julian Diaz, his school’s resident bad boy. This mystery-meets-romance will leave your heart warm and a dent in your stock of tissue boxes.
My apologies in advance to the Cherry Crew. I have never met a slice of cherry that I’ve genuinely enjoyed, nor do I know anyone who is an out-and-proud fan. Is it OK if I suggest Kate McDermott’s Pie Camp
? Kate takes readers and eaters to the next level from her prior cookbook, Art of the Pie
, shifting her focus to technique. Perhaps a cherry pie baked to perfection under Kate’s instruction might be all the persuasion I need to understand your love for this historically unappreciated flavor.
Similar to the Pumpkin Pie People, you’re also a traditionalist with a yen for something sweeter. And there’s no sweeter tradition than Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” hitting the Billboard charts every November 1. Get to know the living legend behind this holiday classic and many others with her memoir, The Meaning of Mariah Carey
. Mariah will have you feeling “Emotions” with her story. As trying of a year as 2020 has been, her story of resilience is a reminder that she’ll be there “Anytime You Need a Friend.”