1. Obsessive Compulsions: The OCD of Everyday Life by Dr. C. Thomas Gualtieri – For all that has been made of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), few books give as accessible an introduction into the condition as this one. “Obsessive Compulsions” explores every side of the affliction, including the positive in addition to the negative quirks it imparts. You’ll find yourself nodding and laughing at Thomas’ eclectic mix of scientific explanation and personal anecdotes that make for a sophisticated overview of OCD.
2. Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl by Karen Booth – Sisterhood or marriage? If Katherine chooses the latter by tying the knot with an old flame, she faces ruining her seemingly shatterproof relationship with Amy. Indulge yourself in the most recent gripping chronicle by Karen, who has penned two dozen books. “As a Harlequin author, romance is my day job, so it’s a ton of fun to immerse myself in a tale that has both a love story and a juicy family saga as well,” she says.
3. Standing at Lemhi Pass by Scott Janssen – Stories have the ability to profoundly influence our lives, even as we enter our twilight years. “Standing at Lemhi Pass” takes cherished narratives from American history and shows their impact on people living with terminal illnesses. Using his unique perspective as a hospice social worker for 25 years, Scott sheds some light on an oft-forgotten aspect of medicine: the human side.
4. Novel Sounds: Southern Fiction in the Age of Rock and Roll by Florence Dore – You would never think that Bessie Smith’s crooning influenced Flannery O’Connor’s grotesque literary descriptions, but that’s exactly what Florence, a UNC English professor, argues in “Novel Sounds.” Reconciling sound and scroll, the book dives into the intricacies of both rock ‘n’ roll and Southern literature to form a coherent, powerful narrative about their interplay.
5. The Possible World by Liese O’Halloran Schwarz – The author of “Near Canaan” returns with a diverting tale of three individuals trying to piece together their shattered lives. Ben, a 6-year-old boy who has just witnessed a murder, Lucy, the doctor who treats him and Clare, an elderly lady who has her own dark secrets, all must overcome obstacles in this vivid, winding portrait of American life across several generations.