The top 10 women’s fiction reviewed in Booklist between March 1, 2016, and February 15, 2017, showcase a variety of story types, from classic chick lit to romance to tearjerkers. These novels deliver something for just about every women’s-fiction fan.
by Camille Perri
Perri’s debut is reminiscent of the golden era of early aughts chick lit—a workplace comedy featuring average women caught up in extraordinary situations. The characters’ millennial concerns—overwhelming student-loan debt, underemployment, loneliness in a world of hyperconnectivity—ring true.
2016. Putnam, $25 (9780399172540).
The Book That Matters Most
by Ann Hood
Her husband having recently left her, and with her adult children both out of the country, Ava looks forward to joining the library’s book club. She suggests a long-forgotten book that helped her through a difficult childhood, but it now has her questioning the secrets surrounding the deaths of her sister and mother.
2016. Norton, $25.95 (9780393241655).
Every Wild Heart
by Meg Donohue
When radio-host Gail is offered a new contract for a television show at the same time that her teenage daughter, Nic, has an accident that puts her in a coma, the lines blur as decisions with unknown consequences have to be made.
A Booklist starred review.
2017. Morrow, $14.99 (9780062644411).
I Almost Forgot about You
by Terry McMillan
After two failed marriages and countless other romantic missteps, Georgia considers herself done with love. She is successful and has two beautiful daughters, but a chance meeting reminds her that she is not altogether happy—so she decides to leave it all behind and begin all over again.
2016. Crown, $27 (9781101902578).
by Gayle Forman
Maribeth is too busy with 4-year-old twins and an increasingly demanding job to realize she’s had a heart attack at 44. Complications lead to an extended recovery period, yet somehow Maribeth is quickly back to the grind. Fed up, she packs up and hightails it out of town, where she hopes to find some answers about her past—as well as some time to herself.
2016. Algonquin, $26.95 (9781616206178).
The Mother’s Promise
by Sally Hepworth
Alice’s cancer diagnosis sends her into a panic, not because of her uncertain prognosis but because her 15-year-old daughter, Zoe, has a paralyzing social-anxiety disorder that makes her dependent on Alice. This story tugs at the heartstrings, guaranteeing that readers will smile through the tears.
2017. St. Martin’s, $26.99 (9781466889927).
Nine Women, One Dress
by Jane L. Rosen
The influence of a particular little black dress on nine women (and a few men) is loosely woven together in Rosen’s lovely novel. This quick read is at turns poignant and laugh-out-loud funny, and readers who like chick lit will find it absolutely adorable.
2016. Doubleday, $24.95 (9780385541404).
by Georgia Clark
Three young New Yorkers have loads of baggage—which they assume would go away if only they were beautiful. One night, they are given a bottle labeled simply, “Pretty.” A single drop magically provides a gorgeous visage for one week, but once that door is open, where do you go? This raunchy, funny tale has a distinctly hip, modern feel.
2016. Atria, $25 (9781501119590).
Swear on This Life
by Renée Carlino
Emi is drawn into a new best-seller from the very first page—because it’s about her. When she tracks down the author, her high-school sweetheart, she’s prepared to rip him a new one for exploiting her life but finds she really only wants him to explain why he abandoned her.
2016. Atria, $15 (9781501105791).
We Are All Made of Stars
by Rowan Coleman
Stella, a hospice nurse, loves her job. She gets to write last letters for patients to send to their loved ones, which she normally mails after the patient’s death. But her decision to send her latest letter as soon as possible ends up having life-altering consequences.
2016. Ballantine, $27 (9780553394146).