With the end of every year, many of us look toward the future and reflect on what we want to accomplish in the coming months. Whatever your personal goals, resolutions, or plans may be for 2021, chances are there’s a book to help you get started!
Below are a few suggestions related to popular New Year’s resolutions, but remember you can always browse our site directly for topics, or stop by and ask a bookseller for recommendations!
Resolution: Read (or re-read) classic novels
Dive in to a book you’ve been meaning to get to, or re-visit an old favorite, with these new and recent reprints.
The Great Gatsby, introduction by Min Jin Lee – $18
Frankenstein, illustrated by Bernie Wrightson, introduction by Stephen King – $27
Resolution: “Dry January” (or beyond!)
Taking a break from alcohol during the month of January has been a popular trend over the past several years. Whether you’re looking for a reset or exploring the idea of more long-term sobriety, these books can help.
The Dry Challenge: How to Lose the Booze for Dry January Sober October, and any Other Alcohol-Free Month, $18.99
The Dry Challenge is ideal for anyone who wants to complete a dry month challenge, giving up all forms of alcohol for thirty-one days. Whether you’re thinking of participating in Dry January, Sober October, or want to choose a time of your own, this book walks you step-by-step through one drink-free month, from making a plan to sharing the news with friends and family (and what to do when someone tries to sabotage it) to getting back on track if you slip up and have a drink (or two).
How to Drink Without Drinking: Celebratory Alcohol-Free Drinks for Any Time of the Day, $18
This beautiful and inspiring book includes tips and recipes for flavoring waters, creating rhubarb bellinis and marmalade bucks fizz, as well as delicious cardamom syrups, roiboos tea punch and root beer floats.Whether you wish to create a watermelon cooler or an alcohol-free fruit punch to get a party started or simply wish to make a pair of herb-flavored spritzes for a Friday night in, this book proves that ‘no-lo’ drinks are every bit as interesting as alcohol.
Resolution: Write or create
Want to tap into your creativity this year, but don’t know where to start? Try one of these to kick start your practice.
Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within, $8
Natalie Goldberg, who has conducted writing workshops for both beginners and professionals all over the United States, sees writing as a practice that helps us comprehend the value of our lives. With insight, humor, and practicality, she inspires writers and would-be writers alike to take the leap into writing creatively and well.
Called to Be Creative, $17
Called to Be Creative is for anyone looking to reignite that tiny spark inside of them and invite creativity into their lives through simple, everyday practices. A certified grief counselor and a Program Coordinator for Shalom Spirituality Center, Mary Potter Kenyon walks you step by step through the process of exploring your true potential in this inspirational guide to embracing your innate creativity.
Resolution: Continue reading anti-racist books
The work of educating ourselves about anti-racism, activism, and race in America is ongoing. If you’ve already read last recent bestsellers such as How to Be An Anti-Racist and White Fragility, keep going!
Long Time Coming: Reckoning with Race in America, $24
Long Time Coming grapples with the cultural and social forces that have shaped our nation in the brutal crucible of race. In five beautifully argued chapters–each addressed to a black martyr from Breonna Taylor to Rev. Clementa Pinckney–Dyson traces the genealogy of anti-blackness from the slave ship to the street corner where Floyd lost his life–and where America gained its will to confront the ugly truth of systemic racism. Ending with a poignant plea for hope, Dyson’s exciting new book points the way to social redemption. Long Time Coming is a necessary guide to help America finally reckon with race.
Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools, $18
The “powerful” (Michelle Alexander) exploration of the harsh and harmful experiences confronting Black girls in schools. In a work that Lisa Delpit calls “imperative reading,” Monique W. Morris (Black Stats, Too Beautiful for Words) chronicles the experiences of Black girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged–by teachers, administrators, and the justice system–and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish.
Resolution: Try something new in the kitchen
Look, the home-cooking-all-the-time lifestyle we all adopted with varying degrees of enthusiasm in 2020 didn’t magically go away on January 1. Luckily, our cookbooks aisle is full of ideas to help you keep things fresh, fun, and nutritious all year!
Build-a-Bowl: 77 Satisfying & Nutritious Combos, $18
Build-a-Bowl is a fun and healthy way to put good food on the table Popular food blogger and teacher Nicki Sizemore’s fuss-free method starts with a grain base, whether it’s a popular favorite such as brown rice or an ancient grain like farro. Add a layer of fresh vegetables and herbs, follow that with a lean protein, and then finish it off with a flavorful sauce for a delectable super-powered meal.
Indian (-ish): Recipes and Antics from a Modern Indian Family, $26
Indian food is everyday food! This colorful, lively book is food writer Priya Krishna’s loving tribute to her mom’s “Indian-ish” cooking–a trove of one-of-a-kind Indian-American hybrids that are easy to make, clever, practical, and packed with flavor. Priya’s mom, Ritu, taught herself to cook after moving to the U.S. while also working as a software programmer–her unique creations merging the Indian flavors of her childhood with her global travels and inspiration from cooking shows as well as her kids’ requests for American favorites like spaghetti and PB&Js.
The Beginner’s Keto Meal Plan, $20
Transitioning to a Keto diet can feel overwhelming and confusing. But luckily for you, Kassey Cameron is a seasoned Keto pro and is here to share her know-how–including a 6-week meal plan to help you kick off your Keto journey with ease. Kassey’s delicious high-fat, low-carb recipes have all your breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack needs covered.
Resolution: Reduce environmental impact
Besides advocating for larger policy changes, many people also want to look for ways to reduce their household’s affect on the environment with lifestyle changes. Try these or more titles from our Environment section:
How to Give Up Plastic, $14
It takes 450 years for a plastic bottle to fully biodegrade, and there are around 12.7 million tons of plastic entering the ocean each year. How to Give Up Plastic is a straightforward guide to eliminating plastic from your life. Going room by room through your home and workplace, Greenpeace activist Will McCallum teaches you how to spot disposable plastic items and find plastic-free, sustainable alternatives to each one.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, $9
Barbara Kingsolver and her family sweep readers along on their journey away from the industrial-food pipeline to a rural life in which they vow to buy only food raised in their own neighborhood, grow it themselves, or learn to live without it. Their good-humored search yields surprising discoveries about turkey sex life and overly zealous zucchini plants, en route to a food culture that’s better for the neighborhood and also better on the table. Part memoir, part journalistic investigation, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle makes a passionate case for putting the kitchen back at the center of family life and diversified farms at the center of the American diet.