Women Who Travel Book Club 15 Books to Add to Your Reading List This Spring

Women Who Travel Book Club: 15 Books to Add to Your Reading List This Spring

Our editors and contributors share their favorite new titles.

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Earlier this year, Women Who Travel launched our “book club”—a quarterly list of the most exciting new reads to keep on your radar, and pack in your carry-on, according to women who love to read and travel. 

We asked our editors and contributors to share their new favorite titles for spring; the ones they couldn't put down until reaching the very last page. Below, you'll find everything from mob sagas and 90's nostalgia hits to thoughtful memoirs. Plus, to celebrate the April 21 launch of NDN Girls Book Club, which amplifies the voices of Indigenous writers, we asked founder Kinsale Drake and her team to share what they're reading this month. 

Keep scrolling for 15 books written by women authors that will transport around the world. We'd love to hear which you're reading, or which fantastic new books we missed, on Instagram or Facebook. (Your picks might make it into the next roundup.)

Age of Vice by Deepti Kapoor

I'm reading Age of Vice by Deepti Kapoor, a gifted Indian writer who has previously contributed to Condé Nast Traveler. There was a lot of drama even before it came out—bidding wars, FX has already bought the series rights—but the drama in the novel itself is several notches above. Set in New Delhi, it follows a young man named Ashok through a tragic beginning and then a life where the dark side of the city is exposed and peeled back. I always struggle with how India is portrayed in English fiction; and Deepti's book is anything but a tourism ad for the country. But it does what good fiction is meant to do: It sometimes makes you squirm, but it also makes you rejoice, it is a lesson in empathy and compassion and suspending disbelief and allowing yourself to enter a rich, reverting new world. —Divia Thani, global editorial director

To Fall in Love, Drink This: A Wine Writer's Memoir by Alice Feiring

One of my favorite reads from last year was To Fall in Love Drink This, a recent collection of autobiographical essays of leading natural wine writer Alice Feiring. The book is equal parts a retrospective narration of personal stories, and an expression of Feiring’s unique taste in wine and other subjects. In August I dipped into one of my favorite small businesses in Brooklyn, Greenpoint’s Archestratus—a bookstore that specializes in cookbooks and other books about food—to listen to Feiring in conversation with the New York Times’ Melissa Clarke and have my copy signed. Alex Erdekian, travel bookings commerce editor

Lost & Found by Kathryn Schulz

I've always loved Schulz's journalism and her memoir—about grief and love, and how we can't plan when either will enter our lives—transfixed me from its opening pages. I rarely cry while reading a nonfiction book, but this one snuck up on me and I was in tears at its end. It's beautifully written, wise, and unsparingly honest. It's true what Andy Borowitz says in his blurb, "Lost & Found is the most daring of books: a memoir by a happy person." Happiness is more complex than most writers give credit, and this book is proof. —Hannah Wallace, contributor 

The Goddess Effect by Sheila Yasmin Marikar

Sheila Yasmin Marikar’s The Goddess Effect is a fun ride that feels very much of-the-moment: It stars a chaotic and complicated heroine, deftly articulates agonizingly relatable social media pitfalls, and offers a sharp takedown of wellness culture. I read it while on the train through the South Korean countryside and it managed to immerse me deep into LA life—I love a novel that sends you crisscrossing the earth even while you’re already traveling. Sarah Khan, contributor

I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai

Set mostly at a rural Northeastern boarding school and jumping between the mid-1990s and the present (give or take a few years), this book re-examines a decades-old murder through the lens of the protagonist’s adulthood as well as against the backdrop of society’s slowly changing mores when it comes to sexism and racism. It has whiffs of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History and season one of the true crime podcast Serial and it’s the first work of fiction that I’ve read that attempts to weave in the Me Too movement in any nuanced way. It’s not perfect, plot wise, but the writing is witty and knife-sharp and it’s a surprisingly fun read even though it deals with a laundry list of very heavy topics, including racial profiling, mental health, and murder."—Rebecca Misner, senior features editor

My Last Innocent Year by Daisy Alpert Florin

This debut novel fits into not one but several categories of fiction that I'm always irresistibly drawn to: coming-of-age, campus, and 90's nostalgia. The premise of a student getting involved with a professor might be (pleasantly, IMHO) familiar, but Florin's particular take on this narrative of power and self-discovery is insightful, specific, and enlivened by secondary characters who play genuinely meaningful roles. I devoured the whole thing in two nights. —Maggie Shipstead, contributor

Woman, Eating by ​​Claire Kohda

Much like how Seinfeld is a show about nothing, this is a book about nothing—in the best way possible. The author gives us a peek into the life of a Gen Z vampire (and burgeoning artist) without the usual frills of a fantastical vampire plot. The story digs into some big topics: hunger, navigating life as a mixed-race woman, and friendship. I loved stepping into someone else's life and finding relatable moments and commonalities with an unexpected character. —Erika Owen, contributor

Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano

I started reading Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano on an overnight flight home from Los Angeles to Paris. Suffice to say I didn't get much sleep during the flight, but it was very much worth it. The book nods to Little Women, telling a story of four sisters (an early scene speaks to LW in the text itself). Napolitano's writing is beautiful, her characters are rich and complex, and the story is as compelling as it is tender and heartbreaking. I'm certain my jetlag will continue taking a hit until the last page. Rebekah Peppler, contributor

My Nemesis by Charmaine Craig

My Nemesis by Charmaine Craig tells the story of two women, Tessa and Wah. It follows their lives, marriages, and ideologies. The book explores what is means to be feminine, a feminist, how we perceive these qualities, and how much our identities and beliefs define us. This book is short, sharp, philosophical, and dramatic. It’s insightful and uncomfortable, like a joke that hits too close to home. Props to the author for creating Tess, who is so deliciously unlikeable. This book explored so many topics—race, class, and gender roles but most importantly how much our perceptions define or limit us. —Pallavi Mohan Kumar, senior visuals editor

Strangers to Ourselves: Unsettled Minds and the Stories That Make Us by Rachel Aviv

Rachel Aviv is one of my favorite writers of nonfiction—every piece of hers is so psychologically rich, riveting, and resonant. When her book was released last September, which included an extended version of her article The Challenge of Going Off Psychiatric Drugs, I preordered it, picked it up the day-of, and read it cover to cover. —A.E. 

More great reads, from NDN Girls Book Club

When NDN Girls Book Club launches on April 21, it will offer free literary and writing workshops, Indigenous author talks, and other events to Native peoples, particularly youth and girls. Stay in touch via @ndngirlsbookclub on Instagram or ndngirlsbookclub.org for ongoing book and writer recommendations. 

The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich

—Kinsale Drake (Diné), founder

A Snake Falls to Earth by Darcie Little Badger

—Lily Painter (Kiowa/Winnebago), graphics assistant

Rose Quartz by Sasha Taqwsəblu Lapointe

—Pte San Win Little Whiteman (Lakota), member

Thunderous by M.L. Smoker and Natalie Peeterse

—Gusti Rattling Hawk (Lakota), member

A Mind Spread Out On the Ground by Alicia Elliott

—Charitie Ropati (Yup’ik/Samoan), member