Recommendations

Books about sad families

Thanksgiving is rapidly approaching. This is by far my least favorite holiday. I hate the food and the racist origins of this terrible holiday. Tensions are high in our nation right now, and many families will be getting together over gross stuff like ambrosia salad. If the thought of being around your family right now is giving you hives, here are some books about families with issues that will make you feel a little better about your own.

Anything by V.C. Andrews

Honestly, V.C. Andrews’s niche is writing about families who are rich with terrible secrets. There’s a lot of incest, but you should stay for the juicy plot twists. The older the book, the better. You should read these if you like Lifetime movie remakes and switched at birth stories.

Everything I Never Told You by Celest Ng

A family is ravaged by the death of the favorite child. This story is told from the perspective of every family member. Secrets tore this family apart, but second chances brought them back together. Read this book if you like thrillers and stories about mixed-race families.

Here Comes the Sun by Nicole by Nicole Y. Dennis-Benn

A fraught relationship between a mother and her two daughters. A sister who makes sacrifices. At the end of the day, blood may not always be thicker than water. Read this if you like books by Caribbean authors and island life.

The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea

Family is about showing up for each other, in times of celebration, and in times of grief. This is a story about a multi-generational Mexican American family and how they show up for one another or have regrets about not showing up. Read this if you like Chicano stories and family sagas.

The Leavers by Lisa Ko

A young Chinese boy left behind by his mother who goes to work one day and doesn’t come back. He is then adopted by a white couple and made into the perfect American boy, all the while a part of him feels missing. Read this if you like immigration stories and books about belonging.

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