Reading Recommendations

What We’re Reading – July

Are you looking for your next great read? We can help! Visit us in person, explore reading recommendations online, join an in-person or online book discussion, get recommendations on Facebook, tune in to our televised book club segments, and more. Get started here!

Sunday Nights on Facebook
Join us on Sunday nights at 8:30pm on Facebook for Currently Reading. Enjoy this hour during which book enthusiasts share favorite books and offer suggestion about what to read next. Find out about the books that have everyone talking.

Wednesday Mornings – Indy Now Book Club
The Library helps host a ‘book club’ on the Indy Now Morning Show with Ryan and Jillian on Fox59. Tune in at 10 a.m. every other Wednesday. Catch book recommendations and IndyPL program highlights from your own local librarians. Re-watch segments you have missed and see book lists of the books mentioned in each segment.

In-Person & Online Book Discussions
Do you love talking about books? Join one of our book discussions or book clubs available both in-person and online.

Online Reading Recommendations
NovelList and NovelList K-8 are online services that offer reading recommendations. Browse both fiction and nonfiction, read-alike suggestions, series information, reviews, and lists of recommended and award-winning books for adults, teens and kids. Learn how to start on this video tutorial. Also try Book Connections which includes a “find the right book for you” feature.

Would you prefer one-on-one help? Call or ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text, or email ask-a- librarian.

Make a selection from one of the book lists below created by our staff of avid readers. You can also follow our staff’s most recently published lists on the library catalog home page. Don’t miss our If You Like… suggestions that cover all the favorite genres like science fiction, graphic novels, romance, and more. Finally, don’t miss What We’re Reading Teens and What We’re Reading Kids.

Local Book Influencers Share Their Favorite Reads of 2024 (So Far!)

Folks who are on social media may already be aware that platforms like Instagram and TikTok are an excellent source for anyone who is hungry for more book recommendations. Accounts can be dedicated to entire subgenres (like cozy fantasy!) or can read widely. The list contains recommendations from 10 different Indiana based bookstagrammers and booktokers (plus 4 bonus recommendations!). Dive in and find a new book to read and new accounts to follow!

Title - Before I Let GoTitle - As Long as the Lemon Trees GrowTitle - You Dreamed of EmpiresTitle - The Bear and the Nightingale

Inspired by "The Bear"

If you devoured the show The Bear you might find yourself craving an Italian Beef, making people say “yes chef” in all of your home kitchen interactions, or contemplating how to make the perfect donut. This list will give you suggestions to keep the show alive while you are waiting for season 3 to drop on Hulu and Disney+.

Title - The Noma Guide to FermentationTitle - Tartine BreadTitle - Beyond BasketballTitle - Cooking at Home

You Are Worth It: Rest as a Form of Resistance

At a time when most all of us are pressured to constantly be on the go and burning out, taking the time to slow down and care for ourselves can be a powerful act. Here are some books on the idea of rest as a form of resistance against oppression, capitalism, and the societal pressure to outperform ourselves at every turn.

Title - Laziness Does Not ExistTitle - Rest Is ResistanceTitle - Living ResistanceTitle - Real Self-care

A History of Fairs and Festivals

The Indiana State Fair is coming up, so get into the celebrating spirit with these titles on the history of fairs and festivals around the world!

Title - Broken IcarusTitle - Handmade Renaissance Faire FashionTitle - American OzTitle - Fair Foods

Animal Themed Crafting for Adults

Animals have been our muses since the dawn of time. If you’re looking to get creative, why not let our furry, feathery, and scaly neighbors spark some inspiration? This list is comprised of all kinds of activities for any and all skill levels. Pick up a book on your current hobby or try something new!

Title - Origami ZooTitle - Quilled AnimalsTitle - Knit your Own PetTitle - Knit your Own Zoo

If You Love Alexis Nikole @blackforager

This bubbly internet educator guides viewers on Instagram and TikTok through the wonderful world of foraging wild food and the mysteries of plants. Alexis Nikole Nelson has a TED Talk, and is the newest host of Crash Course Botany on YouTube. She also won a Daytime Emmy in 2023 for an episode of “Eat This with Yara ” titled ‘The Awful Truth About ‘No Trespassing’ Signs”! Check out her videos, and these book recommends based on her content. And as Alexis’s tagline goes, perhaps we can find “Happy snacking! Don’t die!”

Title - Title - Midwest ForagingTitle - Title - The Forager

Graphic Novels by Nonbinary Creators

Celebrate International Nonbinary People’s Day on July 14th by reading a graphic novel from a nonbinary creator. Some titles on this list are non-fiction and memoirs, highlighting the stories of nonbinary people. Other titles are fiction created by nonbinary authors and artists.

Title - A Quick & Easy Guide to They/them PronounsTitle - Turning JapaneseTitle - MealTitle - Spirit World

Mysteries for Dog Lovers

Dogs as working companions or just beloved pets are featured in these mystery books and series.

Title - Dog on ItTitle - Gun ShyTitle - Dead Canaries DonTitle - This Dog for Hire

Slow Paced Alien Stories

Why do so many alien movies and video games have to be shoot-em-up explosion fests? Maybe, the reason why we haven’t made first contact is because real aliens have become afraid of us. This list is for those who are tired of those kinds of stories. What if the encounter was more suspense than, explosions and the pew pew shootings? Included in this list are stories that do not have a neat little explanation. It is like an unfinished puzzle and you can decide if you have solved it, or if there even is a solution. World UFO day is July 2nd

Title - Stories of your Life and OthersTitle - Roadside PicnicTitle - AnnihilationTitle - The Seep

They’re Watching!

In honor of Surveillance Day, here is a list of teen dystopian / big brother fiction. These books question things like how much privacy are we willing to give up in the name of security? What are the government and companies really doing with our digital devices and internet searches? I started with the classic, 1984. If a book is part a series, I will only link to the first book, but will provide the titles of the remainder of the series in the annotation.

Title - 1984Title - 1984Title - The GiverTitle - Feed

Train Your Pet!

Is your dog, cat, bird, small mammal or fish in need of wrangling? Find guidance for training them to be the best they can be! (Okay, maybe not the fish.)

Title - Zak GeorgeTitle - DonTitle - The Puppy PrimerTitle - The Trainable Cat


they satisfy the fear and fascination with the ocean’s most misunderstood creature. Pair your next Jaws viewing with another shark-themed film, or read about the importance of sharks in our ecosystems!

Title - JawsTitle - SharkTitle - A Pocket Guide to Sharks of the WorldTitle - The Shallows

Summer Gothic Literature

Get eerie in the summer time with these gothic novels!

Title - Cicadas Sing of Summer GravesTitle - Mary and the Birth of FrankensteinTitle - PiñataTitle - My Summer Darlings

Nick Cave

While we await the August 2024 release of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ 18th studio album ‘Wild God’, I hope these albums, concert films, documentaries, feature films, memoirs, biographies, novels, and web resources inspire you to explore Cave’s complex, ever evolving life and work.

Title - Faith, Hope and CarnageTitle - GhosteenTitle - Lovely CreaturesTitle - The Firstborn Is Dead

Coffee Brewing 101

I am definitely a coffee nerd, and kinda snobby. But I also love sharing information and I’m hoping this list gets you thinking about coffee basics, and excited to attend a Coffee Brewing workshop.

Title - The New Rules of CoffeeTitle - BrewTitle - The Little Coffee Know-it-allTitle - Craft Coffee

Pets With Jobs

My favorite pets with jobs are the TSA dogs at the airport. Especially the German Shorthaired Pointers! Read about some inspiring and hard working pets in the titles below.

Title - Finding GraceTitle - Dogs Who WorkTitle - The truffle huntersTitle - Good Dogs of Service


A librarian doing a list on cats – nothing could be more cliché I know. I have tried to include lots of cat and feline related books.

Title - The Good Cat ParentTitle - Amigurumi CatsTitle - Bake Me A CatTitle - The Book of Catitudes

Eggs and Chickens

My friends got a few chickens for their urban backyard and it is fun to get fresh eggs when I need them. Learn more about backyard farming, chickens and egg recipes.

Title - The Backyard Chicken KeeperTitle - Chicken Keeping Pure + SimpleTitle - LetTitle - Under the Henfluence

Mysteries are the Cat’s Meow

Mysteries that feature cats as sleuths and sidekicks.

Title - A Cat on Stage LeftTitle - Double Booked for DeathTitle - The Cat Who Ate Danish ModernTitle - Tall Tail

Tension- Filled Historical Romances to Read in Honor of Bridgerton Season 3

Bridgerton Season 3 is less than a month away from being released! However, for those who can’t wait that long (especially after watching all the press of Nicola Coughlan and Luke Newton), we’ve compiled a list of books to tide you over.

Title - Romancing Mister BridgertonTitle - A Lady for A DukeTitle - UnlockedTitle - Pleasure for Pleasure