May Book List

May is about moms—we’ve got great reads that celebrate the spirit of motherhood (and make excellent gifts, too!)


The Healing
Jonathan Odell

Get your mom the “must-read” summer book with this stunner from Odell. It’s the story of a grief-stricken plantation mistress, the desperate measures she takes to mother, and the woman brought in to make it all right. Already being compared to “The Help,” this is destined to be a book club classic this year.



Confessions of a Scary Mommy
Jill Smokler

Convinced you are the only person ever to look at your child with the occasional sense of loathing instead of love? You’re not alone. They don’t call motherhood the toughest job in the world without a reason. This collection of mini-essays and “confessions” from Smokler’s wildy popular website paints a hilarious, but still touching picture of the ups and downs of mommydom.

The Snow Child
Eowyn Ivey

How far are you willing to go to be a mother? How much are you willing to believe to make it real? For Alaska-bound Mabel, homesteading with her husband Jack in the 1920s, childhood fairytales come very much to life and her unique path to motherhood is a tender, engaging  and highly recommended read.


The Family Fang
Kevin Wilson

If you think your mother was the craziest one on the block, then you haven’t met Camille Fang, along with her performance artist family—husband Caleb and children Buster and Annie. Hilariously dysfunctional, you won’t want to put this book down until the very end.



Off Balance: Getting Beyond the Work-Life Balance Myth to Personal and Professional Satisfaction
Matthew Kelly

Do you struggle with achieving any semblance of balance in your day-to-day life? Bestselling author Matthew Kelly offers up the notion that it isn’t so much balance we seek, but satisfaction—and a path to get there.

Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman
Robert K. Massie

For the history buff on your Mother’s Day list, consider this well-written history of one of the most famous women ever to rule, written by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Peter the Great.”



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Dina Silver

Accidental motherhood almost always has an interesting back story, and this North Shore-based author’s debut effort is no exception. Silver’s engaging, fictional tale of young Sydney Shepard is a cautionary tale for any young lady heading off to college. Just keep in mind, girls—Ethan isn’t real.

Mars Needs Moms
Berkeley Breathed

Skip the movie and get the book. My kids gave this to me for Mother’s Day several years ago, and I still get misty-eyed when I read it. Perfect for children of all ages, and a reminder about how awesome moms really are.

Looking for a good book? Visit any one of the North Shore’s great independent bookstores. Find them online at And keep up with Kelly’s book reviews at