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In the constant search for creative ways to choose books for my TBR, I reach out to some of my favorite stars to see what they’ve read. I’m a huge BookTube follower and have seen BookTubers post videos of notable celebrities reading their favorite books. It sounded fun. I wanted to do the same.
So I started researching. I wanted to find celebrities who read a lot in many genres and I also wanted to find celebrities who are looking for different voices in their reading lives. Ultimately, these are the celebrities whose reading recommendations made it. Here’s a look at celebrities who read diversely and the books they recommend.
Oh, and if you’re interested in following this experiment through to the next phase, I’ll be doing a follow-up where I’ll read the books that one of these celebrities recommended and I’ll officially judge their reading taste. So stay tuned!
I’m a big fan of The daily News, and host Trevor Noah often discusses new books on the show. I’m often skeptical of talk show hosts who put books on their shows – not to target anyone specifically, but how, you can’t actually everyone read, right? Except… it’s actually pretty clear that it’s Trevor Noah does read all these books. And he has some favorite books that he recommends.
Some of Noah’s favorites include Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom, Yaa Gyasi’s Homegoing, Khaya Dlanga’s To Quote Myself: A Memoir, and Sol Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa.
Oh, and if you somehow made it to 2022 and haven’t read Trevor Noah’s memoir A crime born but what are you doing? Read it now. You will laugh. you will cry Ten stars out of five.
You may know actress, comedian and writer Ali Wong from her beloved Netflix standup specials baby cobra hard knock wife and Don Wong. Maybe you love her movie Always be my maybe, in which she starred, wrote and produced. Or maybe you’ve read her book, Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, & Advice for Living Your Best Life. However you met Ali Wong, you’ll be happy to know that she also enjoys reading.
Some of Ali Wong’s favorite books are Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng, Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo and homecoming by Yaa Gyasi. Yes that’s right. This is a second celebrity endorsement for homecoming.
Of course, I had to end up with a few of the more obvious picks. Reese Witherspoon’s taste in reading is probably very familiar to you due to her very popular book club. Reese’s Book Club focuses on stories centered around women, but the types of stories and perspectives vary widely.
Reese Witherspoon has recommended over 50 books through her book club including Seven Days in June by Tia Williams, The Last Story of Mina Lee by Nancy Jooyoun Kim, You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson, Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid , and Little fires everywhere by Celeste Ng. If you count, yes, that’s two votes in favor Little fires everywhere.
Of course, Reese Witherspoon also has her own book. So if you still need more Reese in your life, stop by Whiskey in a teacup.
And to complete this list, we had to end with the queen of book clubs, Oprah Winfrey. Oprah’s Book Club began as a book segment on her talk show The Oprah Winfrey Show in 1996. Now in 2022, Oprah’s Book Club is quite possibly the most influential book club of all time. Oprah loves reading and supporting the books she loves.
Here are some of the notable books Oprah has championed over the years: The Love Songs of WEB Du Bois by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, The Sweetness of Water by Nathan Harris, Caste by Isabel Wilkerson, A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry, Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende and several novels by Toni Morrison: Song of Solomon, Sula, Paradise and The Bluest Eye. Yes, these are two celebrity voices The blues eye.
I just want to note that all of the people on this list are women and/or BIPOC celebrities. So white men, again, I’m gonna need you guys to make it better.
Want more celebrity content? Check out these 8 celebrity novels to add to your TBR. And here’s a look at the history of the celebrity book. Last but not least, here are 15 Celebrity Recommended Books.