12 fall books to read with red wine in hand

It’s still too early to start really bundling up and hunkering down, but chilly fall nights are coming, and nothing is better than a good book when you want to lay low. As you make your hibernation preparations, there are definitely some books to read this fall you should stock up on now so they’re ready when you need them. Just like summer usually means you want a “beach read” or something light to enjoy on a hot day, autumn’s a time to break out what I’ll call Red Wine Books — but all that means is that you can devour them alone at the bar with a glass of red wine (or curled up in bed with a glass of red wine) instead of on the beach with a margarita. Seasons change, but a good read is always just a good read.

This season, there are lots of great new releases no matter what you’re into. There are some heady literary novels to start, biographies, dark memoirs, murder mysteries — pretty much anything you can imagine. It’s a good time to try something new or finally pull the trigger on that classic you’ve always lied about having actually read (don’t worry, no one else has finished Anna Karenina either, I swear).

Here are some ideas to get you started, but much like a glass of red wine, it’s a personal choice and anything will do when it comes to your fall reading list.

Behold the Dreamers: A Novel, Imbolo Mbue

dreamers
CREDIT: Amazon

Imbolo’s first novel is about a Cameroonian immigrant in Harlem who works as a driver and becomes friends with a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. The two families become totally intertwined in their own little versions of the American Dream.

Behold the Dreamers
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Amazon

The Nix: A novel, Nathan Hill

thenix
CREDIT: Amazon

This brand new novel is about a guy who’s old, hippie mom shows back up into his life after abandoning him when he was young. She’s now committed a crime that’s taking over the news cycle and the protagonist, Samuel Andresen-Anderson, helps her by “uncovering long-buried secrets about the woman he thought he knew, secrets that stretch across generations and have their origin all the way back in Norway, home of the mysterious Nix.”

The Nix: A novel
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Amazon

Swing Time, Zadie Smith

swing time
CREDIT: Amazon

OK, this one doesn’t come out until November, but that means you’ll have something to look forward to over Thanksgiving weekend. Smith’s latest novel is about two dancers who grow up together, but one has the talent and the other doesn’t. Amazon says it’s about race, celebrity, and all the other delicious things Smith usually gets into.

Swing Time
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Amazon

Intimations: Stories, Alexandra Kleeman

intimations
CREDIT: Amazon

This collection of 12 stories all have the same protagonist just trying to keep things together through the three stages of life: birth, life, and dying. Kleeman’s previous novel, You Too Can Have A Body Like Mine, was compared to Thomas Pynchon and Don DeLillo, so if you can’t handle short stories, you can always try that one, too.

Intimations: Stories
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Amazon

Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space RaceMargot Lee Shetterly

figures
CREDIT: Amazon

This bestseller is going to be a movie soon starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner. The title pretty much says it all. Get inspired.

The Trespasser: A NovelTana French

tana
CREDIT: Amazon

This is the perfect page turner for a fall night, following Detective Antoinette Conway, who’s just about at the breaking point in her career when her homicide squad gets a new case. Stephen King called it “incandescent,” so this is probably a must-have.

Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist SelloutLaura Jane Grace

tranny
CREDIT: Amazon

You don’t have to be into cult punk band Against Me! to get totally immersed in Grace’s story of her gender transition, her struggles with addiction, her failed relationships, and her career as a punk rock musician. There are even excerpts in this memoir of her journals, going all the way back to when she was little.

Another Brooklyn: A Novel, Jacqueline Woodson

brooklyn
CREDIT: Amazon

Just in case you needed a novel about female friendship set in 1970s Bushwick, this is Woodson’s first adult novel in over twenty years; her young adult novel, Brown Girl Dreaming, won the National Book Award.

The Wangs vs. the WorldJade Chang

wangs
CREDIT: Amazon

This is Chang’s first novel about Taiwanese-born American businessman Charles Wang, who loses all of his cash in the 2008 recession and reunites his family in China to start fresh.

The WonderEmma Donoghue

wonder
CREDIT: Amazon

This is a classic red wine book, set in 19th century Ireland, about an English nurse and a journalist taking care of an 11-year-old girl who thinks she’s the Chosen One.

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Amazon

Gone ‘Til November: A Journal of Rikers Island, Lil Wayne

november
CREDIT: Amazon

Wayne wrote this while in jail for having a firearm on his tour bus and there are some juicy tidbits, like Drake visiting him to tell him about who his girlfriend was sleeping with while he was gone and the shame he felt about being locked up. He writes in the book, “I hope people see I’m a regular motherfucker, just adjusting in an unusual environment.”

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Amazon

The Mothers: A Novel, Brit Bennett

mothers
CREDIT: Amazon

This is another debut novel about a contemporary black community in Southern California, a woman who takes up an affair with a pastor’s son, and all of the drama that ensues when people do secret things in a small town.

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Amazon

There are so many good new releases it will be hard to choose. But as long as you have a fat glass of wine in hand, any book becomes the perfect autumn read.

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