Oh, Aquarius, you can be shy on the surface, but little do people know how much you have going on inside your head! You’re deeply introspective and intellectual, always thinking of original and unique ideas as well as the next way to help someone you love or to contribute to a cause. That’s why we think Jonathan Safran Foer’s We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast is the perfect read for you. A compelling “how-to” about the innovative ways we can help stop climate change through our diet,this book will bring out your energetic side by motivating you to make a change with his philosophical insight about our relationship to our planet.
Pisces, you’re the kind of person who can be around anyone. You’re also always happy to help your friends and are easily able to express your emotions. But we also know how much you desire to escape reality into your own little dream land — which is why Alice Hoffman’s The World That We Knew is a great fit for you. Hoffman mixes magic and history, following a young girl who tries to escape Nazi Berlin with a golem at her side. Filled with mystical beings and demons, the book will be easy to resonate with, as it explores helping a multitude of characters during a tragic time in history, with a fantastical twist.
We know you like to win, Aries. You love looking for the next project, competition, or anything that makes you feel accomplished and victorious. You have a knack for making people like you with your dynamic and personable spirit, and you enjoy knowing that you’re liked by those around you. With your confidence, enthusiasm, and determination, How Could She by Lauren Mechling will be a relatable read. Told from the perspectives of three high-powered female friends (but are they really friends?), the story reveals how much a friendship can rely on competition and bragging rights. But, just like you, Aries, each individual character explores who they are and what they’re passionate about as they strive for success.
You’re in it for the long haul, Taurus, and are ready to invest in yourself and your potential. You thrive when you’re surrounded by beauty, from objects you treasure to people you love. This atmosphere helps you stay accountable and consistent — although, you have been known to be too stubborn which can cause rifts. This is why you’ll love Adeena Sussman’s Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors from My Israeli Kitchen, a stunning cookbook that not only will satisfy your aesthetic pleasure (and looks amazing on your vintage coffee table!) but also explores Israeli culture, cooking, and heritage through sublime recipes with interesting twists. This book will appeal to your aesthetic senses and your stomach and help you break out of your routine, reliable cooking patterns.
Gemini, which is Latin for twins, gets a pretty bad rep for being duplicitous. But we understand your true character. Sociable and fun, you can also be serious and thoughtful, and sometimes people may not know which side of you they’re about to face. You have a curious mind with a yearning to branch out and see all that you can. We think you’d love Maria Kuznetsova’s Oksana, Behave! which follows the life of Oksana, who immigrates to the United States as a little girl, and navigates her dual Russian and American cultures. Spunky and determined to do whatever she wants, Oksana is an appealing heroine and we think you’d get a kick out of her antics and life story.
You’re incredibly tuned into your emotional experience, sometimes to the point of thinking it’s written on your face, but in fact people can be reading something very different. Your loyalty, creativity, and empathy can be taken as fact or fiction, a choice you sometimes make — which is why you should pick up Ayelet Gundar-Goshen’s The Liar. A riveting book that’s dripping with emotional anguish, misplaced teenage cruelty, and raw family dynamics, this will have your Cancer second-hand anxiety thrumming, but might help you consider when to conceal yourself and when to be honest.
Leo is Latin for lion, making you “the king of the jungle.” You have a confident and dominant personality, at least on the outside. You make sure you get the attention in the room and that you’re the alpha. This comes easily to you, since you’re so well liked for your sociability, generosity, and great sense of humor. With all these in mind, you should read Fleishman is in Trouble by Taffy Brodesser-Akner, where basically every character is a Leo, so to speak. We follow the divorce of Toby and Rachel Fleishman, who constantly battle for attention and dominance in their relationship. Funny and deep, this book will be a natural read for you.
We’re glad you’re here Virgo, since we know you love to be productive and have trouble taking moments to indulge. Your deeply analytical and detail-oriented personality makes you meticulous in everything you do, except when it comes to your own feelings. You love to help and give advice to those around you, but tend to neglect yourself and your needs. Lori Gottlieb’s memoir Maybe You Should Talk to Someone will be an important, fun, and eye-opening read for you. Gottlieb invites us into her life as she starts therapy, while also working as a therapist herself. You’ll love her personable and analytical personality, as she analyzes her patients and herself, and serves as an inspiring voice to do some personal development.
Group projects might be your favorite thing since partnership and companionship are super important to you. You’re chasing justice and at the same time running from conflict, acting as peacekeeper whenever necessary. We think The Limits of the World by Jennifer Acker will appeal to your Libra sensibilities — a mixed race, interfaith couple searching for their own equilibrium as newlyweds and facing the inequalities and prejudices of the world and their families with a heavy, quiet heart. Searching valiantly for balance, you realize that one intangible, true gem you won’t find in the world or your partner: yourself.
You may have a bad reputation but we see the impassioned, proud person behind the secrets and mistrust; sometimes your past is your secret and there’s no way forward but with everything you’ve got and quick action. That’s why you should check out An Unorthodox Match by Naomi Ragen, this story of a woman coming to terms with her past and indomitably creating a future for herself in the community she craves, with the man she loves, will fulfill your desire for experience and emotional complexities and resolution.
Sag, we hope you’re here long enough to check this title out. You’re energetic and full of life, eager to learn more about how others live and how you should conduct yourself. But one of your greatest joys is your freedom: to move, to live, to give. You’re ready to put it all on the line to get what you want, which can sometimes cause some uncomfortable confrontations. That’s why you’ll love Ayelet Tsabari’s memoir The Art of Leaving, a gorgeous story about homeland, travel, and confronting the prejudices and contradictions we encounter in society; it’s a book that will help you stay connected to the world and, in turn, yourself.
Capricorn we know you’re here for all work and no play but sit down, pour yourself some hot chocolate and think calm thoughts for one minute. You value hard work, self-control, and independence and often look down on people you don’t see as exhibiting these traits. You’ve gotten as far as you have both personally and professionally by putting in the time and making realistic, achievable goals. And that’s why you should check out Sarah Hurwitz’s Here All Along—a memoir about the former speechwriters journey to rediscover her Judaism and find the language to talk about religion, spirituality, and what she believes. This book speaks to the individual who’s looking to fill in the more spiritual aspects of their life, or just learn more about what Judaism means.
Michelle Zaurov is Jewish Book Council’s program associate. She graduated from Binghamton University in New York, where she studied English and literature. She has worked as a journalist writing for the Home Reporter, a local Brooklyn publication. She enjoys reading realistic fiction and fantasy novels, especially with a strong female lead.
Simona is the Jewish Book Council’s digital content and marketing manager. She graduated from Sarah Lawrence College with a concentration in English and History and studied abroad in India and England. Prior to the JBC she worked at Oxford University Press. Her writing has been featured in Lilith, The Normal School, Barnstorm, Digging through the Fat, and other publications. She is an MFA candidate in fiction at The New School.