Our Texas Signal Holiday Book Recommendations

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Thanksgiving is different this year. For many of us, we’re going to be celebrating Thanksgiving via Zoom. And at the Texas Signal, we want to keep y’all safe, which is why we are encouraging the very safe activity of reading! Here are some recommendations from our Texas Signal staff:

A Promised Land by Barack Obama

What better way to prepare for the Biden years by reliving the first campaign and administration of the Obama years? Beautifully written prose and surprisingly personal insight into everything from Michelle’s conflicted feelings about his presidential ambitions to the daily grind of campaign life provide all the page turning content you need.

Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey

Though this book chronicles the life of the esteemed actor (and perhaps future governor), McConaughey prefers to call this an “approach book.” McConaughey draws upon previous journals and notes that he gathered before hibernating in the desert to write this tome alone. It debuted as the number one nonfiction book on the New York Times bestseller list.

A House of My Own: Stories from My Life by Sandra Cisneros

Cisneros is famously from Chicago and helped kick off the city’s grand renaissance of Chicana literature. However, she has lived on-and-off in San Antonio for decades. Her life as a Tejana plays a part in her experimental collection of these vignettes. This collection, which blends poetry and storytelling, is simply magical and a joyous read.

Cult of Glory: The Bold and Brutal History of the Texas Rangers by Doug Swanson

Like many historical reckonings, the Texas Rangers are getting their due. Swanson does a brilliant job of exposing the discrepancies of Texas Ranger lore, and he dives deep into many of the violent and bloody terrors they waged.

Black Water Rising by Attica Locke 

Houston’s own, Attica Locke has been churning out thrilling bestsellers for over a decade. This debut novel is the first in a two-book collection about struggling lawyer Jay Porter. Set in Houston in 1981, Locke brings to life the city, which essentially serves as a primary character. Locke recently signed a deal with her sister, Tembi, to write a reboot for television of “Waiting to Exhale” with Empire creator Lee Daniels as the Executive Producer.

The End of October by Lawrence Wright

There is perhaps no other writer with their finger on the pulse of everything Texas than Lawrence Wright. His latest novel, first published in April, is about a devastating flu-like virus that unleashes a global pandemic. We’ll never know how he was so freakishly prescient. And we might be too afraid to read this book, but we hear good things!

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