Reese Witherspoon is a Hollywood luminary, renowned for her on-screen versatility and off-screen entrepreneurial prowess. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1976, Witherspoon’s acting career began at the age of fourteen, when she appeared in a television movie. Since then, she has amassed a formidable body of work, winning an Academy Award for her role as June Carter Cash in the biopic Walk the Line and earning critical acclaim for her performances in films such as Wild and Legally Blonde.

Beyond her work as an actress, Witherspoon has also made a name for herself as a producer and businesswoman. In 2012, she founded the production company Pacific Standard, which has been responsible for hit films such as Gone Girl and Wild. She also co-founded the media company Hello Sunshine, which focuses on storytelling by and about women, and has produced several successful television series.

Witherspoon’s advocacy work has also garnered attention, particularly her efforts to promote gender equality in Hollywood and beyond. In 2015, she launched the #AskHerMore campaign, which encouraged red carpet reporters to ask women in the entertainment industry about more than just their clothing choices. Witherspoon’s commitment to empowering women has earned her a reputation as a fierce and influential advocate for gender parity in Hollywood and beyond.

In 2017,  Witherspoon started a book club aimed at spotlighting and elevating the voices of women writers. Since her very first pick – Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine – many of Witherspoon’s recommendations have made their way onto the New York Times bestsellers list, and even been optioned into films and TV shows.

Find a complete list of all the books Reese has recommended through her book club below (as of March 2023) and complement with the book club picks of Emma Watson and Florence Welch.

Reese Witherspoon’s Reading List

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

“This important story illuminates a part of history that’s often overlooked: the women’s war. It’s a harrowing tale of two sisters, survival, love, and female resilience throughout Nazi-occupied France.” -RW

The House of Eve by Sadeqa Johnson

“Set in the 1950s, this unforgettable story follows Ruby who dreams of being the first in her family to attend college, but her first love may derail her plans. And Eleanor who marries into one of DC’s elite wealthy Black families but struggles to have a baby—the thing she wants most.” -RW

The House in the Pines by Ana Reyes

“This is an absolute, can’t-put-it-down thriller…It’s truly a wild ride that had me flying through chapter after chapter—which I think is the perfect way to kick off your year of reading.” -RW

The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell

“I could not stop Googling all the details of this true story. It’s a fascinating, historical thriller about an Italian Duchess, who we learn at the very beginning of the book will die either by sickness…or by her husband’s hand.” -RW

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed

“At the beginning of her career, Cheryl took on the persona of Sugar and wrote an advice column, Dear Sugar, that became a sensation. Sugar’s advice is no-nonsense, poignant, soul-searching, grounded, and fierce in so many loving ways.” -RW

Our Missing Hearts by Celeste Ng

“It’s set in a not-too-distant future where entire sections of the population are deemed un-American and forced away from their families. It follows the story of a young boy named Bird on the search for his mother Margaret, a poet whose work was deemed unpatriotic. I was so invested in the future of this mother and son.” -RW

On The Rooftop by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

“Set in the 1950’s in San Francisco, this book centers around an incredibly talented group of singing sisters and their fierce mom, Vivian, who has big dreams of them becoming famous. An utterly original and brilliant story about learning how to mother children who have very different dreams and how to encourage them to reach for the stars.” -RW

Wrong Place, Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister

“This book is SO good. It’s about a mother who is worried about her son, because he’s out late one night. She looks out the window right at his curfew and she sees him stab a man in her front yard (!!), but she wakes up the next day and it’s the day before her son committed the crime. She keeps going back in time, piecing together why this happened to her son.” -RW

Honey & Spice by Bolu Babalola

“It’s all about a young British black woman named Kiki with a ton of ambition. She wants to land an internship in NYC, but she needs to grow the audience for her radio show and work with another student on a film. This other student is Malakai…and we all know where this is going.” -RW

Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen

“It follows Ava, a lawyer on maternity leave, who gets pulled into a fake handbag scheme by one of her best friends. It’s non-stop, and every minute I was like ‘Oh my gosh, are they going to get caught?!'” -RW

The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams

“A beautiful exploration of history and the power of language. For anybody who loves words and celebrates them, this subversive story weaves together love, loss and literature in a perfectly lyrical way.” -RW

True Biz by Sara Nović

“An eye-opening and heartfelt story about human connection and the beauty and adversity woven into the deaf community and culture. It is both an educational and electrifying peek into a family’s life as they fight to forge connections even as the outside world threatens to close the door on them.” -RW

The Club by Ellery Lloyd

“A beautifully written, densely plotted murder mystery that takes place off at a private club off the coast of England. Read about a luxurious, celeb-only island during a weekend of partying and ultimately murder.” -RW

The Christie Affair by Nina de Gramont

“This novel covers the 11 days in 1926 when famed novelist Agatha Christie went missing. That’s right, an unexpected mix of historical fiction and romance, heart break and revenge based on true happenings… but here’s the twist, it’s told through the perspective of her husband’s mistress!” -RW

Anatomy by Dana Schwartz

“Set in Scotland in the 1800s, this enchanting story follows an ambitious self-trained surgeon named Hazel who refuses to allow societal constraints keep her from pursuing her dreams in medicine. I think you’ll really enjoy the secrets that begin to unravel, and ghostly adventures riddled throughout this historical fiction.” -RW

Honor by Thrity Umrigar

Honor by Thrity Umrigar is about an Indian-American journalist named Smita who returns to India on assignment. Her experiences lift the veil on the complexities of journalism and leave Smita questioning her boundaries as a reporter. Complex and unfiltered, these are the type of characters that stick with you long after you turn the pages.” -RW

Lucky by Marissa Stapley

“This is such an electric story about an unconventional heroine who is on the run from her past with a winning lottery ticket that could change her future forever. But here’s the catch… she can’t cash it in!” -RW

The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak

“Set in different time periods, the story revolves around a couple who met in Cyprus shortly before the 1974 conflict. There’s magic, mystery and a tree that plays a pivotal role which transcends world wars, cultures and great love.” -RW

Sankofa by Chibundu Onuzo

Sankofa, is a beautiful exploration of the often complex parameters of freedom, prejudice and individual sense of self. Chibundu Onuzo has written a captivating story about a mixed-race British woman who goes in search of the West African father she never knew.”

Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood

“I was so drawn into this magical world and its mysterious characters as they risk it all to ban an evil spirit from an old castle.” -RW

L.A. Weather by María Amparo Escandón

L.A. Weather by Maria Amparo Escandon is a unique story that beautifully weaves together the themes of family and weather as we peel back the curtain on the Alvarados and their hidden lives. It’s unconventional and so real, I felt deeply connected to these characters and clung to their beautiful moments of hope and togetherness.” -RW

We Were Never Here by Andrea Bartz

“The story centers around two friends, Emily and Kristin, who love to go on adventures around the world. This year they are in Chile and through a series of circumstances, end up in a room with a dead body. But here’s the twist, it’s not the first time it has happened to them! Coincidence?” -RW

The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee

The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee is clever, poignant and funny. It’s a bold portrait of a young Chinese-American woman named Jo who is faced with adversity and the realities of intersectionality in her community.” -RW

Paper Palace by Miranda Cowley Heller

The Paper Palace is a deeply emotional love story that follows one day in the life of Elle Bishop as she navigates the unraveling of secrets, lies and a very complex love triangle between her childhood best friend and her husband.” -RW

Seven Days in June by Tia Williams

Seven Days in June, follows famous author, Eva Mercy, as she reconnects with her long-lost love, Shane (who is also a bestselling writer), at a book conference. Eva and Shane discover hidden truths about their tumultuous romantic past and have to decide whether they want to find their way back together after a lot of confusion and pain.” -RW

Tokyo Ever After by Emiko Jean

“Join Izumi, a Japanese-American teenager who discovers the father she never knew is actually the Crown Prince of Japan. Caught between two worlds trying to decide where she feels a true sense of belonging, Izumi and her father are both trying to find new meanings to the word family.” -RW

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave

“This story centers around Hannah, who is settling into her new role as a wife and stepmother when her husband suddenly disappears leaving her with an ominous note and a request to protect his daughter. There’s so much to love about this thrilling, roller coaster of a novel.” -RW

Northern Spy by Flynn Berry

“Set in Ireland, this story explores a world of secrets and lies that tear two sisters apart. Following a pitfall with the IRA, one sister is framed for espionage while the other is forced to choose between protecting her loved ones or facing unimaginable consequences.” -RW

Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley

“This fast-paced, intricate thriller centers around the life of a young Native American woman from the Ojibwe tribe who goes undercover to infiltrate a drug ring that is proliferating in her community. A beautifully told story that includes new love, high stakes mystery and the rituals of Native American culture.” -RW

Infinite Country by Patricia Engel

Infinite Country is an exceptionally powerful and illuminating story about a Colombian family torn apart by war and migration. I was so drawn to these characters and their unique journeys as they navigate their dreams.” -RW

The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse

The Sanatorium is an eerie, atmospheric novel that had me completely on the edge of my seat. Let’s set the mood…. You’re in a remote location—at a hotel—and there’s a snowstorm. The winds are howling, the snow is pelting in every direction, there’s a missing person, and a dead body shows up….!” -RW

You Have a Match by Emma Lord

“This story is about sisterhood, friendship and a veryyy unique family dynamic that starts with unforeseen test results from a DNA service. If you have a younger sister in your life… this one’s for her!!” -RW

Outlawed by Anna North

“This feminist Western will keep you on the edge of your seat on a high stakes ride through the old West. The search for identity and the desperation to survive drive the intensity of this women-on-the-run adventure.” -RW

The Light in Hidden Places by Sharon Cameron

“This historical page-turning novel by Sharon Cameron inspired in me such a deep admiration for this young heroine and her remarkable selfless acts of humanity.” -RW

The Chicken Sisters by KJ Dell’Antonia

“Three generations, two chicken shacks, and some big family secrets revealed…. The Chicken Sisters is a charming, hilarious, feel-good story about the kind of bonds & rivalries only sisters can share.” -RW

A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow by Laura Taylor Namey

“Set in Winchester, England, this charming story about a Cuban-American girl who goes to visit family far from her Miami home will warm your heart and leave you hungry for authentic Cuban cuisine and an adventure!” -RW

Group by Christie Tate

“Christie’s story of being a young professional woman who is struggling with deep insecurity and loneliness made me remember so many times in my life where I wished I had a group of friends to carry me through the hard days. And that’s what Christie finds in her therapy group. This book is a testament to the power of human connection.” -RW

Fable by Adrienne Young

“Prepare yourself for a wonderful adventure of a young courageous woman named Fable who is tougher than any pirate you have ever met.” -RW

His Only Wife by Peace Medie Adzo

“Reading takes us all over the world, and this month we are traveling to modern-day Ghana. Culture, heroism and the search for independence are just a few of the wonderful themes in this vibrant book.” -RW

Furia by Yamile Saied Mendez

“This book will set your dreams on fire! It’s a passionate story about a young girl in Argentina who puts everything on the line to follow her dreams. This one will leave you feeling so inspired.” -RW

The Last Story of Mina Lee by Nancy Jooyoun Kim

“Identity, family secrets, and the search for belonging are just a few of the themes. This mystery-thriller interweaves between the past and present through the lens of a mother and daughter duo surrounding a suspicious death and undiscovered truths.” -RW

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

“I’m so thrilled to introduce my very first Young Adult book pick for Reese’s Book Club. I’ve been reading so many incredible, diverse stories in the YA genre and this super funny, joyful story will have you reliving your high school prom days!” -RW

Everything Inside by Edwidge Danticat

“This collection of eight beautiful stories is shaped by different Haitian women’s experience with love and loss. I was so moved by the resilience and strength that these women exemplified. It’s such an empowering read that taught me a lot about intricacies of Haitian culture.” -RW

I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown

“This memoir is a personal narrative from a black, Christian woman who takes us through what she experiences every day as a Black person in America. This book is teaching me so much about how we perpetuate racism in our society.” -RW

The Guest List by Lucy Foley

“This book is a true thriller…It has all kinds of twists and turns and it reminded me of some of my favorite stories from Agatha Christie.” -RW

The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi

“This vivid story is so rich and complex… reading about Lakshmi’s journey from escaping an abusive marriage to becoming one of the most sought-after henna artists in Jaipur captivated me from the first chapter to the final page.” -RW

Untamed by Glennon Doyle

“This memoir is so packed with incredible insight about what it means to be a woman today, what it means to be “good,” and what women will do in order to be loved.” -RW

The Jetsetters by Amanda Eyre Ward

“I love the sense of adventure in this story – it’s about a disconnected family that reunites on a cruise ship traveling through Europe.” -RW

The Scent Keeper by Erica Bauermeister

“It’s a beautiful story about a young woman, Emmeline, confronting the modern world for the very first time. As she embarks on a journey of digging up her past, she is confronted with truth about love, family and who she really is.” -RW

Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid

“This story is a beautiful conversation starter about race, privilege, and work dynamics. I loved following the journey of these characters right up until the last page.” -RW

Conviction by Denise Mina

“This story combines suspense, international intrigue and the murder of an entire family aboard a ship – all following one woman who may just have all of the answers!” -RW

The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes

“It’s such a great narrative about personal strength and really captures how books bring communities together, especially for these women who are completely bonded by their love of literature.” -RW

Fair Play by Eve Rodsky

“The book gives tools on how partners can learn to divvy up life’s workload more fairly, so we can step into the world more fully!” -RW

The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott

“Fans of historical fiction, thrillers, romance, and the power of books to spark change will devour our September pick!” -RW

The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda

“Set in the small vacation town of Littleport, Maine, you’ll meet visitor Sadie Loman and resident Avery Greer. These two are inseparable for almost a decade—until Sadie Loman is found dead. Secrets that have been hidden for years will be uncovered in this thrilling story.” -RW

Whisper Network by Chandler Baker

“I’m so excited to add another great book to your beach bag! My July book pick is Whisper Network by Chandler Baker. This story is a workplace murder mystery that happens in today’s #MeToo era. It’s honest, timely and completely thrilling – I was so surprised to find out who the murderer was!” -RW

The Cactus by Sarah Haywood

“This title is a perfect metaphor for Susan who is a single, regimented woman faced with an unexpected pregnancy just as she navigates a difficult family inheritance issue at the same time. I found myself laughing out loud at Susan’s prickly character as she finds herself in a love triangle, navigating family ties and dealing with 9 months of pregnancy at the age of 45. Hope y’all love Susan as much as I do!” -RW

From Scratch by Tembi Locke

“This beautiful memoir takes us on Tembi’s personal journey of love, parenthood, and ultimately the loss of her husband, Saro. She learns to heal in the most beautiful way—through the support of three generations of women—and yes, there’s Italian food. Lots and lots of Italian food! I can’t wait for you to fall in love with this book the way I did.” -RW

The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo

“You won’t be able to put this down!… Set in a tiny Malaysian town in the 1930’s, the story is about a mystifying tiger who haunts the villages, followed by a series of mysterious deaths. The two main characters will captivate you as their paths are destined to cross.” -RW

Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

“The book centers on the meteoric rise of a rock band in the ‘70s and its lead singers Daisy Jones and Billy Dunne, whose connection is as electric as the music they make together. It’s sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll, people!! The book comes out March 5, so you can pre-order it now… And the very best part?! Hello Sunshine is turning this into a TV show with Amazon Studios… so stay tuned for more updates!” -RW

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory

“It starts with a proposal in front of 45,000 people at Dodger Stadium. But it’s not exactly love and baseball for Nikole (who says no!!!), and as she’s chased out of the stadium by live camera crews, she’s saved by a couple… of siblings… find out what happens next!” -RW

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

“This book is like a love letter to libraries, and made me nostalgic for the long hours I used to spend there when I was a kid. It’s a captivating story and I can’t wait for y’all to read it with me!” -RW

One Day In December by Josie Silver

“If you like rom coms, you will love my December book pick. It absolutely charmed me!” -RW

The Other Woman by Sandie Jones

“My November book pick has one of the most twisted and entertaining plots!” -RW

This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel

“Every once in a while, I read a book that opens my eyes in a way I never expected.” -RW

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

“Romance, mystery, murder and it all takes place in the breathtaking backdrop of the South.” -RW

Still Lives by Maria Hummel

“The ultimate mystery, full of crazy twists and turns!” -RW

Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton

“A beautiful novel full of passion, secrets, courage and sacrifice.” -RW

Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman

“A psychological thriller that captivated me from page one.” -RW

You Think It, I’ll Say It by Curtis Sittenfeld

“The characters in these stories are so complex and interesting.” -RW

Happiness by Heather Harpham

“This beautiful memoir will have you up all night, reading to find out what happens next. There’s heartbreak, joy, and lots of love. Trust me: have your tissues ready. ” -RW

Erotic Stories For Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal

This book has something for everyone! It’s a mystery, a romance, a family drama… and yes, it’s spicy” -RW

The Light We Lost by Jill Santopolo

“This book is all about different kinds of love, spanning decades and continents as two star-crossed lovers try to return to each other.” -RW

Braving the Wilderness by Brené Brown

“Brené Brown speaks of how divided our world is politically, socially, racially, and how we can bridge that divide.  I learned so much about communication from this book.” -RW

The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine

“A fun and fast-paced psychological thriller about two determined women who play a high stakes game of deception that only one can win.” -RW

This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett

“Reading this book is like talking to one of your best friends.” -RW

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

“This story is full of magic, love, family, heartbreak and redemption.” -RW

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

“Celeste Ng writes with stunning accuracy about the power of motherhood, the intensity of teenage love, and the danger of perfection.” -RW

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

“Four friends from high school, bound together by a dark secret, get pulled together with one cryptic text.” -RW

The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

“This exciting and fast-paced story is an amazing tale of courage and redemption.” -RW

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

“Beautifully written and incredibly funny, Eleanor Oliphant is about the importance of friendship and human connection.” -RW

(via Reese’s Book Club)

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