IF YOU LOVE FRIENDS
The women have always been the best thing about this show! Less than best are its body-shaming treatments of Monica’s younger years; best of best is that they’re a quirky, 2/3’s Jewish, supportive gal crew. Celebrate the same with these titles, where young women also pursue their best futures, in and out of friendship (and the kitchen!).
SUMMER SISTERS BY JUDY BLOOM
Victoria and Caitlin were unlikely friends in their youth—Victoria is less than cool, and Caitlin is an it girl. From their early friendship, though, they drifted apart. In adulthood, Caitlin is about to get married on the Vineyard—it’s enough to bring the old friends improbably back together.
CRAVINGS: HUNGRY FOR MORE BY CHRISSY TEIGEN
Chrissy Teigen may be gorgeous, but she’s also a real girl—and a bit comfortably dorky. Her cookbook is all comfort food and embracing your truth, and dishes like Pad Thai Carbonara sound like something that Monica might give a spin.
THE RIGHT THING TO DO AT THE TIME BY DOV ZELLER
Friendship and romance in New York City inevitably begins with some misunderstandings. I think that the youngsters in Zeller’s LGBTQ, Jewish take on Pride and Prejudice would totally sympathize with the young stumblings of Phoebe, Monica, and Rachel—trying to figure out who they are; working to embrace their true selves, and be embraced for the same. (Also, this novel is laugh-out-loud funny at points. Even Chandler would approve.)
IF YOU LOVE THE WEST WING
The best aspirational political show to ever hit the telly. Go President Obama’s book for pure hope, or with An Unfinished Life to understand what it might be like to hide a debilitating illness while holding the nation’s highest office.
DREAMS FROM MY FATHER BY BARACK OBAMA
AN UNFINISHED LIFE BY ROBERT DALLEK
IF YOU LOVE ER
Doctors and tension and medical ick—and the drama doesn’t stop when the scrubs come off, either. Make sure you’re good and inoculated against all things airborne before you wade in to these hospital tales—and get your Congress-writing pen ready for after you’re done with Five Days at Memorial and its accounts of absolute government betrayal.
BEING MORTAL BY ATUL GAWANDE
Maybe more philosophical than any episode of the show: Gawande is a surgeon, and his book muses over issues of infirmity and death.
OXYGEN BY CAROL WILEY CASSELLA
Cassella jumps from her medical expertise into this novel, which is all about character relationships behind the scenes, and all about the drama of practicing medicine up front.
FIVE DAYS AT MEMORIAL BY SHERI FINK
In the aftermath of Katrina, citizens were failed. This was nowhere so clear as at Memorial hospital, and Fink’s investigative book reveals all of the horrors that occur when our medical sites are ignored in times of crisis.
THE QUEEN OF HEARTS BY KIMMERY MARTIN
From friendship to doctorhood, Emma and Zadie navigate their changing lives: as women, wives, mothers, and specialized MDs. Drama and secrets arise.