Please note this post first appeared on August 29, 2019 on SparkPress.
If you’ve been following Jane from the very beginning, seeing this show come to a close might be very bittersweet. This American telenovela was filled with love, heartbreak, intrigue, magical realism, modern miracles, and just about every plot twist in the book.
If you’re a superfan who wants to read anything that Jane has ever written, then you’ve probably already read Snow Falling. For those of you not in the know, yes, they really published the book from the show, complete with Adam’s cover design. However, that’s not the only book Jane’s written. While we don’t have those books, we do have some that inspired her along her path—and some we know she’d love.
Warning: Spoilers ahead!
Profound and Perfect Things by Maribel Garcia
Reading Profound and Perfect Things feels like watching a telenovela. A closeted lesbian, Isa, experiments with a man and gets pregnant. Her sister, Cristina, has been trying to get pregnant for years. They collude to present the baby as Cristina’s. Years go by, and when Isa wants to claim the baby as her own, tragedy strikes.
The Circus Thief by Alane Adams
As someone who loves historical fiction and always strives to do the right thing, Jane would adore The Circus Thief and all of Alane Adams’s other Thief books. She would think they’re perfect for Mateo—they have strong morals, colorful pictures to keep his attention, and are at a reading level for him to strive toward.
The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allande
This was the first book Jane read that had magical realism, and it totally shaped who she wanted to be as a writer. Also, it’s a multi-generational novel during political upheaval in Chile—exactly what Jane wanted to do with her family’s story, but starting in Venezuela.
Seventh Flag* by Sid Balman
For another multi-generational story, Seventh Flag is a great choice. It follows two families in Texas—one a traditional white American family, and the other of Arabic descent. As the families grow together, political paradigms shift. Their stories beg the question: what constitutes identity and citizenship?
The House on Mango Street by Sandra Ciseros
It was only after reading this book and falling absolutely in love with it that Jane turned to her local bookshop owners, Enrique and Alejandro, for a recommendation that lead her to The House of the Spirits. The only way to see what all the fuss is about is to pick up a copy!
Roots and Wings* by Margery Kraus and Phyllis Piano
Remember when Petra asked Jane to ghostwrite her book? Petra is a boss bitch who reinvented the Marbella while raising two adorable and well-behaved (albeit pretentious) daughters. This is everything that Petra’s book could have been, but alas, was not. Jane and Petra’s working relationship wasn’t nearly as strong as Margery and Phyllis’s.
Paula by Isabel Allande
When Jane had the chance to meet Isabel Allande at her book launch party, this is the book that Jane wanted to thank her for. It’s Allande’s memoir about the death of her daughter, Paula, and it helped Jane cope with the grief of Michael’s death. We can’t think of a better title to help us mourn the end of this show.
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Jane tries to teach this classic novel to her “Books for Ballers” class, but struggles with a student, Matt “McBaskets” McNeill. She does, however, learn to use basketball as a teaching method by comparing the plot to a famous basketball game.
*not out yet, but available for pre-order now