Since 1996, Oprah’s Book Club has been the literary equivalent of a golden ticket.
As Book Club rolls into three decades, Oprah Winfrey hit a big milestone this month: She selected her 100th book, “Hello Beautiful” by Ann Napolitano.
One of TODAY’s most anticipated books of 2023the novel was released on March 14. “Hello Beautiful” is set over several decades, following the life of William Walter and the family of four sisters he marries. You can read an overview here.
Speaking to TODAY.com, Napolitano described her latest release as a modern homage to “Little Women”.
“When the four Padavano sisters entered the story – each of them strong-willed and loving but so different from each other – I realized they were the heartbeat that would shape the rest of the novel. They became my tribute to the fictional sisters I loved so much growing up: the four March girls in Louisa May Alcott’s ‘Little Women’,” Napolitano told TODAY.
Winfrey also noted the similarities to the literary classic in an interview with the New York Times.
“Not since Jo and Meg and Amy and Beth have we seen sisters like this, with this kind of connection, and written so vividly that you feel like you’re in this house,” Winfrey said. “You live life with them. I tell you, the end? I cry. What an amazing writer Ann is.”
The media mogul said she walked through “Hello Beautiful” one rainy day in front of her fireplace with her dog and a blanket.
“I had about 30 pages and I was like, ‘OK, that’s the book,'” Winfrey said. “You can’t read it without being open. It just opens you up in a way that you didn’t know was closed.”
Winfrey started the book club in 1996, after frequent conversations with its producer, Alice McGee, about the novels they liked. His first selection, “The Deep End of the Ocean” by Jacquelyn Mitchard rode the wave of success, selling more than 2 million copies, according to the Associated press.
THE author’s latest novel, “Dear Edward“, was chosen as a Read with Jenna choice in 2020 and was even adapted into a 10-episode Apple TV + series.
Jenna Bush Hager said TODAY she chose the bestseller because “it’s a book about love and loss and finding your way past the unthinkable”.