Oprah's 102nd Book Club Pick: Wellness by Nathan Hill

Attention, readers: Oprah has a special announcement! The 102nd Oprah's Book Club selection is Wellness by best-selling author Nathan Hill (The Nix, 2016).

Leaping from the '90s Chicago grunge scene to the Flint Hills of Kansas to the detox-dieting suburbs, Wellness tells the story of Jack and Elizabeth, two college students who fall in love at first sight and, over the years, see themselves and their world change in ways neither of them could have imagined. This is a love story like none other—one that continues long after "happily ever after," and captures the full, complicated, occasionally hilarious and always surprising path of a single relationship. Jack and Elizabeth must confront the ghosts of their past, the impossible projections of their future and the ways technology can warp our view of ourselves and each other. "You're about to be taken for an incredible ride," said Oprah.

The author drew inspiration for Wellness from a shift he observed in his own social circle. Around 2014, on an annual trip with a group of friends, Hill noticed a dramatic change in their conversation. "Whereas in our 20s, we talked mostly about books, now in our 30s, we talked mostly about health," he observed. "Someone was doing interval training at varying intensities. Someone was now making pasta out of zucchini instead of flour (reason: fewer carbs). Someone else was removing the chewy centers of bagels (also carbs). Someone was now making mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes (ditto, carbs)." Hill was baffled by this development until he recognized that this "surge in self-care had coincided with a retreat in empathy." If you can't count on others to take care of you, taking care of yourself becomes a very rational priority. "I started writing a story exploring this tension," the author explains, "which, many years later, and after many twists and turns, became Wellness."

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Published 09/21/2023
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