How to Rock Thanksgiving Dinner (Book Nerd Style!)

Thanksgiving is almost here, and we are so ready for some delicious food and quality time with our favorite people and books. If you’re a little nervous about how you’ll find time to read among all the eating and talking to relatives you see once a year, don’t worry—we have you covered.

Here’s how to rock Thanksgiving Day like the champion book nerd you are!

1. If you’re helping with the cooking, volunteer to cook the turkey.

That might seem like a big task, but here’s why you should take it on. Once that bird is in the oven, depending on the size, you’ll have three or four hours of downtime to read! The average person reads about one page per minute, according to the interwebs. If your turkey needs to cook for four hours, that means you can read 240 pages before you need to take it out of the oven. Luckily, we have some great book recs that fit right into that range!

We Were Liars Deluxe Edition

We Were Liars Deluxe Edition

By E. Lockhart

This read is so fast-paced, you’ll fly through the 225 pages and probably have time to read the bonus content!

Two Boys Kissing

Two Boys Kissing

By David Levithan

At only 196 pages, you’ll have time to sit and ponder (and maybe have a good cry) before you need to get back to business.

Kale, My Ex, and Other Things to Toss in a Blender

Kale, My Ex, and Other Things to Toss in a Blender

By Lisa Greenwald

A food-related and heartwarming story that will have your mouth watering for that turkey you just cooked! You might need to read a few pages while the turkey rests, since this one is 261 pages.

2. Charge your e-reader in advance.

Keeping an e-reader on your lap during dinner is crucial, and you don’t want it to run out of battery in the middle of your cousin’s boring story about how awesome college is.

3. Cheers!

If you’re asked to give the Thanksgiving toast when you sit down to eat, just say this: (thanks, Lord of the Rings!)

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”

—J. R. R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

4. Avoid nosy questions from family members.

When your relative asks you if you have a significant other in your life, don’t panic! If you’re single (you do you!) but are feeling the pressure, you can rely on these book baes! It doesn’t matter if they are technically fictional—that rude relative doesn’t need to know.

Henry from <em>Words in Deep Blue</em>

Henry from Words in Deep Blue

By Cath Crowley

Henry is the boy you were friends with for years, and then you started working together at the same bookshop and it blossomed into something more.

Kit from <em>What to Say Next</em>

Kit from What to Say Next

By Julie Buxbaum

She didn’t even know you existed until she sat at your lunch table one day. You’ve been eating lunch together ever since.

Jack from <em>Holding up the Universe</em>

Jack from Holding up the Universe

By Jennifer Niven

He’s sort of a bad boy, but definitely misunderstood, and you get to see his sweet side.

Blue from <em>Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda</em>

Blue from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

By Becky Albertalli

You’re not technically dating him, but you talk every day online so it counts!

5. Be on point!

When the conversation inevitably turns to the news and current events, here are a few YA books you can speak to that are powerful and about topical issues:

Dear Martin

Dear Martin

By Nic Stone

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"Raw and gripping." —Jason Reynolds, New York Times bestselling coauthor of All American Boys

A must-read!” —Angie Thomas, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Hate U Give

Raw, captivating, and undeniably real, Nic Stone joins industry giants Jason Reynolds and Walter Dean Myers...

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

By Erika L. Sánchez

National Book Award Finalist!
Instant New York Times Bestseller!

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
meets Jane the Virgin in this poignant but often laugh-out-loud funny contemporary YA about losing a sister and finding yourself amid the pressures, expectations, and stereotypes of growing up in a Mexican-American home. 

 
Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away...

The Sun Is Also a Star

The Sun Is Also a Star

By Nicola Yoon

The dazzling new novel from Nicola Yoon, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Everything, Everything (streaming now!), will have you falling in love with Natasha and Daniel as they fall in love with each other!

Natasha:
I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a ...

Being Jazz

Being Jazz

By Jazz Jennings

Get ready for season 3 of the popular TLC show I Am Jazz! Teen advocate and trailblazer Jazz Jennings--named one of "The 25 Most Influential Teens" of the year by Time--shares her very public transgender journey, as she inspires people to accept the differences in others while they embrace their own truths.

"[Jazz's] touching book serves as a rallying cry for understanding and acceptance."–Bustle

6. Use your secret weapon!

If the conversation gets stale and you’re facing an awkward silence, pull out the question you know you have the answer to: “So, has anyone read any good books lately?” This is your time to shine. You got this!

7. Don’t eat too much!

Don’t let the tryptophan get you! After a long day, you deserve to stay up to read that extra chapter.

What are your Thanksgiving traditions? Tag us @GetUnderlined!