Aquariuses are Air signs like me (a Libra), although this line from Cosmo makes them sound way more exciting than I’ve ever been: “Aquarians not only want to save the world, but they’ve got the engineering and intellectual smarts to actually have a plan on how to do it too.” They also apparently keep things sort of buttoned up and will also tell it how it is. I’m now confused my middle sister is not an Aquarius. I’m so tempted to do her birth chart because you cannot tell me she doesn’t have Aquarius in there somewhere. Anyway, before I get more sidetracked, I’m really pleased to recommend some books with characters I think are Aquarius or books with themes I think will connect to people who share or admire these traits. So let’s jump in, shall we?
Traits: Analytical and Assertive
I feel like I have recommended Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi to so many signs at this point, but honestly, Transcendent Kingdom would really appeal, I think, to people who really like books that make them think, especially if they make them think about things in a different way. Transcendent Kingdom, to me, fits well with the humanitarian theme that is also an Aquarius trait, because there is a huge epidemic with opioids and addiction. A book I’m usually less likely to recommend because I really didn’t like it, but I think sort of goes with this theme is Long Bright River by Liz Moore. I am decidedly not the intended audience for that literary mystery type situation, but so many people really loved it. I think if you like quiet books and you want to see the human cost of addiction and poverty, this book does a good job of showing that. I would also recommend Hood Feminism, always, but I think here because Mikki Kendall does a fantastic job (at everything) humanizing a lot of the issues we see politicians sort of talk over and the people experiencing those issues that the news does a good job of othering a lot of times. Plus all of Kendall’s arguments are really superbly argued and therefore should appeal to the analytical nature of an Aquarius.
This quote from that Cosmo article I linked above is sort of what I relied on to guide these recommendations: “There is a deep sense of justice, liberalness and fairness in all Aquarians.” I want to start with a nonfiction pick that I think does a superb job laying out a lot of the reasons/ways we got to where we are now in the U.S., Mediocre by Ijeoma Oluo. I think this book should appeal to Aquarians because it sort of talks about how though the ideals of the U.S. might be sort of built around Lady Liberty and fairness, that’s definitely not the country we have. It really puts a lot of things into context historically that I appreciated. I would also recommend The Witches are Coming by Lindy West, in large part because her essays about climate change have stuck with me well over a year later. The collection overall has some of West’s trademark humor paired with her incisive analysis of current events. It’s a really well done collection and I would similarly recommend Shrill. To provide context for other lives and other places that may really contextualize the fight for a better world, I would also recommend Ayiti by Roxane Gay, which was her debut short story collection and it’s heartbreaking like Gay often is, but also contains some stories with hope as well. Ayiti is the Haitian word for home, I believe, and this collection is a series of stories about being Haitian, whether in the diaspora in the U.S. or still living on the island. Lots of trigger warnings in this book, particularly of sexual violence. On a much lighter note, which is weird given this book, I would recommend My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite because this really challenges notions of justice! Do you protect your sister when her boyfriends keep winding up dead? What about when she suddenly becomes interested in the man you’ve been crushing on for years?
Trait: Independent and Original
I think I’m really just proving that I will take any opportunity to rave about my favorites over and over again, but Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid just fits these traits so perfectly. Daisy probably needed to be less independent and more independent at the same time, but there’s also the fact that I think this book is written in such a unique way. Told sort of like the longest episode of VH1’s Behind the Music, Daisy Jones and The Six is told in interview format with the band members and people connected to the band in some ways. It’s actual perfection on audio and I recommend it so fervently. I didn’t reread it at all in 2020 and that is both shocking and a terrible oversight. (Honestly, I would also recommend Evelyn Hugo, but like… I already recommend them both in tandem constantly.) Speaking of original though, if you want a fantasy book unlike any other, I would really recommend N.K. Jemisin who is doing so much cool stuff. I would personally recommend The Fifth Season, which won the Hugo, but more importantly, is such a fascinatingly told story. I really want to reread the first two books and finally finish the series, but I will warn you that they’re a bit heavy. Similarly, another really unique adult fantasy novel I’ve loved is Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse (ARC Review here). Inspired by the Pre-Columbian cultures in what is now North/Central America, Black Sun creates such vivid characters and cultures and weaves them all together to create this stunning book that has me desperately impatient for the next book in the series.
Let me know what you think about these recommendations! And please share what yours would be. Also if you would like more, before I fell off this project in the past, I actually did an Aquarius Recommendations post, so there are five more books recommended there, if you’d like.