Sheila is the author of Dancing on the Edge of the Roof, On the Right Side of a Dream, The Shade of My Own Tree and Girls Most Likely. Her stories are making the leap off the page in Juanita, the new Netflix film based on Dancing on the Edge of the Roof, and the upcoming opera Fierce, written by Sheila and composer William Menefield.

Sheila’s most recent book, The Secret Women, explores the complex relationship between mothers and daughters and was picked as a top summer read by Time, Women’s World and Parade. After racing through it, we asked Sheila what books she’s been loving lately. Here’s what Sheila Williams reads.

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

“I have a photo of the two of us on my bookshelf. She told me to keep writing and so I will.”

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

“A book about mothers and daughters. What else is there to say?!”

The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende

“Beautiful magical words spun together.”

Black Water Rising by Attica Locke (and her other novels)

“I adore thrillers and mysteries and if my life depended upon it, I could not write one. But this woman can.”

Poems by Joy Harjo

Any of them, all of them but especially “Eagle Poem” and “I Give You Back.” Joy Harjo is a wonder.