Thursday, June 01, 2017

May: What I Read

Meh-- you probably don't need to rush out and get these:

16. Women Who Work by Ivanka Trump: You can hear my review of this book on our most recent podcast.  I know a lot of academics who have been falling over themselves to trash this as hard as they can, but I really did try to engage because I think the topic is so great and the idea of a conservative voice saying these things is even greater.  But, alas.

15.  Same Beach Next Year by Dorthea Benton Frank:  She's a guilty pleasure for me for sure, but this one was not stellar.


13.  A Twist of the Knife by Becky Masterman:  This is the third book in a detective series, and I didn't realize it until halfway through, but it explains why the character descriptions and interpersonal plots assumed I knew what the hell was going on already.  I always like stories about girl detectives, but you might want to start with the first one if you explore Brigid Quinn, ex-FBI agent.


A couple of memoirs that might be worth your time:

12.  I Am Supposed to Protect You From All of This by Nadja Speigelman:  I really like children of famous people exposes, but this one felt like maybe the only reason she got a book deal was because of her parents, not even because of her story, which just was not interesting on the face.

11.  Greetings from Utopia Park: Surviving a Transcendent Childhood by Claire Hoffman:  This was a really interesting memoir about a little girl growing up in a meditation colony in Iowa.  I liked it a lot, actually, and it was a quick read.

10.  A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in my Mood, my Marriage, and my Life by Ayelet Waldman:  The author has  severe PMS, PMDD, and it's been affecting her life forever, more so as she begins to go through menopause.  So!  She tries microdosing herself with LSD and chronicles the results for a month-- it's a great read.  I am pretty sure that I also have this, so I was especially interested.

I wouldn't buy these or even put them on hold, but if you go to your library and see them on the shelf, NOT BAD:

9.  The Gilded Years by Karen Tanabe:  I am not usually a huge historical fiction reader, but this story of the first black woman to (secretly) graduate from Vassar was really lovely and also a little boring.

8.  Don't You Cry by Mary Kubica:  A totally serviceable thriller.  Don't believe the  next-Gone-Girl hype on the flap, though.

7. The Forever Summer by Jamie Brenner:  Total chick lit, but I loved it.

6. Swimming Lessons by Claire Fuller:  This book is obviously way better than the rest I have written about so far, but I still didn't love it.  It's all there-- crazy characters who behave like they should given their personalities, a good plot, excellent literary devices to propel that plot, an ending that's up for interpretation.  But, I just didn't quite love it.

These are GOOD

5.  Exit West by Moshin Hamid:  I am not going to say very much about this book because I think you should probably just read it and then we can talk.


3.  The Futures by Anna Pitioniak:  I wish every book I read could be like this one-- a straightforward plot, compelling characters, relatable writing-- loved it.

2.  Who Thought This Was a Good Idea: And Other Questions You Should Have Answers to When You Work in the Whitehouse by Alyssa Mastromonaco:  The author was Barack Obama's deputy chief of staff, and before that she was his scheduler-- in both cases, the youngest woman to do those jobs.  I mean, she is only 40 now writing the book.  It's breezy and funny and drops great names.  Loved it.  It is, though, written with a co-author and even so, it's a little chaotic and the timeline is weird.  But!  I LOVED the stories-- like how the West Wing finally got a tampon machine in the bathroom.

1.  The River at Night by Erica Ferencik:  OH MY GOD this was scary and fast and the first book I read but it stayed with me all month.  Total summer entertainment read.

1 comment:

Virginia said...

I have been lazily using Instagram to chronicle my book reading, which has been sloooow since having Thomas (two babies close in age makes life a bit more chaotic, who knew??!!). But, I love that you still post your books here because I often throw a bunch on my to-read list!!!