Reading and Reviewing: July

I love reading and often spend time pouring over the latest releases on Amazon—I am looking forward to reading thisthis, and this at some point over the summer. I think it’s fun to own books in hard copy, but the cost can add up, so scouring used book stores or my local library’s dollar sale rack is for sure the way to go (I also love discount websites such as Thriftbooks—seriously, check it out, it has some great deals!). I really need to go to the library more in general and stop buying books, though! ANYWAY. I love Jackie’s book review posts and wanted to share a few favorite, recent reads of my own (and I guarantee more of these posts will be coming your way throughout the summer!):

Sweetbitter, by Stephanie Danler: When I ordered this book from Amazon (oops…) I was so excited. I spent the month of June working as a hostess at a tavern-like restaurant in Philadelphia, so I couldn’t wait to read a book about the restaurant industry. I was proud of myself for understanding the on-the-job lingo and raced through the first half of the book, but after some point I got kind of bored and wasn’t as enthused as I had been when I picked it up earlier in the week. However, considering that this book has been topping every blogger’s summer reading list, I’m still glad I picked it up.

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Tiny Beautiful Things, by Cheryl Strayed: While I still have yet to read Wild (I know, I know…it’s in my pile, I promise!), I had read rave reviews of this book by Cheryl Strayed (from when she was an anonymous advice columnist) and finally ordered it at a deep discount. As a former sociology major, I am often drawn to nonfiction books, and this one—which does touch on some heavy subjects—did not disappoint. In answering her readers’ questions, Cheryl draws on her own life experiences to a great extent, and it will be interesting to read Wild equipped with this knowledge about her background.

The Nest, by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney: I saw this book on display in Barnes and Noble for weeks before I discovered it in a used bookstore for only $8…score! I tore through this book in about a day and a half and absolutely loved it. It’s an easy read about an extended family going through some tough stuff (the aftermath of an accident, money woes). There’s a reason that this one is also up there on everyone’s summer book list (oh, and it’s even better when paired with a Cookie Butter Donut, but maybe that’s just my opinion).

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The Assistants, by Camille Perri: Having served as an assistant in the NYC media world myself, I was eager to pick up this book, which I finished a couple of weeks ago. While I enjoyed it, I was disappointed that the plot centered solely around one incident in the office that created tons of drama for the main character and her group of friends. I guess I had been hoping for more day-to-day banter instead of focusing on one major indiscretion. I also wasn’t super into the author’s writing style, which likely colored my opinion of the book a bit as well.

MWF Seeking BFF and Jennifer, Gwenyth, and Me, both nonfiction by Rachel Bertsche: I read MWF Seeking BFF this past spring and immediately told all of my friends to go out and read it (I promise this is not a jab at any of my BFFs- I love you all, but most of you live in other cities, so I needed to follow Rachel’s lead!). I thought Rachel’s technique of trying to make a new friend each week was ambitious but also fascinating to hear about—too bad Bumble BFF didn’t exist while she was writing the book, it likely would’ve eased the process a ton, haha. I found myself nodding and laughing along while reading this and may have considered emailing Rachel and asking her to be one of my BFFs…it was that good. I read Jennifer, Gwenyth, and Me a few weeks later, which while also intriguing (again, I’m a former soc major over here!) was shorter and didn’t give me the same “YES I GET YOU LET’S BE BFFS K THANKS” vibe as the first book. In this book, Rachel emulates the lifestyles of some of her fave celebrities, chronicling her findings and challenges. Overall, it’s a unique idea and a fun, quick read.

Stay tuned for another book post in the coming weeks…I’ll be over here trying to make another dent in my huge to-read list!

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