Books I’ve Been Reading

One of my more recent resolutions was to start using my idle time to read more books. Here are the books I’ve finished over the last couple of months – I keep a list of suggestions on my phone, so if you have any that you’ve read and loved, send them to me!

 

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“What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding” by Kristin Newman

I found this book to be laugh-out-loud hilarious. The author is a comedy writer who’s worked on shows like That 70’s show – I deeply identified with her story of being a thrill-seeker who is scared to settle down and sit still.

Favorite quote: We sat on the river, and talked about how the river had become something unique and amazing just by cruising along on its path. How even if your life seemed quiet and typical, you never knew if around the next bend you were about to become something spectacular. Or fall spectacularly in love. We talked about how that was probably how I wanted to feel when I fell in love, like I was going over a waterfall for all eternity, and how that might just possibly not be sustainable, or, if you really thought about it, enjoyable.

 

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“Yes Please” by Amy Poehler

I had been wanting to read this book since it came out and found myself at the bottom of the world’s longest wait list at the library, but the wait was worth it. I found so many funny yet heartfelt gems of advice in this book – as someone who’s trying to build a career and make sense of my personal and professional life, it was pretty spot-on. Amy wrote this after her divorce and it’s sort of a manifesto on love, life, and work.

Favorite quote: You will never climb Career Mountain and get to the top and shout, “I made it!” You will rarely feel done or complete or even successful. Most people I know struggle with that complicated soup of feeling slighted on one hand and like a total fraud on the other. Our ego is a monster that loves to sit at the head of the table, and I have learned that my ego is just as rude and loud and hungry as everyone else’s. It doesn’t matter how much you get; you are left wanting more. Success is filled with MSG.

 

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“The Vacationers” by Emma Straub

This novel explores the complicated dynamics between family and friends by documenting an eventful vacation after the patriarch of the family is caught having an affair. The daughter of the family is about to go away to college and so the book tended to remind me of the feeling I had when I was graduating high school: of wanting to be on my own but also being scared of independence.

Favorite quote: That’s what best friends did: ruin people for everyone else.

 

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“A Visit from the Goon Squad” by Jennifer Egan

This book was amazing. It’s been recommended to me many times, but for some reason I thought it was some kind of sci-fi book so I never picked it up. I started this on our trip to Costa Rica and could not put it down. It perfectly captures everything that is beautiful and bittersweet about life through a unique way of storytelling.

Favorite quote (because it reminds me of New Orleans): It was one of those days when every intersection brings up another familiar face, old friends and friends of friends, acquaintances, and people who just look familiar. Alex had been in the city too long to know how he knew them all: clubs where he’d deejayed? The law office where he’d worked as a secretary? The pickup basketball game he’d played for years in Tompkins Square Park? He’d felt on the verge of leaving New York since the day he’d arrived, at twenty-four – even now, he and Rebecca were poised to spring at any time, should a better job come along in a cheaper place – but somehow, enough years had passed that he felt like he’d seen every person in Manhattan at least once.

 

*This seems like a good time to remind everyone that if you live in New Orleans, early voting starts soon to pass continued funding for our library system. If the millage does not pass, half of our libraries will close down. More info can be found here.

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