I don’t have a lot of rules for myself when it comes to books and reading. There are no genres I won’t touch or read exclusively. I care even less what or how you read. You want to read vampire teen fiction? Zombie novels? World War II historical fiction? Knock yourself out. You want to skim read? Skip chapters? Read the last page of Gone Girl? Whatever floats your boat, baby.
I do think the best way to start a book is to know nothing about it, which is why I never read Goodreads reviews or plot summaries beforehand (and why my book reviews are spoiler free). Going into a story with a clean slate and an open mind is just better for everyone.
This idea is particularly important for thrillers and suspense novels. One of those for you today, plus the total opposite of a suspense novel: A sequel and memoir by one of my very favorite comics and women.
Happy reading, friends.
If You’re Looking For: Thrills, Complicated Novels, Amazing Writing
If You Liked: The Girl On The Train
My Review: Here is what I want to tell you: This novel is exquisite. Reading it is like slow-eating a piece of rich, dark chocolate. Every little observation about motherhood and friendship is to be savored, relished, enjoyed. As each chapter switches perspective, it’s easy to get caught up in the thrill and warmth of the human experience. Harriet Lane is (truly) brilliant!!! Here is what I don’t want to tell you: There’s a good chance you will hate this book. Like really, really hate it. It’s one of those books people love to toss out the window because of a very important detail. My advice: If you choose to read this book, I encourage you to focus on the writing rather than the plot. Feel free to send me an an angry/confused/indignant email at 2am when you’re finished. 4.5/5 stars.
Their Review: “Never have I seen the angst and vulnerability of early motherhood so vividly portrayed. Harriet Lane explores the “tyranny of domesticity” and the almost primitive bonds that link women to their children and also to other mothers. HER is at once funny and terrifying. I read it in one sitting and when I was finally able to put it down, my heart was pounding.”― Ann Leary, author of The Good House
Quoted: “I found the final plot twist unsatisfying, as plot twists often are: nothing like life, which – it seems to me – turns less on shocks or theatrics than on the small quiet moments, misunderstandings, or disappointments, the things that it’s easy to overlook.”
2. Why Not Me?
If You’re Looking For: Humor, Essays, Memoir
My Review: My review of this book is as predictable as Donald Trump’s hair in a windstorm– you know exactly where it’s going to go. I loved this book with my whole heart. I loved it so much that once I finished it, I started it over again. If you are a fan of Mindy or funny women or millennial humor, I don’t know how you could possibly not love this book. Don’t read this book if you are A) the opposite of me or B) a heterosexual male who only enjoys filthy comedies and war movies (basically the opposite of me). 5/5 stars.
Their Review: “Hilarious…Kaling knows her strengths, and plays to them brilliantly…Aside from that effortlessly conversational tone and her pitch-perfect humor, Kaling’s biggest strength here is curatorial. She gives us the candy we came for – the advice, the anecdotes, the straight talk on body image – but sprinkles in something extra.”— Entertainment Weekly
Quoted: “People’s reaction to me is sometimes “Uch, I just don’t like her. I hate how she thinks she is so great.” But it’s not that I think I’m so great. I just don’t hate myself. I do idiotic things all the time and I say crazy stuff I regret, but I don’t let everything traumatize me. And the scary thing I have noticed is that some people really feel uncomfortable around women who don’t hate themselves. So that’s why you need to be a little bit brave.”