Recent Reads

I got in some great reading time this past month. I’ve loved spending time outside reading in the summer heat – it’s just so relaxing to me. I will say, though, that I miss the post-work reading with a Starbucks at Schenley Plaza that I’d typically be doing this time of year. I’ve been doing my best to replicate it with my Nespresso cappuccino here at home!
Here’s what I’ve been reading.
I was so excited for this book, and it did not disappoint! Zoje is the author of Baby Teeth, which I also loved, so I was really looking forward to reading what she wrote next. (I also met her briefly at an event here in Pittsburgh!) Once I started reading, I legitimately couldn’t put it down until I finished. She writes so descriptively and captivatingly. This is a psychological thriller like Baby Teeth, but also a bit more straight-up horror. It follows a family who moves out to a house in the middle of nowhere, where some strange things start happening.

I never really used to be a memoir reader, but I’ve been reading a lot more of them recently –  maybe since I’m having less human connection in person, I want more glimpses of other people’s lives through books. I have seen Elaine on Project Runway, but didn’t know much else about her. I loved following her trajectory both professionally and personally, and her drive and ambition made me want to do more, ha!
There’s a movie starring Glenn Close based on this book, but I haven’t seen it. I have, however, read other books by Meg Wolitzer and I always love them. This book was also about ambition and success – and about sacrifices you have to make to get where you think you want to go. It wasn’t a long read, but I really enjoyed it.

Another memoir! Part of me always wanted to work for a magazine, so I love reading about the behind-the-scenes from people who did. Andrè Leon Talley is iconic now, but it was fascinating to read about how he got to where he is, and about being Black while ascending the ranks. Plus there’s good fashion-insider gossip sprinkled throughout!

This is set in the 1920s, but the themes about feeling split between two worlds and trying to figure out where you fit in are really timeless. I always love reading about the 20s, and imagining the excess and glitz and glamour (while wearing pajamas, ha!).

Jasmine Guillory writes really great rom-com books that aren’t too cheesy for me. This was so fun to read, but it had depth to it, too – it explored dating as a Black woman in the public eye. It’s a great summer read.

I’ve been looking forward to this for a year or so – it’s the sequel to The Royal We. I wish I had re-read The Royal We before I started this one, to help me remember more, because it picks up right where the last one lets off. It’s a fun, fictional look at what it’s like to marry into the British Royal Family (the first book was written well before Meghan Markle married Prince Harry), and how it’s probably more difficult than it might seem at first glance.

I loved how this book tackled balancing so many aspects of life – motherhood and career, friends and relationships, career and romance. The characters really drew me in, and I cringed and celebrated along with them.

This book was excellent. It follows two Black sisters, both light-skinned, and how their lives diverge when one of them starts to live as a White woman. It delves into race, and relationships, and family, and belonging, and it’s beautifully written. Highly recommend.

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