Recent Reads

I struggled to find books that really sucked me in this month – this is the list of finished books, but there are a few others that I started and then took a break from to read something else and haven’t picked back up yet. I’m blaming the weather – when it’s so cold and dreary out, I find it a lot harder to read something that doesn’t really draw me in. But I actually went back to one of the books that I had given up on after just a few pages a month ago, and now I’m really into it! So really, it’s all in my mindset.

With that being said – here are the books that I did finish this month.

Five book covers are pictured: All Girls, The Lightness, White Ivy, Girls with Bright Futures, and Black Buck.
All Girls by Emily Layden

Some people love mystery and crime novels, I love books about preppy boarding schools! This book was unique in that it doesn’t follow just one or two main characters, but each chapter actually follows a different student at Atwater, the all-girls boarding school. Because the characters all interact with each other, it’s not as difficult to follow as it sounds, but it takes a little getting used to. I also want to note as a warning that this book does center around an accused rape between a teacher and past student, though it doesn’t really ever go into much detail about it.

The Lightness by Emily Temple

This was a really interesting book – it’s about a small clique of girls at a Buddhist camp who spend the summer trying to teach themselves to levitate. It’s actually a bit darker and deeper of a book than you’d think, based on that description. I didn’t love it, but it really stuck with me.

White Ivy by Susie Yang

It took me a few pages to get into this book, but once I was in, I was in deep. It follows Ivy, whose parents immigrated from China and who is obsessed with feeling like she fits in. The book grapples a lot with identity and balancing your own wants with your family traditions… and then takes such a quick turn into a psychological thriller, in the best way. I really liked it.

Girls with Bright Futures by Tracy Dobmeier and Wendy Katzman

This book was… fine, but kind of reminded me of Admission in that it followed a few high school girls and their college acceptance journey. This one, however, had a bit more of a suspenseful take to it – there’s so much competition about who can get into each school that someone ends up getting hurt, and no one knows who did it. There’s also some conflict between the well-off students and the scholarship students, too. It had a surprising twist or two, but a lot of it was kind of predictable in my opinon.

Black Buck by Mateo Askaripour

I’ve never read anything like this book before – it combines a typical novel with a sales manual of sorts. Darren (“Buck”) is spotted working at a Starbucks and is hired to work in sales at a start up in the same building. There’s a lot going on at the start up – toxic, racist culture – and Darren struggles a lot trying to fit together his old life and his new one. It will be nothing like you expect, but it’s such an incredible story – if you read any of the books from this month, this is the one to pick.

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