An historical escape and a speculative fiction novella
Plus more best books of the year (so far) lists and a book sale you don't want to miss
This is a hectic travel weekend for me (fingers crossed I’m home in Denver by the time you’re reading this!) so we’re going to skip the prologue today and dive right into the books. That’s almost never a bad thing right?
This week in books.
This week I read…
Bloomsbury Girls by Natalie Jenner. This is a charming novel about three underestimated and under-appreciated women who work at the Bloomsbury Bookshop in London in 1950. They all have big dreams and truly keep the shop running, but they can’t seem to get a leg up in the patriarchal structure of the shop and the world. What I loved most about this book was the introduction of real historical figures who take these women under their glittering wings. It was really fun to see how Jenner imagined some of the great authors and publishers of the time, and to see ambitious women supporting each other! This was a sweet, fun literary romp for when you need a historical escape. Amazon | Bookshop | Libro.fm
The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid (out 8/2). I’m still processing this book and am not quite sure what to make of it. I know it was good. I know I couldn’t stop reading it. I’m not totally sure what I read or how I felt about it. This book is set in world where white people begin to change color. Either slowly or all at once, they wake to find themselves in darker skin. The story follows Anders and Oona, through this change, reveling their difficult pasts and exploring their attempt to make a future under such uncertainty. Hamid writes in a style that makes it hard to put the book down, but also difficult to read very quickly—basically every paragraph is a singly, run-on sentence. It’s short enough to read in one sitting, but something about the structure makes it hard to speed read. I’ll be eager for more people to pick this one up, as I know my own reading of it will benefit from thorough discussion. Amazon | Bookshop | Libro.fm
Now I’m reading…
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry. I’m still reading this doorstop for Novel Pairings so you’ll be seeing it here for awhile. We did have our first discussion with our Patreon community and everyone is thrilled and surprised by how much they love it. I have to say I agree! Amazon | Bookshop | Libro.fm
Persuasion by Jane Austen. I haven’t read this one since high school and I am definitely appreciating it more now! Will I have a new favorite Austen novel? Only time will tell. Amazon | Bookshop | Libro.fm
Links I love.
New York Review of Books is having a huge sale on their classics this weekend! Get up to 40% off some great under-the-radar literature.
I love NPR’s Book Concierge (I know it’s not called that anymore, but I will continue to call it that here because it’s perfect), and in 2022 they are updating it throughout the year. Check out their first back of favorites!
Pride Month has ended, but that doesn’t mean we stop reading Queer Lit. Here’s a roundup of nonfiction titles to add to your shelves.
I haven’t watched much of anything, but my husband discovered his new favorite movie this week.
Being out east with family, and also returning home. Both things are so wonderful.
Readers, I can’t believe we’re one third of the way through summer reading season! For questions, comments, or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to reach out by emailing email@example.com or responding directly to this newsletter. I love hearing from you!
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