Convenience Store Woman – Sayaka Murata
Convenience Store Woman describes the life a woman trying to fit in with society, it is wonderfully weird, insightful, and well-written.
Vacationland – John Hodgman
Before Rob introduced me to the podcast Judge John Hodgman (where Hodgman settles petty disputes), I best knew Hodgman as the PC in the “I’m a Mac / I’m a PC” Apple commercials circa 2006. I’ve grown to appreciate his wit and commentary. In Vacationland Hodgman pokes fun at himself as a product of privilege when he finds himself owning two vacation homes.
I’m still working on some of the books from my December reading list, but here are the next two I’m hoping to read:
Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup – The rise and fall of Stanford drop out Elizabeth Holmes and her start up, Theranos, which promised to revolutionize health with a drop of blood, but couldn’t deliver.
American Prison: A Reporter’s Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment – After his release from imprisonment in Iranian, a Mother Jones reporter takes a job as a prison guard to learn about incarceration in American from the inside.
I’m naturally more drawn to non-fiction than fiction, but I’m hoping to read more fiction this year. If anyone has any great novels to recommend, please let me know.
I have a ton of books on my list this month:
Candide – What I’m reading right now. Candide is like a parody of the tale of an aristocrat. It’s very short and fun to read.
An Elderly Lady Is Up to No Good – A humorous book about an 88 year old Swedish woman murders anyone who gets in her way.
Faithful Place – A 19-year-old man plans to run away with his girlfriend but she never shows up at the train station, he assumes she left him until 22 years later when her suitcase is discovered in an abandoned house. Don’t you want to read this book now?
Small Fry – I am eager to read this memoir about Lisa-Brennan Jobs, the daughter of Steve Jobs.
Damnation Island – A history of Riker’s Island and how New York treated the poor, mentally ill, and criminal.
Art Thinking – This book is a practical guide to navigating creative self-employment with advice detailing how the worlds of creativity and commerce collide.
Right now I’m itching to read The Library Book by Susan Orlean. I absolutely love libraries and can’t wait to read her book about the 1986 fire that destroyed hundreds of thousands of books in the Los Angeles Public Library.
This year, I’ve been trying to read more fiction. I’m always more interested in reading non-fiction and have to force myself to pick out novels. But, I never regret reading fiction once I’m actually into the book. I recently heard an interview with Gary Shteyngart that made me curious about his latest book, Lake Success. It’s a story about a someone with a seemingly perfect life losing it all. Here is the podcast episode, which also includes a great interview with Lisa Brennan-Jobs, daughter of Steve Jobs.
I’m currently reading Educated, a memoir by Tara Westover. Westover grew up in rural Idaho and never attended school, but managed to end up with a Phd. After listening to interviews with her on The New York Times Book Review Podcast and Fresh Air, I felt compelled to read her story.
Next on my list is Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. I’ve read Jane Eyre, but never Wuthering Heights. I though the gothic themes in the novel would be perfect for fall. I also love reading the classics of British literature, especially at this time of year, because it reminds me of being in school.