Meg Blocker, Queenie Takes Manhattan, and the brainpower behind The F WordsThe Likeness by Tana French I love an un-put-down-able mystery, but I chafe at cliched genre writing. (Love the cliches of the genre; hate the repetitive phrasing and language.) Enter Tana French, author of the Dublin Murder Squad series. Each novel can be read independently - and they work in any order - and this one is my favorite yet. It's told from the perspective of Cassie Maddox, a former murder and Undercover detective who's been working Domestic Violence cases. Cassie goes back undercover to solve the murder of a woman who adopted her old undercover identity, and winds up living in a house full of eccentric, too-close-for-comfort PhD candidates. Classic Agatha Christie estate-focused crime novel, with a twist. The Perks Of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky I just started this last night, and am already hooked. I love Young Adult fiction with a passion, and seeing the trailer for the movie version of this novel reminded me that I'd never quite gotten around to reading it. So far, so awesome. It's a classic coming-of-age story set in the early 1990s (Hello, awesome music and flannel shirts!), and it's written in an epistolary style, which I just love.
I Capture The Castle by Dodie Smith This is one of my all-time favorites. I read it (for the first time) in my mid-20s---and fell deeply in love. I re-read it every summer, and plan to bring it with me to Maine in July. It's about a family whose patriarch wrote one superlative novel, then stopped writing altogether after an altercation involving a cake knife, a hot temper, and a nosy neighbor. As a result, his family is living on next to nothing, but doing it in a drafty, rented castle in the middle of Sussex. Enter the Americans who've inherited the estate to which the castle belongs, and cue the adulthood-making culture clashes, romances and life lessons. The first line? "I write this sitting in the kitchen sink." It. Is. So. Deliciously. Good.
Michelle Edgemont, Designer I always wished I was one of those people who loves to read and constantly has great book recommendations. Ever since I launched my company last year, the pile of business books next to my bed has been growing taller and taller. A few I'm done with, a few I'm half way through, and some I'm saving for the beach. Nothing better than a nice big blanket on the sand with a few books to page through.
FINISHED: Launch: How to Propel Your Business Beyond the Competition by Michael Stelzner This was a fast, great read that I actually took notes on. I loved the simple language and easy to understand concepts. It's ideas can be applied to any type of business, especially ones that are online based and have a blog. My to-do list after finishing this book was a little overwhelming, but it gave me a good kick in the butt to get things in gear.
HALF WAY THROUGH: Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath and Dan Heath Ok, honestly, this book is too thick to hold my patience level, hence why I'm only half way through, BUT, it's full of great information on why some stories are easy to remember and some are forgettable.
EXCITED TO START: Uncertainty: Turning Fear and Doubt Into Fuel for Brilliance by Jonathan Fields I got to get myself to the beach to start this baby. Being a small business owner, fear and doubt are the #1 and #2 things in my brain at all times. To use those as fuel to be awesome, I would be unstoppable.
MAGAZINE: Runner's World After only being able to run one block (not kidding), I started training in January and ran/walked two half marathons in the past two months. I was way towards the back of the pack during both, but I finished, and that's a big accomplishment. I wouldn't necessarily call myself a runner today, but leafing through an issue of Runner's World makes me feel a little but more legit.
Miya Hirabayashi, You + ME* I do a lot of sitting on the subway. I admit that I often am that girl who is passed out and drooling during her commute (don't judge, I have to sleep sometime), but I love to read magazines because of the short nature of each of the pieces. The three that I read religiously every month are:
The Atlantic I love the shorter snippets in the front that explore a wide range of topics. This month, I loved the piece by James Harkin about gallows humor in Syria. It followed a piece about the reintroduction of beavers into American streams and rivers (by parachute in the 1940's, and probably not by parachute starting shortly thereafter) by ecologists as a conservation effort. I love that these stories present stuff that is really interesting, and that I wouldn't otherwise be exposed to.
Garden and Gun My sister-in-law, Robyn, turned me on to Garden and Gun. I have neither a garden nor a gun, nor am I a southerner, nor do I live anywhere remotely close to the south, but this is a beautiful magazine with a lot of stories that I would never otherwise come across (fly fishing in Guyana, or a father-son barbeque road trip in Tennessee). I really believe in seeking out and letting in influences that don't match perfectly with your exact aesthetic, and Garden and Gun is just that for me (also, see above, the story about beavers). It's enjoyable because it's foreign, and still really beautiful. Plus, I may have purchased a subscription on Fab after having one too many glasses of wine. But who remembers these things, really.
Fast Company Fast Company is great for short, well-written articles that appeal to entrepreneurs. It's business-y and design-y, so it appeals to my aesthetic sensibilities but also makes me feel like I am actively cultivating my business sense. Plus, when I hold it while I'm passed out on the train, I look like a smart, design-y entrepreneur. And isn't that what magazines are for?