Staff Reads: September 22

Staff Reads: September 22

Do you wonder what the Bookish team is reading? Do you want to take a peek at our bookshelves? You’ve come to the right place. Here are the Bookish staff’s personal weekend reading recommendations. Tell us what you think in the comments!

If you’re still looking for some inspiration, check out our Fall Previews for a look at the best books of the season.

Genuine Fraud

I had the opportunity to interview E. Lockhart recently, and I eagerly dove into this twisted tale about a friendship gone wrong. The central character is an antihero who constantly works to stay one step ahead of everyone around her. I don’t want to give away any spoilers, so I’ll just say that I finished this and immediately made plans to pick up Lockhart’s We Were Liars. —Kelly

Slouching Towards Bethlehem

I am too excited about the Joan Didion documentary coming to Netflix (I’m even proud to say that I donated to the Kickstarter a few years ago!). Didion has been one of my favorite authors for longer than I can remember and so it’s embarrassing that I have yet to read her seminal collection of essays, Slouching Towards Bethlehem. Well, I’m reading it now and I am blown away each time I turn a page. Didion is, of course, a masterful writer and her subject matter is always compelling no matter what it is. The book comes to me at a time when I am struggling with my own writing projects, worrying over the futility of finishing them. Then I read her preface and knew I would find the inspiration I needed: “I went to San Francisco because I had not been able to work in some months, had been paralyzed by the conviction that writing was an irrelevant act, that the world as I had understood it no longer existed. If I was to work again at all, it would be necessary for me to come to terms with disorder.” —Myf

The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.

This week I’m reading The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O. by Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland. Anyone who is familiar with Stephenson’s writing won’t be surprised at the size of this book (700+ pages). With a mix of science, magic, time travel, linguistics, and clever humor, it most reminds me of the writing of one of my other favorite authors—Connie Willis. —Alyce


I’m on a cookbook kick after last week. My sister gave me this cookbook for Christmas last year, and in an attempt to shake up my meals a little bit, I’m finally cracking it open. Just flipping through it is making me hungry. —Elizabeth

Three Dark Crowns

This book has been on my TBR pile for far too long. With the season changing and Halloween on the horizon, I’ve been looking for a book that isn’t afraid to get dark, so picking this up seems like the perfect choice. The story follows three sisters who are destined to kill each other, with the last one standing left to wear the crown and rule their island as queen. All three receive their own POV chapters, and it’s all too easy to play favorites and start hoping that my queen comes out on top. —Kelly


After seeing the official book trailer for Alan Gratz’s new book, Refugee, it not only moved to the top of my to-read list, it became my must-read-right-now book. I had it shipped the next day. Three characters’ dramatic stories are told in alternating chapters, each designated with their name, location, date, and the number of “days from home.” Josef, Isabel, and Mahmoud each leave his or her homeland in search of safety and a better life. Josef and his family are escaping Nazi Germany in the 1930s; Isabel is hoping to reach Miami from Cuba with her family in 1994; and Mahmoud, in 2015, is attempting the long trek from Syria to Germany with his parents, brother, and baby sister. I was immediately pulled in to each child’s story, worried about what would happen next and if they would survive. As the characters face many struggles, grim details are not spared by Kratz. If you are looking for a book that takes you through heart-wrenching moments but leaves you with hope, this is a must-read. —Gerilyn


In the beginning, a tree falls at the same time that a child is born, another child ponders her existence, while a man takes the stage to the sound of applause. Thousands of miles apart, these three have no idea yet that they will one day come together, bonded by their connection to a famous choreographer. Lovely, haunting prose and a dry sense of humor, mark Mycology, Joan Wilking‘s debut, which was the winner of the 2016 Wild Onion Novella Prize. Prize judge, Lindsay Hunter, says this is a “gem of a book,” and from what I’ve read so far, I couldn’t agree more. —Myf







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