“A well-read woman is a dangerous creature” – Lisa Kleypas
I’ve been an absolute BOOK WORM this month and I am loving it. It is also universally acknowledged that to become a better writer you have to become a committed reader- which is no chore for me I can tell you. I’ve also realised that I love the feel of proper books, I have a Kindle which I adore especially for a beach holiday/long flights, but when I am in the comfort of my own home I love physically holding and turning the pages of a book. I used to be the weird kid in Waterstones that would smell the pages. I also love looking at the covers and you don’t get the same effect looking on a Kindle. Anyway… onto the books.
(ps. omg, there are SO MANY GREAT BOOKS out there right now especially if you’re into feministy reads/memoirs. Lots of celebrations of being a female basically.)
- The Vagenda by Holly Baxter/Rhiannon Lucy Coissiett: A Zero Tolerance Guide to Media – I’ve preordered this book by the absolute legends behind the feminist blog The Vagenda. One of my favourite blogs on t’internet. If you order it from the Guardian Bookshop here and get £3.00 off.
- #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso: No, don’t worry – this isn’t anything to do with Tulisa from N-Dubz (remember when she realised that tragic book/perfume called the Female Boss?) This is much cooler. Also it is a HASHTAG as a book title, hello? Sophia is the founder of the US clothing site Nasty Gal which basically sells loads of dreamy clothes fit for Coachella and a (sort of) afforable price. Also it makes me happy that Lena Dunham is besties with Sophia – any endorsement from Lena is more than enough for me to part ways with my hard-earned cash. Oh, I’m so easy sold. Amazon link here.
- Everyday Sexism by Laura Bates: I’ve only just ordered this but cannot wait to give it a read having been following the Twitter feed for yonks. It’s a great cause to get behind as “casual” sexism is my pet peeve. Small little remarks that go unnoticed is still extremely prevalent in modern society as well as the bigger issues which Laura is not afraid to raise. I also LOVE that a website/Twitter feed campaign that can then be turned into a book that can be passed down. Amazon link here.
- Goose by Dawn O’Porter: Not going to lie, I’m so very smug that I have a signed copy. I had a great time meeting Dawn at Waterstone’s Piccadilly and hearing all about her writing process and inspiration behind the book. I read it in a less than day. That’s sort of what I loved about Paper Aeroplanes too, that fact that I could read it in one sitting and have a lovely afternoon reading with a cuppa tea. I love the subject matter: friendship, sex, religion – Dawn touches on topics in a confident way and makes you really get to grips with the characters personalities, emotions and flaws. Can’t wait for the next TWO in the series. Amazon link here. Oh and if that’s not enough, the lovely Dawn has also been a busy bee and written a book about vintage clothes too (and soon to launch a clothing line I hear) as part of a Channel 4 series. Here’s the link to “This Old Thing” – looks way better than Trinny and Susannah FYI.
- The Manrepeller: Seeking Love, Finding Overalls by Leandra Medine: I’m nearly finished with this book and it’s been an ABSOLUTE DREAM to read. It’s fashion meets feminism. Leandra is a total babe who has had an embarassing childhood like the rest of us but used that old age trick of ‘being yourself’ to turn herself into an unconventional ‘IT’ girl telling an unconventional love story. Every chapter is marked by an item of clothing that meant something to her – a great way of telling her narrative. Whole-heartedly recommend this book to anyone who is ambitious but also likes day-dreaming. Amazon link here.
- Not That Kind Of Girl by Lena Dunham: I have no idea what this is going to be like really, except for the fact that IT’S LENA BLOODY DUNHAM and I love love love her. It’s not out until October, which I think is really mean actually – first we are without Girls as the series is over and then she leaves us hanging for her book. She could have timed it so we all had our Lena fix with Girls over. Anywho, I’ve pre-ordered this bad boy and can’t wait to tuck into it. Amazon link here.
- Fabulous Nobodies by Lee Tulloch: I haven’t started this yet but it was recommended to me by my friend Pat McNulty who knows a good book when she sees it. I instantly bought it online and can’t wait to dip in. It’s set in the 80′s in NYC, before social media/the Internet took over, before SATC and Girls, but is meant to be an amazing book for getting inspiration for writing your own novel. It’s out of print now, but you can still nab a copy on Amazon here.
- The Wrong Knickers by Bryony Gordon: This isn’t out until June (sob sob) and I haven’t been contacted by any PRs about reviewing it so I am very sad! But, I cannot wait to read it as I’ve heard marvellous things through the people who have had a sneeky peek, I believe it’s all about the ‘chaotic’ period of her 20′s. Plus Bryony’s columns such as this one for the Telegraph make me love her, so pretty sure I’ll love her book too. Amazon link here.
- How to Build A Girl by Caitlin Moran: Caitlin’s back, back again. Caitlin’s back, tell a friend. THIS IS SO EXCITING. For anyone that has a major career/girl crush on Caitlin Moran, especially after reading How To Be A Woman (which I have read six times and own two copies of as I am paranoid of losing it) and a fan of watching her drunken Twitter rants, then this is the book for you to get your hands on! It’s not out until July (again, someone let me review it please!) but you can pre-order from Amazon here. It’s a novel, but has a lot of similarities with her own upbringing (woo, Wolverhampton!) so I’m guessing it has ‘autobiographical qualities’ but apparently that is an annoying thing to say to a novelist so I will shhh now. Anyway, buy it and please talk to me about it once you have!
- Vagina by Naomi Woolf: I’ve had to pause reading this as I’ve had so many on the go but I’ve loved it so far. It’s sort of sciency but in a total readable way. It’s made me question things in society that I also just take for granted and listen to. Naomi Woolf is also an idol of mine and I’m looking forward to studying her language in more detail so I can learn from her. Amazon link here.
- A Life in Agony By Irma Kurtz: This book was sent to me via my blog and I really enjoyed reading it. It is a memoir by Irma who is one of the most well-known ‘agony aunt’ columnists, her career spanning 40 odd years (for Cosmopolitan magazine). She has had a very interesting life and I love how she had been giving people advice (without really realising it) from a really early age (during her school years). It made me think that what you enjoy/are good at as a child can really shape what career you step into and bring to the world. Her life hasn’t been plain sailing either, making it a very moving book. Amazon link here.
- Your Voice In My Head By Emma Forrest: This book made me cry like a baby. In a sad but good way. This is Emma Forrest’s memoir, which describes the part of her life that was sadly filled with depression and therapy sessions. She has the most amazing relationship with her therapist but after he passes away she has to face up to things alone – it’s moving, funny and extremely well-written. Emma’s ‘Gypsy Husband’ in the book is supposedly Colin Farrell. Emma is also a columnist forELLE UK at the moment and her writing is very ‘romantic’ especially the way she talks about LA – it makes me want to move there immediately. I also think there is a film version being made of this book which is very exciting indeed (although apparently Emma Watson is cast as Emma Forrest, not so sure about that, we’ll see!)
Phew, that’s it for now. But PLEASE do let me know if you have any suggestions! I’m going to be keeping up my book worm status for the time being.