I’ve been really lucky to have plenty of extra time to read this summer. I’ve been trying to read for just 15 minutes every day. I used to be a lot better about having plenty of time to read for long amounts of time, but lately I just don’t have as much time.
I get lots of questions about how I read so many books and it’s really about just fitting in reading when you can. I’ll read in the morning or just before bed. I’ll even read while I’m waiting for dinner to cook, even if I only have time for a few pages. I know a lot of people love audiobooks and they are able to listen to a lot. I’m just not an audiobook person. I enjoy the texture, smell, everything about physically holding a book. If you’re trying to fit in more reading, watch this video. It explains a lot about reading, making time to read, and makes you want to go on a world tour of bookstores.
My summer reading list this year has been sort of random. I’ve just been picking up books each week that I think sound good. I’ve been reading probably 1-2 books each week. In April and May I was reading tons of nonfiction and business books and I’m just feeling very burned out this summer. So I’ve mostly been reading fiction and/or things that don’t require a lot of brain power.
I picked this one up last weekend and finished in only a few days. It tells the story and explores the sex lives of three different women across the country. Lina lives in Indiana and is married to a man who won’t even kiss her. Maggie is a 17 year old in North Dakota who has an affair with her teacher and years later comes forward with her story. Sloan is gorgeous and successful and her husband chooses people for her to sleep with. It’s such a complex book and an open, honest look at these women’s lives and the power dynamics that shape them.
I really loved Normal People. It’s the story of Connell and Marianne beginning at the end of high school. Connell is popular and the star of the soccer team. Marianne is a loner and considered weird. They start a somewhat secret relationship that ends badly. They meet again in college where the roles are reversed. Marianne is finally popular and has lots of friends while Connell is sort of on his own. The story progresses with their lives. Sometimes they’re together, sometimes they’re not. It’s a really great story about relationships and depression and how can they work. This book definitely stuck with me for days after I finished reading. I had to wait at least 3 days before I could start something new.
I love Nora Ephron and her books are always the ones I go back to read time and time again. She was so talented and captured mundane things in this hilarious way that no one else could do. I love this collection of some of her best pieces, especially “Twenty Five Things People Have a Shocking Capacity to be Surprised by Over and Over Again”. This is a perfect book if you want something quick and/or hysterically insightful.
In this set of essays, Mary Laura Philpott writes about life after checking off all the big to-do’s: job, spouse, house, babies, etc. What’s next after you’ve done everything right? She goes into detailed observations about everyday life in a hilarious way. It’s also a great pep talk for getting through an identity crisis at any age because it doesn’t just happen at mid-life.
I love essay collections and several people recommended this one to me. Another I love so much is I Was Told There’d Be Cake by Sloane Crosley. Essays are great when you don’t have tons of time to read because you can read one story really quickly and come back any chance you get.
Set in the ’80’s on Cape Cod, Eve leaves her job as a secretary in New York to take a job as an assistant for the summer for a prestigious author. She gets the chance to immerse herself in a literary world she’s only dreamed of. Nothing goes as planned and everything is much more complicated than Eve realizes.
I have been waiting for a good pool day to dive into this one. I love a good summer at the beach novel.