It’s time for another Currently Reading roundup! A bunch of light reads with some less light pieces sprinkled in. This was a really good bunch–I didn’t dislike anything–so hopefully inspires you if you’re looking to stock up on books as we fully embrace cozy reading season.
The Adults*: Random House sent this my way and said it was kind of Love Actually-esque, which it kind of is, in a slightly darker way! A separated couple, their daughter, and their new significant others go on a Christmas vacation together and as you can imagine, the entire thing is a bit of a disaster. There are a lot of conflicting personalities and an opinionated child in the mix, not to mention “leisurely” activities to pass the time…literally over Christmas. It’s drama-filled and funny, and a good one if you appreciate a British backdrop and sense of humor. // Recommend? Yes–it’d be a fun holiday read.
A Place For Us: I really liked this book but didn’t love it–it’s beautifully written and the story is touching, but it just moved too slowly for me. Jen articulated her thoughts well and I’m inclined to agree with her about the pace; I really don’t like when books take me forever to finish. Mirza writes about a complicated cultural and familial dynamic that will be relatable to many, and does so so well that it makes it hard to imagine this is her debut novel. Pace aside, I would definitely read whatever comes next from her and enjoyed having this amid a bunch of lighter reads from the summer. // Recommend? Yes, because of the general story and the strong writing, but be prepared for a slower read.
Crazy Rich Asians: // The Crazy Rich Asians movie totally surprised me in the best way! I LOVED it and wasn’t expecting to want to see it again immediately (it’ll be one of the few movies I actually buy!). I hadn’t read the book ahead of time and picked it up last month–I did really enjoy it, but actually thought the movie was better. I’ll get to the rest of the series eventually, but am not pining to get to them immediately. // Recommend: Yes–especially if you loved the movie! (But don’t expect the glitz and glamour to be translated in the same way–there’s a lot of blunt, fancy name dropping to convey the levels of opulence.)
The Hating Game: A novel about a dramatic, flirtatious, love-hate workplace drama. Lucy and Joshua love to hate each other but surprise, surprise–there is something more. They love to make each others’ lives miserable and claim disdain, but it’s obvious from the get-go that this is a full on office romance waiting to happen. I thought the whole thing was kind of redundant and predictable, but it was entertaining and light and would make a good beach or vacation read. The reviews on Amazon are overwhelmingly positive so looks like I’m in the minority! // Recommend? Take it or leave it–if you want a quick light read, sure, but it wasn’t my favorite.
All We Ever Wanted: I was so excited to get my hands on this book–Emily Giffin is one of my favorite authors. I didn’t read it right when it came out so feel like I was just constantly listening to people rave about it for weeks, but it was worth the wait and completely lived up to expectations. Nashville elite Nina Browning lives a seemingly perfect life, but her husband hasn’t been the same since he sold his successful tech company and her otherwise poster child of a son finds himself in the middle of some scandalous high school drama that threatens to jeopardize his acceptance to Princeton. Giffin just has a way with words–I don’t know that this plot line would be as compelling if it was written by someone else, but she nails it. Is it bad that I hope it gets made into a movie? // Recommend? Yes, yes!
From the Corner of the Oval: One of Obama’s former stenographers writes this riveting account of her time working for the president. I literally finished this entire book in a weekend, and it was one of the best I’ve read in awhile! Dorey-Stein candidly shares everything from her pre-White House life and how she got the job (it’s hilarious) to her on-the-job romance and office drama from 35,000 feet on Air Force One. It’s a must-read if you’re interested in what goes on behind the scenes for staff at 1600 Penn, and is a much lighter take on “insider” books written by former members of the administration. // Recommend? YES!
The Matchmaker: I love Elin Hilderbrand’s books for a light read (they’re the ultimate beach companion) and this one was no different. Nantucket-lifer Dabney Beech is known for her matchmaking abilities yet there is drama in her own life–”the one that got away” from her past is back in town and throws a wrench into her love life. // Recommend? Yes–this is one of my favorites from her!
When Life Gives You Lululemons: If you’re a Devils Wears Prada fan, this is a must-read! Lululemons follows Emily (the notable pre-Andy assistant) as she navigates her seemingly glamorous world from NYC to suburban Connecticut. It’s just as drama-filled and over the top as it’s predecessor in the best way, and we get get to see the other, unfiltered side of Emily. I read this one quickly and didn’t want to put it down! // Recommend? Yes, especially if you’re fan of the Devil Wears Prada.
All the Names They Used for God: Short stories aren’t usually my genre of choice, but I read this collection earlier in the summer as part of Jen’s book club and really enjoyed it. Sachdeva is an incredible writer and creates subtle but intentional ties between each story–many of which have underlying themes that make you think but are enjoyable reads if you’re not looking to dive deeper. // Recommend? Yes, especially if you’re into short stories but also if you’re not and looking to branch out.
* Thank you to Random House for sending me these books!