Hi hi! It’s your favorite bookworm, Shanti Knight, reporting from my pink sofa about what I’ve read this year that’s been awesome. I must admit that I’ve read fewer slam dunks so far this year than usual, so I’m only giving you the ones I actually recommend. In no particular order…
• My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up by Russell Brand captivated me. I’m so grateful for the courage of anyone who decides to share the details of their rock bottom with the world, and Russell does this with such grace and intelligence and humor.
• Dying of Politeness: A Memoir by Geena Davis is a book I picked this up after hearing on a podcast that it was a great read; I’m so glad I did. Geena approaches feminism with love, commitment, and a measured hand. Plus, there’s a whole chapter set my home city, Evansville, Indiana, which was a major filming location for A League of Their Own.
• The Party Crasher by Sophie Kinsella is great for those times when you just want some good fun. Sophie always delivers on that front. I’ve read so many of her books; this is definitely one of my favorites.
• American Mermaid by Julia Langbein frankly blew my mind. I became aware of it via this essay that I have now reread several times to attempt to fully take in its breadth of insight; once I’d finished it the first time, all I wanted to know was where I could get more from this writer, and immediately put her debut novel on hold at the library. It was dense with descriptors, metaphors, and imagination. I’ve truly never read anything like it.
• Tell Me Everything: A Memoir by Minka Kelly was another I picked up after hearing it was good; I never would have picked it up otherwise, because I’ve never been a fan of Minka Kelly— not not a fan, I just never saw her in anything to become a fan. I was thoroughly impressed with Minka’s processing of her childhood of neglect and abuse, and the generosity of spirit that it took for her to write such a vulnerable account of her life up to this point.