When we share our reading list each year, we tend to have a theme, or underlying message that the books are sending through each page, however, this year, similar to 2020, the list runs the gamut of subjects and themes.
The books on the list were predominantly read by me (Shannon), with the exception of one, which is Woody Allen’s controversial book, “Apropos of Nothing.” We are Woody Allen fans, and were excited to read it when it was released. It is on my list to read, but since Gerry finished it and recommends it, we added it to our summer list.
The summer, which hasn’t even felt like summer, has been full of fear and uneasiness, with the pandemic luring. It is nice to escape, but to also be inspired, and I think this summer’s choices fulfilled what has been needed in our lives, through books.
The first book, which was digital, and that I recommended on Instagram is, “Ms. Bitch,” by Tricia O’Malley. Ms. Bitch is delicious! It is a story about finding independence and living your life the way you desire. If you are a wanderluster, or enjoy traveling as much as we do, you will also love this book. It is a great escape when you cannot physically do so.
Jennifer Weiner played a significant role in my summer reading. I love her, and love everything she writes. She released, “Big Summer” in May, and I could hardly wait to get it. When I pre-ordered it, I was pleasantly surprised that I also had not read her book, “Mrs. Everything,” so I purchased that one as well.
“Big Summer” was a fun read, allowing for a bit of suspense, adding some tidbits of the underlying world of social media influencers. This book is spot on for being socially relevant, and the perfect summer read. I zoomed through it!
“Mrs. Everything” is a big change from what I usually expect from Weiner, and I think it is by far, my favorite book of hers. It is beautifully written, and a heartfelt story of the lives of two sisters, who are on quite different paths, and the challenges they encounter. It takes you from the 1960’s, to current date. I don’t want to give anything away, but let’s just say, I laughed, I cried, I was fearful, then relieved… all of the emotions! Read this!
Jessica Simpson’s biography, “Open Book” was something I read, just before the quarantine, but I have spent the summer recommending it to people. Even if you are not a Jessica Simpson fan, but maybe are into Hollywood gossip, and basically, just being a voyeur of some of these paths, this is your book. I do like Jessica Simpson, and thought I knew all of the stories of her love life, her struggles with weight, her rise to fame, but I had no clue of all the little secrets she was keeping- thankfully, she wrote this book, and now we can all be fully aware, ahem, if that’s your thing. 😊
Last summer, I had a lot of self-help books on the list, so I had to include one this year, though, not the traditional self-help author that one would think of. “Hustle Harder, Hustle Smarter,” by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson was THE motivating book of my summer. I love a story of a self-made person, rising from challenging circumstances, but 50 puts learning lessons into a whole new league of their own. This book not only stirs up drive and ambition from deep down, but it also shines a light into how calculated each of 50’s moves are. You don’t have to be a 50 Cent fan to appreciate this book, but if you are, you will love it!
Lastly, Ger’s summer pick, Woody Allen’s “Apropos of Nothing”– this book has had a rocky release. It was originally due to be published by Grand Central Publishing, in April 2020, but in March, they said they would no longer publish it, but thankfully it was published by an Italian publisher, Arcade Publishing in late March, after Woody received the rights back to it.
Gerry and I are big Woody Allen fans, as an artist. We love his humor, his films, and his writing. Since other people have always had so much to say about him, it is nice that there is a book written by Woody himself, telling his own story. This book is humbling, and honest. It is an informative book, that we wanted to make sure we included in our summer reading list.
Summer isn’t over yet, and we are always looking for books to read. What is on your list? Can you make any recommendations?