Book Lust // Books by female authors to read this fall

female authors

When I was younger, maybe an early teenager, I realized that most of my favorite books, which consisted mostly of YA fantasy and bad historical fiction novels, were all books by female authors. I adored books like Ella Enchanted,  A Great and Terrible Beauty, and especially Harry Potter. My favorite authors were Jean Plaidy, JK Rowling, Libba Bray, Gail Carson Levine, and Margaret George.

Being a female writer comes packaged with tons of difficulties you’d think of being a woman in a male-dominated field. There are even some people who ignore books by female authors entirely, and won’t pick up anything written by a woman. JK Rowling styled herself that way because her publisher warned her that since she’s a woman, her books may not sell as well if she went by “Joanne Rowling.” How infuriating, and sad.

Read More »

The new Harry Potter books, a fan’s review

It’s been a very Potter year. By now, you’ve probably all heard about the new Harry Potter books, three e-books that collect the new writing on Pottermore into an easy-to-read form. “Pottermore Presents” is a mix of old writing and new, so they aren’t exactly new Harry Potter books. Here’s what I thought of the decision to package the stories like this, and a review of the books themselves!

new harry potter books

Read More »

Alice in Wonderland quotes to laugh and live by

Alice in Wonderland is one of those books everyone has read, and a story that everyone knows. The story has been changed and reinterpreted so many times and that’s lovely, but it’s also the absolute best to return to the original book and get lost in its zany wisdom. I’ve always been in love with Alice in Wonderland quotes and their brand of ironic truths and hidden meanings in the ridiculous, and these quotes are no different.

“I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night. Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I’m not the same, the next question is ‘Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!”

alice in wonderland quotes
Read More »

Book rec // ‘The Woman on the Orient Express’

Hey all! Book review here, of a new release entitled The Woman on the Orient Express. If you like Agatha Christie and historical fiction, you’re going to want to read about this new release!

the woman on the orient expressThe Woman on the Orient Express is set in 1928, during Agatha Christie’s impromptu visit to Mesopotamia, i.e. Iraq. She travels on the Orient Express to escape her failed marriage to Archibald Christie (who is set to marry his mistress in a few days’ time) and the embarrassment of her “disappearance” and scandal that occurred two years earlier (her very own “Gone Girl” moment!). While on the Orient Express traveling to Iraq, she meets two women: Katharine Woolley and Nancy Nelson. All three women are harboring huge, life-defining secrets that haunt them, but all three eventually forge deep bonds of sisterhood and learn about themselves during the journey.

Halfway through the novel, Christie and her three-dimensional companions do reach Baghdad, and thus the second half of the novel is a glittering and realistic portrait of life in the Middle East during the late 20s. We visit a Bedouin camp, a Yazidi temple, open-air markets, and learn about the customs, lifestyles, and traditions of the Iraqi people during this time. The main portion of the novel is set on an archaeological dig at Ur, where Agatha Christie eventually met her second husband, Max Mallowan. And it is also the place where Christie absorbed enough material for half a dozen (or more) of her novels set in or inspired by Mesopotamia and the dig at Ur.Read More »

Book rec // The Girl at the Lion d’Or

Hey all! A book recommendation today for anyone who loves character-driven novels with romance and history! So, that’s definitely me. I stumbled across this book called The Girl at the Lion D’Or a couple years ago at my favorite bookstore, Westsider Books. I like thrifting at secondhand bookstores because you find books that have been forgotten or lost, and you can find some true gems.

westsider booksRead More »

Reads & Recs: summer and fall new releases!

New 2016 book releases for ya! All of these books are ones that I’m dying to read. One has already been released, and the others are shortly coming to a bookstore/e-reader near you. I love the excitement of finding and reading an amazing new book, so here are my recommendations for summer and fall new releases in fiction!

2016 new releases2016 new releases2016 new releasesRead More »

My Harry Potter and the Cursed Child review (spoilers!)

I have been counting down feverishly to the release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child for MONTHS, and on Saturday night at midnight, like so many other die-hard Potter fans around the world, I finally got my hands on it.

harry potter and the cursed child review

I don’t need to explain what this eighth story means for Potter fans: it’s like coming home, revisiting the magic we fell in love with when we were kids, and feeling like that magic won’t ever end. It meant reading more about the characters and where they ended up, and for me, it meant being immersed in that amazing world again. And even though this story is only in the form of a scriptbook, most of us had little to no doubt that the last story would shine as bright as the other installments. However, after reading the book, a lot of people felt a little disappointed. Here’s what I thought.
Read More »

Females in Fiction // my favorite quotes!

The female characters I love the most in fiction are a mix of the very fiesty, the very cunning or smart, and the very brave. I grew up devouring books whenever I could, and in books I found dozens of amazing female characters that felt not only like role models but like friends. I grew up admiring them and wanting to emulate them, and obviously, this all had a lot to do with how they acted and, most important, what they said. Here are some of my favorite characters in fiction ever and the quotes that made me fall in love with them. (In no particular order!)

Scarlett O’Hara

I LOVE Scarlett O’Hara despite all of her immense faults because in the face of adversity, Scarlett does anything but give up. She is constantly fighting to keep her family together, keep her house, and stay alive.

“I’ll think of it tomorrow, at Tara. I can stand it then. Tomorrow, I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.”

Elizabeth Bennet

females in fiction
Read More »

Book rec // ‘The Last Days of Night’ review

Raaave review coming! If you’re into historical fiction like me (I would say I’m more obsessed), then I would absolutely recommend a new release called The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore. Set in the late 19th century, The Last Days of Night really intrigued me because it promised a fictional account of a subject I didn’t know so much about: the legal and dramatic battle between George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison to answer one very important question: Who invented the light bulb?

the last days of nightIn school, we learn that Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, but the truth is actually muddled, confusing, and varied. The narrative of this book is from the perspective of a man named Paul Cravath, a Tennessee-born New York lawyer who, at 27, is a precocious partner in a law firm with a lot to prove. He’s approached by George Westinghouse—and threatened by Thomas Edison—to lead a countersuit against Edison for the right to manufacture the incandescent light bulb.

Sounds dry, but within the historical narrative is intertwined drama, attempted murder, glitzy New York parties, THE Nikola Tesla, and a snapshot of New York during the Gilded Age. I ADORE New York fiction because I grew up here in the ‘burbs (and attended college in Manhattan and the Bronx) and so New York was always my playground, and I absolutely love reading about the history of what I consider “my city.”
Read More »

Book rec // ‘Overlapping Lives’

I picked up Overlapping Lives, by Andrew Dicker, on a whim. I was looking for a quick read, something not too long or difficult, and what I found instead was an unconventional group of stories that really challenged and excited me. I would definitely recommend this book, and here’s why.

overlapping livesoverlapping lives

Read More »