What I read: The End of Winter 2019 Edition
Family Trust – Kathy Wang
She blew me away. Her writing is beyond what I expected. I did not go into reading it expecting another Crazy Rich Asians which apparently is the hot new thing to emulate in reading circles BT dubs, but I went into it thinking: Okay, let’s see what comes out of this. Asian family in Silicon Valley? I’m game.
I was not expecting much (sorry KW), but she just knocked it out of the park.
I’d call this more of a dark fictional drama than chick-lit. Don’t get it twisted, it’s not chick-lit, there aren’t descriptions of expensive sexy clothes and fancy things, okay? This is real life and it is so well done I really felt pangs when I read it.
Anyway, I related and saw all the characters as actors in my own life. Frankly, Stanley has a few things in common with my own father… and the descriptions of going to a prestigious school, the pressure to always be on top, to be a certain way, to act a certain way and then to not be penalized for it. She nailed it.
LOVE. THIS. BOOK.
I will read anything by her.
The Female Persuasion – Meg Wolitzer
I am sorry, but I really dislike the name “Greer”. In any shape or form. It is only because it was the name in a series of books by Anne Bishop where the character did horrific things, and I have forever associated the name with that character. 🙁 I cannot help it. I absorb things deeply.
That aside, the book was very well done, and a little painful for me to read to be honest.
As a mother and someone who had grown up on the fringes of school cliques, I cannot say it felt good reliving all that and feeling emotions I should not have to feel because they aren’t real.
I liked it. The writing is great. I just can’t deal with the plot and themes.
My life is complicated enough with #FirstWorldProblems, I need escapist literature that doesn’t bring up dark memories and make me feel sad.
That is definitely a sign of a good writer who can twist fiction to make you FEEL the words and events days after you finished the book, but it didn’t really brighten my mood. I was a bit down the whole next 2 weeks after the book.
But if you are okay with depressing themes, but top notch writing and deep characters with vivid scenes, pick this up.
How to Accessorize – Micaela Erlanger
This book is better in print. Flip through it or buy it in person, but even in black and white, I got lots of fun ideas.
I don’t really get stuck on accessorizing or styling so I wouldn’t necessarily add this to my library, but you can!
(P.S. have you seen his incredible penthouse? OMG!)
Listen if you know anything about fashion, you will have known that there is a bit of a rivalry between Tommy Hilfiger and accusations that he was copying Ralph Lauren and was just an upstart.
There are always two sides to the story.
I loved reading his memoir of how he grew up, how he started, failed, started, failed… it is truly an entrepreneur’s dream to read such a memoir.
I felt inspired at the end, and I really felt like I was there in his mind as everything was happening. Fantastic, truly. He taught me a little more about branding, marketing, exposure, and being careful in contract negotiations.
No matter what you say about whether he is a copycat, you simply cannot deny his SUCCESS.
I call all of this copycatting nonsense sour grapes, because you can try and pretend to copy great brands (look at all the mainstream knockoffs and high street shops), but you can never reach that level of success by just copying alone. That’s all I am going to say.
It looks easier than it really is, as everything does.
I find his logo iconic even though I don’t really wear any of that clothing – Ralph Lauren, etc — and I do think they made a huge mistake in growing too fast and become overexposed and therefore, cheap, during the 90s, but lesson learned!
I am actually more interested now to look at these clothes when I go to Europe to see the differences.
This will only hurt a little – Busy Phillips
This was a memoir from the actress and how Busy tried to break into the industry.
She NAMES CELEBRITY NAMES!!!!!! And is very honest.
I cannot say I love the emphasis CAPS all the time because it seems overused in many parts of the book and I just keep hearing her voice emphasizing it each time I read it, but I’m being a hypocrite because I write like that as well.
I guess I’m a pickier reader than a writer.
Anyhoo. She says exactly how she grew up, how she felt so awkward and so on. I feel like every celebrity says this even though they’re smoking hot, they pretend they were bullied in school and such a nerd. Please. You don’t know bullying. I went through it and actually looked the part for most of my awkward teen years and it is not just being left out of parties.
It is being ignored, teased, singled out… anyway.
A good read especially if you like celebrity gossip and dirt with actual names and I found it to be a nice fun read. Would I read it again? No.
Did I regret reading it? Not really. But it isn’t a book I would rave about to everyone. And she does come across a little abrasive and full of herself but then again who doesn’t. I’m a bit like that, myself and I call that confidence.
I will read anything by Marian Keyes because she’s lovely on Twitter, and I have also read her memoirs which I find great as well.
This book was an okay read (sorry, MK), but I think it is because the plot wasn’t something I could get into.
Of course, true to form, she had funny bits all over the place and references to European things like “Jaffa Cake” which I realized was chocolate and orange biscuits that I have never eaten nor tried but now want to.
Would I recommend it? If you are a MK fan, yes. If you want to read some chicklit, yes. You might enjoy it more than me — I have very particular tastes in books and cannot really decipher when I think something is good or not great (hate to say bad unless it is really trash).
Would I personally read it again? No. But don’t let me stop you, I have loved books in the past that people have found terrible….
WHAT I COULDN’T READ
- Proust’s Duchess
- The Merry Spinster