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Friday Book Debrief Vol 16

Every week we’re sharing what our some of our writers are currently reading.

For all of our US readers we now have our own Bookshop! You can find the full list of the below books here and with every purchase you will be helping local independent bookstores! All the below links will direct you to Amazon, but as usual we would much rather you support your local independent stores, lots are now doing local deliveries and they need your help more then ever in these uncertain times. - ❤️

Normal People by Sally Rooney - Maggie

I am 80 pages into the wondrous writings of Rooney who writes flawed, relatable, and downright frustrating characters with complete and utter ease. Characters you want to simultaneously punch and hug. I am reading this in anticipation of the new Hulu series coming out after devouring her other novel, Conversations With Friends, late last year.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

How to Write an Autobiographical Novel by Alexander Chee - Mel

I've been savoring Chee's essays for a couple weeks. The topics vary between his professional and personal lives but all of his words are full of his heart and his intellect—I'd recommend it to all the writers out there.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

The Child by Fiona Barton - Melissa

Honestly, I really should be reading something lighter than the mystery of a long-decomposed infant's body being found within the wall of a construction site. But I can't help that thrillers are my go-to for comfort!

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Hannah

A much-loved classic which I admittedly didn't finish the first time around a few years ago. Hopefully this time I can redeem myself!

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

Generation F: Why We Still Struggle With Sex & Power by Virginia Trioli - Cat

Originally published in 1996 as a response to the "Ormond College affair" and Helen Garner's The First Stone, Trioli's book has recently been republished with a new foreword and afterword. While the way society reckons with sexual harassment has changed, many of the feminist struggles outlined by the author remain relevant today. An interesting snapshot of how different generations perceive and address issues related sex and power.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

My Lover’s Lover by Maggie O’Farrell - Courtney

I bought this on the basis of pure intrigue, having never read anything by O’Farrell before. I wasn’t feeling it at the start but the circumstance have really ramped up. An interesting consideration of love & relationships. A love story, with a spicy twist, if you will.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern - Nikki

I'm only, like, 10 pages in. Here's hoping it's as magical as The Night Circus.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio - Marian

If this isn’t enough to jolt you right out of a reading slump, I don’t know what is! I’m a couple chapters in but could tell from the prologue that this was one special book: “I attempt to write from a place of shared trauma, shared memories, shared pain. . . a snapshot of pain, a high energy imaging of trauma brain.” Indeed.

You can check out Karen Salgado’s excellent review and author interview for more on this gem.

Pre-order it here - US, UK, AUS. OUT 24th March 2020

The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis - Jessica Maria

This past week I've been too distracted to really sit down and read for any length of time. I found solace in a recommendation for a short story from this collection, one called "Break It Down," and it was short and tremendous. My first Davis, and now I can't wait to continue to dip into this unread tome on my shelf.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

The Shapeless Unease: A Year of Not Sleeping by Samantha Harvey - PL

It is common knowledge that I don’t sleep much, I routinely work 20+ hours days to the great dismay of our Global Managing Editor Jessica, who plagues my messages with “GO TO SLEEP” “FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOMAN SLEEP” “I don’t want to be a mom but GO TO BED NOW” pretty much nightly. Picking up this collection of essays, it is doubtful that it will be acting as a sleep-aid, since I am hanging onto every word - it is an ununiformed higgledy-piggledy mess with very little structure in the most perfect of ways - and it is exactly the kind of book I need right now.

Buy it here - US, UK, AUS.

Take Me Apart by Sara Sligar - The Book Slut

I was having a chat with a friend the other day, saying that I wish there was a book version of the documentary Finding Vivian Maier, and then this arrived in the mail..

Divine intervention? I think so.

Pre-order here - US, UK. OUT 28th April 2020

what have you been reading this week?

Sending lots of love to wherever you are in the world, from all of us at

the book slut. x


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