As you head back to work, ready to ring in 2012, read a love story or a young-adult favorite, giggle with new suggestions for old books, and brush up on your wine knowledge with a fun and helpful podcast.
On Your Kindle
The Marriage Plot , by Jeffrey Eugenides
Ah, love triangles. They’re fascinating plot devices, even when their sharp angles prick all three lovers and leave a reader frustrated. In his latest novel, Pulitzer-prize winner Jeffrey Eugenides riffs on this classic literary geometry, examining the (love) lives of three Brown graduates who leave campus and enter the real world in 1982.
As he follows their trajectories toward adulthood, Eugenides explores different searches: the search for a career, the search for mental health, the search for a practicable religion. All the while, the liberal arts-versed main characters (English major, Biology and Philosophy major, and Religious Studies major, respectively) allude constantly to heavy-hitting texts, creating an intellectually self-indulgent mood (that might even have you creating your own reading list).
On Your Smartphone
What Old Book Do I Read If...?, by Carrie Hill Wilner
Need to apply old book themes to a modern girl’s life? Look no further than the sassy Excel chart created by Carrie Hill Wilner, shared in this article. She recommends “old books” to read based on whatever you’re dealing with in life. For example, what should you read if you’re thinking, “Is my boyfriend normal or crazy?” (Answer: Villette, Jane Eyre, Middlemarch , and Daniel Deronda will all suffice).
She goes on to provide other recommendations—an old book about sisters, an old book about Italy—in an irreverent stream of consciousness. I found Wilner’s writing so funny that I even did a little cyber-stalking so I could read more of her easily-penned jokes and her apt and insightful recommendations.
On a Podcast
Auld Lang Vine , by the Crush
Whether it’s during the holiday season or during that long bleak stretch between New Year’s and whatever worthwhile holiday comes next, wine is great. And as an adult, it stops being okay to indiscriminately purchase box upon box of boxed wine, and it starts being acceptable (and super interesting) to make knowing something about wine a hobby.
If you’re a starting-out wine enthusiast or a years-long connoisseur, download this free podcast from the Crush. In this most recent episode, hosts Whitney Adams and Christina Pickard chat about what they imbibed at their respective Christmas gatherings, hangover-curing foods, and drinks for a post-New Year’s morning, and (best of all) wine world predictions for 2012. Their tone is breezy and anecdotal, and their revelation of general recipes and specific wine brands will help you in planning for your next cocktail party or casual night in.
The Giver , by Lois Lowry
As you prepare for your own ( better ! healthier ! more productive !) future, read this futuristic middle school throwback and count your lucky stars. Who could forget Jonas, blissfully ignorant in his black-and-white world, and his experience being the keeper of memories and feelings from a less-controlled world? A wonderful book for any age, this is a quick and entertaining read that will help you ease back into the new week (and month, and year).
Photo courtesy of Francisco Osorio .
TopicsEducation , What to Read on the Subway This Week by Hope Bordeaux , Break Room , Book Reviews
Molly is The Daily Muse’s resident bookworm. She currently works in communications and is begrudgingly learning to be a grownup. She likes coffee shops and (the bakery aisle of) grocery stores, reading about other places but not necessarily traveling to them, keeping things clean, and stalking the Harvard Opportunes, her beloved college a cappella group.More from this Author