issue #115 - the 'my book is finally out!' one
It’s been out for nearly 2 weeks now, and it is very surreal to see it on display at bookstores, to see people sharing it on social media, and that so many of you like it.
If you pre-ordered the book, thank you. If you bought it in the past 13 days, thank you. If you’ve left a review on Amazon or Goodreads, thank you. And if you haven’t done any of these but plan to, thank you. (And please do them soon?)
My book tour has me visiting Charleston this week (join us at Blue Bicycle Books on 11/2!) and Seattle in two weeks (so thrilled to be speaking at my alma mater - details coming soon), as well as SaksWorks in NYC on 11/16 and Greenwich in December.
My suitcase is filled with outfits from Armoire, I’ve been catching up on e-mails and reading on my long flights, and I’ve gotten to see old friends and make new ones. After a year and half hunkered down at home, it’s been so nice to get out a bit more (with lots of masks and COVID tests, of course).
A number of cities - DC, Dallas, Chicago, Austin, Atlanta, Miami, and the Bay Area - are on deck for next year. And my offer to Zoom into your book club is still valid - I would love to join if you’ll have me.
We’ll be back to our regularly scheduled programming this week (aka minimal book talk). But if I may, just one more time…
What we read this week
The Royals Next Door by Karina Halle - this is one of the most delightful books I’ve ever read, and that’s saying something. This book brings the royal drama that our real life royals bring to the table, with the heart and bravery of a Abby Jimenez or Helen Hoang book. I love Piper. I love Harrison. I love the duke and duchess of Fairfax. And I was so sad when I finished this book.
State of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny - I woke up at 4:30 this morning for one reason - to finish reading this book before jumping into my day. And while I needed 3 cups of coffee to get through the day, I have zero regrets. It was SUPERB and one of the best political thrillers I’ve ever read (and I’ve read a lot and been let down by most of them). Fiction is eerily close to our reality, so if you can’t handle a book that delves into an actual deep state trying to undermine our fair and free elections, you’ll want to take a raincheck on this. But promise me you’ll read it - it was SO GOOD.
Salt Fat Acid Heat by Samin Nosrat is an old cookbook I've reopened to do some reading and research. I have a degree in Chemistry so even though cooking is my passion, needing out on food science is sometimes the fuel.
Any Geronimo Stilton book! I know this sounds silly but I have 2 young girls, ages 4 and 2, so we read A LOT! For the last yr, we have been reading through the Geronimo and Thea Stilton series and even though it's not anywhere near as captivating as a book I would like to read on my own, I wholeheartedly enjoy picking up these chapter books and cozying up on the couch to dive into one of his ridiculous adventures. It's a nice change from reading the same 5 pictures books over and over again.
The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes- For the first time since 2019, I sat down and started reading this book, and didn't get up until I'd finished it. The puzzles and riddles throughout really kept me engaged through every hare-brained high school/twenty-something scheme. While the character development is limited, the escapism was stupendous.
The Top 9
Yes, Pumpkin-Shaped Reese's Actually Do Taste Better Than The Original (Better Homes & Gardens)
What's That Feeling? Oh, It's Fall Regression (Anne Helen Substack)
What Do You Pack To Find Love On TV? (Bustle)
The Catch Up (Two Weeks Ago)
October 15, 2021 (Heather Cox Richardson)
Survival Mechanisms Content Warning: Suicide (The Offing Mag)
The Best Kind of Vanishing (The Paris Review)
What It’s Like to Travel When You Have a “Bad” Passport (Catapult Magazine)
Friday (Hitha & LaToya)
The $10,000 suppository (Axios)
Commerce head out to save US jobs, 1 computer chip at a time (Associated Press)
The Road to Bimini- The Story of Gary Hart (Vanity Fair)
The Catch Up (Last Week)
Bosnian Serb lawmakers nix ban on Srebrenica genocide denial (Associated Press)
Are We Losing Our Humanity to Big Tech? (Vanity Fair)
Are We Losing Our Humanity to Big Tech? (AP News)
Timing Is Everything (Cup of Joe)
Rethinking Hunger: Why Feeding Those in Need Must Focus on Nutrition (Edible Communities)
We Accidentally Solved the Flu. Now What? (The Atlantic)
Things we love this week
One more shoutout to Armoire for all my amazing book tour outfits. I bought this fabulous striped Tibi dress because I loved it so much, and I’ll be re-renting this pink Scotch & Soda shorts and blazer because it’s just fabulous. You can get 50% off your first case when you use my link!
Built Bar - These protein bars are absolutely delicious. No weird textures, no funky aftertaste, just pure yum. They’ve been accompanying me to workouts every single morning, and I have now officially stockpiled their cookie dough flavor.
Omni Plus 10-in-1 Air Fryer Toaster Oven - I waited a LONG time before I jumped on the air fryer wagon and so glad I did. This Instant Pot Omni Plus has 10 features in 1 and I love that I can see my food cooking without having to open the oven. Along with air fry, the other most common feature we use is the reheat function and the roasting feature. It saves counter space for us because it can do so many things, aesthetically pleasing, and easy to clean!
Kobo Libra H2O - For the times I can read on my own, I love having my Kobo Libra H2O with me at all times. It's slim and easy to pack in my purse or bag for quick reads in the random lulls I may have during my day. I never thought I would be someone who would read more than one book simultaneously but with my Kobo I can carry all 2-3 of my books with me and depending on my mood, pick up reading any of them.
Hitha’s note - for my American friends, I love my Kindle Oasis! The battery lasts forever, it’s waterproof, and I use mine as much as I use my laptop.
You’ve Gone Pink by Jessica Nirvana Ram - A dear friend has been working on an unbelievable poetry collection. Getting to read drafts behind the scenes (swoon over them, to be more accurate) is one of my favorite parts of writer-writer friendships. She recently published this poem from her growing collection and I can’t recommend it highly enough!
Wild Blueberry Sumac - I'm on my second jar of this jam and it's so good! The sumac brightens the flavors and it's wonderful on toast or a cheeseboard. Plus, it's local to me in Brooklyn.
Take care of yourself, and please share this newsletter with someone you love or someone who can use some smart reads in their life.