Thursday, February 25, 2016

February Reads

February hasn't been quite the success of January, in terms of finished books. Yes, I know February isn't over, but I don't expect to finish another book this month, so here we go.

First up, My Brilliant Friend: Neapolitan Novels, Book One by Elena Ferrante

Do you have Ferrante Fever? Have you heard of it? These books are blowing up everywhere - people are obsessed! I admit, the story of this anonymous author is somewhat intriguing, so I jumped on board too.

The first 3/4 of the book, I was all what are people so obsessed with? And this is a trilogy that I will not finish. But by the end, I was hooked too. I wouldn't say I have the fever, but I'll definitely continue on with the other books in the Neapolitan Novels trilogy.

Next I read Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik.

I admit that before this book, I really didn't know much about RBG, or even (truthfully) the Supreme Court, but with the recent death of Justice Antonin Scalia, I wanted to learn more. This book is actually a nice little primer on RBG going back to her school days, and yes, it will make you a fan too. I've started thinking about WWRBGD (What Would Ruth Bader Ginsburg Do). There are skippable parts, write-ups of RBG's legal notes, for example (unless you like that kind of thing - I don't).
Finally, I've just finished Alison Kinney's Hood. (full disclosure, I work for the company that publishes this book & series).

Where to start with this book, which part of the excellent (I might be biased) Object Lessons series... This is such powerful and provocative book, which considers the cultural history & legacy of the hood - as worn by executioners and executed, protesters and police, and, well,  everybody. As you might have guessed, Hood culminates in the hoodie as worn by Trayvon Martin on the evening he was murdered and the controversies of the hoodie, or rather who is perceived to be wearing it. All in all an excellent book - so good that I actually stood in my subway station to finish the last couple pages, knowing I couldn't wait to get home!

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