• The Bossy Bookworm

Three Books I'm Reading Now, 10/8/21 Edition

The Books I'm Reading Now

I'm listening to Conversations with Friends, Sally Rooney's book about a young poet hyper-focused on her interactions and romantic encounters; The Project, Courtney Summers's suspenseful young adult book about a journalist searching for her sister and trying to uncover the dark side of a cult; and So Long, See You Tomorrow, William Maxwell's story of mining youthful, sometimes difficult memories while searching for the truth of a long-ago shooting.

Which books are you reading and enjoying these days, bookworms?

01 Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney

I'm listening to Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney, author of Normal People and the more recent book Beautiful World, Where Are You. It's read by Aoife McMahon.

Frances is studying and writing poetry and regularly performing spoken-word pieces with her longtime friend and former flame Bobbi. When Frances and Bobbi fall in with a famous photographer and her actor husband, fascinations, jealousies, hypersensitive reactions, and loaded conversations ensue.

The detail with which Frances picks apart and analyzes each nuance, each look, and each word she notices in others is often excruciating but I'm interested in Rooney's microscopic descriptions of speech and emotion. It's tough for me to feel a connection to Frances so far as she pursues a reckless dalliance with a married man.

02 The Project by Courtney Summers

My book club is reading this suspenseful young adult book by Courtney Summers.

In The Project, Lo and Bea are young sisters whose parents die in a car accident. They drift apart. Younger sister Lo gravitates toward a career of seeking and exposing the truth around her as a journalist, while Bea retreats into a reclusive, mysterious community.

Lo tries to find and reunite with her sister, but she can't make contact with her, and she suspects the worst. When mysterious events come to light that seem linked to the publicly harmless, seemingly benevolent group The Unity Project, Lo digs a little deeper into the founder and into the group's activities. She suspects that its members are part of a cult. Lo just knows The Unity Project is dangerous--and she thinks her sister may be involved.

03 So Long, See You Tomorrow by William Maxwell

My friend James mentioned this one as a favorite of his while we talked about reading and books on his Maybe I'm Amazed podcast last summer, and I'm finally starting to read So Long, See You Tomorrow.

In Maxwell's slim story, a man is trying to piece together the events surrounding the shooting of a man named Lloyd Wilson in 1920s rural Illinois fifty years earlier. In doing so, he traces memories and tracks down details from his childhood, reliving moments and bringing to light information long forgotten.

The story promises to explore loss, the state of seeking, the power of youthful memory, and the irresistible, ongoing contemplation of the past.