The Interestings by Meg WolizterJenni picked this one and because it tells the story of a close-knit group of friends and how those friendships evolved over time it really struck a cord for us. We've been friends since HS, going on 18 years(!!!!). In terms of the plot, we really enjoyed how it flashed back and forward and around, that structure kept things interested and created moments of surprise. But, we felt the ending was kind of "meh".
Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion
This was one of my picks, and to be honest I'd not read Didion until this book, her first. I loved the sense of place of California at the time of the '60s and Jen was intrigued by it's sense of melancholy.
Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegner
Another novel on long-term friendship (are we sensing a theme). Unlike The Interestings, this is set about 50 years ago, spanning the 30s thru the 70s. Again, the plot went back and forth in the timeline, which AGAIN was an effective technique to keep the narrative fresh. We both felt it was quiet, but powerful book.
I Have to Go Back to 1994 and Kill a Girl: Poems by Kathryn Morton
Another pick from me, our only (so far) book of poems. Jenni wasn't a huge fan, and while I appreciated the craft of the poems in the collection, I only had a few moments of emotional connection. As a poet myself, when I read poetry, my favorite collections are those that grab me and provoke me throughout the book, this not so much.
The Dressmaker by Rosalie HamThis was a totes vacay read, and it was entertaining, interested in OnDemanding the movie at some point. *****Spoiler Alert****** bitch set the whole town on fire! We both and to reread that ending to make sure we got it right?!
The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl by Issa RaeWe haven't yet talked about this book. I read it first then gave my copy to Jenni. Memoirs can be tricky, and only really work if A. the person is ultra famous and elucidates on moments well known in history, B. has a very unique story that opens up one's perspective, or C. has a relatable story for the reader to connect with. Ann Misadventures falls into category C for the most part.
Next up we're going way back to a book we read in high school
The Outsiders by S.S. Hinton
Granted I'm more familiar with the movie, but if I recall the book is even more depressing, so that's right up our alley!
We've read other books together, but these were the titles that stood out the most for us. In addition to our book club reading we also talk about the books we're reading on our own. It's such treasure to have a best friend to talk reading and writing! Jenni, here's to another 18 years of friendship (at least) and many more books!