Hi friends! Before I get into the main event, I first want to share A Fish Has No Words for Water: A Punk Homeless San Francisco Memoir by Violet Blue (Kickstarter!) Violet Blue has written a phenomenal book that is unlike any of her others. A Fish Has No Words for Water is her punk homeless San Francisco memoir played out against the backdrop of the “dream” of the tech industry which was and is truly its own kind of hellscape for those of us who grew up here. Violet Blue’s story is one of the countless stories that people don’t know about or even think about when they think of San Francisco and Silicon Valley. This fact alone makes it so incredibly important that this book gets out into the world. It’s about the reality of youth homelessness and the necessity of community. You only have through Sunday to support this Kickstarter. I hope you do.
And now < drumroll >
I read fewer books this year than I did last year; however, this year had some absolute bangers. Some I included in the last resource post that I’m including here but this list is now much much longer. I’ve included links to podcast episodes where I talk about the books (if applicable) and as always, links are affiliate links and you can shop directly through my Bookshop link.
I desperately wanted to include cover photos but friends, I am le tired and my New Moon intention this go 'round was, "Do not let the perfect be the enemy of the good" so please, feel free to click through on any of the links to view the cover art.
White Women: Everything You Already Know about Your Own Racism and How to Do Better by Regina Jackson & Saira Rao (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): An absolute explosion of a book with things that white women “allies” need to hear and many of us wish we felt safe enough to say.
Rest Is Resistance: A Manifesto by Tricia Hersey (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): I’m definitely going to go into more detail about this book in a future newsletter issue but it is by the founder of the Nap Ministry who believes that we will not achieve liberation by being burned out.
How to Keep House While Drowning: A Gentle Approach to Cleaning and Organizing by Kc Davis (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): I actually wrote about this book in a July issue of this newsletter that you can read here. I am obsessed.
How to Tell a Story: The Essential Guide to Memorable Storytelling from The Moth by The Moth with Meg Bowles, Catherine Burns, Sarah Austin Jenness, and forward by Padma Lakshmi (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): A masterclass in storytelling by one of the organizations that does it best.
Ten Steps to Nanette: A Memoir Situation by Hannah Gadsby (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): Like her show Nanette, this book will shatter you into a million pieces as it breaks your heart while simultaneously making you laugh hysterically. An absolute gem on audiobook if you listen to audiobooks.
Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler by Ibi Zoboi (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): Octavia E. Butler biographical with poetry and pictures. A lovely book and I definitely bought a physical copy to own.
You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): Deliciously messy and intense romance with two bisexual main characters that is also a fascinating examination of grief.
Her Majesty's Royal Coven by Juno Dawson (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro): Possibly my favorite fiction I’ve read this year. Holy shit. This is for those of us who loved Harry Potter but threw it in the trash because 1) the author is a TERF and 2) we eventually learned they aren’t actually that good and are full of various kinds of hate. HMRC is definitely a book for adults, though.
Disorientation by Elaine Hsieh Chou (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): This is tied with the above book for the best fiction I read this year and it is completely different. Satire about grad school, specifically an East Asian Studies Department that is almost completely white professors and students. This book was a mess and I loved it.
Rust in the Root by Justina Ireland (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro): Historical fantasy about Black Americans who work the “mystical arts.” It’s an examination of race and power and it’s an incredibly fun read.
Astrid Parker Doesn’t Fail by Ashley Herring Blake (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro): Sapphic romcom follow-up to Delilah Green Doesn't Care; maybe not as steamy (though there is definitely sex on the page) but I laughed more reading this one.
The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro): Queer young adult romance that I don't want to say too much about because I don't want to give anything away but I will say that I laughed a lot while reading it.
Dreams Bigger Than Heartbreak by Charlie Jane Anders (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro): Sequel to Victories Greater Than Death. To call it a friends' space adventure is to underplay the absolute wonder, fun, and heart of these books. The third in the trilogy is out in 2023.
Recitatif: A Story by Toni Morrison with an introduction by Zadie Smith (Bookshop | Amazon | Libro | Hear me talk about it): This short story purposefully fucks with race and your mind as you read it and I love it. Smith's introduction essay is phenomenal as well.
That’s it for this week! You can shop any books I’ve mentioned in this newsletter at my affiliate shop, The Infophile’s Bookshop, and support independent bookstores. If you want to send me some snail mail, you can find me at P.O. Box 21481, Oakland, CA 94620-1481. If you are a subscriber and would like for me to send you some happy mail, feel free to give me your address.
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