I take two forms of public transit every morning, a commute totaling half an hour, which provides me with plenty of time to read. I’ve gone through a bunch of books and magazines just by reading on the bus while commuting to work the past 8 months, so I’m always keeping my eye out for new reads. Reading, though, is an expensive habit. If I examined my budget, I’m sure buying books takes up a substantial portion of it (stuffing my face with candy comes in at number 2). Everyone I know has a Kindle or some other eReader and swears by it, but I stare at enough computer screens all day for my liking, and it’s nice to be able to disconnect and sit with a good book. And besides, nothing can ever compare to actually cracking a book open and physically turning each page. I don’t care if I’m the last person alive that prefers books, I’ll never convert to an eReader.
While I’m busy getting off my soapbox, let’s take a look at 2 new books that have piqued my interest recently:
“Dear Me: A Letter to My 16 Year Old Self” by Joseph Galliano
This book was just released this week, but have you seen these? Excerpts taken from letters written by celebrities to their younger selves, aptly titled, “Dear Me: A Letter to My 16 Year Old Self.” Full of advice, humor, love, and some sadness, with a foreword from one of my favorite authors. Warning themselves not to do drugs, telling themselves they matter, it will all be okay, and not to let that one person break their heart. It makes me wonder what I’ll have to tell my 16 year old self when I’m older. Of course, trying to write a letter to myself at 16 now when I’m barely 9 years older is pointless, because so often I still think of myself as being an awkward high-schooler. Every time I pay a bill or remind myself to pick up laundry detergent, I experience a brief moment of shock, like, “I’m a grown-up? Since when?” If I had to give 16 year old Erin some advice it would be to put school before boys, stop worrying about your boobs (FUTILE), and that, yes, everything will be okay. Pinky promise. Oh, and invest in Facebook.
“Van Gogh: The Life” by Steve Naifeh and Gregory White Smith
I saw a segment on 60 Minutes last week about this book and the art history nerd in me has been freaking out over getting my hands on it ever since. It’s an 800 page behemoth on the life and death of Vincent Van Gogh, arguably one of the most influential and famous painters in the world. It chronicles his history with depression as well as his relationships with his family and calls to light a new and interesting (and convincing) theory on how he died. Illuminating stuff, if you like that sort of thing. Which, I do. Unfortunately, its hefty size precludes it from being a “read it on the subway” kind of book, since I don’t think I’ll enjoy schlepping it back and forth all day. The thing is 3 pounds!
What about you? Reading anything good lately? I’m curious, what advice would you give your 16 year old self if you could? Would you, at all? And why is it that 16 is always the most talked about age? Anyway, I’ll see you guys tomorrow with a Halloween-themed Friday Five! I promise it’s a good one.