Saturday, March 21, 2009

Girl Seeking Books

A double-post! Go me.

One of the ironic things about being an English major is that you don't have time to read for pleasure anymore. Seriously. The highlight of my week was looking up interesting book titles on and reading the blurbs and reviews. La-ame. And when/if you actually do have time to read for leisure, your brain is so tired from all that academic mumbo-jumbo that all you want to re-read is Confessions of a Shopaholic for the 43rd time. My mom laments [talks shit] that I read literary junk food all the time, but in my defense, I read Of Mice and Men, The Scarlet Letter, and To Kill a Mockingbird all before I reached middle school.

I may have peaked.

Anyway, I need something in between, you know? Something a little more highbrow than Size 12 is Not Fat (don't hate) but that's not too heavy. Bonus points if it's a British book: they're funny. And must, MUST have a traditional plotline. No Toni Morrison. I like linear novels. Stories. Give me your basic rising action, climax, falling action, denouement structure. With preferably a love scene thrown in for good measure. Also, and this is a recent development, black characters preferred.

This is the fly in the pudding. See, I like chick-lit (again, don't hate). However, love it though I do, all of the plucky, earnest characters in said chick-lit seem to be lacking melanin. Pre-HBCU, this would not have bothered me. Now, it does. When I finally came across a black historical romance novel, I freaked out in the middle of Borders.

I'm not saying that there are no books for black women, because one, DUH that's a lie. But what I'm having a hard time finding are, say the black version of Jennifer Weiner or Meg Cabot. Stories (of quality) about contemporary, middle-class, educated black females like myself. Like a novel about a Vanessa Huxtable-type gal.

So, suggestions, anyone, on some quality literary stimulation? Maybe I just don't know where to look, point me in the right direction! And ok, they don't just have to be FUBU reading (For Us By Us, if you don't remember that horrid satortical phase); any good, moderately-easy to get through novels will do.

As if I'll have time to read them.

PS-had another internet run-in with The Smoker that I would've mentioned had it been productive/interesting, but I shan't even waste space because he has proved, once again in stunning fashion, to be a major asshat. It's my fault for [starting?] entertaining it, but damn! He is the king of Home Depot (ie, a tool). How do you forget someone who won't stay gone?


Anonymous said...

Anything by Ian McEwan. It's what I always say when people ask me to recommend a book to them. Except 'The Innocent' because that is all kinds of messed up right there. 'Atonement' is officially the best book ever. Apart from 'The Color Purple', which is my absolute favourite.

I am so the same. I'm an English student, and I love reading but I have a pile of books by my bed that I've never even touched because I'm too busy reading Austen and Dickens. Sad times.

Also, loving the chick lit. Have you ever read any by Freya North? She is awesome, too. Love her style, and it's witty enough that you don't feel guilty!


Lucky said...

Thanks, boo! Silly question, though, is "Atonement" sad? It's a love story, right? I never saw the movie...

Anonymous said...

It's beyond sad, but in a beautiful way.
Don't watch the movie before you read the book, it'll totally spoil it!

Lucky said...

Hmm, now I really am tempted to read it!