Wrap Up: Essay Collections

Essay collections are strange animals. They don't often get a lot of press and generally can be difficult to find. But a great essay collection is a beautiful thing. Here are some titles to add to your list:  

Vintage, 2017

Vintage, 2017

We are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby

While we were putting together this list, I was listening to Samantha Irby's We Are Never Meeting in Real Life. Holy mother of pearl, guys, I haven't laughed this hard in a LONG time. Samantha writes about her life—dating, bowel problems, her even cat Helen Keller—in excruciating detail. I've never had a better time. But between the laughs, Samantha makes points about how she interacts with society as a queer, fat, black woman.  -K

P.S. I just finished it. Go pick it up. It's brilliant.

The Possessed: Adventures With Russian Books and the People Who Read Them by Elif Batuman

When The Idiot made the rounds through bookstagram earlier this year, it was the first time I had heard of Elif Batuman. Or so I thought. Come to find out, I'd seen this essay collection several years ago, but didn't think it would interest me. Elif briefly talked about this collection when I heard her speak earlier this year and it seems like it is a hilarious read. Can't wait to pick it up.   - A

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012

When I Was a Child I Read Books by Marilynne Robinson

I haven't had a lot of chance on the podcast to proclaim the intensity of my love for Marilynne Robinson. But, by George, I LOVE Marilynne Robinson! I hope I'm half as cool as she is when I grow up. Robinson is most well known for her Gilead trilogy, but she also is a profound essayist. In this collection, Robinson focuses on how books influenced her life. Usually, most of her books also discuss her faith and how that intersect with the world, so I am sure to have a gold mine of depth and insight ahead of me with this book. - K

Feel Free by Zadie Smith 

I know two things about this book: It's essays and it's written by Zadie Smith. Zadie is a wonderful human and ridiculously talented writer, so I am already adding this book to my TBR. It's due to come out in February, so we have a few more months to wait. In the meantime, if you haven't read her work, start with White Teeth or On Beauty then check out her most recent novel Swing Time. - A

Penguin Press, 2018

Penguin Press, 2018

Ecco, 2017

Ecco, 2017

Some Day We'll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter by Scaachi Koul

Well, if it isn't another funny lady on my TBR. Scaachi Koul entered the bookish scene with her debut collection of essays One Day We'll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter. In it, she discusses her life as a Canadian and as a daughter of Indian immigrants. I've heard so many wonderful things about this book. Funny. Meaningful. Did I mention funny? In between my upcoming intense fiction reads, this is the book I'll be reaching for.   - K

A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women: Essays on Art, Sex, and the Mind
by Siri Hustvedt 

The title of this book drew me in immediately. It's described as "a compelling and radical collection of essays on art, feminism, neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy." The female experience is so varied, that I am always looking for new perspectives and these essays seem to do just that. -  A

Simon Schuster, 2016

Simon Schuster, 2016


Reading Women

Autumn: Twitter | Instagram | Website

Kendra: Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | Website