17 Books Jenny Zhang Recommends on Instagram

We stalk the Sour Heart author's feed for some great book recs.

Jenny Zhang

Jenny Zhang (the delightful @jennybagel) may be a first-time novelist (her debut Sour Heart is the inaugural book in Lena Denham’s Lenny imprint for Random House), but she is a long-time writer and reader. Jenny is known for her skills as a published poet, and has made many author friends that are frequently featured on her Instagram account. While she’s new to publishing novels, she’s a pro at sharing books on her Instagram, so we’re sharing our favorite finds from Jenny’s feed with you.

Jenny had a great time discussing her book with fellow authors Michelle Richmond (The Marriage Pact) and Janelle Brown (Watch Me Disappear). We loved that she takes the time to acknowledge how talented and smart they are.

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woke up to the happiest surprise ????????????

A post shared by Jenny Zhang (@jennybagel) on

Jenny keeps it real while waking up to find finished copies of her book. She even stayed in her pajamas for the picture which we like.

We love seeing Jenny support other female authors. Here she is with Janet Mock and her new book Surpassing Certainty.

read some poems by women i love for the @tracy_reese presentation today ????‍????‍????

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As a poet, it’s no surprise Jenny has an amazing poetry collection. Here she shows off some of her favorite poetry books by other badass women—Tender Data by Monica McClure, There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé by Morgan Parker and Veronica Bench by Leopoldine Core.

Reading a TELL ALL about Mao Zedong #living #my #best #life #riiight

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Who doesn’t love sitting and reading by the water? While we usually associate the water with a light read, Jenny is reading a tell-all about Mao Zedong: The Private Life of Chairman Mao by Dr. Li Zhi-Sui.

#feeling #blessed #and #haggy

A post shared by Jenny Zhang (@jennybagel) on

Jenny shows off her poetry chapbook Hags (now found in a volume titled The Selected Jenny Zhang) alongside with Lenny founder Lena Dunham’s essay collection Not That Kind of Girl. We’re glad to see the two are so close—in this bookstore and IRL.

Almost finished with My Struggle (photo cred: @samgaskin)

A post shared by Jenny Zhang (@jennybagel) on

The struggle of staying awake while reading on the train is real. We hope Jenny was able to wake up and finish reading her book, My Struggle: Book One by Karl Ove Knausgaard.

Fave girls ????????????????

A post shared by Jenny Zhang (@jennybagel) on

Always a proponent of women writers, Jenny shares some of her favorite books by her fave ladies. Included in the group are Pussy King of the Pirates by Kathy Acker, Near to the Wild Heart by Clarice Lispector, Speedboat by Renata Adler, and Bluets by Maggie Nelson.

Belladonna suite reading/sweet reading for lovers feminists and allies

A post shared by Jenny Zhang (@jennybagel) on

What’s better than a book club? Gathering your friends to read your favorite book aloud, of course. Jenny shares this photo of her friends reading The Story of My Accident is Ours by Rachel Levitsky.

We love a good Throwback Thursday, and Jenny doesn’t disappoint. Here she is at the National Book Awards with fellow author Karan Mahajan, celebrating his NBA finalist status for The Association of Small Bombs.


Featured image: Adalena Kavanagh; All images: JennyBagel/Instagram.com

JENNY ZHANG is a poet and writer living in New York City.

About Stella Spiegel

STELLA SPIEGEL is the email marketer for Read It Forward. When she is not busy reading her favorite celebrities’ memoirs, she works on creating enough memories for her future memoir.

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