Dreams from My Father
This autobiography really spoke to me, probably because the President and I have so much in common. We were both raised by caring, supportive grandmothers. We both attended Harvard Law School. I applied for a job at the White House a few years ago. Never heard back.
Discourses and Selected Writings
My fiancé Will gave me this book. He’s an archaeologist, and he’s always yammering on about Stoic philosophy. Frankly, I can’t relate. Epictetus says we’re the only ones in control of our emotions and our destiny, and most of us fail to realize that “no one is ever unhappy because of someone else.” I read that and was like, dude. You obviously never worked at a big law firm.
Much Ado About Nothing
My best friend Freddy insisted I read this play. She said, “Look at the relationship between the cousins Beatrice and Hero. It’s just like our friendship.” I said, “Which of us is Beatrice and which is Hero?” She said, “I’m Beatrice, obviously.” “No fair!” I said. “Beatrice has all the snappy lines. And Hero is falsely accused of being a drunken slut, whereas I actually am a drunken slut.” Freddy said, “You’re missing the point, idiot.” I shrugged. “Whatever. You can be Beatrice. Robert Sean Leonard is way hotter than Kenneth Branagh anyway.” “Oh my God!” she cried. “You didn’t read it! You just watched the movie!” Busted.
Louisa May Alcott
I read this book when I was 10, and it blew my mind! So many confluences and mirror-opposites with my life. Instead of a family of four daughters and a mother, I had a family of one daughter and four mother-figures (I have stepmothers out the wazoo). Also, like the March sisters, I had an absent father. Only mine wasn’t off fighting the Civil War—he was in New York getting drunk and burning through his inheritance. And while I didn’t have a sister with scarlet fever, I did remember overhearing Dad tell the story of the time his uncle caught syphilis from an exotic dancer. The coincidences went on and on. I wrote a long book report about them and read it to my second-grade class. My teacher sent a note home.
Ada, or Ardor
Frankly, the only worthwhile part of this book is Part Four’s dense metaphysical lecture on “The Texture of Time.” Kidding! It’s all about the sex, people. The filthy, filthy, pre-teen sex.
A stunning, hilarious polemic about the capitalist underpinnings of monogamy and the insanity inherent in our propensity to pair off. As someone about to get married, maybe I shouldn’t have been quite so enamored of this book. But it’s definitely got me thinking…
I Take You
Hi, I’m Lily Wilder: New Yorker, lawyer extraordinaire, blushing bride. (Oh, and I love bookstores, so I know we have something in common.) My friends say I’m sassy, impulsive, fond of a good drink (or five), and have no business getting married. I’m the star of I Take You, the novel everybody’s calling the Big Beach Read of the summer. It’s sexy and provocative (like me) with the ribald humor of Bridesmaids (love that movie). If you like my reading list (and who wouldn’t, it’s awesome), I know you’ll love the book I’m in.
Featured Image: Rawpixel/iStock; Author Photo: Lauren Volo