- Read a book that is set in the Middle East
- Read a nonfiction book about feminism or dealing with feminist themes
- Read a food memoir
|Little, Brown and Co.|
Malala is a skilled narrator. She's bright, she's hopeful, she's very detailed and she's very intelligent. Although her book is a translation, which is sometimes apparent, I felt like I could read and relate to her feelings. She does a fine job of connecting to her readers, detailing her thoughts and feelings--and making her voice heard. She makes a compelling argument for education, for giving women equal education opportunities. Truthfully, you can see why Malala Yousafzai is a Nobel Prize Laureate.
I also had the opportunity to read a short (and rather famous) essay by Virginia Woolf: A Room of One's Own. As an avid reader and, ahem, English major in college, you would think I'd have taken the opportunity to read A Room of One's Own, but, until this year, I had yet to make more than a cursory acquaintance with Woolf's work. Unfortunately, I wasn't enamored by her essay.
The point is, I finished reading A Room of One's Own and I have a new appreciation for Woolf. She's a talented writer, but, personally, I'm not so sure she's the writer for me. I appreciate her work and I appreciate the significance of her essay, but I don't think she's the one and only feminist writer for me.
Last but not least, I read Julie and Julia by Julie Powell. It's riotously funny, yet strangely poignant. Oddly enough, it reminds me of Jenny Lawson and her memoir, Furiously Happy--yet just a tiny bit less chaotic. Not by much, considering Julie Powell undertakes to make 524 different recipes, many of which take hours to prepare, in just one year in a crappy little apartment in Queens. It's astonishing the things she (and her marriage) manages to survive, including: biological clocks, frozen pipes, disastrous dinner parties, inane dead end secretarial jobs, break downs, Blanche days, and celebrity crushes.
Julie and Julia is strangely heartwarming and incredibly amusing. To me, it strikes just the right balance that makes it a memoir worth reading, especially if you have the chance to listen to the author tell her own story. It makes it memorable. However, I will note that while I was listening to the audiobook I discovered I borrowed the abridged version. I don't know if the audiobook had the full text, but I do know I missed a few things that might otherwise have filled in details or fleshed out the characters involved. It was my only disappointment in an otherwise wonderful book.