Weekend Reading

Sarah Harrison Smith on September 07, 2018


That back-to-school feeling has us ready to hit the books, and this weekend, we're excited to read a prequel to Dracula, Anand Giridharadas's study of elites and good intentions, a buzzy forthcoming novel about a girl and her band, and two new anthologies edited by very big names.

What are you planning to read this weekend? Let us know! 

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Full disclosure: I love Bram Stoker's Dracula and Dracula-related books. You could say I'm a sucker for them, but I wouldn't recommend it. So here comes Dracul (October 2), a novel co-authored by Dacre Stoke—Bram's great-grand-nephew—and bestselling horror/thriller writer J.D. Barker. Drawing on Bram Stoker's own biographical notes, Dracul imagines the events preceding the seminal vampire tale as Stoker's own experience grappling with a supernatural evil that has descended on Dublin, his childhood home. Shadows and nights are growing longer, and this book should be a good opener for the spooky season.  Jon Foro

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I can't wait to sink my teeth into Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World by Anand Giridharadas. Giridharadas explains how so-called "thought leaders" and "change-makers" might be trying to solve hard issues, but when the foundation of any transition is to maintain the status quo for the elite, necessary change is never going to happen. I've been trying to gain a more realistic perspective on the real-world effects of social hierarchy, and while I'm not promising to swallow Giridharadas's ideas whole, I'm pretty sure my eyes will be opened wider. Other readers seem to be seeking a similar experience, as Winners Take All hit the Charts Most-Sold list for the first time this week. –Adrian Liang

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This book will not be published until March of next year, but there has been a lot of buzz around it. So I checked it out. Daisy Jones is a novel written as an oral history. It's the story of a famous (fictional) 70s band that was fronted by a beautiful, slightly mysterious, even chimeric young woman named Daisy. There's something captivating about the story so far, and the method of story telling — telling it as a collected oral history — gives it an interesting angle. I am looking forward to finishing it this weekend.—Chris Schluep

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I feel like a break from the stack of big thick novels in front of me, so I'm taking home The Best American Food Writing 2018 (October 2nd), edited by none other than Ruth Reichl. The essays are plucked from a wide range of publications on a variety of food related topics including the battle over school lunch, women in the restaurant world, and the superstition of PB&J in NBA basketball. Just the bite-sized reads (I know, I know) I'm in the mood for... —Seira Wilson

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While Seira Wilson is reading The Best American Food Writing, I’ll be immersed in another book in that great series, The Best American Short Stories. Roxane Gay, a prolific novelist and essayist herself, edited the 2018 edition, which Mariner will publish in October. Gay says in her introduction that reading for the collection was “a political act” and that the twenty stories she includes “offer fascinating insights into the human condition and the terrible ways people can treat each other and how beautifully people can love.” There are familiar writers here (Emma Cline, Curtis Sittenfeld, Thea Obreht, Ron Rash) as well as some who are less well-known. Sampling work by all of them is the great opportunity anthologies offer, and I can’t wait to dive in. —Sarah Harrison Smith

(Photo: Jason Leung @Unsplash)

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