Don’t Book Back // August Reading

last read…

I only got around to two books during the month of August. One I enjoyed and one that I wish I had not bothered reading. I will let you figure out which was which.

I blame my senior thesis advisor for turning me on to Bret Easton Ellis. Dr. Haley augmented my list of suggested reading material for my analysis of the yuppie and hippie movements with Ellis’ works in order to get a sense of the former. I read most of his fiction, save for American Psycho, and enjoyed nearly all of it. Hot tip: skip eating truffle macaroni and cheese while reading the torture scene of Glamorama.

I read White by Bret Easton Ellis. It is his first nonfiction book. I thought I would love what he had to say, but I find his brand of no-nonsense abrasive. Lots of critiques on coastal elites, snowflakes, and millennials, despite the fact that he remains in a live-in relationship with the latter-most. I tend to love memoirs and find them inspiring, but in the case of White, I simply found it to be exhausting.

For the same reasons I read White, I read Lips Unsealed: A Memoir. Like many xennials, I romanticize the late 1970s into 1980s, particularly popular culture. Bret Easton Ellis and Belinda Carlisle were only a few years apart and experienced a southern California upbringing during that time. While I related to Ellis’ more privileged upbringing, I deeply identified with Carlisle’s scrappy attitude.

The perfect antidote to White was Lips Unsealed: A Memoir. The Go-Go’s were one of my favorite bands growing up – still are – though from a few viewings of Behind the Music, I knew that they were not the nice five California girls that the marketing department of I.R.S. Records would have one think. Belinda Carlisle’s candid memoir did not hold back, nor did it present her struggles with addiction with rose-colored glasses. It is her candor that makes Lips Unsealed: A Memoir a fantastic read.

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