To rip off Miriam, I’ve compiled a little list of my own. Below are a few books that, for whatever reason, may make you question your faith in humanity. More publishing advice to come soon!
WE WISH TO INFORM YOU THAT TOMORROW WE WILL BE KILLED WITH OUR FAMILIES by Philip Gourevitch: The title gives a pretty strong indication that all is not well in these pages. Emotionally devastating but entirely necessary, this work, subtitled “Stories from
IF I DID IT by O.J. Simpson: What does it say about us that we’re snatching this book up in large numbers? Who is reading it? And why? To me, the only thing more upsetting than the book was the number of people who tried to silence it. Would I buy it? No. Would I have represented it? Probably.
The collected works of Ann Coulter: About as smart as O.J. and about as reprehensible. This woman is a mouthpiece for hatred and contributes nothing legitimate to political discourse. Also, I think she eats babies.
TRY by Dennis Cooper: The adopted teenage son of two sexually abusive fathers begins a journal about his own mistreatment and exploitation entitled “I Apologize.” The adults in Cooper’s vicious world are violent and degraded. The children seek solace in drugs and sex. The book is legitimately shocking, and you might have to numb yourself to get through it. But the biggest surprise is that if you can stomach it, you come out on the other end realizing that Cooper is actually a humanist, and that this is a novel about love. You just have to survive the attack to realize it.
THE MYSTERY METHOD: HOW TO GET BEAUTIFUL WOMEN INTO BED by Mystery: Now, if anyone has seen the VH1 series The Pick-Up Artist, they know that Mystery is a guy named Erik who wears big furry hats, silly eye makeup, and entirely too much animal print. He looks like the love child of Dennis Rodman and Tammy Faye Bakker. He’s a misogynist, a moron, and a self-professed “expert” on landing beautiful women. Now, I watch bad reality TV. I watch a lot of bad reality TV. Rarely, if ever, have I come across someone who is as big a tool as this guy. That enough people seem to believe he might have the secrets to becoming a ladies’ man to propel his book to the bestseller lists makes me want to vomit in my mouth a little bit.
HALF OF A YELLOW SUN by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Sometimes I get on thematic reading kicks. I’ll go all Southern Gothic for a little while then find myself reading lots of books set in and around zoos for a few weeks. Earlier this year, I found myself reading back to back books about civil wars in