lev hardware book club

Ah. Here I am freshly back from vacation. Haven’t had time to upload a new Art Bitch for this week, but am ferociously penciling and inking new strips as we speak. In the meantime, I want to talk about some books I’ve read recently.

I truly love to read. Once, in second grade, we had a day where we brought in all the books we’d read that month. Most kids had two or three. I had a stack of more than ten. Chapter books. Yeah, I know, badass.

So. Here are the three books I read in the last two weeks. Surprisingly, they are all autobiography-type books. Usually I stick pretty close to novels.

First, “Big Man” by Clarence Clemmons and Don Reo. I feel deeply sad that I never got to see the E Street Band in concert, with Clarence and Bruce together, and now I never will. C made a lot of magic in his life, and the book is a joy tinged with the sadness of his death. It is stories, in the largest sense of the word. A fully felt, beautiful thing.

Next, I read Patti Smith’s “Just Kids.” This book makes me feel like I can be a musician, which is a secret dream of mine. It also makes me nostalgic for New York, which nothing else has really been able to do in the nine months since I left. Her writing draws me in, and I see a lot of myself in her inner world. I didn’t want it to ever end. I want to listen to Patti Smith songs in the car with the window rolled down in the summer forever.

Third, which I just finished this morning, is Tina Fey’s “Bossypants.” I see a lot of myself in Tina’s inner world too. I read the majority of this on a five hour bus ride and people started staring at me because I was doing that silent laugh thing so hard that it made a weird noise and I was crying from said laughter. My dad (who read all three of these books right before me) didn’t find the book very funny until the second half. I think that’s because in the first half she writes a lot about growing up: getting her period, her first pap smear, and other gross/weird/awkward things that we gals go through that might be less relatable for men. And, as a woman trying to make it in a male dominated workplace/world, I found some great advice, and a view on feminism that is very close to my own (thank you Ms. Fey). I got this book from the library, and after reading the whole thing I am planning on buying it. It’s that kind of book. I want it to sit proudly on my shelf for years to come. I want to re-read it and underline my favorite parts. I want my future daughter to read it.

In conclusion, I recommend all three of these books. Enjoy.

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