What I Read- May and June 2023

Hat: J.Crew Cover Up: Lake

Long time no post! My last post was a round up of what I read- in April!-but here we are in early July so I’m sharing what I read the last two months. I had been looking forward to all of these novels once I heard about them as they are all new releases from authors I’ve loved in the past. If I could only pick two to recommend for summer reading, I’d say Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld and The Five Star Weekend by the queen of beach reads Elin Hildebrand are must reads this summer!

Have you read any of these books? What have you been reading recently? I always love your recommendations!

Happy Place-I was so excited about a new Emily Henry release as I loved Book Lovers last year. Happy Place tells the story of Harriet and Wyn, a couple who broke up months ago and pretend to still be together during their annual friends getaway vacation. Not giving anything away here as I am sure it is pretty obvious if you’ve read any other Emily Henry books, but they still have feelings for each other and pretending to be together feels good. This wasn’t my favorite Emily Henry book, but if you like her books I think you’ll still be entertained and enjoy it!

Romantic Comedy Another book by an author I love- Curtis Sittenfeld! Romantic Comedy starts off on the set of The Night Owls, a comedy show that airs every Saturday night (Saturday Night Live anyone?). Sally Millz is a sketch writer on the show who is more into casual dating and hookups than finding something serious after her divorce and another heartbreak. Noah Brewster is a double threat on the show- coming on as the celebrity host and musical guest. Sally and Noah start working together on a few sketches for the show and she swears he is flirting, but decide this can’t be as he is Noah and she is her. I was completely hooked on this book and loved the different writing styles used. It felt fresh and relevant with pop culture references and a take on celebrity living during the pandemic.

Coronation Year I really enjoyed Jennifer Robson’s prior novel, The Gown which was a fictionalized story of the seamstresses who worked on Queen (the Princess) Elizabeth’s wedding gown so when I heard she had a new novel coming out via Elizabeth Holmes’ So Many Thoughts newsletter I was excited to order! Coronation Year is similar to The Gown in that it takes a historical event- in this case the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II- and shares a fictional story of characters in that moment in time. The story centers around the Blue Lion Inn, a family owned inn for several years which is struggling financially, but has been lucky enough to be located directly on the coronation procession route! The novel switches between perspectives of three characters: Edie, the owner of the Inn; Stella, an Italian photographer and Holocaust survivor; and James, a war hero and artist who has been commissioned to make a painting of the coronation coach passing a building across from the Inn.

The Five Star Weekend Another awesome beach read from Elin Hildebrand! This is my second favorite Elin book I’ve read- I loved it and the overall idea for the book! When Hollis, a popular food blogger, finds herself suddenly a widow, she takes inspiration from a post she sees online and plans a “Five Star Weekend”- a weekend with her best girlfriend from each phase of her life (high school, twenties, thirties and mid life) at her home in Nantucket. With drama between the friends and Hollis’ invite to the weekend to a blog reader, Gigi, she had never met, The Five Star Weekend is one to remember! Definitely pack this one in your beach bag this summer!

The Celebrants By Steven Rowley, author of The Guncle, The Celebrants follows a decades long friendship of five college friends who made a pact with each other after the unexpected death of their friend, Alec to celebrate each others funerals while they are still alive so that nothing is left unsaid. The novel spans points in time in the decades of their friendship and reveals secrets along the way. This was a book that made me laugh and also cry, but probably was more on the crying end.


Unscripted: The Epic Battle for a Media Empire and the Redstone Family Legacy– I had seen this book described as real life Succession which was what inspired me to download it. I listened on audio- and while the book almost seemed like two separate stories, the first being about Sumner Redstone and his romantic relationship with a younger woman that ended in a lawsuit and the second being about the struggle for power at Paramount Global between Sumner’s daughter, Shari and Les Moonves, CEO of CBS.

The Daddy Diaries: The Year I Grew Up- I’d say I’m a casual Andy Cohen fan, but I don’t necessarily watch a lot of Bravo which probably sounds weird. Either way, I really enjoyed Andy’s new book The Daddy Diaries! I’ve said it before, but I love listening to celebrity memoirs on audio and I liked Andy’s writing style with his diary (turns out he has other books in this style and I’m late to the game!). I loved hearing some inside views to his famous friendships, like Anderson Cooper, SJP and John Mayer, but also some of the more poignant pieces about being a single dad. If you enjoy pop culture I think you’d enjoy this book, but probably even more so if you are a Bravo fan!

What was your most recent read and would you recommend it?

xoxo, Jenna

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