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Withitgirl Summer Book Club 2021

The Beautiful Animations are by Laura Salaberry

The Seas (2004) by Samantha Hunt

The protagonist of the Seas might be a mermaid. She also might not be the most reliable narrator. Or maybe it's everyone else who isn’t really reliable. One thing is for certain, the protagonist of the seas isn’t your typical mermaid. Hunt says “My mermaid rejects all that. She plays with language. If you don’t like the names they call you (slut, crazy, bitch, deserter) then change the meaning of those words. Stories alter the physical world. So do emotions. My mermaid creates the identity she wants by changing the story, making her own language.” The Seas is a haunting, beautiful, poetic tale you won’t soon forget.

Samantha Hunt's website

Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life (2016) by William Finnegan

Barbarian Days is William Finnegan’s memoir of an obsession, a complex enchantment. Surfing only looks like a sport. To initiates, it is something else entirely: a beautiful addiction, a demanding course of study, a morally dangerous pastime, a way of life. Finnegan's novel is an autobiography, an adventure novel, and a surfing story. It travels far and wide through many different times and places and offers a personal lens into the obsessive, addicting side of surfing that only some ever get to see.

Where the Crawdads Sing (2018) by Delia Owens

The wildlife scientist Delia Owens has found her voice in Where the Crawdads Sing, a painfully beautiful first novel that is at once a murder mystery, a coming-of-age narrative, and a celebration of nature…Owens here surveys the desolate marshlands of the North Carolina coast through the eyes of an abandoned child. And in her isolation that child makes us open our own eyes to the secret wonders—and dangers—of her private world. The New York Times Book Review - Marilyn Stasio

Author's website and Instagram as well as a New Yorker review

Dharma Bums (1958) by Jack Kerouac

First published in 1958, a year after On the Road put the Beat Generation on the map, The Dharma Bums stands as one of Jack Kerouac’s most powerful and influential novels. The story focuses on two ebullient young Americans–mountaineer, poet, and Zen Buddhist Japhy Ryder, and Ray Smith, a zestful, innocent writer–whose quest for Truth leads them on a heroic odyssey, from marathon parties and poetry jam sessions in San Francisco’s Bohemia to solitude and mountain climbing in the High Sierras.

Kerouac Society website and an interesting take with the "Dharma Girls" Review

The Alchemist (1988) by Paulo Coelho

Through the adventures and struggles of shepherd boy Santiago, Coelho simply and poetically pens powerful wisdom about following one’s path and staying true to oneself. True love is never selfish and true dreams should always be followed.

A Man Called Ove (2015) by Frederik Backman

Fredrik Backman’s novel about the angry old man next door is a thoughtful exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others. “If there was an award for ‘Most Charming Book of the Year,’ this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down” (Booklist, starred review).

The Great Alone (2018) by Kristin Hannah

In this unforgettable portrait of human frailty and resilience, Kristin Hannah reveals the indomitable character of the modern American pioneer and the spirit of a vanishing Alaska―a place of incomparable beauty and danger. The Great Alone is a daring, beautiful, stay-up-all-night story about love and loss, the fight for survival, and the wildness that lives in both man and nature.

Kristin Hannah website and Instagram

The Overstory (2018) by Richard Powers

A must-read for every human being living on this earth. The Overstory has won the Pulitzer Prize and is widely critically acclaimed for its ability to present the dazzling complexity of the natural world to the human audience which too often turns a blind eye.

Richard Powers' website and incredible New Yorker review


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