I’m so thrilled to be a part of the Ladies Who Launch community, and am doubly thrilled to be able to heave myself onto my soapbox to share my thoughts about books and other fun things. When Emma reached out to me to partner with the LWL Shelf, I’ll admit, I was a little intimidated. Y’all have so many followers! This is a legit organization! Gah! After much hemming and hawing, however, I’ve decided I’m just going to lean into the feeling and go with it. I’m 40% nervous...and 60% excited!
A little background about me: I grew up in a book-loving family, and learned to love reading from an early age. My mother is a librarian, and her twin, my aunt, is also a librarian. Reading has always been one of my favorite things to do, and in April of 2019 I decided to jump on the trending bandwagon of book clubs. This came out of a strong desire to meet women in my community, to make new friends, and, frankly, to drink wine with other people on a weeknight. There are a few “cool lady” book clubs in Portland, Oregon where I live, and after some attempts at joining, I was told that they were all FULL. I had no choice - no choice! I tell you - but to start my OWN cool lady book club. That is how Literally was born.
We are a group of around 30 women who meet the last Wednesday of each month to discuss books, and inevitably end up sharing with each other the highs and lows of work, friendship, the gender inequality we experience, our relationships, politics, what's on HBO, and so much more. It’s been incredible to connect with women I never would have met were it not for book club, and the feeling I get the last Wednesday of the month, as I’m sitting awash in the glow of feminism and rosé, can only be described as “bliss.”
I think that pursuit of female-powered "bliss" is part of why I'm so drawn to Ladies Who Launch, and am so excited about this partnership. Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing more about the partnership between #LWLShelf and Literally, a few book recommendations, as well as a deeper dive into our organization.
To kick things off, and to give those of you who would like to join us on our reading journey some time to read, October’s book is American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst by Jeffrey Toobin. I won’t go too much into the book quite yet, but I can tell you that it’s an absolutely fascinating true story of a woman who was radicalized by the Symbionese Liberation Army in 1974 in San Francisco. I read this book about a year ago and am excited to take a second look! It’s definitely a page-turner.
Follow along with us at @literally.pdx!
In other news, if you’re looking for some fun email inbox content, I would highly recommend subscribing to Molly Young of NYMag’s “Read Like the Wind” newsletter. This is a once a month email with book recommendations that span every genre and decade. I like that the recommendations typically aren’t on any best-seller or “must read” list, and most of them aren’t newly released. It’s essentially a deep cuts book share, and at the bottom of each newsletter is a link to an open source spreadsheet, where you can recommend your faves to Molly.