Fenton’s Summer 2022 Reading List
Whether you’re headed for the beach or planning on staying cool indoors, summer days are a great time for getting lost in a new book. Our colleagues are avid readers who love sharing book recommendations, from novels to collections of essays to memoirs. Check out some of the recommendations below from Fenton’s book club to add to your list. Happy reading!
“A Little Devil in America is a delicious tome that explores Blackness through the lens of art and performance. I picked up Hanif’s work at the top of 2022 and could not put it down. From the history of the Soul Train line to learning about a hilariously scandalous beef between James Brown and Joe Tex, Hanif takes the readers on a journey of what it means to be Black in America while creating, devouring and exploring artistry.”
– Shakirah Hill-Taylor, Chief Digital Officer
“About three years ago I read Elif Batuman’s debut novel, The Idiot and it left such an impression on me. I didn’t think anything could top it until the sequel was released earlier this summer! This series focuses on the protagonist Selin’s
undergraduate years at Harvard in the 90s as a first generation American. It tells a compelling coming-of-age story about navigating being a first generation American while also bringing the classic literature Selin reads into a modern context.
– Isabel Serrano, Account Executive
“For those who enjoyed A Visit From the Goon Squad, for which Egan won the Pulitzer prize, you’ll recognize some of those characters in this thought provoking novel. She takes on how to be authentic when our culture is dominated by social media and the role of memory in our consciousness and relationships. This is very deep stuff brought to life with imaginative scenarios and truly relatable characters. A truly creative, challenging and unique story that reads like a vacation book but penetrates your conscience and leaves you thinking.”
– Jennifer Hahn, Managing Director
“I read The Moment of Lift last summer and it really opened my eyes to the incredible domino effect that happens when you empower and uplift women around the world and how in turn, that strengthens families, communities, systems and economies. It’s informative and research-based, but it’s told through a storytelling lens, making it still captivating and inspirational!
– Nicole Levi, Account Coordinator
“Homegoing, Yaa Gyasi’s first novel, follows two separated half sisters in Ghana starting in the late 1700’s. One woman remains in Ghana, and one is kidnapped and sold into slavery by the British and lands in the American South. The book follows their lives and the lives and stories of their descendants, generation by generation up until the present day. Breathtaking, heartbreaking and so good! Looking forward to reading her next book, Transcendent Kingdom, next.”
– Alyssa Singer, Vice President
“I just finished The Fifth Season and I am hooked! It’s an apocalyptic fantasy written by a Black woman with great world-building, a unique and engaging authorial voice, a broad range of representation for groups not often centered in adventure fantasy, and an engaging and thought-provoking plot. This book covers a lot of serious topics, handling them with respect and gravity while maintaining a sense of hope and capturing the resiliency of the human spirit.”
– Aileen Andres, Associate Vice President, Digital
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
“The Poisonwood Bible is an epic novel exploring a white missionary’s family experiences in the Belgian Congo that’s on the verge of independence. A jewel of post-colonial literature, the book explores white supremacy on micro and macro-levels, the use of religion as weapon, and the role everyday people play in the rollout of larger historical narratives.”
– Valerie Jean-Charles, Associate Vice President
“Between Two Kingdoms is a heart-wrenching story about what it means to truly live. Author Suleika Jaouad brings you on her journey through and beyond cancer. Centering the questions we all share such as: “who am I?,” ”how do I begin again?,” and “why am I here, now?” Jaouad’s memoir is as relatable as it is soul-enriching.”
-Lindsay Morgenstein, Digital Account Coordinator
“Bevy Smith is a fashion icon, TV personality and lowkey, an amazing self-help guru. Bevelations offers tidbits and tips for folks who are looking for something meatier than your traditional “how to make in America” style self-help book while also managing to be a dynamic portrayal of the ups and downs of following your dreams in the fashion and entertainment industries even when racism, misogynoir, classism and nepotism are against you. The book takes you on a journey from her beginnings in Harlem, NY through to her work as the fashion editor for VIBE magazine and RollingStone, to her current work as a TV and radio personality through her relationship with Andy Cohen. The best part is that Bevy narrates the audiobook herself and her thick, everlasting, Uptown accent is the perfect complement to her story.”
– Mia Logan, Vice President