I am a huge fan of both reading and writing. After work, I’m either reading a book or using writing prompts to make up my own story. This is why, as the marketing intern, I have had the pleasure of picking out 3 books for summer reading. These books all have a focus on social issues that plague the United States, and they tackle this though both memoir and fiction writing. I loved relaxing and reading all three of these books, so please enjoy!
PS: To purchase any of the books, please click on the cover image and you will be redirected to a retailer.
J.D. Vance chronicles his upbringing in Middletown, Ohio into an Appalachian family with strong values, but with equally as strong demons. Personally, I enjoyed this memoir as it calls attention to a large forgotten class in American society: the poverty stricken laborers of the Rust Belt. The people that Vance writes about play a large role in the American culture and government and are often ignored. Their misfortunes are some due to economic disparagement in the area, but mostly due to their overall culture. Overall, Hillbilly Elegy gives a compassionate analysis about a broken society that has led to the political turmoil that our country faces today.
Educated: A memoir
by Tara Westover
Tara Westover gives an account of growing up in a survivalist family in the mountains of Idaho without ever receiving a formal education, She then leaves her family in pursuit of higher education. This book struck me as important to realize how important formal education is in the development of contributing members of society. Often times, I personally do not realize that the way I grew up in suburban Massachusetts is probably much different than someone who grew up in the rural Midwest, or on the West coast. Understanding cultural differences, like those in Hillbilly Elegy, are vital in order to comprehend other people and make meaningful relationships with others.
The Female Persuasion
by Meg Wolitzer
The Female Persuasion is the only fiction book on this list, though it addresses many real world issues that women often face. Meg Wolitzer tackles modern day feminism while following a mentor-mentee relationships between a Gloria Steinem-like feminist icon and a young woman beginning her career in New York City.
What I enjoy about this novel is that not only is it female driven and shows women achieving positions of power in the business world, but it also addresses all aspects of modern feminism from all different angles. It is not a book written to make women feel empowered after reading, (though it does achieve that) but it does show that feminism takes many different forms and what works for one, may not work for others. I greatly enjoyed reading this book and I connected deeply with the main character. This is a great summer read that you can bring with you to the beach.