Thursday, February 16, 2017

Gettin' nostalgic for...

The 2008 financial crisis?
The Futures by Anna Pitoniak is the ticket back to the financial crisis of '08 that nobody asked for. If you get misty for the days of fallen hedge fund heroes this should satisfy your inexplicable craving for that dismal period of recent memory. Meet Julia and Evan (*eyeroll*), young Yale graduates on the edge of the future. Scrappy small town Canadian Evan gets the privileged and perfect girl of his dreams / Julia is living a privileged and perfect life with her hedge fund manager boyfriend but she just can't figure herself out and *tiny violins* for real. It's a he said, she said-style narrative so of course there's gonna be cheating, which always makes for a good read, and I for one can't resist a good ol' marriage in crisis story. Read it if you're in the mood for a crumbling relationship with a side of crumbling economy!

BTW, Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue was the NYC-set book to read about this particular period, also with a marriage at the center, should you feel the sudden need to reminisce about that time when everybody lost their pensions.

Geeking out in the 80s?
Let's hear it for the nerds, am I right? The Impossible Fortress features kids that remind one of the beloved pack of misfits from Stranger Things. What's better than coming of age stories featuring great friendships? And set in the 80s too? The 80s had the best friends.
This book has it all: a geeky trio of misfit guy pals; an impossible quest for a much coveted issue of Playboy; lots of nerding out over programming video games on a Commodore 64; young love. It's funny, and clever, and lovable, and I want to read it again.
Speaking of great 80s kids and formative friendships, half of Swing Time by Zadie Smith is spot on! The other half a little less so--[spoiler alert] when the narrator grows up and goes to work for someone who seems an awful lot like Madonna, but after several eye-rolling chapters of asking yourself "and why do I care?" you'll be nostalgic for the beginning of the book when it was a pitch perfect tale of awesome 80s girlhood and best friends, and when you finish it you'll be nostalgic for On Beauty.

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