What I Read in April 2024

Hi, friends!


In White Tears/Brown Scars, Ruby Hamad writes about the racism experienced by women of color, highlighting the intersectionality of race and sex. She intertwines her personal story, stories of other women, historical text, and references to popular culture in her storytelling. White it felt validating (and angering at times) to read as a woman of color, I hope many white women read text like this to understand the harm white feminism causes not only to other women but to women’ rights as a whole.

LONESOME DOVE by Larry McMurtry

Finishing Lonesome Dove felt like an accomplishment, especially since this was my second attempt! In my first defense, the first time was with a library book and I couldn’t finish it during the 21-day hold period. I picked up a used copy of Lonesome Dove while in Colorado last summer, and it was at the top of my list for this year since I’m challenging myself to read more big books. After I started reading it in February, a few people on the Internet told me this was one of their favorite books of all time and while it’s not my favorite, I can see why.

Lonesome Dove follows Hat Creek Cattle Company headed by a couple of retired Texas Rangers, comfortably settled in a small Texas town called Lonesome Dove at the beginning of the story, as they journey from Texas to Montana. Lonesome Dove is sort of an anti-Western Western and goes beyond the cowboys-fighting-indians thing. The story does not shy away from portraying the hardships and lawlessness of the Old Frontier, and the characters in this story are some of the most interesting, layered, and complex ones I’ve ever read about. If you feel like you can commit to reading 800+ pages, Lonesome Dove felt definitely worth it for me!


After putting The Complete Persepolis on my TBR back in 2018, I finally got around to reading it! It turns out Rex read it for a class while in college and still had a copy. The Complete Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s graphic novel memoir about her childhood growing up in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution, her life abroad in Vienna as a teenager, her return home before another departure. I knew very little about both the author and history of Iran so I found The Complete Persepolis very enlightening (though the Western involvement in the Middle East, or anywhere really, is not surprising). It’s a terrific read!

나는 나로 살기로 했다 (I DECIDED TO LIVE AS ME) by Suhyun Kim

I’m pretty sure I’ve had this book since pre-pandemic, perhaps since my mom’s trip to Korea back in 2017… but that’s okay since I have now read it just in time for the English translation which is coming out this November! I Decided to Live as Me is a collection of “how-to” advices/suggestions. I’m not a huge self-help book person but I found value in I Decided to Live as Me, especially considering the Korean audience. Reading this felt like listening to a big sister giving advice, one I needed desperately just a few years ago!

WHERE SLEEPING GIRLS LIE by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé

Where Sleeping Girls Lie is the sophomore novel of Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé, author of Ace of Spades. Similar to Ace of Spades, Where Sleeping Girls Lie is a dark academia mystery set in an elite British boarding school. The audiobook hooked me from the beginning (Natalie Simpson is my new favorite narrator), and Àbíké-Íyímídé introduces the big mystery from the very beginning: the disappearance of Elizabeth, roommate of the new girl Sade Hussein on Sade’s very first night at Alfred Noble Academy. The story takes time to build and reveal (I found the middle third to be a bit slow) but the resolution is satisfying.

P.S. I’m currently reading The Absolutist By John Boyne!

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