2000s books

Bookshelf | Married Lovers by Jackie Collins (2008)

Married Lovers

When beautiful Cameron Paradise flees her abusive surfer husband in Australia, she lands in Los Angeles, where she starts a new life as a personal trainer at a posh gym facility. Determined to sustain her newly-gained independence, her main objective is working hard and saving money, so she can fulfill her dream of one day opening her own gym. While the men she encounters can’t seem to resist her stunning beauty and perfect physique, she blocks all their advances with a steely determination. (more…)

Bookshelf | I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman by Nora Ephron (2006)

i-feel-bad-about-my-neck

In this collection of essays, Nora Ephron gives us the gift of her signature candor as she presents her thoughts on a range of topics such as aging, body maintenance, the sport of cooking, life in New York City, apartment-separation anxiety, parenting, and more. She even tells her story of being overlooked by JFK as a potential paramour, when she was a White House intern during his administration. Whether they be on milestones or the events of everyday life, the reflections she shares in these essays are funny, poignant, and rife with her trademark wit.

Great Quotes from the Book

“What failure of imagination had caused me to forget life was full of other possibilities?”

Bookshelf | Always Wear Joy by Susan Fales-Hill (2003) | How to be an original diva

alwayswearjoy

In this beautifully-written memoir, Susan Fales-Hill paints a comprehensive portrait of her late mother, the inimitable Haitian-American performer Josephine Premice.

A triple threat, Premice sang, danced, acted, and wowed on the stages of Broadway and Paris in the 1940s and ’50s. However, despite her showstopping presence, Josephine’s career never rose to the heights of her white contemporaries. In an entertainment industry that did not favor her type of beauty, Josephine was always deemed either “too much” or “not enough” of something. In spite of the ever-present adversity she endured, Josephine Premice always faced her challenges and naysayers head on, and she was ever the consummate performer and the epitome of glamour. (more…)

Bookshelf | French Women Don’t Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano (2004) | Mastering the art of guilt-free indulgence

French Women Don't Get Fat

Having observed the American tendency toward extremist diet and exercise programs, French-American Mireille Guiliano makes a convincing case for the French approach toward maintaining one’s figure.

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Bookshelf | Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea (2007) | Love and marriage in Saudi Arabia

girlsofriyadh

Waiting to Exhale meets The Real Housewives of Saudi Arabia.

The women in this juicy novel have 99 problems—all relating to men. Through a series of emails, an undisclosed narrator recounts the tumultuous love stories of four upper-class Muslim twenty-somethings in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. At a time in their lives when marriage seems to be the most important goal, the characters discover all that glitters is certainly not gold. I’m telling you, some of the characters in the story experience the kind of man-drama that could make someone catch a case. This entertaining novel is filled with drama and unexpected turns.

Bookshelf Favorite!

Bookshelf | Open by Andre Agassi (2009) | Playing in the game of life

Book Recommendation: Open by Andre Agassi (2009)

Tennis icon Andre Agassi tells the story of his tumultuous life both on and off the tennis court. With open honesty, he reveals the profound unhappiness and frustration he experienced devoting his life to a sport he hated from an early age. He also speaks candidly about his relationships with Brooke Shields and Steffie Graf as well as his longtime battle with his own personal demons. You don’t have to be a tennis fan to appreciate this book!

Bookshelf Favorite!

Bookshelf | Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell (2008) | You’re only 10,000 hours away from success

outliers

When it comes to success, why do some people surpass others in leaps and bounds? In this book, Malcolm Gladwell explores the backgrounds of certain high-achievers and reveals how the idiosyncrasies of their upbringing and life experiences contribute to their phenomenal success. He also explains how a 10,000-hour investment in developing a skill can make you an expert. Very interesting reading.

Bookshelf Favorite!

Bookshelf | What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami (2008) | A great book for running writers (Or writing runners)

haruki-murakami

Novelist Haruki Murakami writes about training for the New York City Marathon and reflects on the role running has played in his life as a writer. This book is inspiring for both runners and writers.

Bookshelf Favorite!

Bookshelf | Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Aspergers by John Elder Robison (2007)

Book Recommendation: Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Aspergers by John Elder Robison (2007)

John Elder Robison talks about growing up with Asperger’s Syndrome, a disorder on the Autism spectrum. While Robison discusses how having the disorder made him socially awkward and negatively affected his personal relationships, he also acknowledges how his condition influenced the creativity and focus that led to his career success.

Bookshelf Favorite!

Bookshelf | The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (2007) | A nerdy, overweight outsider’s search for love and happiness

Dominican-American Oscar Wao dreams of becoming the next J.R.R. Tolkien as much as he dreams of finding love.

Unfortunately, the world–including his family and friends–sees him as nothing more than a nerdy, overweight loser. As if Oscar didn’t have enough obstacles in his way to becoming one of New Jersey’s finest, there is also the devastating curse that has plagued his family for generations…

What I love most about this book is Junot Diaz’s writing style. It’s raw, entertaining, and exhilarating. In addition to the captivating tale of Oscar Wao and his various family members, Diaz injects plenty of interesting information about the history of the Dominican Republic under the rule of dictator Rafael Trujillo into the story. A fantastic read!

Bookshelf Favorite!