Books & Brews: The Hating Game / Dogfish Head’s Beer for Breakfast

Two of my favorite things in the world are craft beer and books. On the last Thursday of every month I pair a book I love with a pint to sip while reading it.

514sa3hcecl

At some point a few months ago, my friend Julia gushed about how much she enjoyed Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game. Then at my local writers conference in September, Sarah MacLean told me she loved it. Then my friend Lindsay read it, and sent around a message saying we had to discuss it. Clearly, with all this prodding I moved it to the top of my to-be-read list. And while we’re talking lists– it’s worth nothing that the novel was in the top ten of Goodread’s Choice Awards for romance and named one of NPR’s best books of 2016. A good book to round out my 2016 Books & Brews series, I suppose!

The premise of the story is classic, bitter work rivals who can’t stand each other, until eventually they start to piece together that maybe they very much can. An enemies-to-lovers story, if you will. Main characters Lucy Hutton and Josh Templeman are executive assistants for co-CEOs of a large publishing house who have a daily routine of disdain for each other. Things get complicated when they are forced to compete for a promotion. And even more complicated when the facade of hate starts to crumble.

Here what I loved about the book: Continue reading

What’s On …

Just a few little notes about what’s on my playlist, my nightstand, and my stove these days.

On my playlist: I listened to an interview with Jesse Browner on The Good Life Project podcast last week. Browner, a novelist, was talking about his recently released memoir HOW DID I GET HERE? The book is his reflection on his decision to leave the Bohemian lifestyle of Alphabet City in the 1980’s (think, RENT) and take a government job. It’s about how he questioned for years whether he would have been more creative and productive as an author had he not taken the “day job” and how he has finally made peace with his decision. This is something I think about all the time and his wisdom and insight helped me see some of my own choices from a different perspective. Pretty sure this is one I’ll need to listen to again. And maybe again. Continue reading

Books & Brews: Love in a Carry-On Bag / Abita’s Pecan Harvest

LoveinaCarryonBag-Final600px

Two of my favorite things in the world are craft beer and books. On the last Thursday of every month I pair a novel I love with a pint to sip while reading it, under the theory that there is a perfect beer to compliment every book.

It seems like there were a number of gray, rainy days in Richmond, Virginia this month, which made it a perfect month for curling up inside, under a blanket, with a good book.  Which is exactly what I did. This month I read Sadeqa Johnson’s Love in a Carry-On Bag. The novel tells the story of Erica and Warren, who are about a year into their long-distance relationship. She lives in New York, and is climbing the ladder in the marketing department at a huge publishing company. He lives Washington D.C. and works a lucrative job as an IT contractor by day and plays jazz trumpet by night. The story chronicles the intense ups and downs of their long-distance relationship, while also weaving in their childhood experiences (neither of which were easy).

Heres what I loved about the book: Continue reading

Books & Brews: Jagged Hearts / Starr Hill Double Platinum

Two of my favorite things in the world are books and craft beer.  Out of this grew the idea that maybe pairings aren’t just for the table anymore; perhaps there is a perfect beer for every book . . .

This is an especially exciting installment of Books & Brews because it’s about not only beer and books, but also rock n’ roll.  I recently read the first installment in Lashell Collins’ Jagged Ivory series, Jagged Hearts. Continue reading