Collegiate bookworms complain, “I never have time to read for fun!” With busy schedules, it’s easier to scroll through social media rather than pick through a novel. Even though I have a chaotic workload, I manage to find time to read the “fun stuff” (aka, not that bizarre literary novel my professor assigned me) by carrying around novellas, short story collections, and essays. These books are travel size, easy to read on-the-go, and a great way to pass the time between work and class.
Famously called the “non-diet book,” French Women Don’t Get Fat reads like a collection of relatable essays with health tips and delicious recipes snuck in. Author and native of France, Mireille Guiliano gained weight during her year studying abroad in America. She decided to unlock the secret of how French women can enjoy their croissants and fine wines without breaking the scale. Each chapter is like a short anecdotal article, filled with humor, good food (I love her magical leek soup recipe), and body positivity.
A good friend of mine lent me this book, and the first time I read it I couldn’t put it down. In 2012, writer Marina Keegan was on her way to greatness. She graduated magna cum laude from Yale University with a play she wrote in production and a job waiting for her at The New Yorker. 5 days after graduation, she tragically died in a car accident. This posthumously published collection of essays and fiction are taken from Marina’s writings. Her stories will make you laugh out loud, sob until you can’t breathe, and inspire you. As Marina said, “We MUST not lose this sense of possibility because, in the end, it’s all we have.”
Reading a few of Stephen King’s chilling tales is a perfect way to celebrate the spooky season. And honestly, if you’re a horror junkie like me, you know that scary stories aren’t just for Halloween. This collection of some of Stephen King’s best horror proves he’s a master of both the short story and the bizarre. With each story only a handful of pages each, it’s an easy book to pick up and put down at any time (except maybe for bedtime. Read this book at night at your own risk).
You know Mara Wilson as the adorable and spunky star of the children’s classic, Matilda. Now all grown up, Mara has found herself in the spotlight once more due to her hilarious autobiography Where Am I Now? True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame. In her book, Mara discusses childhood fame and adult obscurity, being told she wasn’t “cute” enough for Hollywood, and the universal journey of finding where you belong. You can easily read a chapter or two during your lunch break; the problem will be if you can put it down and get back to work.
This one’s for all you Audrey Hepburn fans. Did you know one of Audrey’s best movies was first written as a novella? Novelist and screenwriter Truman Capote first introduced Holly Golightly to the world in prose, and then later adapted his story for the silver screen. With a page count of only 179 pages, you can easily read over breakfast whilst window shopping for jewelry (Danish pastry and coffee not included).