Destress with Brain Candy Books and Other Easy Reads

destress with brain candyDid you know that you can destress with brain candy -- those super enjoyable, lightweight books? They can be great whether you're dealing with anxiety (like after interviews or in general), taking a break from social media, or otherwise having problems in general with overthinking or relaxing after a stressful day. Sure, they may fall into the categories of "chicklit" or "romcoms" or even (gasp) "romance" but hey -- these are trying times. Which are your favorite easy, lightweight reads when you're stressed out? Do you prefer to destress with brain candy books, TV shows, games, or more? We'd love to hear!

Some all-time favorites (all affiliate links):

Favorite Memoirs/Non-Fiction:

-BossyPants, Tina Fey
- Yes Please, Amy Poehler
-#GirlBoss,  Sophia Amoruso
- anything by Malcolm Gladwell
- for creatives: On Writing, The Tools, and The War of Art

Favorite ChickLit:

- The Undomestic Goddess, Sophie Kinsella
- Eligible, Curtis Sittenfeld
- The Royal We, Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan
- The Hating Game, Sally Thorne

Favorite Romance Books (all funny/lightweight, though!)

These are kind of meant to be binge-read, and can be great if you're seriously stressed. (These are perfect for Kindle reading! I have and love the Paperwhite.)  I've read and enjoyed pretty much everything by Julia Quinn, Sarah MacLean, Tessa Dare, or Kresley Cole...

Brain Candy Books and Other Fun Summer Reads

 brain candy books and other fun summer readsWith the holiday coming up tomorrow, I thought it might be a great time to discuss brain candy books — what have you read lately that you can’t wait to recommend to friends? What are you eager to read again? (Let’s try something new — please preface your comment with the category of the book you’re recommending, to make it a bit easier if you’re looking for a Thriller or Sci-Fi or Romance book it’s easy to find new suggestions!)

For my own $.02, I just finished The Power, by Naomi Alderman (affiliate link), recommended by Auntie M — she made me promise to read it and even though dystopian novels aren’t really my thing right now I was surprised how quickly I loved the book and the author.  Here’s the squib from Amazon:

In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there’s a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power–they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world drastically resets.

Other brain candy books I’ve read lately that I’d recommend:

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Holiday Weekend Open Thread

Something on your mind? Chat about it here.

Readers recently recommended The Hating Game by Sally Thorne, and I read it and really loved it! It was very funny — as the publisher describes it, it’s “a hilarious and sexy workplace comedy all about that thin, fine line between hate and love.” (If you like books by Sophie Kinsella, I think you’d like this.) I’m excited about this new author, too — it’s her debut novel. I will note there were a few face-palm moments of “Why is the heroine being so dense?!” but that’s par for the course in a rom-com sort of book. So if you’re looking for something to read over the holiday weekend, or if you’ve got spring break coming up, do take a look The Hating Game, which is $9.44 at Amazon. The Hating Game: A Novel

Psst: Happy holidays to everyone celebrating this weekend! One of the “holidays” we’re missing, of course, is April Fool’s Day — see our previous content here. That Hunt on shrugs will just have to wait for next year.

Psst: The Marimekko collection with Uniqlo just dropped — pieces are already selling out.

This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!

Gift Idea and Open Thread: The Best Books for Gifts

The Stone Sky caught my eye after the NYT reviewed the series of which it’s a part (the Broken Earth trilogy) as the “fantasy trilogy that changed the game,” not in the least because the female author, N.K. Jemisin, became the first black writer to win the Hugo Award for best novel. I’m excited to read this book myself, and as my husband is very into fantasy novels, I’m going to give this to him this year. I’d love to hear from the readers, too: What books are you gifting to people this year?

This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!

Books, Binge TV, Movies, and More

Ladies, it’s been far too long since we’ve had a check-in to see what you’re reading, what TV you’re bingeing on, what movies you’ve loved, and more (games?). What would you recommend? For my $.02, my television habits are probably more erudite than most of my other habits at this point. Right now, my husband and I love to watch great TV — anything mediocre seems like a letdown. (No judgment here, though — I’ve enjoyed plenty of not-as-great TV, too.) I’m talking about shows like Fargo, Big Little Lies, Game of Thrones … the usual heavy-hitters for awards. I’d recommend binge-watching Fortitude (Amazon), and I finally watched House of Cards (Netflix; not sure I’d recommend the last season).

When it comes to reading, I’ve been enjoying a ton of brain candy, romance-type books lately — a friend joked that it was similar to the “grief reading” she did when her father passed, and I suppose that’s true (no one died in our family; we’re just going through some slightly stressful family issues and general “2017 stinks” issues.) I can’t wait to read Big Little Lies, though, and Crazy Rich Asians is also on my list. (Trust me, this counts as “literature” compared to the other stuff I’ve been reading.)

Kate offered to share her current faves, too:

Reading: I have to admit that my reading habits of late have mostly brought me to online outlets rather than anything on paper, as well as shorter things vs. books: for example, articles in The Washington Post (especially because I have a free digital subscription for six months through Amazon Prime) and stories linked from Longform that have ranged from “Losing It in the Anti-Dieting Age” from The New York Times to “The Story of the DuckTales Theme, History’s Catchiest Single Minute of Music” from Vanity Fair.

Watching: I don’t watch a lot of TV on the actual television, mostly because we don’t have cable — so everything I’ll mention here is streaming on Netflix. As a Marvel fan, I’m currently enjoying Daredevil, and I’ll start The Defenders once I finish (skipping Iron Fist, which was universally panned). I’d also recommend Jessica Jones (as a loyal David Tennant fangirl), which is now filming its second season, and Luke Cage (which features some great music, including Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings). I’ve also recently binge-watched Jane the Virgin (perfect escapist TV!) and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (yes, Marvel again). I’ve become reacquainted with Portlandia, which is a lot of fun, and I finally watched Black Mirror, which is equally entertaining and disturbing. I’m looking forward to the next season of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend — Rebecca Bloom is a musical and comedic genius!

So, ladies: What did you find and devour on your summer vacation that you would heartily recommend? And looking ahead: What are you eagerly awaiting? What fall TV are you looking forward to the most — are there any fall premieres you’ve made sure to add to your calendar? 

Image source: Pixabay

Summer Reading Fun

books to read this summer working womenIs anyone else excited that summer is almost here? On the off chance anyone has some down time this summer, let’s discuss: which are the best books to read for fun? Which are the thrillers you couldn’t put down — the rom-coms that warmed your heart — the memoirs that made you laugh, cry, think? Which authors do you eagerly follow and read pretty much anything they write, and which best sellers were worth the hype? 

I’m happy to report that I’m reading books again — a few months ago I got a Kindle Paperwhite after hearing readers raving about them, and so I’ve been getting a ton of books out of the library as well as buying old favorites to “keep” on my Kindle. I’m also a fan (particularly for nonfiction or memoirs) of getting audio books out of the library.  Some of my recent reads (and likes):

Fiction I’ve Enjoyed Recently:

  • Girl on the Train, by Paula Hawkins — Yes, I just got around to this. I didn’t like it as much as I liked Gone Girl, which still sticks with me.  I’ve been trying to clear out my Pocket reading list, and found all these old articles I’d saved about Gone Girl, including an old New Yorker article comparing it to We Need to Talk About Kevin — that book looks like a much heavier subject matter (especially as a mom to two boys) but I may try to get into it.
  • Where’d You Go Bernadette?, by Maria Semple. A few friends and I were going to start a book club and someone chose this one as the first book — we actually never got around to discussing the book, but I read it and enjoyed it a lot.
  • Twenties Girl: A Novel, by Sophie Kinsella.  Kinsella is one of those authors that I’ll read pretty much anything she writes, and I hadn’t read this one yet, so I did.  It wasn’t my favorite book of hers, but it’s a solid, enjoyable book.  (My all time favorite of hers is The Undomestic Goddess — I highly recommend, especially to Corporette readers. I also was surprised by how much I enjoyed I’ve Got Your Number: A Novel.) (Word to the wise, with any Kinsella or other book written by someone who churns out content (Stephen King, Julia Quinn, whatever) — don’t binge read several books at once!)
  • The Royal We, by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan.  I mentioned this a few months ago, and it’s a solid, enjoyable book loosely based on Wils/K-Mid’s romance. Here’s a free Kindle preview (first 7 chapters).

Non-Fiction Books I’ve Enjoyed Recentlyish

  • #GirlBoss, by Sophia Amoruso – Yes, yes, I just got around to reading this one — I love that The Washington Post apparently called this “Lean In for Misfits.”  I got the audiobook out from the library and died laughing on a few walks — her story is really inspiring to me.

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Holiday Open Thread

brain candy booksSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

Happy holidays, ladies! As always, we’ll be on a reduced schedule for the next week or so, with some year-end roundup posts for you to use as new open threads, as well as some deal alerts (stay tuned — I’m excited for the sales this year!).  May everyone have a lovely and calm next few days!  It’s a bit of a stretch to think I’ll have time to read this holiday season, but on the OFF CHANCE I do, I thought I’d kick off this holiday open thread with a request for brain candy books.  The last one that I read (and thoroughly enjoyed!) was The Royal We, authored by the ladies behind the blog Go Fug Yourself — it uses the royal romance between Kate/Wills as a jumping off point, but then makes it up from there. It’s well done and a fun, quick read, very much in the vein of a Sophie Kinsella book or the like.  Ladies, what else are you reading this holiday season? Is anyone having a fun staycation, or are you traveling this season?