In case you missed it, there's an election going on here in the United States. It's all very civil and entertaining and not scary in the least!
How are you coping? I'm escaping with fiction, and The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close was my way of escaping our current political dumpster fire while still staying grounded in the reality of election season.
The first time I visited DC was in 2008. As I sat on the metro during morning rush hour, I felt like I was missing out on something. I needed to live in DC.
Instead, we settled down in equally FOMO-inducing Shreveport, Louisiana for four years.
Eight years later, I realize the "something" I was feeling in the DC metro may have been a fierce competitiveness that I am WAY too lazy for.
The Hopefuls is told from the perspective of Beth, who leaves New York for DC when her husband joins the Obama campaign, chases his own political ambitions, and gets caught up in the fierce competitiveness I sensed. Beth watches it all as a disgruntled outsider missing New York.
I enjoyed the peek into this world, and I plowed through it in two days. But y'all, I wanted to hit Beth's husband, Matthew, over the head with a frying pan. I sat at a coffeeshop reading this book, seething, while Y was at an emergency dentist appointment. When he walked up, smiling to show me his new gold filling, I glared at him. My anger at the husband in the book had spilled over to my own husband.
Is that the sign of a good story? Let's go with yes.
Big Girls Don't Cry: The Election that Changed Everything for American Women dissects the role women played in the 2008 election, how voters viewed them, and how the media portrayed them. Two elections later, the book can definitely be applied to the gender issues at play in today's campaign.
WHO DOESN'T NEED A DRINK RIGHT NOW? The Copper Hen in Minneapolis is serving up red, white, and blue bubbly—a classy drink for a classy election cycle. (While you're there, get a loaf of milk & honey bread. Trust.)
Red, white, and blue bubbly flight photo from The Copper Hen's instagram.