The Editor and Co-Founder of Goodreads gives her selects on best books to read,
gift and bring along on sun-soaked beach days.
Book that changed my life…
The Power of One. I used to carry this book around with me when I was a teenager like a talisman. I studied classical ballet seriously and something about the pugilist protagonist really spoke to me. And I loved Peekay’s mantra, “First with the head, then with the heart.”
Best book to give as a gift…
The Time In Between. This international bestseller has couture, spies and international glamour — a very fun read. I also think Anna Karenina is a book that every woman, and man, should read. I’m not the first person to think this, but I find Tolstoy’s ability to capture a woman’s point of view uncanny.
Favorite coffee table book…
A Feast of Wonders: Sergei Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes. I’m very interested in what happens when different art forms spark against each other to create unusual collaborations. I wish I could have seen the first performance of Parade in 1917, with music by Erik Satie, a one-act scenario by Jean Cocteau, costumes and sets designed by Pablo Picasso and choreography by Léonide Massine (who danced).
Best beach read…
It’s old and a bit dated, but Riders by Jilly Cooper is a really fun, and little tawdry. It’s about the international show-jumping circuit.
Book I’m reading now…
I just finished Shantaram. It’s a sprawling — sometimes frightening — fabulous book with a great big, warm heart. It makes you fall in love with India.
I love to read because…
As soon as I was able to read I was insatiable. I’m kind of a glutton for words, knowledge and escapism. There are so many places to travel in a book and so many things to learn. I’m also blown away by a skillful turn of phrase or elegant thought. It’s humbling and exciting to be able to climb into a great mind, which you can do by reading their book!
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