Lena Gilmour’s March 2017 TBR: Lauren Graham, Mindy Kaling and More

lena gilmour march 2017 tbr listPaperback Paris

In honor of Women’s History Month, I decided to make my March 2017 TBR a list of books written by inspiring females who have found success in both business and in life. Having been wrapped up with textbook readings for so long, I’m hoping to get through this list before the move is over. Plus, I could definitely use something with a plotline right about now.

I’m pretty proud of the list; it combines wit and wisdom and also gives guidances on how to live your best life, privately and professionally. So here are five books I plan to read this month in honor of the ladies:

#GIRLBOSSSophia Amoruso

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Portfolio / Mario Anzuoni

Synopsis: The founder of Nasty Gal offers a sassy and irreverent manifesto for ambitious young women

At seventeen, Sophia Amoruso decided to forgo continuing education to pursue a life of hitchhiking, dumpster diving, and petty thievery. Now, at 29, she is the Founder, CEO, and Creative Director of Nasty Gal, a $100+ million e-tailer that draws A-list publicity and rabid fans for its leading-edge fashion and provocative online persona. Her story is extraordinary—and only part of the appeal of #GIRLBOSS.

This aspirational book doesn’t patronize young women the way many business experts do. Amoruso shows readers how to channel their passion and hard work while keeping their insecurities from getting in the way. She offers straight talk about making your voice heard and doing meaningful work.

She’s proof that you can be a huge success without giving up your spirit of adventure or distinctive style. As she writes, “I have three pieces of advice I want you to remember: Don’t ever grow up. Don’t become a bore. Don’t let The Man get to you. OK? Cool. Then let’s do this.”

Thoughts: This book has been on my to-be-read list for awhile, and I know that I’m late to the party. I love reading books by women who are making it in the business world. It’s so inspiring to hear about women who came from nothing and are making it big. This book has been hailed as the go-to for reading about women who are being bosses in their personal and professional lives. I knew it had to have a place on my list.

Nice is Just a Place in France: How to Win at Basically EverythingThe Betches

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Gallery Books / Erin Baiano for The New York Times

Synopsis:  A book about “how to deal with your problems when you have no problems,” Nice is Just a Place in France is the first book written by the bloggers at BetchesLoveThis.com. It’s a witty and sarcastic work, challenging the typical self-help book. The Betches teach you how to be cutthroat and succeed in the areas of life you really want to succeed in. It’s written for the girl who probably isn’t a nice girl, who’s looking to get ahead as fast as she can. It’s basically a guide for how to be a badass.

Thoughts: This book definitely doesn’t seem like it’s for the fainthearted. I follow The Betches on social media and holding back is not in their nature. Always ready with a sarcastic quip, The Betches are hilarious and ruthless. They look at the world in a very blunt way and express that in their typical bitch-girl way. Though maybe not as inspiring as some of the other books on this list, the book does focus on getting what you want in the real world. I added Nice is Just a Place in France to get a laugh and maybe at the same time get a bit of sarcastic wisdom.

Why Not Me?Mindy Kaling

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Three Rivers Press / Mindy Kaling

Synopsis: In Why Not Me?Mindy Kaling shares her ongoing journey to find contentment and excitement in her adult life, whether it’s falling in love at work, seeking new friendships in lonely places, attempting to be the first person in history to lose weight without any behavior modification whatsoever, or most important, believing that you have a place in Hollywood when you’re constantly reminded that no one looks like you.

Mindy turns the anxieties, the glamor, and the celebrations of her second coming-of-age into a laugh-out-loud funny collection of essays that anyone who’s ever been at a turning point in their life or career can relate to. And those who’ve never been at a turning point can skip to the parts where she talks about meeting Bradley Cooper.

Thoughts: I read Kaling’s first book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? last year and absolutely fell in love with her writing. She uses embarrassing stories and things she’s learned over the years to make us laugh and make us think. I love Kaling’s raw sense of humor and will basically read anything penned by her. I added her to this month’s list because I really feel she represents women in the business taking life head-on and doing it with class and hilarity.

Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls (And Everything in Between)Lauren Graham

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Ballantine Books / Shuttershock

Synopsis: In this collection of personal essays, the beloved star of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood reveals stories about life, love, and working as a woman in Hollywood—along with behind-the-scenes dispatches from the set of the new Gilmore Girls, where she plays the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore once again.

In Talking as Fast as I Can, Lauren Graham hits pause for a moment and looks back on her life, sharing laugh-out-loud stories about growing up, starting out as an actress, and, years later, sitting in her trailer on the Parenthood set and asking herself, “Did you, um, make it?” She opens up about the challenges of being single in Hollywood (“Strangers were worried about me; that’s how long I was single!”), the time she was asked to audition her butt for a role, and her experience being a judge on Project Runway (“It’s like I had a fashion-induced blackout”).

Some more things you will learn about Lauren: She once tried to go vegan just to bond with Ellen DeGeneres, she’s aware that meeting guys at awards shows has its pitfalls (“If you’re meeting someone for the first time after three hours of hair, makeup, and styling, you’ve already set the bar too high”), and she’s a card-carrying REI shopper (“My bungee cords now earn points!”).

Thoughts: Like so many others, I am a huge Gilmore Girls fan and Lorelei is one of my absolute favorite characters. With the show now finished and the revival completed, I definitely need something to get me through my post-Gilmore Girls days. It sounds like the book is written in her classically hilarious style, telling about her journey in Hollywood.

Bad FeministRoxane Gay

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Harper Perennial/ Roxane Gay

Synopsis: In these funny and insightful essays, Roxane Gay takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman of color while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years and commenting on the state of feminism today. The portrait that emerges is not only one of an incredibly insightful woman continually growing to understand herself and our society but also one of our culture.

Bad Feminist is a sharp, funny, and spot-on look at the ways in which the culture we consume becomes who we are, and an inspiring call-to-arms of all the ways we still need to do better.

Thoughts: Once again, I’m last to the party. I know this book was incredibly popular in 2014 when it was released and it’s been on my list ever since. I’ve heard only great things about the book of essays that takes a deeper (and funnier) look at feminism. This book had to make it on my list this month—Gay’s book is about as go-and-get-it-girl as it gets.

Have you read any of the books on this list?!

Tell us which books you’re most looking forward to reading in the comments below!
Be sure to keep up with the Paperback Paris Team’s monthly TBRs!

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Lena Gilmour
the authorLena Gilmour
My name is Lena Gilmour. I'm a second-year university student passionate about reading and writing. I live in Canada and yes, it's as cold as they say it is.