Enjoying DC · Reading

Claire’s Week in Books, 3rd to 10th April


the hopefulsI’m delighted to have been approved for a digital review copy of Jennifer Close’s The Hopefuls. In the words of the legendary book-world queen Rachel Ferschleiser, it’s all about “sexy political shenanigans”, and I am here for that. Literally. I’m in DC because I love politics and I love reading about it and writing about it (and, obviously, watching a well-known TV show about it). I’ve been bumping into Jennifer Close at Politics and Prose readings for almost as long as I’ve been in DC, too, so I’m excited that I get to read her book early. Waiting is hard.


the gilded yearsAnother DC-based author friend of mine, Karin Tanabe, has a new book out this summer, and I was lucky to get a digital review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. It’s called The Gilded Years and it’s historical fiction set in the Gilded Age – hence its perfect title – and inspired by the true story of Anita Hemmings, who was the first African American to attend Vassar, where she “passed” as white. It’s wonderful, and I’m not just saying that because Karin is my friend – the characters really come alive, not least through some excellent dialogue. I particularly loved Anita’s roommate, Lottie, who is rich and privileged and larger than life in the best ways. (Best for a character in a novel, that is. Real life is another matter.) Always so fun to re-immerse myself in college years, too, which are so formative and were so happy for me. Look out for this one, out 7th June, and come and hear Karin read from it at Busboys and Poets on V street.

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