AFA Reading List – August Edition

August is my final month of summer so I intend to get a lot of reading done. I’ve made it an August goal of mine to read at least 6 books, which is completely doable. Buying a Kindle has made it so much easier to read because I always have it on me and have over 75 books on it at the moment; I’ve finished 2 books this week! Last month I didn’t focus on novels so for the August reading list I’m doing half fiction, half non-fiction.

August Reading List – Fiction


Valley of the Dolls – Jacqueline Susann

I’ve always known about this book, largely in part due to the late Sharon Tate having a role in the film, yet never thought to read it. It wasn’t until a friend placed it on her book list that I decided to give it a go. The novel is set in New York City during the 1940’s – 1960’s. It focuses on the highs and lows of fame, love and friendship. It is filled with drug dependance, alcohol abuse, cheating spouses and abortion. I had a difficult time putting the book down. And even though it was written so long ago, it touches on topics that are completely relevant for today.




The Girls – Emma Cline

As I mentioned above, I was first introduced to Valley of the Dolls via the Sharon Tate connection. Sharon Tate was of course the actress who was brutally murdered in the Manson family murders. Well this novel is actually a fictionalized version of those same murders. Set in two different time periods,the book follows character Evie as a young girl being lured in by the romantic ideals of a local cult and focuses on her life years later as an adult living with the choices she made as a child. Anyone familiar with the Manson family cult will immediately find similarities between the fictional cult leader Russell and the real life cult leader Charles Manson.




White Oleander – Janet Fitch 

This novel is a coming of age story of a young girl, Astrid, navigating life after being removed from her mothers care and placed into a series of different foster homes. She is removed from her mothers care after her mother is charged with the murder of her former boyfriend and sent to prison. Astrid struggles with maintaining her loyalty to her mother while still opening herself up to new relationships with the different adults that she is placed with. Her series of foster parent range from a former alcoholic and drug addict stripper to a woman who refuses to feed the girls in her home any meals but supper. The book touches on themes such as abandonment, suicide, drug abuse and sexual abuse.

August Reading List – Non-Fiction



Style Your Mind –  Cara Alwill Leyba

Last month I suggested Girl Code, same author, and this month I’m moving on to her workbook Style Your Mind. This book focuses on self development and looking into yourself. It is meant to help you find what you want for your life and your future. It’s not a secret that I love Cara’s message and this workbook just made me love it even more! You really look into yourself and think about what you want for your life.



A New Model – Ashley Graham

I think Ashley graham is literally flawless. Everything that she does has me yelling “yaaas girl” and cheering her on because she is so genuinely honest. She embraces herself and loves who she is and teaches other women that it’s ok to do the same. When I saw she released a memoir I immediately added it to my never-ending list of books to read. This month, I’m making sure I do it. She talks about the hate that she has received for being plus size and the different struggles she’s overcome during her career and personal life. Graham is the first woman to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated at a size 14. She is goals.





The Good Girls Revolt – Lynn Povich

The true story of how the women of Newsweek challenged the status quo and sued their bosses, completely changing the workplace. The women of Newsweek rallied together to break the “Mad Men” workplace and fight for their rights to equality. On March 16th, 1970 Newsweek published a cover story on the growing feminist movement. That same day, 46 Newsweek employees filed charges against the magazine for discrimination in the hiring and promotion process. It was the first all female journalist class action lawsuit to be filed. It wasn’t long before other women in the industry followed suit.


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