True Story

Falling Into Essays

Fall is (sort of) here, and I find myself reading essay after essay. I’m not sure why this time of year drives me to pick up these perfect little gems of nonfiction. Perhaps it’s the back-to-school vibes or my love of annotation. Whatever it is, I have read some excellent essay collections recently. 

Of course, my Corgis, Dylan and Gwen, have been incredibly helpful in the library. As always, Dylan often plans larger TBRs than he can read, and Gwen, well, she’s just happy to be here.

But before we jump into this week’s books, let’s talk bookish swag!

Bookish Goods

A bookmark featuring the phases of the moon.

Moon Phase Bookmark by Candy’s Book Thongs

I love moon-themed everything. This bookmark features the phases of the moon on a small, wooden charm and a larger version of the moon on the other end of the bookmark. $10+

New Releases

A graphic of the cover of Year of the Tiger: An Activist’s Life by Alice Wong

Year of the Tiger: An Activist’s Life by Alice Wong

The editor of the disability anthology, Disability Visibility, is back with a memoir of her life. The book is structured like a scrapbook, including photos, transcripts, drawings, and so much more. It makes the reading experience feel incredibly interactive. Alice Wong has long fought for disability rights in the United States and has helped so many disabled people tell their stories. Now, she’s telling her own story.

A graphic of the cover of The Chaos Machine: The Inside Story of How Social Media Rewired Our Minds and Our World by Max Fisher

The Chaos Machine: The Inside Story of How Social Media Rewired Our Minds and Our World by Max Fisher

In this book, Max Fisher writes about social media in society today. Based on years of international investigative reporting, The Chaos Machine follows how large companies — like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube — have used algorithms to foster the most extreme opinions in exchange for engagement.

For a more comprehensive list of new releases, check out our New Books newsletter.

Riot Recommendations

A graphic of the cover of A Measure of Belonging

A Measure of Belonging: Twenty-One Writers of Color on the New American South edited by Cinelle Barnes

The American South contains a diverse world of lived experiences. In this anthology, writers — like Kiese Laymon, Joy Priest, and Natalia Sylvester — examine what it means to be a person of color in the South. Set in places like doctor’s offices and DMVs, these essays tackle the topic of their lived experiences with race very differently, and contain unique perspectives that deserve to be heard. Editor Cinelle Barnes does a great job of collecting a range of different essayists in the collection, creating a truly incredible anthology that highlights some of today’s most talented writers in the modern South.

A graphic of the cover of The Writing Life by Annie Dillard

The Writing Life by Annie Dillard

I had never read Annie Dillard before, so I thought this short book of essays would be a great place to start. Dillard possesses an ability to capture ideas in such beautiful ways. She’ll start talking about forming sentences and how long she feels that it takes, and I find myself completely engrossed with how she spent her afternoon. If you love books about writers and writing, then you will absolutely love this book.

A photo of Dylan, a red and white Pembroke Welsh Corgi, sitting near stacks and stacks of books.
Dylan and his stacks of books.

That’s it for this week! You can find me over on my substack Winchester Ave or over on Instagram @kdwinchester. As always, feel free to drop me a line at For even MORE bookish content, you can find my articles over on Book Riot.

Happy reading, Friends!

~ Kendra