Reading, drinking, and reading *about* drinking
Holiday book recommendations from The Fingers Reading Room
Reading a book alone in a bar is one of life’s simple pleasures. Or at least, it’s supposed to be. Writing for MEL Magazine in 2017, writer, novelist, and fellow newsletter editor Miles Klee made a cozy case for the “art” of bringing your favorite tome to the corner dive:
There’s a meditative comfort in sharpening your mind with a devilish story even as you erode your brain with alcohol; the hobbies complement one another so that the pleasure of each seems more refined. (Distilled, you might say.) A softening of inhibition allows you to drift down deeper into the page. It is easier, in the dim bar light, to be hypnotized.
Sounds pretty wonderful! Your mileage may vary, of course. Mine does: I wasn’t big on the books-in-bars thing in the Before Times, and the past 18 months haven’t afforded many chances to (safely, comfortably) thumb pages with a pint in hand. Nevertheless, I’ve done plenty of reading, drinking, and reading about drinking over the course of the pandemic, and I plan to do more in the year to come. But what to read?
Last month I published a discussion thread asking you, the Fingers Fam, to answer that question. Your responses surfaced a bunch of booze/booze-adjacent/general food and drink titles that I’d never even heard of, all of which I’ve got added to my reading queue for 2022.
This is so, so cool, and exactly the sort of Fingers community I’m planning to invest in more in the year to come. Thank you to everyone who submitted their suggestions!
For those of you who missed the thread, or find it a bit confusing to navigate, I’ve built out the suggestions in a curated, shoppable section of The Fingers Reading Room, my affiliate page on Bookshop.org.1 Buying your books via that page is an easy way to support the boozeletter and independent bookstores at the same time, and I hope you consider it! (Of course, the library is also fantastic for this sort of thing, but some of these titles don’t make it into wide circulation.)
Below, I’ve spotlighted some of the Fingers Fam recommendations I’m particularly excited to dig into next year—plus a few recommendations of my own that I think you might dig, whether it’s in a bar or laid up on your couch. Read on, dear reader.