Stories for: Books

BooksLake With No Name

Guys, I have been on a reading rampage lately, devouring books in one sitting- not even showering after the gym and giving up my otherwise Tuesday evening events to down a 300 page book in 3 hours. I used to do this when I was 12 and then the Internet happened and it hasn’t been until this summer that I’ve gotten back into appreciating good books.

At any rate, here’s one that I read last night that I enjoyed though I’d have to preface the review with a few personal details.  The book is called Lake with No Name, a memoir written by Chinese mystery novelist Diane Wei Liang chronicling her life in Beijing before and during the Tiananmen Square Massacre.  It was originally published back in 1993, but Simon & Schuster picked it up again in time for the 20th anniversary of the event which happened on June 4, 2009.  Now, despite the implications of all that, the book is not (nor do I think it was meant to be)  a political statement but rather a coming of age love story of a bright college student figuring out her relationships during the late 80s. READ MORE

Books, SkincareLittle Bee, Big Buzz

I received this book, Little Bee, as part of a Sephora mailing they sent to beauty editors to launch their new summer beach collection. While the major event that sets the story in motion does take place on a beach, reading about it didn’t particularly motivate me to slather on some of their Divine Oil and go for a frolic in the sand.

The name of the book, the cover and even the cutesy, cryptic description (It is a truly special story and we don’t want to spoil it. Once you have read it, you’ll want to tell everyone about it. When you do, please don’t tell them what happens either. The magic is in how it unfolds.) had me thinking this was going to be an easy, breezy book.  Boy, was I wrong and I figured that out somewhere in the middle of the first, mildly graphic death scene.

That said, I did read it in one sitting- which is something I haven’t done in a very long time.  It’s a good book, but when I finished around midnight last night, I had to distract my mind by hitting up a few fashion blogs before turning in for the evening. READ MORE

Books, Dining & Nightlife, New YorkEating Clean in NYC

Editor’s Note: This guest post today is brought to you by our friend Jennifer from YogaDeals. As you can tell by her blog name, Jennifer is the go-to person for yoga and fitness tips, the best deals, and cheapest happy hours (ok, you can’t really tell about that one, but we know from experience).  She’s also been a  lifelong health nut thanks to her mom serving her whole wheat bread back when no one even knew what that was. Today she shares a cheap find that helps you locate delicious and healthy food in Manhattan for locals and visitors alike.

In New York, each neighborhood is blessed with a variety of cuisines and price points on every block. But when it comes down to it, New Yorkers are not exactly known for their ‘home cooking.’ Instead they have been given the unique gift of enjoying the tasty fruits of some of the world’s most amazing culinary artists. Sadly, tastiness usual comes with a guilt-ridden calorie count, and now with obesity (and vanity) levels rising, even New Yorkers, the very ambulatory society, are still looking for healthier options that don’t require a cooking class.

[enter: Clean Plates NYC] READ MORE

Books, FashionMichelle Style

The Obamas may only have been in office for a few months, but the world is completely enamored with Michelle Obama – and in particular, her fashion sense.  In fact, Obama is the second first lady… ever, I believe, to get her own style book and today, fans will be able to pick up their own copy of Michelle Style, available from Harper Collins.

I was lucky to get my hands on a copy early and spent some time going through the book.  It’s an incredibly thorough review of Michelle’s sartorial choices to date, complete with style guide and quotes from industry insiders.  Fans of the First Lady certainly won’t want to miss out. Since Mrs. Obama has already established herself as a very important figure in the fashion industry, her choice to don a particular designer could, in fact, make his career.  Most famously, is her love for Jason Wu a designer she’s worn over and over again.  Wu, who didn’t even have an online presence at the time Mrs. Obama wore his white gown to the Inaugural ball, all of a sudden debuted a spectacular website only days after.  I also follow Michelle Obama’s style in the media as part of my job in keeping up with the fashion world.  At first, I didn’t get the hype.  I didn’t see Mrs. Obama’s outfits cutting it in the hallways of the glossy world of fashion magazines and I’d always followed socialite editors on Patrick McMullan as my own style inspiration. But what I grew to see was that her choices really spoke to the millions of working women across America who would never think of wearing platform Louboutins and mini skirts to the office. Whereas so much of fashion is purely aspirational, Mrs. Obama’s style is attainable which makes this book, perhaps, more relevant to readers than the last 5 years worth of Vogue combined.

Check it out for yourself on amazon.com.

BooksThe Sky Isn’t Visible From Here

Felicia Sullivan, as a person and as my friend, is awesome! So awesome, that she critiqued my grad school application essays for me the DAY after I met her. So awesome that her memoir got optioned into a movie.  Hellooo Sundance- we’re coming!  There’s a picture of her being my hot date at a fashion party last year.

In addition to being (obviously) a talented writer and deeply introspective and insightful person, Felicia is just plain fun, kind and cool.  We’re always gossiping and chatting about beauty, fashion, FOOD, and the lack of qualified men in New York City. And if I ever need some serious advice, she’s my go to gal.

If you believe in karma, this is a true sign of how fabulous the cosmos think Felicia is:  she won a free pair of Louboutins once.

Plus, she always replies to my emails within 5 seconds with hilarious stuff like:

“Baby, I’m on the elliptical, but there is a decent pic of me on my about me page.  Sent from my iPhone. ”  Someone who emails during the gym?  Definitely a kindred spirit. READ MORE

Beauty, BooksConfessions of a Beauty Addict

I love a good chick lit but I love it even more when it also includes insider secrets of the publishing industry, product recommendations, and is penned by a fellow blogger- in addition to the obligatory hot guys, lovable protagonist, and the bitchy underminer that eventually gets served. I devoured Nadine Haobsh’s newest book: Confessions of a Beauty Addict in one sitting last week while simultaneously getting jealous and giddy reading about all the going-ons of Bella Hunter, Beauty Editor. If you love yourself a little Devil Wears Prada style peek at what really goes on in the beauty world, you’ll have to get yourself a copy. READ MORE

BooksSomething Borrowed

If you were on Team Jennifer during the whole Brad/Angelina fiasco, Something Borrowed is a book that could potentially make you see Angelina’s point of view and even make you sympathetic to her cause.  Although this book wasn’t published recently, it is one of my favorite chick-lit books and I always recommend it to my girlfriends on long plane flights for its compelling narrative and addictive plotline.

I am not giving anything away by telling you that the book starts off immediately with the everygirl protagonist, Rachel, sleeping with her glamorous best friend, Darcy’s boyfriend, Dexter.  Despite whatever initial feelings of hate you might bear towards Rachel, author Emily Giffin, deftly explores the frenemy relationship between Darcy and Rachel, to make you empathize with and root for her heroine.  The writing is easy to read, and the poignancy of Rachel and Dex’s feelings keep you turning pages.

Pick this book up before your next long haul plane flight, and be enthralled as the hours fly by and you become absorbed.

Books, Celebrities, FashionInfluence

It’s no secret if you check out my obsessions that I am officially a fan of Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen (and not just because they are alumna, or rather un-graduated alumna of my alma mater).  I know people have mixed reactions regarding the bohemian chic look that they made popular, but I always give them credit for wearing interesting and original looks.  I grew up watching them on Full House like everyone else, and even ran into Ashley Olsen one time on the street back in my college days; I’m pretty amazed at how these teenage millionaires have created not only one, but two carefully created fashion lines (The Row and Elizabeth and James) and also a new, interesting coffee table book all about the creative process. READ MORE

Books, FashionUp Close and Personal with Karl Lagerfeld


Say what you want about Karl Lagerfeld, but there’s no disputing that he is a fashion institution and a fascinating individual, with a few…eccentricities, like any good “creative” person.  Although his eccentricities aren’t restricted to appearance, if you ever see Karl in pictures, there are always a few undeniable facts:

1. His hair will be in a low, swept back ponytail.
2. His outfit will predominantly consist of black, including black skinny jeans.
3. His hands will invariably contain a collection of heavy silver rings.

The fashion documentary, Lagerfeld Confidential, directed by Rodolphe Marconi, cements all of these facts and more, by granting the viewer a brief look into the fashion maestro’s world through personal interviews; behind the scenes access to the Chanel fashion show; and a view into his personal abode, so that you see Karl Lagerfeld in all of his facets: photographer, designer, and marketing genius.  READ MORE

Books, TravelSecret Travel Agents

It’s no secret that us TDO girls love traveling. We love doing it in style and sharing all our finds and secrets with you, our dear reader. Currently, we are all in between trips, but keeping ourselves informed and motivated for our next big one by reading the book Mr & Mrs Smith: Boutique Hotel Collection. Their global shortlist profiles 30 top properties around the world in a chic guide filled with decadent pictures and firsthand accounts of staying at the most luxurious hotels. I’m getting starry-eyed just thinking about traveling to these locations. Whether staying at one of these properties is a reality for you or a fantasy, this book has got you covered. In addition to hotel reviews, Mr and Mrs Smith includes concise city guides that tells all you need to know – how to get somewhere and what’s worth getting out of bed for (I, too, would have a hard time getting out of those amazing looking beds). Thanks to what I learned in the book, Mexico City and Istanbul are now high on my list of must-visit spots.

So who exactly are Mr and Mrs Smith? It’s a stylish panel of industry insiders who are frequent travelers living the good life. Contributors to this book include Dita Von Teese (burlesque artist), Bee Shaffer (fashion columnist and daughter of Anna Wintour), Anne Kornblut (political reporter with The Washington Post), and Serena Rees (lingerie designer for Agent Provocateur). They visit all the venues anonymously and then dish on their findings. Whether you’re planning your fantasy trip or just dreaming about your next vacation, Mr and Mrs Smith will let you know  what’s cool and definitely make you antsy to get your travel on.

The Daily Obsession draws from the expertise of a coast-to-coast editorial team offering dedicated readers reports of the most luxurious products and trends. We provide sophisticated and relevant angles on the latest fashion trends, must-have beauty products, insider interviews, travel destinations and of course, our current obsessions.

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