Here for the Well-Read Women series is one of our favorite bookworms, Reese Lansangan!
Reese is a pop-folk singer-songwriter, musician, visual artist, author, and multi-awarded creative from Manila. Last October, she released Playing Pretend in the Interim, an EP that explores different personas and hyper-specific situations through songs. The EP was recorded entirely from home. Listen to her music on Youtube, Spotify, Apple Music, and everywhere else. Support her best at patreon.com/reeselansangan.
Why she thinks it's important to read women
"Despite our progress, it's important to read women at a time when we are STILL fighting for equality in many different ways. Being aware of the varied experiences of women from different walks of life informs how we react to, interact with, and move about the world. It opens our eyes to the injustices and struggles that are still present and are asking to be fought for. Reading helps us solidify our convictions and pushes us to use our voice & amplify our own advocacies."
Check out her recommended reads!
Here’s a book I finished in a salon while having my hair done. Needless to say, I was left weeping in my chair, with foil on my hair. This book was gifted to me on my 18th birthday, by an older cousin of mine who loved to read. Amy Tan creates beautiful and complicated family portraits of multi-generational Chinese women, in a language that’s gentle, colorful, and vivid. I lined up for Amy’s book signing when she went to Manila a few years ago. She signs each flyleaf with Joy + Luck. It’s perfect.
After this book, Jenny Slate has become one of my favorite women. I am mad in love with her writing voice because it’s completely weird and kooky and painful and uniquely her own. She describes the little delights and deep valleys of life in unthinkable metaphors that hit the gut hard. How I wish I could see the world the way she does.
I read this pandemic book in quarantine and what a special book it is. It perfectly puts to words all my anxieties and struggles as a professional creative whose suddenly confronted with what seems to be an infinite amount of time. I love how I’m reading a beautiful piece of work about our current time, which we still (in many ways) haven’t escaped yet.
My favorite thing to read are short story collections, and this one was my first Russel. She took my breath away. Her imagination is powerful and mythical yet all the emotions so real and visceral. I would love to live in a conch-shell shaped world tinged with Karen Russell magic.
I picked this up initially because the hardcover version was stunning. I came out carrying stories highlighting the struggles of the Filipino working class who often toil abroad seeking for a better life for their family. Each short story plays out like fast, intense teleseryes that you have a complete grasp of, despite all the layers of moral complexities.
Too often I get intimidated by poetry but Mary Oliver reads like a prayer. She writes with so much reverence for nature that it makes you stop and all of what this world holds that you’re ignoring. I cherish the way she celebrates life through her keen observations in stunning poetry.
Part of the Penguin Orange Collection, a limited-run series of twelve influential and beloved American classics in a bold series design offering a modern take on the iconic Penguin paperback.
Get The Joy Luck Club: A Novel, Penguin Orange Collection (Paperback) by Amy Tan and other contemporary fiction books at Fully Booked online and in Fully Booked bookstore branches.Learn More
In her stunning debut, Mia Alvar gives us a vivid, insightful picture of the Filipino diaspora: exiles, emigrants, and wanderers uprooting their families to begin new lives in the Middle East and America—and, sometimes, turning back. One man smuggles drugs from his pharmacy in New York to Manila for his ailing father, only to discover an alarming truth about his mother. A woman living in Bahrain faces a challenge that compels her to question her marriage. A college student in Manila struggling to write fiction knows that her brother, who has gone abroad to make money, is the one living the kind of life that stories are made of. The novella-length title story follows the unexpected fates of a journalist and a nurse during the 1970s labor strikes in Manila.
Get In the Country: Stories (Paperback) by Mia Alvar and other short stories books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the PhilippinesLearn More
Four mothers, four daughters, four families whose histories shift with the four winds depending on who's "saying" the stories. In 1949 four Chinese women, recent immigrants to San Francisco, begin meeting to eat dim sum, play mahjong, and talk. United in shared unspeakable loss and hope, they call themselves the Joy Luck Club. Rather than sink into tragedy, they choose to gather to raise their spirits and money. "To despair was to wish back for something already lost. Or to prolong what was already unbearable." Forty years later the stories and history continue.
Get The Joy Luck Club (Paperback) by Amy Tan and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
From A to Z, the Penguin Drop Caps series collects 26 unique hardcovers—featuring cover art by Jessica Hische
T is for Tan. In 1949 four Chinese women, recent immigrants to San Francisco, begin meeting to eat dim sum, play mahjong, and talk. United in shared unspeakable loss and hope, they call themselves the Joy Luck Club. With wit and sensitivity, Amy Tan examines the sometimes painful, often tender, and always deep connection between these four women and their American-born daughters. As each woman reveals her secrets, trying to unravel the truth about her life, the strings become more tangled, more entwined.
Get The Joy Luck Club, Penguin Drop Caps (Hardcover) by Amy Tan and other Classics books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Step into Jenny Slate's wild imagination in this "magical" (Mindy Kaling), "delicious" (Amy Sedaris), and "poignant" (John Mulaney) New York Times bestseller about love, heartbreak, and being alive -- "this book is something new and wonderful" (George Saunders).
You may "know" Jenny Slate from her Netflix special, Stage Fright, as the creator of Marcel the Shell, or as the star of "Obvious Child." But you don't really know Jenny Slate until you get bonked on the head by her absolutely singular writing style. To see the world through Jenny's eyes is to see it as though for the first time, shimmering with strangeness and possibility.
Get Little Weirds (Paperback) by Jenny Slate and other essay books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Here is the debut short story collection from the author of the Pulitzer Prize finalist Swamplandia! and the New York Times bestselling Vampires in the Lemon Grove.
In these ten glittering stories, the award-winning, bestselling author Orange World and Other Stories takes us to the ghostly and magical swamps of the Florida Everglades. Here wolf-like girls are reformed by nuns, a family makes their living wrestling alligators in a theme park, and little girls sail away on crab shells.
Get St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves (Paperback) by Karen Russell and other fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Deeply personal and powerfully moving, a short and timely series of reflective essays by one of the most clear-sighted and essential writers of our time
Suffused with a profound intimacy and tenderness in response to these extraordinary times, Intimations is a slim, suggestive volume with a wide scope, in which Zadie Smith clears a generous space for thought, open enough for each reader to reflect on what has happened--and what should come next.
Get Intimations: Six Essays (Paperback) by Zadie Smith and other non-fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More