10 Books to Read If You Love “Mindhunter”

Even though we are supposedly living in the era of “Peak TV,” it is amazing that few shows really rise above the background noise and stand out. Netflix’s drama Mindhunter was one of these shows. I had looked forward to Mindhunter‘s premiere as far back as last year. I’m a huge David Fincher fan. Some of his films, like Zodiac and The Social Network are among my favorite movies ever. And I’ve also enjoyed House of Cards, which Fincher helped launch. From that first chilling first trailer, Mindhunter announced itself as a tense psychological thriller about the rise of criminal profiling in the FBI in the years after J. Edgar Hoover. The first season surpassed my expectations. Mindhunter also felt literary, and indeed many of the crimes were based off historical cases, in some cases the dialogue the original team collected from interviews was used in Fincher’s drama, too. Ten episodes was definitely not enough, and I was left yearning to learn more about this era and the themes the show explores. Thus the birth of this list of 10 books to read if you love Mindhunter. The titles featured here are divided into five nonfiction and five fiction books I recommend for fans of Mindhunter. Each of these...

Books for Fans of Lifetime’s UnREAL

Reality? Fiction. Fiction? Reality. Last June, Lifetime slapped the first four episodes of its new drama UnREAL up on their website free for the streaming. After my knee-jerk reaction–“Oh my god, it’s Liz from Roswell!”–I watched the first episode of the series and found myself totally intrigued. I’ve never watched the Bachelor but I do regularly binge on Top Chef, Chopped, Project Runway, and the full spread of Gordon Ramsay reality shows on Hulu. I like UnREAL‘s unsettling argument that many of the most entertaining moments on reality competitions are essentially coerced into existence through morally suspect backroom agreements, pacts, and bargains. It’s disturbing that a “real” story is entirely fabricated just to provoke a gasp-worthy moment, though I can’t say I’m surprised. It did make me wonder… Do TV audiences really believe that what they see on screen is real? Or do they not even care that it’s fiction? Because if not, why don’t you read a damn book and save reality-TV victims humiliation, shame, and public meltdowns immortalized in GIFs? C’mon people. Get your shit together.  Of course part of the appeal of UnREAL is Shiri Appleby’s character, Rachel. Rachel has recently returned to the production crew after having a very visible breakdown. Her own sense of what’s “real”...

Book Recommendations for “Downton Abbey” Withdrawal

It’s finally happening. Downton Abbey is airing its last season here in the U.S. In just a few short weeks, we will bid goodbye to a show that has united people around the globe in a shared love for melodramatic courtship, gossip and upstaging, stunning costumes, somber piano music, and, well, British accents. But it does not have to end there.  If you are already experiencing symptoms of Downton Abbey withdrawal then you’ve come to the right place. Book recommendations for Downton Abbey withdrawal is my specialty. Last year I went through a whirlwind phase of researching books for Downton Abbey fans. I distinctly remember one summer afternoon when I went to the library and picked up 5 or 6 books recommended for Downton Abbey fans that had come in as holds. I crammed them all into my tote bag, explaining to one of our librarians that I was doing research to prepare me for today. Faced with this melancholy reality, I oversteep my tea and find out it’s gone bitter, make awkward jokes about my Edith-like spinsterhood, and every so often hear an imaginary bell chiming in the distance. But, dear reader, I have prepared for this moment and bring...

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Welcome to Broke By Books, a blog by Sarah S. Davis, where the guiding mission is to spread a contagious love for reading through helpful, thought provoking, and enjoyable writing about books. Please join me in growing an inspired, engaged, and fearless reading life.

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