Rachel Recommends: Autumn 2019 Edition

Posted on September 26, 2019

by Rachel S

It’s Sweat Suit Season!

I won’t pretend I don’t love autumn for all the stereotypical reasons. I like blankets, cocoa and pumpkins just as much as any other Instagrammer. But what I find most appealing about the turn of the year is more about mood, smells and anticipation than a pumpkin spice latte or shearling boot.

There’s a magic in the air unlike summer joy or manic spirit of the holiday season. It is a season that offers heavy moons, bonfire smoke and crisp mornings. It is a season set to the music of leaves crunching under chunky boots, conjuring fond memories of hurrying home after class to watch “Melrose Place” while wearing a flannel and scrunchie. Too specifically ’90s? Not to worry! Fall is timeless, and the seasons are ever-changing.

Fall offers a time for camaraderie and merrymaking without the holiday pressure. It’s a time for road trips, for denim and blazers, scarves and dark nails. It’s also a time for changing out your handbags and putting away your caftans and open-toed shoes. The following are media you might enjoy while contemplating the falling leaves and your fashion choices:

Cover of In West Mills Cover of In West Mills

In West Millsin Catalog In West Millsin Catalog

By De'shawn Charles Winslow

A saga of a close-knit community of friends and family spanning a lifetime and multiple generations, starring Azalea “Knot” Centre, who lives life exactly as she sees fit. Knot’s friends and family can’t help but love her.

Cover of Biloxi Cover of Biloxi

Biloxiin Catalog Biloxiin Catalog

By Mary Miller

A grumpy old man who makes questionable life decisions finds a dog and a reason for living. You may not fall in love, and he is certainly not perfect (I still worry about his health), but it’s difficult not to root for Louis McDonald, Jr.

Cover of The Man who Killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot Cover of The Man who Killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot

The Man who Killed Hitler and then the Bigfootin Catalog The Man who Killed Hitler and then the Bigfootin Catalog

A quiet movie about a lonely man who does extraordinary things. The odd title intrigued me enough to put it on my to-be-watched list, but a personal recommendation ultimately put it on my screen. This film mixes genres seamlessly and showcases loyalty and love (romantic, familial and patriotic respectively). The unapologetic suitcase McGuffin adds charm. Loved it.

Cover of Naturally Tan Cover of Naturally Tan

Naturally Tanin Catalog Naturally Tanin Catalog

By Tan France

I’ve been die-hard fan of Queer Eye since the original show (“Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”) aired on Bravo in the 2000s. And I’ll admit to being veerryy skeptical about this new cast. How could they possibly come close to replicating the hilarious and heartwarming mood of the original in all its zhuzhing glory? The original guys are my fantasy best friends (well, maybe not Jai), and I was almost offended by the notion that a bunch of millennial dudes could come in and take over. THEN, I met Tan, JVN, Antoni, Karamo and Bobby and realized that I have room in my heart, and at my imaginary dinner party, for everyone (again, maybe not Jai). Tan France’s memoir is the first of the books written by the new QE stars that I’ve read. I chose to listen to it on audio because I wanted to be lulled by his covetable accent as I went about my day. As a gay, British, Muslim of South Asian descent married to a Mormon cowboy and living in Utah, his is a unique perspective on the world. He also includes some fun details about how he was cast and how the show is run.

Cover of Fall Mixed Up Cover of Fall Mixed Up

Fall Mixed Upin Catalog Fall Mixed Upin Catalog

By Bob Raczka; Illustrations By Chad Cameron

Children of a certain age will fall hard (see what I did there?) for this book of ridiculous mix-ups. Kids are eating caramel pumpkins and getting turkey and stuffing door-to-door on Halloween, Baseball players are hitting touchdowns and people are cooling off by a bonfire. It’s outrageous, and the kids listening to the story will let you know just how.

Cover of The Weather Machine: A Journey inside the Forecast Cover of The Weather Machine: A Journey inside the Forecast

The Weather Machine: A Journey inside the Forecastin Catalog The Weather Machine: A Journey inside the Forecastin Catalog

By Andrew Blum

I took this book home for my husband to read because he is fascinated with weather, especially event weather. Watching coverage of a hurricane or debilitating snowstorm is akin to the Super Bowl/Oscar Night in our house. I knew he’d get into it, but like many books I bring home and force upon my family, I assumed he’d leave it on a pile for months and maybe read bits here and there before I finally had to take it back. This book apparently hit the entertainment and information sweet spot because he consumed it in a single weekend.

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