True Story

This Is Not a Drill — Prince Harry’s Memoir Has Landed!

As you may have gathered from my love of Corgis, I enjoy little bit of royalty in my life. (Fun Fact: Dylan’s and Gwen’s names are actually Dylan Excalibur, The Lord of Winchester, and Gwenllian Tailwind, The Lady of Winchester.) I love reading through histories, tracking who is related to whom, and learning fun facts about queen Elizabeth’s jewelry. I have read an embarrassing number of books on these topics and more, so of course, I’m going to be talking about Harry’s new memoir today. But first, bookish goods!

Bookish Goods

a photo of eight owl sculptures made out of paper

Owl Upcycled Book Art by Small Town Grace Shop

While I understand that some of you may be horrified by the idea that books were destroyed to make these owls (has this turned into a horror newsletter?!), they are so cute! Look at the little glasses! How about let’s just stick to the word upcycled and try not to think about it, okay? $31

New Releases

a graphic of the cover of Spare by Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex

Spare by Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex

THIS IS NOT A DRILL! Prince Harry’s memoir is hitting shelves and — oh my goodness — people have OPINIONS. Naturally, as soon as this audiobook (which he performs) hits my audiobook app, I am going to be all over it.

a graphic of the cover of Have You Eaten Yet? by Cheuk Kwan

Have You Eaten Yet? by Cheuk Kwan

Cheuk Kwan describes himself as a “card-carrying member of the Chinese diaspora,” and Have You Eaten Yet? is his love letter to the Chinese restaurant. All around the world, Chinese restaurants have provided a way for immigrants to make their way in new countries, created a place for communities to gather, and — of course — are places that serve incredible food.

For a more comprehensive list of new releases, check out our New Books newsletter.

Riot Recommendations

Let’s talk about women in science! This week, I’m recommending books by lady scientists out there doing incredible work AND writing about it.

a graphic of the cover of Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer

There’s a reason this book is much beloved. The way Kimmerer writes about the natural world just sweeps you off your feet. You are there in the water with her trying to save her pond from being reclaimed by the land, or you are right beside her as she leads dozens of students out into nature on a guided hike. Kimmerer, a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, also discusses her Native Nation’s culture around plants, and the traditional practices she was taught by her elders that help care for the land. She investigates these traditions, and discusses how these practices work from a scientist’s perspective. Each chapter includes a different aspect of nature that she examines. I found myself endlessly fascinated by her essays.

a graphic of the cover of Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

Like Kimmerer, Hope Jahren is a botanist, and in her memoir, she shares how she found herself in the world of plants, working to make a place for herself in a male-dominated field. She and her lab assistant have a beautiful friendship. They travel the world, collecting samples, and stay in each other’s lives for decades. This memoir won the National Books Critics Circle Award for nonfiction when it was released. And for good reason! The prose is incredible, and even though I know very little about botany, I could still follow along and understand what was going on.

That’s it for this week! You can find me over on my substack Winchester Ave, over on Instagram @kdwinchester, or on my podcast Read Appalachia. As always, feel free to drop me a line at For even MORE bookish content, you can find my articles over on Book Riot.

Happy reading, Friends!

~ Kendra