Erin Flaaen

Erin Flaaen

Erin Flaaen is a corporate marketing assistant at Simon and Schuster. Despite her innocent appearance, she loves dark stories, having been strongly influenced by Flannery O’Connor and William Faulkner as a teenager. Originally from Arizona, she moved to New York in 2014 and now spends her days being constantly confused by the weather, craving Mexican food, and reading books on trains.

Posts by Erin Flaaen

The Book I Can’t Wait For You to Read

As a young writer, I was often told that you needed to master all the rules of writing before you could go about breaking them, and this statement is illustrated no better than in the work of George Saunders. In his short story collection TENTH OF DECEMBER, Saunders demonstrates clearly that he can master and twist every rule to his will, but in his first novel, LINCOLN IN THE BARDO, he takes this a step further, breaking every single rule in the most beautiful and poignant way possible.

The Book That Launched a Beloved Author

THE BEAN TREES begins with a tire exploding and a woman leaving home in a battered car and changing her name. From this description, it may sound as if I’m speaking of a high-octane thriller, but THE BEAN TREES is a beautiful literary novel, Barbara Kingsolver’s first (before she was famous for THE POISONWOOD BIBLE). Missy-turned-Taylor Greer is neither running from a killer nor from the law. She’s a part Cherokee, twentysomething, down-home Kentucky girl who never could quite sit still.

Carrie Fisher & Debbie Reynolds: Writers We’ll Miss

In 2016, we lost many of film and music’s greatest, ending with the deaths of two of Hollywood’s most beloved stars, mother-and-daughter duo Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher. Not only were they show-stopping performers, but they were celebrated writers as well. I grew up watching “Singin’ in the Rain” with my mother, and always waited impatiently for “Halloweentown” to come on television each October.Recently I fell in love with the Star Wars franchise (better late than never, right?) and developed great respect for Carrie Fisher because of her work as a mental illness awareness, female rights, and addiction rehab advocate. As such, I thought it only right to commemorate the lives of these great women with a list of their significant contributions to literature.

14 Monumental Books to Read on the Anniversary of Pearl Harbor

From the soldiers on the front lines in North Africa, Normandy, and the Pacific to the civilians fighting with the Resistance in Nazi-occupied territory, we’ll always be grateful to those who gave their lives and those who fought in World War II.

Today, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, we’ve gathered some of the most intimate, heart-wrenching, and transfixing nonfiction accounts of the war.

13 Book Recommendations from the Gilmore Girls Themselves

In May 2007, my sister and I gathered around the TV for what we thought would be one last trip to Stars Hollow and one last visit with the Gilmores. Now, with the “Gilmore Girls” reboot coming to Netflix on November 25, I can’t contain my excitement. Lorelai, Rory, Luke, and all the rest were extraordinary bookworms, mentioning a whopping 339 books in their first 7 seasons! To celebrate their return, I’ve compiled a list of some of the best books on their reading lists.


In 1933, the North Carolina Eugenics Board was formed, which led to more than 40 years of forced sterilization in the name of combating poverty and welfare costs in the state. This period in history affected thousands of poor women by taking away their right to bodily autonomy. And yet, it has been almost erased from history.

In Diane Chamberlain’s compelling novel NECESSARY LIES, the work of the Eugenics Board is brought to light through the poignant, heart-wrenching tale of a teenage girl living on a tobacco farm in 1960 and the social worker put in charge of her fate.

12 Fascinating Historical Novels That Will Transport You to Another Time

Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. When done right, it can transport us to another time and teach us about eras that are often overlooked in history books. In the historical novels listed below, the authors bring us back in time to show fascinating events and time periods that, while significant in human history, are rarely seen in other stories. Here are some of my all-time favorites of the genre.

15 WWII Novels Beyond Europe’s Shores

With readers around the world embracing novels like ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE, THE NIGHTINGALE, and EVERYONE BRAVE IS FORGIVEN, it’s clear that I’m not the only one who loves stunning and beautiful World War II fiction. Several months ago, I read GONE TO SOLDIERS by Marge Piercy and fell in love with its unique kaleidoscopic perspectives on the war. I have since been on a hunt for more World War II fiction that portrays the war from viewpoints outside of Europe. I have discovered many novels that show the war as it played out in Asia, America, and the Pacific. Here are just a few I most look forward to reading.

An Exquisite Novel About a Forgotten Piece of History

I first learned about America’s orphan train riders when I was interning for a literary agency. One of their books was a children’s nonfiction story about a young boy who was sent west on an orphan train in 1926. Since then, I’ve wanted to learn more about this often forgotten piece of history. So, when I found Christina Baker Kline’s acclaimed novel ORPHAN TRAIN, I immediately picked it up and convinced myself I did, in fact, need a new book.

A Dishy and Witty Novel Perfect for Your Prada Bag

As a fourteen-year-old with plans of becoming a journalist or a publishing professional and a love for Anne Hathaway, it’s not surprising that I watched “The Devil Wears Prada” many, many times. Then, as is my habit, once I discovered it was based on a novel, I bought what is now an incredibly beat-up movie tie-in edition with Anne Hathaway and Meryl Streep’s faces on the back cover.

THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA by Lauren Weisberger is still the book I turn to when I need an amusing, lighthearted read with quirky, entertaining characters and a side of dish.

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