I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite things to do in the fall is get cozy, snack on some cinnamon-pumpkin treats, and fall in love with a book. Reading has been a comfort in my life for years, and nothing can compare to the feeling of getting lost in a fictional world and coming out a different person. In honor of this autumn season, here are some book recommendations that will keep you company during your studies but might also enhance your public relations knowledge.
“Fangirl” by Rainbow Rowell tells the story of Cath, a fandom-obsessed college freshman about to start her first semester at a new school. She’s anxious about pretty much everything and has a hard time connecting with her classmates, an exact mirror of how I felt when I started college. This book has a special place in my heart because when I was a nervous freshman, I took comfort in Cath’s character and related to the struggles she faced in her new environment. I was (and still am) heavily involved in fandom culture, so her fangirling about her favorite book characters was very relatable. Even though there isn’t really a public relations element in this story, it’s still a good read for anyone who feels lost in their current environment and is struggling to fit in amongst their peers. “Fangirl” also comes in both text and manga form, so there’s a format for anyone to enjoy!
This comic series, written by Aminder Dhakuwal, showcases how PR campaigns can affect how people view themselves and the people around them. However, there’s a twist. This takes place in a society of cyclopes. Pressure from advertisements making them feel insecure encourages them to change their appearances, and cosmetic surgery is very popular; sound familiar? This graphic novel follows the stories of a few different cyclopes families and how they navigate the societal pressure to alter how they look. The public relations tie-in here is obvious and almost identical to what we see in real life. I highly recommend people read this novel. It’s funny but also has a good message about ethical advertising and how it affects others.
“Welcome To Night Vale”
“Welcome to Night Vale,” written by Joseph Fink and Jeffery Cranor, is a story taken from the ominous, creepy town of Night Vale. It follows some of its residents, Jackie Fierro and Diane Crayton, on a journey of mystery, acceptance, and general weirdness as The Man in the Tan Jacket throws the town through a loop. Oh, by the way, Diane’s son, Josh, is a shapeshifter. Where’s the public relations tie-in? Well, the omnipresent voice narrating within this town is none other than Cecil Palmer, the eccentric local radio host with his own tricks up his sleeve. He relays news from different parts of the town, and he’s considered the town’s official representative. This is a personal favorite of mine, and I highly recommend this book to those looking for something new and weird to read, especially in October. If books aren’t your speed, you can also explore Night Vale through their ongoing podcast series, where you’ll listen to Cecil’s rich, melodic voice report on the town’s daily activities.
Rachel Dickson, Account Associate