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3 non-tourist books with New York theme

I have a lot of books about New York. Since I create a lot of content about the city, I like to buy books with a lot of tips – the ones that show an unobvious version of the city are my favorites. Research material, you know. But recently I also ended up buying some that have nothing to do with this touristy vibe. These are books that have more to do with the city lifestyle, with short essays of real life. Perfect for those who love stories – and for those who love New York City, of course.

Ask a Native New Yorker – Jake Dobkin is a born and raised New Yorker and also the founder of Gothamist, a website focused on news, events, and culture in New York. “Ask a New Yorker Native” has become one of his most popular columns on the site. I would define this book as a basic New York survival guide, so you can get to know the “unwritten rules” of the city. Everyone who lives here should read it – and anyone who enjoys the city lifestyle will also love it. In 48 short and fun texts, the book offers practical information on transportation, finding apartments, and even cultivating relationships for anyone who is new to the Big Apple. Subjects include “Why is New York the biggest city in the world?”, “Where should I live?”, “Where do you find peace and quiet when you feel overwhelmed?” and so on. Dobkin is, in addition to being a resident, passionate about the city, and makes this very clear in his texts.

Modern Love – Modern Love is the name of one of the most acclaimed columns in the NY Times, which also became a podcast. It brings modern, special, and not-so-obvious love stories from ordinary people. And you know what is the coolest thing about it? Everyone has a story. The book brings a collection of the most popular, provocative and unforgettable stories from the last fifteen years. One story better than the other! Some of the stories are unconventional, while others hit close to home. Some reveal the way technology has changed dating forever; others explore the timeless struggles experienced by anyone who has ever searched for love. But all of the stories are, above everything else, honest. Together, they tell the larger story of how relationships begin, often fail, and—when we’re lucky—endure. You will probably gonna relate in some way and you will realize that it could be your story. These real stories are deep, emotional, inspiring. Remember that Modern Love became an Amazon Video TV series last year – and the episodes are based on column stories published in that book.

Goodbye to All That / Never Can Say Goodbye – both books have the same feeling and were organized by the same writer, so I put them here together. The first one brings 28 visceral and emotional stories about the eternal magic – and inevitable misery – of life in New York. The essays often begin as love stories do, with the passion of something newly discovered-the crush of subway crowds, the streets filled with manic energy, and the certainty that this is the only place on Earth where one can become exactly who she is meant to be. They also share the grief that comes when the metropolis loses its magic and the pressures of New York’s frenetic life wear thin on even the most fervent dwellers. As friends move away, rents soar, and love-still- remains just out of reach, each writer’s goodbye to New York is singular and universal, like New York itself.

The second book is a new collection of original texts about what keeps writers connected to New York City; it is a celebration of the city that never sleeps. is ultimately a love letter to the Big Apple and a must-have for every lover of New York—regardless of whether or not you call the city home.

What makes these books special is, for me, that thing I mentioned earlier: everyone has a story!

  • The links on the post are from affiliates – it costs nothing extra to buy for them and you help my work! 

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