It's no small secret that Emma Roberts loves to read. Anyone who follows the Scream Queens actress on Instagram will attest that her feed is brimming with artfully staged #bookstagrams of buzzy novels—not to mention one very ambitious summer reading list that includes Marcel Proust, Joan Didion, and Haruki Murakami, among other highbrow names. The latest page-turner to prompt an upload? Brooklyn writer Stephanie Danler's much-lauded debut, Sweetbitter ($15; amazon.com)
For the uninitiated, the story follows a 22-year-old named Tess, who arrives in New York City from the Midwest circa 2006 with little reason other than to start over. While doing so, she nabs a rental in Williamsburg and a job at a hip restaurant in downtown Manhattan (loosely based on Danler's previous waitressing gig at Danny Meyer's Union Square Café). There, she's exposed to... well, pretty much everything: the trials and tribulations of young love; the allure of fine wine.
What unfolds is a classic coming-of-age story of an eager millennial navigating the city in a pre-iPhone world, with prose that is both poetic and mouthwatering (literally, you'll want to dive headfirst into a plate of oysters). Roberts loved it so much, she even stopped by Danler's reading at Book Soup in West Hollywood, Calif. "If you don't already have a copy of #Sweetbitter you must get it," she wrote underneath the caption to her pic (above). "New favorite book. New favorite author @smdanler." We're sold.