Exclusive: See Lena Dunham’s Ideal Bookshelf

Photo: Jane Mount

To paraphrase an episode title from HBO's Girls, all reading women do. Have a stocked bookshelf, that is. Lena Dunham especially. Just in time for the show's second season premiere, Vulture has an exclusive look at her entry for the book My Ideal Bookshelf (Little, Brown), which came out in November. Edited by Thessaly La Force, the book asked authors, musicians, chefs, and other notables to discuss the books that mattered most to them. Then artist Jane Mount illustrated an imaginary bookshelf stocked with said books. Dunham explains her bookshelf, which did not appear in the November edition, thus: "I chose a mixture of the 'great' books that have formed me (Nabokov, Beat writing, notable American poetry) and the fringier ones (my dad's copy of How to Disappear scared me senseless, and the Clueless book series allowed me to go everywhere with Cher). I love children's books and graphic novels, especially ones with scrappy girls at the center. Also, I still miss my pet rabbit Chester — my facialist says that rabbit souls vibrate on my frequency."

Dunham's selections:
  • Fodor's Flashmaps
  • How to Disappear Completely and Never Be Found, by Doug Richmond
  • Birds of Britain, by John D. Green
  • The Portable Beat Reader
  • Love Poems, by Anne Sexton
  • Sayonara, Mrs. Kackleman, by Maira Kalman 
  • Ghost World, by Daniel Clowes 
  • Enter Whining, by Fran Drescher 
  • Rebecca, by Daphne DuMaurier 
  • Going to Pieces Without Falling Apart, by Mark Epstein
  • Stories Rabbits Tell, by Susan E. Davis and Margo Demello
  • Shopgirl. Steve Martin 
  • Long Time Relationship, by Julie Doucet 
  • A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett 
  • Letters of Edna St. Vincent Millay
  • Eloise in Paris, by Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight
  • Having It All, by Helen Gurley Brown 
  • Clueless: Cher Goes Enviro-Mental, by Randi Reslfeld 
  • Lolita, by Vladimir Nabokov
  • The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry, Vol. 1 & 2