The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1990s

Hello & welcome to the decade of my birth. I know I’m bias, but I sure do love the 90s. From magazine ads and photos clipped and tacked on my wall to my Walkman skipping on the bus ride home to my Lisa Frank notebook filled with cursive and multiplication problems. So hella cool.

Also, while we don’t usually hit on music, two of my all time favorite bands originated in the 1990s. Dave Matthews Band started in 1991 and the Foo Fighters formed in 1994. If you don’t listen to them, you should 😉

Alright, let’s get back on track…

B O O K S

The Harry Potter series is set in the 90s. Maybe that’s why it’s so amazing and wildly successful 😉 Just kidding. Kind of. But obviously this series ends up on my recommendation list. The Battle of Hogwarts was in May 1998 so the six books preceding Deathly Hallows all occur in the six years prior.

M O V I E S

Once again, Harry Potter is at the top of my list.
(1991-1998) I am very passionate about the book > movie debate. And I don’t think that HP is an exception necessarily, but I will say that the movies possess a magic all their own, and the music and acting that accompany them are beautiful and amazing. So if you’re a staunch HP book lover and adamantly against the movies, give them a shot.

(1991) If you’ve ever questioned my love for Robin William’s acting then question it no more. Hook is one of two RW films on my list 🙂 If you didn’t just holler “RUUUUFIIIIOOOOO” in your head then you need to watch it again. I love how the old story of Peter Pan is brought to life.

(1995) I have one R movie on my list… I haven’t seen it in a long time and I probably won’t ever watch it start to finish again, but the movie Se7en is a series mind-twist. It’s violent and vulgar and 100% not my kind of thing, but I remember loving the story line when I first saw it. If crimes films (and 1990s Brad Pitt 😍) ARE your thing, you should watch this.

(1995) Has everyone seen the original Jumanji movie? Not the one with Kevin Hart and The Rock. I’m talking about the classic with Robert Williams and Bonnie Hunt and Kirsten Dunst. SO GOOD. I could do without the spider and mosquito scenes, but I just cover my eyes 🙂 For being a fun kids movie it makes me whole body shake with anxiety every time they roll the dice.

(1999) Soon after we first started dating my husband (boyfriend at the time, obviously) asked if I wanted to watch Notting Hill. I’d never seen it but shrugged and said sure. It’s such a cute movie and it’s super cute when your teenage boyfriend suggests it. I think he’s just always had a crush on Julia Roberts. Lol

(1999) I absolutely love the movie 10 Things I Hate About You. I think Julia Stiles is amazing and obviously Heath Ledger is crazy adorable. And Joseph Gordon-Levitt is cute, too! It’s a loose retelling of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew & the late 90s fashion is on point.

*dates indicate setting, not release

B O N U S

The West Wing kicked off in 1999. Honestly, I think everyone should watch this series. Besides the actors being incredible, the stories are so humbling and intriguing and timely.

On Deck…

  • Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
  • Joy (film)
  • The First Wives Club (film)
  • The To Do List (film)
  • Empire Records (film)

Go check out what Alexandra recommended from the 1990s!

Next month is our last month of recommendations! (HOW are we at the end already?!) We are diving head first into the first decade of the 2000s. The threat of global warming loomed larger, the War on Terror was born, and the world became obsessed with superhero films. Join us for a blast from the most recent decade.

Check out our past posts from this series: 19101920193019401950, 1960, 1970, 1980

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1980s

When I’m a parent I imagine myself driving down the road, playing Fallout Boy, Panic! at the Disco, and The Academy Is albums (from the mid-2000s) for my kids. When I was a kid, my mom did this with 80s music. I’m not an huge fan of the general style but I feel like the 80s and the 90s were a great time to be a kid.

Ok, on to the recommendations! (When you’re done, go check out Alexandra’s recs!)

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

B O O K S

The Joy Luck Club (Amy Tan) shows up on all those “must read” lists, but I hadn’t heard of it until a college roommate recommended it. I don’t know what it was, but once I sorted out which mother belonged to which daughter, I was so moved and swept up in their stories. I think this is a beautiful story about the struggles between old and new generations.

I read a book called Secret Daughter (Shilpi Somaya Gowda) for one of Erin’s challenges and ended up absolutely loving it. It was a very maternal book so I didn’t think I’d be able to relate, but it absolutely floored me. It also brought back such vivid memories of my trip to India.

M O V I E S

(1981) An incredibly under appreciated movie is Wet Hot American Summer. It was filmed in 2001 and stars Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Bradley Copper, Ken Marino, Molly Shannon, and so many more. It’s so dumb and goofy- it sucks you right in. If you really love it, they made some tv episodes, too.

(1982) While it’s admittedly a super raunchy movie, there’s something about Fast Times at Ridgemont High that makes me love it. It’s funny, but it’s also kind of disturbing in that the author of the book the film was based on actually went undercover as a student at a CA high school to develop these stories.

Three of my husband’s favorite movies are set in the 80s. He’d point you in the direction of The Wedding Singer (1985), Trading Places (1983), and Back to the Future (1985).

(The placement of apostrophes are important because of sentences like that one ^ )

I believe Alexandra is mentioning The Breakfast Club. I second that.

B O N U S

I know there are a millions 80s television shows, but I didn’t have a clue what to recommend. What do YOU recommend?

On Deck…

  • While I don’t have any TV to recommend, I am hoping to catch GLOW sometime soon. I also was to watch Freaks and Geeks!
  • Book-wise, Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt has been on my TBR list for a while.

And that about sums it up! Be sure to pop over to Alexandra’s blog and check out her recommendations, too!!

Obviously the 1990s is the greatest decade because we were born into this world 😉 Just kidding! Next month we’ll dive into the 90s and explore some of the best books, movies, tv shows, and more set in this decade! Dig out your scrunchies and overalls!

Did you miss our previous decades-themed posts? Find them here: 19101920193019401950, 1960, 1970

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1970s

Welcome back! I know I literally JUST said I wasn’t going to be around much but this collaboration with Alexandra (and the Show Us Your Books link-up next week) requires my attention 🙂

This week we’re exploring the 1970s.

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

My post is very light. I tend to avoid things set in the 60s and 70s because I just don’t relate to that era or the popular culture within it. I wish I’d had more time to read and watch more 70s entertainment but… well… life. So without further ado…

B O O K S

All I’ve got are movies today… Anyone have some 70s-set book recs?

M O V I E S 

(1970s) I know it’s super stupid and sexist, but Anchorman is a favorite in our family. I think it might just be the quotability. “You pooped in the refrigerator? And you ate the whole… wheel of cheese? How’d you do that? I’m not even mad, that’s amazing.”

(1971) Any time a high school teacher didn’t want to teach we watched Remember the Titans. Usually it was a social studies teacher- who was also a coach. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a GREAT movie. But it reminds me of lazy days in school. We are Marshall is another good football movie from the 70s (& I’ve been to that campus!).

(1973) Admittedly it’s not my favorite one, but X-Men: Days of Future Past is set smack dab in the middle of the 1970s. I love that it has lots of Jackman, Fassbender, McAvoy, and Lawrence, as well as a bunch of the lesser known mutants. That said, it’s essentially a gateway to the new wave of X-Men movies- bridging the time warp.

*dates indicate setting, not release

B O N U S

Nofin’.

On the Shelf…

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah is definitely on my tbr list.

As far as movies go, I think Now and Then (1970) sounds cute.

I warned you this was a short post 😉 Skip over to Alexandra’s blog to see her 1970s recommendations!

Can you believe we’re already moonwalking our way into the 1980s next month?! Join us as we say goodbye to The Cold War, John Lennon, and Bob Marley, and say hello to leg warmers, heavy metal bands, and the Brat Pack!

Did you miss our previous decades-themed posts? Find them here: 19101920193019401950, 1960

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1960s

Welcome to the Sixties, friends. This is an era that gives me total anxiety. For being the birth of the whole “peace & love” movement, it’s an incredibly violent decade. War and anti-war riots, violent sexual diseases and rampant drug use, Helter Skelter, the JFK assassination, etc. That’s A LOT to take in a 10 year span. Plus the violence associated with (and mostly against) the Civil Rights Movement, second-wave feminism, and the Gay Rights Movement.

There is NO part of me that wishes I was alive and active in the 60s. Flower child, I am not.

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

While I adamantly dislike the 60s, I admit there are some amazing books and movies set in this decade. (Check out Alexandra‘s recs, too… And wish her a happy birthday!!)

B O O K S

Lots of YA and middle school literature here. But also some of the best books ever.

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (E.L. Konigsburg) was first read to me in 3rd grade and I think I’ve read it half a dozen times since then. It’s cute and it’s set in a museum and it’s the perfect introverted kid’s (adult’s?) fantasy of running away and living in a museum 🙂

One of my favorite books ever is The Phantom Tollbooth (Norton Juster). It’s witty and adorable and chocked full of puns. I love it. It’s a good lesson about how life is only as dull as you perceive it.

I’d be remiss to go through the 60s without mentioning The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton). It blows my mind that this story was written by a 16 year old high school girl. I mean, pretty much all of US had to read it in hs, right?? So incredible. Stay gold, guys. Stay gold…

M O V I E S

One night, probably during a thunderstorm, I was laying on the couch with the dogs and happened upon The Night of the Iguana on TCM. It’s a strange, strange movie, full of vice and madness (originally a play by Tennessee Williams) but it stuck with me.

(1962) My family loves the movie Secondhand Lions. It’s a heartwarming classic and if you haven’t seen it, I URGE you to watch it. (Also, if you’re anything like me and you worry about the treatment of animals in film, here is the AH rating for the film. The lion, pig, and dogs were treat 100% humanely. Spoilers in that link, just FYI.)

(1962) I love the X-Men movie franchise and X-Men: First Class is my favorite film. It reveals a lot about some of the mutants’ pasts, it has most of my favorite characters, and it has all my favorite X-Men actors (although I wish we saw more of Jackman- there’s only a short scene).

(1964) One of K’s favorite movies EVER is That Thing You Do. Probably because the main character is a charismatic drummer and the whole thing is a little goofy. Plus it has Tom Hanks and Liv Tyler.

*dates indicate setting, not release

B O N U S

Last week Lindsay mentioned the You Must Remember When podcast on her blog. I am not a podcast listener- at all. But I got curious and tuned in to the one about Lauren Bacall. Dang. I am 100% hooked. Episodes 44-55 detail the Charles Manson insanity- which happened in the 60s. It’s nuts & perfect for history lovers. I might’ve consumed +8 hours of Manson Family-related history this past weekend…

I will definitely be mentioning this podcast in future RSFB posts, too. I listen to it on Spotify.

Back when it was on TV in 2015, I loved The Astronaut Wives’ Club (abc). The stories and acting and history drew me right in! It’s based on the true book by Lilly Koppel, which I plan to read soon!

I still can’t figure out why Pan Am was canceled… It has SO many big names and I loved the stories! Admittedly, I haven’t seen the last few episodes in the series but I plan to. This show starred Christina Ricci, Margot Robbie, and Michael Mosley to name a few.

On the shelf…

I’ve tried many time to read The Help but it’s always a DNF. I haven’t given up yet, though.

When these film trailers were released I wanted to see them, but then life got busy. I’m still hoping to watch The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Big Eyes, and definitely Hidden Figures someday!

The mini-series called The Kennedys caught my attention when it was first released and I remember watching the first episode, but then I got distracted. I’d like to go back and watch the whole thing soon!


Alright, that’s it from me today 🙂 You’ll find more 1960s books, movies, and TV shows over in Alexandra‘s corner of the internet!!

The 1970s saw political scandal, the rise of feminism, and environmentalism and anti-war protests. It was a weird time for the United States and the world. We’ll be sharing our favorite movies, books, and television shows that encapsulate the strange and groovy 70s.  

Did you miss our previous decades-themed posts? Find them here: 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940, 1950

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1950s

Hello! Fair warning- you will not find Grease on my list of recommendations. Welcome to the 1950s! While girls and boys were sipping on shakes in the malt shop the rest of the world was fighting in the Korean War, racing to space, and whispering behind closed doors about communism and capitalism.

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

I’ve mentioned this before, but music from the 1940s makes me happy. Some of those same artists trickled into the 50s (Sinatra, Crosby, Martin, …) but when the mid-century rock n’ roll starts I lose interest. (Which is funny, considering my father-in-law plays bass in a nationally recognized Elvis band.)

Alright, on to the recommendations…

B O O K S

I only have one book to recommend but it’s one of my favorites.

It’s the only TJR book I’ve read: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo (Taylor Jenkins Reid) is so entertaining and engrossing. It spans a few decades, but it starts in the 50s. This book has star power, small twists, romance & friendship, and lovable yet flawed characters. I really loved it.

M O V I E S

(1953) I didn’t see it until I was in my 20s, but Roman Holiday is cute and fun and it includes Audrey Hepburn & Gregory Peck. When Peck was hired his contract gave him solo star billing. Halfway through filming he suggested newcomer Audrey be billed equally. (That didn’t happen in the 50s in Hollywood.) I really love both of these actors and their work outside their films.

(1954) If you’re new around here you might not know that I LOVE Clue. It’s one of my all-time favorite films. It’s silly and eerie and mysterious and star-studded.

I don’t have an exact year for this film’s settings, but many of the flashbacks in Big Fish are set in the 50s. I watched this movie a long time ago, but I need a refresher. I read that it’s based on a book and that the book/the plot is based on the Odyssey and 12 Labors of Hercules.

(1959) Again, it’s been way too long since I’ve seen it, but obviously Dead Poets Society makes the list. It’s a sad movie (especially now after Williams’ passing) but the message is good.

(1959) Another film I waited until my 20s to see, Chocolat is seriously so sweet (pun intended) and beautiful. It’s about the way we have faith and lose faith in other people, though in the end there is always something to connect us- even if it’s simply a love of chocolate.

*dates indicate setting, not release

B O N U S

I’ve only watched a few episodes of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel but I loved them! I love the constant dynamic between upper class and lower class, male and female, Jewish and not Jewish. The show is very progressive for 1958 and that’s 100% the point.

On the shelf…

Books I want to read include…

Television shows I want to watch are…

Now be sure to hope over to Alexandra’s blog and check out her 1950s recommendations, too!

The 1960s was a time of revolution and political unrest. From the rise of the Vietnam war to the death of President John F. Kennedy to the birth or hippies, the 60s were quite the time to be alive! Join us next month for our entertainment recommendations from the era!

Did you miss our previous decades-themed posts? Find them here: 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1940s

Ahhh. My favorite era! I love the music and fashion of the 1940s. I know the 40s are often associated with World War II and the Holocaust- especially the first half. I tried to offer a mix but many of my suggestions circle around those themes.

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

This is a weird one… I really like this era but my recommendations don’t reflect that, lol.

B O O K S

How do I have NO books to recommend?! I’ve read stories from this decade, but I couldn’t think of any that were recommendable. Sorry, guys. *shrug*

M O V I E S

(1940) I don’t know why, but I just love The Philadelphia Story. I think Katharine Hepburn is such a stunning, inspirational human being and I remember loving her fire when I saw this movie for the first time. I also think it’s a cute romance. Plus, Cary Grant. Me-OW.

(1941) No beating around the bush, Pearl Harbor is definitely a war movie. But it’s another one that we just really love. Plus, the musical score from this movie is incredible. I love the music.

(1943) You don’t get to be a member of our family unless you’ve seen A League of Their Own half a dozen times. My husband loooves this movie and we always watch it when it’s on. I have a HUGE crush on Geena Davis and I love the different roles and personalities from all the women in this film. If you haven’t seen it YOU SHOULD!

B O N U S

I haven’t seen many episodes, but I agree with the vast population that loves The Crown. For some reason the royal family sucks me right in. (Yes, I will be waking up at the crack of dawn for Harry & Meghan’s wedding.) I can’t wait to watch more episodes of this show!

On the Shelf…

There are so many things I want to read & see set in this era!

The Alice Network (Kate Quinn)
The Book Thief (Markus Zusak)- My aunt just recommended this one to me on Sunday!
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows)
Code Name Verity (Elizabeth Wein)- I’ve seen this book rated highly on reviews everywhere!
We Were the Lucky Ones (Georgia Hunter)- I’ve only heard amazing things about this book.

Foyle’s War– a British mystery television series set during WWII
Fleming– a mini series about the man behind Bond: Ian Fleming
Bomb Girls– I watched an episode or 2 and loved this. I need to finish it!
Island at War– another wartime mini-series

I know, I know. I need to get busy!

Be sure to hope over to Alexandra’s blog and check out her recommendations!

Throw on your poodle skirt and leather jacket, and meet us at the sock hop next month to dive headfirst into the 1950s! We’re rockin’ and rollin’ our way into the next decade and we hope you’ll join us!

Check out our recommendations from the 1910s, 20s, & 30s, too!

The Roaring Swinging Fabulous Groovy Blog Collaboration | The 1930s

We’re back! (And if you couldn’t find Alexandra’s 1920s post from last month you can find it here! She had a scheduling glitch.) This month we’re checking out the 1930s- not a great time for the US of A… Between the stock market crash at the end of the 20s leading to the Great Depression and the dust bowl wreaking havoc on land and crops in the west, the US was struggling. Meanwhile, across the big pond, Germany saw the growth of the Nazi party, China was traumatized by multiple floods, and Spain found itself in a civil war.

Yeah… not a great time for planet Earth.

On the first Tuesday of the month, February through November, we’re highlighting books & films from/about specific eras that we recommend! (Television shows, too, sometimes!) There’s no commitment or link-up during those months on your end, but in December we’ll host a recap/link-up for the entire year!

Despite the incredibly depressing events of the 1930s, some of my favorites stories come from this era.

B O O K S

(1932) A few years ago I fell in love with Amory Ames. The first book in the series, Murder at the Brightwell (Ashley Weaver), is a mix of British elite, classic mystery, and a tiny bit of romance. Since that seaside scandal, Weaver has penned three more stories with a fifth due out Sept. 4th. I love getting lost in Amory’s (and her playboy husband Milo’s) adventures.

(1933) I’d wager that 75% of us (at least) had to read To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee) in high school. I did, but it’s been a while. I remember this book being the perfect marriage of childhood innocence and adult conflict. I won’t lie- I decided not to read Go Set A Watchman when it was released because of the controversy surrounding Lee’s consent. To Kill a Mockingbird is the only Scout, Jem, and Atticus I know.

(Late 1930s) I expressed interest in Agatha Christie to a classical book-loving colleague a while back and she recommended I start with And Then There Were None. It was the perfect 1930s Clue-like mystery! Christie’s writing is timeless- the language was easy to digest and the plot flowed along seamlessly. Keep in mind, the original title and titular poem that this book was based around isn’t P/C by today’s standard, but the major contention points have been altered and the story sucks you right in. I love that the story was serialized in newspaper format when it was first released.

The 1930s are a fun setting for mysteries 😉

M O V I E S

It’s been SO LONG since I’ve seen Fried Green Tomatoes. It is one of my mom’s favorite movies and the song “Goodbye Earl” by the Dixie Chicks always reminds me of it. I need to rewatch this one soon.

(1935) Is The Green Mile a popular movie? I referenced it once to a friend and she told me she’d never seen it. It’s a sad one but it’s so good. But I hate the one part and I HATE Sam Rockwell’s character. But I love John Coffey. This film conflicts me.

(1937) I feel foolish for putting this on here, but Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? is one of my dad’s all time favorite movies. It’s so silly but it has George Clooney so…. I suffer through it when he puts it on for the millionth time.

*dates indicate setting, not release

B O N U S !

I don’t have any 1930s tv shows or musicals to recommend. Do you?

On the shelf…

In 2015 BBC released the 3 episode mini-series And Then There Were None (based on the book I just mentioned)! I definitely want to check this out- especially because the cast includes Aidan Turner and Sam Neill.

I started the movie The Sting just last night but I didn’t finish it in time for this post. I’ll have it done for our final December recap. You should watch it, too, because Paul Newman and Robert Redford are very easy on the eyes.

I was reading an article about all the period dramas on Netflix (which of course I’ll share with you) and I saw the British drama Dancing on the Edge. I think it looks interesting!

We try not to repeat our recommendations so be sure to check out Alexandra’s blog now!

Big bands and WWII await us in May when we cross into the 1940s. Possibly one of the most romantic eras, I love this decade for its big band music and sharp fashion. Plus we start to see women hold down the fort and demand some credit!

Did you miss our first two decades?
Check out my recs from the 1910s and the 1920s!