The Surznick Common Room

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Surznick Reads: May 2016



The end of May is here already! A busy schedule means a slow reading month for us. Things are about to get even crazier, so bear with us as we review less books than normal. We have fun stuff on the horizon that we think you'll love even more!

Sarah's Reads!

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
From Amazon.com: "More than twenty years ago, Claire and Lydia’s teenaged sister Julia vanished without a trace. The two women have not spoken since, and now their lives could not be more different. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother, dates an ex-con and struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the horror and heartbreak of their shared loss - a devastating wound that's cruelly ripped open when Claire's husband is killed. The disappearance of a teenage girl and the murder of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: what could connect them? Forming a wary truce, the surviving sisters look to the past to find the truth, unearthing the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago... and uncovering the possibility of redemption, and revenge, where they least expect it."

Nick reviewed this book in April, but now it's my turn! We both read this for the book club we've been hosting once a month at our house. If you'll recall, Nick absolutely loved this book and he was so excited for me to read it after him. I really loved this book as well. It was recommended as a book to read if you're a fan of Gone Girl or The Girl on the Train, but I thought it was way better than both of those books. It was exciting, raw, emotional... I couldn't wait to see where the next chapter would take them. It has twists and turns that you won't expect. It's definitely the perfect easy, summer read if you're into violent, disturbing thrillers that leave you feeling a little uneasy. Either way, I highly recommend it.

My Rating: 5 Stars

xo, Sarah

Friday, May 27, 2016

Surz Style (II)


I can't believe we shared the first and only Surz Style post 8 months ago. As soon as we decided to start this new feature, the evenings became darker earlier and we just couldn't make it work with our schedules. But now summer is here and we're bringing it back!

Here's a look at what I wore to work this week. Unfortunately most of the pieces I'm wearing are from prior seasons so I can't link the exact items, but similar items are linked below. If you like this feature, be sure to let us know!

Monday - 6:45 PM


Chambray Shirt \ Old Navy (similar)
Blue Patterned Skirt \ TJ Maxx (similar)
Pink Flats \ Modcloth (similar)
Daniel Wellington-inspired Watch \ Poshmark (similar, actual DW)

Tuesday - 7:00 PM


Gray Casual Shirt \ Old Navy (similar)
Black Jeggings \ Charlotte Russe (exact)
Heart Flarts \ ASOS (exact sold out)
Sunglasses \ Forever 21 (similar)
Daniel Wellington-inspired Watch \ Poshmark (similar, actual DW)

Wednesday - 6:15 PM


Yellow Dress \ Ifchic (exact)
Black Jersey Blazer \ Old Navy (similar)
Skinny Black Belt \ Forever 21 (similar)
Cat Flats \ ASOS (exact sold out)
Daniel Wellington-inspired Watch \ Poshmark (similar, actual DW)

Thursday - 5:30 PM


Sleeveless White Top \ H&M (exact)
Khaki Jeans \ Old Navy (similar)
Huarache Sandals \ Charlotte Russe (exact)
Daniel Wellington-inspired Watch \ Poshmark (similar, actual DW)

xo, Sarah

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Our 10 Must See Concerts This Summer

The Avett Brothers
Every year around this time we start to make our "Summer To-Do List" (see 2015 and 2014.) Last year we failed miserably at doing just about anything on the list, so this year we're not making one! We do, however, have big plans for this summer and despite how busy our schedules will be, the one thing we always make time for is concerts.

We love going to concerts and it's not unusual for us to go to several shows a month, especially in the summer. We already have a few concerts lined up for the next couple of months, and a few more that we want to attend. Below are our 10 must sees in Pittsburgh for summer 2016! (In order from soonest to latest!)

Taking Back Sunday
1. Dashboard Confessional / Taking Back Sunday / Saosin / The Early November
6/7/16 - Peterson Events Center (Tickets)
I feel like this lineup needs no introduction. I love turning on Tell All Your Friends when we cook breakfast on Sunday mornings and I still haven't gotten over meeting Chris Carabba last summer. Seeing all these bands together would be so fun. Not to mention, I've seen Anthony Green perform in Circa Survive, The Sound of Animals Fighting, and solo, but never in Saosin. It would be once in a lifetime for me. -S

Houndmouth
 2. Houndmouth
6/9/16, Mr. Smalls Theater (Tickets)
Many years ago, my very first solo acoustic performance was at The Smiling Moose opening for a tiny little band called Houndmouth. I brought 11 friends to that show, and they were the only people in the entire crowd. Now, Houndmouth is selling out all over the place, playing late night talk shows, touring the world and all around killing it. I love seeing this band, and I probably always will. -N

3. Vinnie Caruana (The Movielife, I Am the Avalanche) / Brandon Reilly (Nightmare of You)
6/14/16, The Smiling Moose (Tickets)
I Am the Avalanche and Nightmare of You were two of my favorite bands in high school. I've seen each them once, but not in many, many years. This solo show would be so fantastic. -S

4. Modern BaseballJoyce Manor
6/22/16, Altar Bar (Tickets)
Modern Baseball is my current obsession. I thought it was just going to be a quick fling, but it doesn't seem to be going away. Their newest album, Holy Ghost, is absolutely incredible. If you can't check them out on tour this summer, you NEED to get your hands on some of their music. -N

Lucius
 5. Lucius
6/25/16, Schenley Plaza (Free!)
We saw Lucius in Cleveland a couple months ago (read post here) and we are so excited to see them again (for free!) at the WYEP Summer Music Festival. Their new album is seriously fantastic and their live performance is something to behold. -S

6. Dolly Parton
6/28/16, Consol Energy Center (Tickets)
Which one of these is not like the other...? Ah yes, Dolly Parton! I'll be honest, we won tickets to this concert, which is why we're going. But seeing Dolly Parton at least once in your life just seems like something you should do, right? -S

7. Weezer / Panic at the Disco
7/3/16, Stage AE (Sold Out)
Mostly interested in seeing Weezer because we never have before! This show is the 105.9 XFest so it's an outdoor, afternoon affair that would be so much fun! Too bad it's already sold out. -S

8. Brand New / Modest Mouse
7/5/16, Stage AE (Sold Out)
When Brand New goes on tour, you go no matter what (or at least that's our policy.) We still listen to Brand New regularly and are so damn excited for this show. -S

Merriment
 9. Merriment / The Hush Sound
8/7/16, Club AE (Tickets)
We saw Merriment on my birthday a couple years ago (read post here) and would love to see them again. I still maintain that Sway, their debut album, is one of the prettiest records I've ever heard. You can't go wrong with the DuPree family. -S

10. Nick Offerman & Megan Mullally
8/21/16, Benedum Center (Tickets)
If I needed to pick a more perfectly hilarious celebrity couple, I'd be hard pressed to find anyone above Offerman and Mullally. Spawned out of our mutual love for Parks and Rec and a healthy background of Will & Grace, these two are some of my favorite comedians. -N

Are you attending any summer concerts? Share with us below!

Sarah & Nick