For those of you who are still on the grind and taking summer school, a novel might be the only vacation you’ll be getting. There’s nothing quite like immersing yourself fully into a great fiction or non-fiction novel. Here’s a list of recommended books and novels to propel you into an alternate reality this summer:
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J.K. Rowling
I know, this is definitely not new and clearly not the first installment of the seven-part series that defined our generation. But, seeing as how the final movie hit theaters mid-July, an upsurge in Harry Potter fandom has occurred around the world. Now, I am sure that most of you have read this or seen the movie but I highly recommend going back and re-reading this last one to put the book down to rest and say goodbye.
2. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Seems like Hollywood is starving for another thriller/sci fi series, and The Hunger Games is super filling with large servings of twisted plots and fabulously rich characters. According to Nicole Hart, a senior human development major, “Diving into a world that doesn’t follow any of the very popular teen fiction fantasy rules is really exciting, you never know what will happen in this series.”
3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
In this sassy throwback to the early ’60s, with the ever prevalent backdrop of rural Mississipi, The Help chronicles the lives of three women, two black maids who refuse to accept their circumstances and the woman whose brave voice liberates them all, despite of and because of her ethnicity. Debbie Lucas, a junior communication major, suggested that, “If you feel like feeling good at the end of a book, you absolutely have to read this.” Plus, like almost every other bestseller, it has been transformed into a summer flick.
4. Love the One You’re With by Emily Griffith
It may not be Jane Austen, but Griffith’s latest novel is yet another classic tale of love and friendship, delicately observing the intricacies of friendship in the 21st century. Yasi Sahely, a senior English major, explained that, “I was addicted to this. Once I started I had to know what happened to these characters-it felt like I really knew them.”
5. Dresden File Series by Jim Butcher
Feel like reading a mystery thriller with a touch of magic to it? The Dresden File Series brilliantly explores the world of Harry Dresden, a wizard who thinks like a detective. Combining gothic elements and a slightly alternate universe, the 13th installment has just been released, but these novels read so fast you can probably finish them all before school starts again!
6. A Song of Fire and Ice Series by George R.R. Martin
Time is literally of the essence in this literary renowned series. In a fictional world where seasons have no natural rhythm anymore, the politics to restore balance to this universe are as complicated and compelling as the adventure, romance and mystery. Game of Thrones was the first part of this seemingly never-ending series, which just released the latest installment: A Dance With Dragons. In fact, this series is so addicting, HBO has just premiered the first season this summer.
7. A Stolen Life, a Memoir by Jaycee Dugard
In 2009 the world watched in horror as Jaycee Dugard was finally released from the captors and abusers who kidnapped her as a young child. Now, she has put down in plain and simple prose what exactly she has been through, sharing her pain with the world in hopes to educate those who may have been through a painful experience. Despite the disturbingly graphic portions of the book, it will reiterate in the most profound way how lucky we are. Partial proceeds of the memoir go to her charity foundation, J A Y C.
8. The Naked Roommate by Harlan Cohen
Cohen’s exploration of everything college life hits home in every way. From sharing your privacy to class notes, The Naked Roommate is a guide to surviving college, with tons of crazy but truthful anecdotes from college students nationwide.
9. Bossypants, by Tina Fey
If you are in the mood to laugh, giggle, cry or pee your pants, please pick up Tina Fey’s self authored, Bossypants. Its hilarity all stems from the queen of “Saturday Night Live” herself, and never tries to pretend to be anything other than pure entertainment. Fey proves once again that her comedic genius lies in her wit, intelligence and pure nerve. Brenna Weingus, a senior English major said, “Tina Fey perfects the art of self-deprecation and manages to capture the general awkwardness of life with her signature wit and sharp sense of humor. It’s also the most hilarious thing I’ve ever read. Ever.”
10. An Anatomy of Addiction by Howard Markel
Despite being one of the most dangerous of illegal substances, Markel uncovers the vital role cocaine played in the careers of infamous scientists and philosophers, including Dr. Freud. Louie Franklin, a senior philosophy major said, “Even though it’s a hard read, it is so interesting that you force yourself to go on.”
BRITTANY PEARLMAN can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.