While the frequent lockdowns of the coronavirus pandemic have helped broaden the reading audience, they’ve also contributed significantly to people giving up reading “Dalgona Coffee” recipes, let alone a novel. It’s understandable. It seems a lot easier to start an endless Netflix binge than to jump into the great unknown of a new book. Luckily, each weekend brings new opportunities and new books to peruse.
Although there is no way to prevent reading seizures, there are always more books available to cure them. With new bestsellers launching every week, it can be difficult to keep track and identify which is best for you, but there are countless lists on the internet brimming with recommendations to quench your thirst for safe Terminators.
“Malibu Rising” by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Set in 1983, Rise of Malibu is the story of the Riva family. Four siblings: Nina, Jay, Hud and Kit. They all have their own secrets, secrets that even their closest confidants, their siblings, don’t know. This family, built on a rocky base by their parents, will it be able to survive the volcano that is heading towards them?
Switching between the 1950s and 1980s, the story jumps between the story of their parents’ relationship and the lives of each Riva brother. The book is a compelling mystery that will shatter even the most brutal crises.
“People We Meet on Vacation” by Emily Henry
Poppy Wright is the exact opposite of what Alex Nilsen is. She’s a wild child; it’s as cool as Portland on its coldest days. She is an insatiable wanderlust; he wants nothing more than to snuggle up with a book. Yet, ever since they shared a car from college many years ago, they’ve been inseparable best friends. They live miles apart, but have vacationed together every summer for a decade. Until two years ago, when they screwed it up. They have not been in contact since.
A warm childhood of friends to lovers, The people we meet on vacation is a perfect beach read and is probably the best fiction book to get back into reading.
‘The Book Life of Nina Hill’ by Abbi Waxman
The only child of a single mother, Nina’s life is everything she could want: a job at a bookstore, an immaculate trivia team, an elite planner, and a cat named Phil. If she ever wonders what’s more in life than books, she just shrugs her shoulders and finds a new book to read. But when her father – the one she never knew existed – dies and she’s surrounded by countless sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews, Nina can’t find a dark enough place to hide.
A poignant novel about a bookworm, The Book Life of Nina Hillis an effortlessly fun and emotional read.
“Eleanor Oliphant is perfectly fine” by Gail Honeyman
Eleanor Oliphant is fine, and that’s all she needs in her life. Struggling with her poor social skills, she tends to speak exactly what she thinks. Nothing is missing in her programmed life until she meets Raymond. He’s a deeply unsanitary computer scientist from his office, but when they rescue Sammy together, the three save each other from the life of isolation they’ve been living.
With original characters and a memorable story, Eleanor Oliphant is perfectly fine will get you out of a reading slump in no time.
‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ Delia Owens
For as long as she can remember, rumors about the “Marsh Girl” have haunted Barkley Cove. But Kya Clark is none of that. She’s carefree and wild, maybe even a little unfit for polite society, so when the notorious Chase Andrews is found dead, the first suspect on everyone’s list is her. But Kya doesn’t want any of that. After years of isolation, she wants to be loved, but what happens is the unthinkable.
A tender coming-of-age tale, Where the Crawdads sing criticizes the impact of isolation on the behavior of a young woman who, like all of us, has the innate disposition to belong to a group.
‘Circe’ by Madeline Miller
Silence strikes when a girl is born in the house of the most powerful. But Circe is a strange offspring – she’s not powerful, like her father, nor viciously seductive like her mother. However, she possesses the power of sorcery, which can turn her rivals into monsters and threaten the gods themselves. Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a desert island, where she has become stronger, more powerful than ever.
Circeis the feminist retelling of the legend of the Greek goddess Circe, who is powerful enough to defy gods and titans, but must make a choice: to belong to the gods she was born from or the mortals she came to love.
“Such a Fun Age” by Kiley Reid
Alix Chamberlain always gets what she wants. She has made a living with her confidence-driven brand and trains other women to do the same. So when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, a young black woman, is harassed by the security guard at a local high-end supermarket one night while watching the Chamberlains’ toddler, Alix decides to fix things.
With compassion and heartbreaking social commentary, Such a fun ageexplores the rigidity of transactional relationships, what it really means to think of someone as family, and the complex web of reality that involves being an adult.
VE Schwab’s ‘Vicious’
As college roommates, Victor and Eli recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. Brilliant, arrogant, and lonely, they shared research interests in their senior year due to adrenaline, near-death experiences, and events that seemed supernatural. But things got out of hand when they upgraded their thesis from academic to experimental. Now, ten years later, they are looking for each other. Driven by betrayal and loss, sworn enemies are out for revenge.
In a captivating tale, Vicious discovers a world where superpowers do not translate into heroism and a time where allegiances are questioned.
“Six of Crows” by Leigh Bardugo
Ketterdam is a bustling corner of international trade where for the right price, anything is achievable. And if anyone knows it by heart, it’s criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. When offered a chance to pull off a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams, there’s no reason to say no. Except…he needs a team of six dangerous outcasts, including himself, to complete the mission. His team members are the only force standing between the world and its destruction…if they don’t kill each other first.
Now a series on Netflix, Six of Ravens is a fantasy that will make you feel all the emotions that a human being can feel.
“We Were Liars” by E. Lockhart
One summer. A private island. A group of four friends – the Liars. A rebellion. A misadventure. A mystery. Cadence and her mother head to her grandfather’s private island like every summer vacation. But this year, things look different. Cadence is sick, and her family seems… strange. They’re hiding a secret, and when it comes out, the ocean waves won’t be strong enough to drown out the screams.
A captivating story that will grab you by the collar and make you want to jump into the ocean for answers, We were liars is a novel that everyone should read once in their life. And if someone asks you how it ends, lie.
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