Books to Read Before the End of 2019
By: Megdalyn Leilani
The start of summer… meaning extra time on your hands to do the things you are interested in doing that couldn’t be done during the regular fall/spring semesters of school. Reading is one of my favorite hobbies and can really help expand your vocabulary in life. Summer is the perfect time to start those books that have been on your list all year, but also to find new recommendations from other fellow readers! I personally love adding new books to my giant list of reads that I want to finish before the end of the year (I never finish everything on my list because I always add so many more) so I waterfall it over into the new year. Here are some of my book recommendations for this summer and the rest of 2019:
Dracula by Bram Stoker: One of the best/most popular figures in Western literature. Both seductive and evil, Dracula showcases mystery and horror, love and death, sin and redemption. Stoker is the original author and creator of the figure Dracula and has inspired countless books, films, and plays all over the world. Written in the form of letters and diary entries, this book takes you through Dracula’s journey from his Transylvanian castle to the streets of London.
The Man in the Iron Mask by Alexandre Dumas: Probably one of the thickest and longest books on this list of recommendations. This novel takes you through Seventeenth-century France, which boils with plots and counterplots as King Louis XIV struggles to extend his power and transform himself into the “Sun King.” A tale of mystery and political intrigue and a swashbuckling adventure, The Man in the Iron Mask is the final novel in Alexandre Dumas’s series of d’Artagnan romances.
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous: A letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearth’s a family’s history that began before he was born - a history whose epicentre is rooted in Vietnam- and serves as a doorway to parts of his life his mother has never known, all of it leading to an unforgettable revelation. This novel is brilliant, heartbreaking, tender, and highly original - poet Ocean Vuong’s debut novel is a sweeping and shattering portrait of a family, and a testament to the redemptive power of storytelling.
Where Reasons End: Yiyun Li meets life’s deepest sorrows as she imagines a conversation between a mother and a child in a timeless world. This novel was composed in the months after she lost a child to suicide, Where Reasons End trespasses into the space between life and death as a mother and child talk, free from old images and narratives. Deeply moving, these conversations portray the love and complexity of a relationship.
The Handmaid’s Tale: Set in the near future, it describes what life was once like in the United States and is now called the Republic of Gilead, a mono-theocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birth rate by reverting to, and going beyond, and the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The Handmaid’s Tale is funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing.
Books are such an amazing way to fill your brain with knowledge as well as new vocabulary. It can be difficult to get into reading if you are not too big of a fan, but once you find your genre/style/author that you particularly like… it will become so much easier to pick up a book and read it for hours. We are always looking for great book recommendations, so don’t forget to share with us your favorite books on Instagram! Cheers to the summer.