Friday, January 3, 2014

Books That...

As a follow up to my Top Ten post, I started thinking about books outside of that list that still hold a special place on my shelf. I put together some superlative-esque books that were particularly noteworthy to me this year.

...Made Me Laugh

I was not a fan of Kaling's character in The Office (I know she was supposed to be annoying, but I just could not take it). After learning that she was one of the writers for the show, however, I found myself seeking out her work. The Mindy Project is one of my favorite television shows now, it makes me laugh out loud every single week. This book (in a similar style to Tina Fey's Bossypants) is just another example of her hilarious talents, and is perfect for 20- and 30-something readers who want a light read that reassures us we're not the only ones who feel like life is a daily struggle to be graceful.

...Made Me Cry

I just cannot handle refugees tales without a box of tissues and without seriously considering volunteering for the peace corps. This book was real.

...Made Me Question Everything

I'm not going to give it away, but I feel like the world needs to sit down and discuss this book. I don't have many friends who've read it, but I feel like this is one of the very rare times that I've sided with a "villain" in a story (the result of a Disney upbringing), and I want to know that other people have the same conflicted feelings. I really felt that something about the evil in this book was, in fact, extremely wise. I know that Dan Brown can be a bit of a controversial topic in literature circles, but I've always been a fan and will remain so.

...Pulled Me Out of My Comfort Zone

I picked this up at a Friends of the Library book sale for a dollar. It took me forever to read, but when I finished I felt like I was in an altered state of consciousness for days. I hadn't known anything about the expeditions to find the Northwest Passage, but after reading I was fascinated by the way these men took such great risks for the chance to be the discoverer of this mysterious arctic passage, and actually bought a related book, Resolute, that would interest any adventure/history buff. The fantasy element in The Terror was an added bonus, although while reading it felt like it was barely fantasy, more like a legend that is almost too crazy not to believe. 

...Made Me Gasp At Every Turn It taught me the meaning of evil (and manipulation). Writing about it gives me the creeps. But I also have a strange urge to re-read it. Bottom line: It messes with your head. I can't imagine what kind of mental state Gillian Flynn must have been in while writing it. 

...I Wish I Liked More

I was embarassed, in the midst of Gatsby fever this year, that I hadn't already read this. All I can really say is that when it comes to the 1920's, I am a fan of the fashion...and that's about it. I had no empathy for the characters and came away both confused and a little annoyed. Some books I have trouble connecting with, unless I'm in an English course where we can hold discussions and conduct analyses of the book. I think this is one of those books. I'm going to leave it at that, until I get a chance to re-read.

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