English student highlights the must-read classics

Written By Chandni Shah, For The Globe

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“All the Bright Places” by Jennifer Niven

Soon to be a major motion picture, “All the Bright Places” follows the love story of Violet Markey and Theodore Finch as they learn about themselves and life through each other. It’s a perfect book for those who enjoy Young Adult Fiction and page turners.

 

“A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini

From the author of the “Kite Runner,” “A Thousand Splendid Suns” tells the heart-wrenching tale of two different sets of characters and how they are brought together by war. Taking place in Afghanistan and spanning over 30 years, the novel illustrates the unforgiving outcomes of destruction and the ruling of the Taliban.

 

“Why We Broke Up” by Daniel Handler

Mostly known by his pseudonym Lemony Snicket, Handler writes a book about the events leading up to a break up. The pages are full of illustrations of the contents of a box where Min (the main character) keeps all the knick knacks and keepsakes collected from her and Ed’s relationship.

 

“Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Written in the form of a letter to his son, “Between the World and Me,” illuminates to readers the history of America and race. Coates elucidates the truths of racism and the dangers of being a black man or woman in American society. Toni Morrison stated that “this [book] is required reading.”

 

“In Cold Blood” by Truman Capote

On Nov. 15, 1959 the Clutter family was murdered by two men in Holcomb, Kansas. Capote writes this true-crime novel detailing the killing of the victims and the trial held, becoming one of the most well-known homicides in American history. The reader is given a deeper understanding of the two killers and some find themselves empathizing with the criminals.

 

“Beartown” by Fredrik Backman

Backman follows the interconnecting lives of residents from the small hockey town of Beartown. The residents of the town rely on the sport to bring up their spirits and the town itself as it is slowly failing. Their junior hockey team is about to compete in the national championship game, but a scandal may take that all away.

 

“Love, Rosie” by Cecilia Ahern

A charming must read for anyone who loves romance. The book follows the story of Rosie and Alex, best friends who are meant to be together, but are separated by teen pregnancy and college ambitions.

 

“Things Fall Apart” by Chinua Achebe

Achebe conveys the impacts of colonialism and ethnocentrism with the story of the Igbo people in his novel, “Things Fall Apart.” He gives us an insight into how Christianity was introduced to African culture and how in this case it clashed — instead of making things “better” the colonists destroyed a village and the main character, Okonkwo.

 

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

“Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes

Charlie, a mentally disabled man is given an experimental brain operation to boost his intelligence and increase his IQ. Algernon, a mouse, is given this same operation as a parallel to Charlie. The reader sees how these two characters change within the writing of the novel, as the story is told through a series of the main character’s diary entries.

 

“Astrophysics for People in a Hurry” by Neil deGrasse Tyson

Tyson answers all of the commonly asked questions about the ways of the universe in a manner that is easy to understand, especially for beginners. He takes the reader on a journey through the creation of the universe all the way to lesser known entities such as dark matter and energy. A great read for curious people who enjoy science and physics.

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