As a writer, I read a lot of books, not as many as I’d like, honestly, but still quite a few. And since the year is closing out, I thought I would give my recommendation of three books I’ve enjoyed during 2015.
1.) “The Rest of Us Just Live Here” by Patrick Ness
In a word: Poignant. In more words: The Rest of Us Just Live Here is a book that is not what you probably assume going off its synopsis. I picked it up thinking it was going to be a somewhat black comedy dealing with the people on the sidelines in a chosen one narrative. And while that second part is true, it is not a comedy. This is a bleak book. Full of relatable, if horribly broken characters. It tore me up inside watching people younger than I am deal with this…well…life shit. It is not a book to read if you’re in a good mood. But it is excellent. And I have to recommend it. It is just too artistically clever, and downright human not to tell you to read it.
2.) “Cinder” by Marissa Meyer
While the premise of a sci-fi retelling of a classic fairy tale gave me quite a hesitation to reading this, I found it surprisingly enjoyable by the end. It doesn’t, as one might assume, use the source material as a cop-out or some sort of map for how the story is supposed to go. It frequently went its own way, and even managed to surprise me. The world it paints feels real, and is full of both cultural and technological aspects that I found enjoyably creative. And while it’s actual prose lacked in some areas, it is worth a look, especially if you have a love for the old brutal versions of the Brothers’ Grimm Fairy Tales.
3.) “Let It Snow” by John Green, Lauren Myracle, and Maureen Johnson
This book is different than the others for two reasons: 1.) It’s a collection of three short stories, and 2.) I haven’t actually finished reading it yet. At time of this writing, I’ve only read the first two stories. Which tells you something, because I am still willing to recommend this book. For every lonely heart, or lover of a good sweet romance, this is warmth and joy and happiness rolled into a novel, and it made me laugh out loud. I adore John Green’s writing—and seeing his comedy muscles stretched without any of the tragedy was amazing. And Maureen Johnson proved herself to be able to write characters that I felt I’d find sitting across from me at a café–if that makes any sense. I read this book on Christmas day, and it was worth the price just for the first two stories. I cannot wait to read the third. And you should pick this book up if you haven’t already.
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