by Ama Debrah
I understand that at this point in the semester, there is no time for breathing, let alone extracurricular reading. However, because I have a PhD in procrastination, I have been able to do a little light reading during this semester, and I’ve come across five compelling, incredible, and frankly mind-bottling (it’s like when your mind is in a bottle) books that are sure to get you through the rest of the semester. Check out this list for a little bit of enlightened free time:
Lexicon by Max Barry: For all you English majors out there, imagine a world in which everyone has the power to use words to coerce people to do their bidding. There are no magic or wizards, only a secret language that makes anyone do whatever you want them to do, even if that means killing everyone. Add a love story, and you have an awesome, page-turning thriller.
The Diviners by Libba Bray: You might know Libba Bray from the Terrible Beauty series, but The Diviners is a series that should merit fame on its own. Whenever you add the flapper-era plus supernatural powers plus mystical murder mystery in one plot, you know it’s going to make an awesome story. Have fun trying to do anything productive before you finish this book.
1Q84 by Haruki Murakami: So straight up, this book is long. Not like 500 pages long, like this book is 900 plus pages. However, Haruki Murakami is a genius, and while the prose is dense, this book will blow your mind open and then go back for seconds. I can’t get into much of the plot without spoilers, but know that there’s a parallel universe and then shit gets crazy from there on out.
Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosch: Are you familiar with the hilarious blog Hyperbole and a Half? If no, GO CHANGE YOUR LIFE RIGHT NOW. If yes, check out Allie Brosch’s new book that includes the best-of from her blog as well as hysterical new entries. For new and old fans alike, Hyperbole and a Half is exactly what you need to raise your spirits during exam season.
I Am the Messenger by Marcus Zusak: If you are at all familiar with his previous work The Book Thief, you know that Marcus Zusak can write excruciatingly tragic books that will leave you in a puddle of tears whenever you’re casually reading in public. Now imagine the amazing storytelling of The Book Thief but in a mystery rom-com. I Am the Messenger is ridiculously engaging, relatively short, and the perfect break from a twelve-hour stint at Butler.
Okay, I get that it may be unrealistic to read these in the upcoming weeks, but if you’re not totally burned out by the time winter break rolls around, I encourage you to check these out and remember what reading for fun feels like. After all, what else are you going to do for an entire month? (Answer: hibernate.)
Ama Debrah is a senior at Barnard and Contributing Editor for The Nine Ways of Knowing.