Being jolly and merry are apparently two things I seem to lack when it comes to my book selections. Sitting in front of my “library” and browsing my virtual library for hours got me to this conclusion, I don’t have happy-go-lucky books! Well, that’s not entirely true, I’ve just come to realize that I have nothing dashing enough for the holiday season. What I do have are extremes: heavy-hearted books (covers an array of genres and authors), Sci-Fi/fantasy, or the guilty pleasures people don’t admit to owning. But I, as most people know, have no shame in what I read. So for this season of festivities, I’d like to present to you my top three “unseasonal” books.
My first option was a no-brainer. I’ve been itching to find an excuse to sneak this book into a “must-read” list. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger has always been a personal favorite of mine. I first read this book in high school, as did most people. Yes there’s a certain stigma and negative publicity attached to this title, but I stand by my belief, the book is harmless. Salinger managed to perfectly embody a 16 year-old boy when writing this, with all the anger, emotions, and anxiety that comes with being a teenager. An outsider looking in, Holden Caulfield is a self-proclaimed phony with a deep-rooted resentment towards phony people. A coming-of-age novel, The Catcher in the Rye was originally intended for adults, but Caulfield’s relatable angst made it popular amongst younger crowds.
To start you off, let me define epistolary before I jump right into it. An epistolary is relating to the writing of letters, which basically translates to a complete coherent novel written in the form of penned correspondence. Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn is a wonderfully written tale defying all the rules of grammar and spelling. Based in the fictitious island of Nollop where the government uses Nollop’s pangram “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” as law, Ella Minnow Pea along with her family and friends document the happenings through their correspondence. When a single letter falls off the pangram’s monument, chaos ensues and the use of said letter becomes banned. In order to restore order, and letters, in the alphabet, a committee must be formed for a new and modified pangram to take Nollops’ place. Find out what happens to the citizens of Nollop through this “Novel Without Letters.”
Guilty pleasures are awesome, end of story. Every person has a book, or set *ahem*, that we don’t really admit to reading, let alone enjoying them. Indulgences are important though, especially after reading an epic fantasy or a hefty biography, or the ever-so-thick anthology! Back to my point, my ultimate guilty pleasure author is Lauren Weisberger, the woman better known for The Devil Wears Prada. But the book chosen from this “shoe cover” collection is none other than Last Night At Château Marmont. Based in New York, we follow the story of a happy couple, Julian and Brooke. Brooke being the working wife who supports her husband while he struggles to become a recognized musician. When a record label finally discovers Julian, their life turns upside down as they attempt to navigate the fine line between married life and “famedom.” Between the paparazzi stalking them, the late night parties, and hotel rendezvous their life is open to uninvited scrutiny. This is an awesome book full of ups, downs, and mischief. Easy and fun to read, you can easily get through it in a day or two!
Oh to the joys of reading ALL THE BOOKS! Regardless of taste, you’ll always find yourself drawn to a book or two in each of the aforementioned categories. Now say it loud and say it proud, books are awesome! Stay tuned for next month’s selection of non-fiction literary goodness.