A list of a few of the books I've been reading.

Please recommend books to me via the "Contact" page!

girl with a pearl earring

Tracy Chevalier

“He spoke her name as though he held cinnamon in his mouth.”  This book is pure passion and poetry in novel form.  A historical fiction about Vermeer and his muse that would soon be the famous Girl with a Pearl Earring.  She works as a maid in his household and... you know what happens next.  The way Chevalier writes about art, color, and passion... there's truly nothing like it.  You find yourself licking your lips and blinking hard at her descriptions.  She writes details the way Vermeer painted clouds -- filled with multiple colors that you could never imagine would go together, but do.  This book is fire.  Simply fire.

the shadow of the wind

Carlos Ruiz Zafon

“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.” A dark mystery by Zafron was my next read this summer.  I received the book as a gift from a friend, and devoured it.  A story of a young boy who unlocks the secret of a hidden library.  He picks up a book and is trusted to keep it safe, but little does he know that that book holds a deep mystery in it's past.  A dark thriller emerges from this simple tale, and twists into something more complicated and delicious.  This was one of those "read under the covers at night" kind of books.  The type of book you just can't put down until you're finished.  Furthermore, it's scattered with absolutely divine one-liners that you want to write down and keep forever. 

the way of kings

Brandon Sanderson

“To lack feeling is to be dead, but to act on every feeling is to be a child.” Another winner by Sanderson. One that has been recommended to me for years but I hadn't been able to truly get into.  I'm glad I did.  A fantasy novel that dives into a world of slavery, war, friendship, apprenticeship, and history.  He builds a world with an intricate thread (not unlike Rothfuss in Name of the Wind), enough for the reader to be fully immersed and cloaked.  The story follows multiple lines of characters as they all face the same problem -- the end of the world.  This is book one of three, and the second book is just as enrapturing.  Unfortunately I've found the third to be a bit too dry for me, and have yet to finish the arc.  Maybe one day... But I do not regret reading the first too, and I would urge you to try them too.

the secret life of bees

Sue Monk Kidd

"Knowing can be a curse on a person's life." An absolute gem of a book that I picked up as a child, now reread as an adult.  Each page is filled with wisdom that triggers your heartstrings.  Be prepared to answer questions about life, and wonder why some people are the way they are.  Kidd uses the life of bees as a metaphor to shine clarity on the difficult secrets humans keep.  Lily is a young girl who runs away from home with her maid, to escape a terrifying father.  The story moves through various themes of racism, love, lies, hope, empathy, trust, and betrayal.  Read it.

fahrenheit 451

Ray Bradbury

"‘Why is it,’ he said, one time, at the subway entrance, ‘I feel I’ve known you so many years?’ ‘Because I like you,’ she said, ‘and I don’t want anything from you.’"  After so many years of hearing about this novel, I finally took the plunge and read it.  I'm actually still undecided about how much I liked it... but it was definitely intriguing.  There were many moments where I was pulled in by the story, but not the writing... but also vice versa.  The girl that shows up in the beginning of the story had me hooked, but she doesn't stick around for long.  The concept was incredible, and I can't believe they haven't made a film about it yet.  Overall, I would recommend it, but I wouldn't put it in my top-reads of the year. 

the graduate

Charles Webb

"Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me."  I didn't want to use that quote as the opener, but it's almost like I didn't have a choice.  The classic film was based off of this novel, and I knew I had to read it before (finally) watching the movie.  I wasn't blown away by the writing, but I will admit that I read it smoothly and quickly.  The book reads like a movie -- fast-paced and filled with dialogue.  I had seen clips of the movie before, and it definitely helped me appreciate the book more.  I had the mood, the lighting, the characters already placed in my mind before reading the book.  I don't know if I would have liked it as much without that added effect... 

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