Tag Archives: Les Miserables

Summer Reading List

As any English major knows, it can sometimes be hard enough to find time to read the books you’re supposed to read for class. So extracurricular reading often gets pushed aside until you have a little extra time, meaning the summer. I’ve been accumulating books that I want to read over the summer (including ones I’m going to try to use for my Honor’s Thesis next semester), and here’s my list!

  • Divergent, Veronica Roth – I’ve been hoping to read this for a while, and even started it this semester, but I just don’t have time to read the whole thing until classes are over. But maybe I’ll try to read all three books from this series.
  • Kafka on the Shore, Haruki Murakami – This author was recommended to me by a friend, so I decided to put it on the list. It’s a translation from Japanese, and has two intertwining plots – which is always something I find interesting in a book.
  • The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood – Since I read Oryx and Crake, I’ve been dying to read more of Margaret Atwood’s work. She’s just amazing and I keep hearing about this book, so I’m excited to see what everybody’s been talking about.
  • The Road, Cormack McCarthy – I’m doing my thesis on dystopian novels (as you might be able to guess I’m interested in from the line up so far), and people have been telling me to read this one for a while now. The cashier at Barnes and Noble said it was pretty bleak when I bought it from him, but he also said it was amazing. So we’ll just have to see, I suppose.
  • The Dinner, Herman Koch – I bought the two books above this one in this list at Barnes and Noble a few weeks ago, and there was a buy two get one free sale, so I picked up this guy. It seems to be about a pair of parents whose children did something terrible (the synopsis didn’t say what), and because of their social class, don’t come right out and talk about it, but carefully broach the topic over the course of a high-class dinner. I’m pretty interested in this book because I love books where high-class people are forced to deal with the nitty and gritty but do it within the constraints of society – at least that’s my understanding of what this book might be.
  • Les Miserables, Victor Hugo – I got this book for Christmas two years ago, and still haven’t gotten around to reading it, but I’m pretty determined. I want to see the movie, but I won’t until I read it, because I know it’ll have to be a big time commitment and I want to plot to carry me through.
  • Anthropology of an American Girl, Hilary T. Hamann – I bought this book a long time ago, as well, and I can tell it will be a good one. I love the cover, the title, the way it feels – I know you’re not supposed to judge a book so superficially, but you can sometimes just tell when a book is going to be good–like, be something that you in particular can relate to–based on those things. I started reading it, actually, and I really like the style of it, but I didn’t have time to really focus on it, so I wanted to wait until I could give it enough time to really absorb it.
  • The Lowland, Jhumpa Lahiri – I read The Namesake over winter break, and I loved it (possibly in large part because I love Gogol, the Russian author who was a big part of the book, but also because the writing was expressive and real), so I’m very interested in her new book, which has already been nominated for the Man Booker Prize.

I will hopefully have a lot of time to read, because these are just the books I can think of off the top of my head. I feel like my reading list is always changing, because some books catch your attention at some times more than others do. Do you have any good summer reading suggestions? What’s on your list?