A List of Great Books

I don’t understand why some people say that they hate reading books. People don’t hate music because there’s a wide array of genres. People are usually able to find a movie they love because there’s a lot of variety amongst them. And even people who don’t like to read books will still read magazines because there’s many different types. Well, the same is true for books. There are a lot of different kinds of books. This is a list of novels that even those who hate reading might enjoy. I think. Please read, you guys. You’re missing out if you don’t.

Kasher in the Rye: The True Tale of a White Boy from Oakland Who Became a Drug Addict, Criminal, Mental Patient, and Then Turned 16 by Moshe Kasher

What a title. It starts out with a pun that is based off of a different, more profound novel. Then, a brief self description followed by a list of labels. The title culminates with a twist ending that will make you wonder if this is for real. Then you reread and see that it is, indeed, a “true tale.” This title is an emotional rollercoaster.

Moshe Kasher wrote about his crazy upbringing. He drank a lot. He did drugs. He got in a lot of trouble. He got caught wearing makeup. He did illegal things. It’s so interesting to read. Also, he’s so funny. I love this book because it could have been preachy, but it wasn’t. He doesn’t try to be inspiring. He doesn’t specifically warn you not to follow in his footsteps – it’s sort of implied. It doesn’t seem like Kasher had any other motives in writing his story. As a result, the book feels so real.

It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

This is a popular book, but I’ll include it anyways. Craig Gilner wanted to get accepted to an advanced high school. He did, which made him so happy. Then, school becomes so difficult. After Craig almost killed himself, he spends some time in a mental hospital.

Like Kasher in the Rye, this book feels so real. Craig Gilner is a fictional character, but I got to know him so well. By reading this book, you will really enter Craig’s head. I loved getting to learn and grow with him as he spent time in a mental hostpital.

Winger by Andrew Smith (and the sequel, Stand Off)

Well, read the first book before the sequel. I had to wait a year for the sequel. But today, someone can read the first book, then read the second one right after. I’m so bitter.

Winger is narrated by Ryan Dean West – a 14 – year – old high school junior who plays rugby at the boarding school he attends. He draws comics, which are in the book. Ryan Dean’s narration is so hilarious, but also ridiculous. If he was a real person, I’d shake my head at him. Ryan Dean is also so weird. He created his own rating system. Examples include “five – out – of – five habanero hotness” and “three out of five Cossack dancers on the Ryan Dean West How – Far – to – Kick – a – Pug Spectrum.” His boarding school shenanigans are such a fun read.

 

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

This is the hipster John Green novel because it’s not as well known as his other ones, The Fault in our Stars and Looking for Alaska. Reading this taught me that it’s possible to like a book and dislike its main character. This book is about Colin Singleton, who has had 19 girls end relationships with him and doesn’t understand why it keeps happening. Once you read the book, you’ll figure out why no one wants to continue dating him. Although Colin is gifted in terms of intelligence, he is an idiot. He wants create a theorem to explain how long a relationship will last. He wants to use math to explain love. Who is this guy?

Colin and his best friend, Hassan, spend a summer in Gutshot, Tennessee. They make friends and have good times. The book sort of encapsulates the adventurous summer a lot of people want to have –  Take a best friend! Go somewhere you’ve never been! Explore! Have adventures! Meet new people!  Enjoy life! Don’t worry! Reading about Colin and Hassan’s experience was cool, but I need to have my own.

 

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