December Reads

2015’s last monthly recommendations!

  • AND THEN THERE WERE NONE by Agatha Christie (Goodreads)

First, there were ten—a curious assortment of strangers summoned as weekend guests to a private island off the coast of Devon. Their host, an eccentric millionaire unknown to all of them, is nowhere to be found. All that the guests have in common is a wicked past they’re unwilling to reveal—and a secret that will seal their fate. For each has been marked for murder. One by one they fall prey. Before the weekend is out, there will be none. And only the dead are above suspicion.

I’m not really a murder-mystery gal. Frankly, I’m the type of person who gets scared after episodes of Supernatural and can’t even read MACBETH at night. So I was leery about reading this book in the beginning. But I got over that pretty quickly.

I read this when I was in seventh or eighth grade and I’ve read a lot of books since, so I don’t really remember much of AND THEN THERE WERE NONE. But I do remember that I liked it a fair bit. Agatha Christie’s style was different from most of what I’d read until that point, and I enjoyed that.  I think I might try and get into the genre a bit more now that I’ve read this one.

  • WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON by John Green and David Levithan (Goodreads)

Will Grayson meets Will Grayson. One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two strangers are about to cross paths. From that moment on, their world will collide and lives intertwine.

It’s not that far from Evanston to Naperville, but Chicago suburbanites Will Grayson and Will Grayson might as well live on different planets. When fate delivers them both to the same surprising crossroads, the Will Graysons find their lives overlapping and hurtling in new and unexpected directions. With a push from friends new and old—including the massive, and massively fabulous, Tiny Cooper, offensive lineman and musical theater auteur extraordinaire—Will and Will begin building toward respective romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history’s most awesome high school musical.

Okay, so you all know how much I adore John Green by now. I think I’ve read every book he’s written except for his story in LET IT SNOW, but I really, really liked this one. It was hilarious and real and heartbreaking and I loved it. The tone was so refreshing and open and it took me in a whirlwind. Both Will Graysons were lovely and real, and oh my God—Tiny Cooper. Tiny’s the kind of character I didn’t know I needed in my life. (And his musical. Oh my gosh, that was amazing.)

Another thing I really liked about this book was how different the two Wills were.  Just from a couple of words, I could tell which was which, and that’s really important when you’re writing a story with more than one narrator.

In short, this made me love John Green even more, and also made me realize that I need to read more of David Levithan’s books, because so far I’ve only read books he’s co-wrote and it’s embarrassing.

  • THIRTEEN REASONS WHY by Jay Asher (Goodreads)

Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers thirteen cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker, his classmate and crush who committed suicide two weeks earlier.

On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out how he made the list.

So this book is admittedly a bit darker than a lot of the books I’ve read, and if you’re looking for something light-hearted, this isn’t the book for you. But it was recommended to me by a friend who loved it, so I picked it up from Chapters and decided to give it a try. And I’m glad I did. This isn’t my favourite book by any means, but I liked a lot of things about it. I liked Clay. I liked the medium of Hannah’s cassette tapes. I liked how Clay changed over the course of listening to the tapes. I liked the ‘thirteen’ metaphors and symbolism. I liked the ending.

It’s been a while since I read this book, and maybe if I read it again, I’d be gushing a lot more. Or maybe the subject matter was a little too personal at the time for me to truly love it. But I did really like this book, honest. And I think you will, too.

 

What books are you guys reading? I’m always open to suggestions 🙂

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