So lately I have felt a bit cooped up in my flat, confined by the cold and rainy months that make up the Danish Winter. However, during these past few months I have finally found the time to start chipping away at the long list of book recommendations given to me by my Grandma. My Grandma is a serious reader. I am talking a book every 3 days for at least the past 20 years, and her house reflects that. There are books everywhere. The second you ask her if she has read any good books recently, it is inevitable that you end up with a stack at least 5 high next to your bed that night.
In all honesty though, she is my best source for good reads. She is the ideal recommender. She reads all genres, a trait that I have a hard time relating to (still figuring out how to love science fiction). She reads books geared towards all ages (she read the hunger games series although her reviews were not particularly glowing). And the best part is that she remembers everything that she reads.
Here’s a recent list of titles she recommended:
1. Catfish and the Mandala by Andrew X. Pham
I loved this book! For starters, I am a die hard romantic when it comes to all things Asia and have wanted to travel to South East Asia for a while now. When I was reading this book I felt like I was in Vietnam. The story itself is very self reflective, however it is the description of the culture and the vivid scene setting that had me swooning.
2. Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
This has to be one of my all time favorite books. It is a bit of a brick to carry around in physical form however, it is well worth the haul. The action packed scenes and black market descriptions are thrilling and arguably a bit of a turn on. This book captures India in one of its finest and most chaotic forms, unveiling the city to a foreign eye. I think it is a must read!
3. What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami
In comparison to Shantaram, this is a quick read! Although the book is indeed about running the metaphor of life is much stronger. This book is ideal for that quick reminder to challenge yourself in everyday life and reflect in your day to day. *Note: be prepared to feel like you need to start training for a marathon after reading this book…
4. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
I clearly missed the section of high school when most American teenagers were assigned this book to read. Regardless, at a ripe age of 22, I finally caught up. If you haven’t read this yet, don’t miss out. It is one to add on to your list of WWII reads, targeting the subject of Hitler’s orders to burn all of the books. (Apparently there is also a movie based on the book! I need to add that to my list)
5. Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult’s
This book really levels your own notions of morality and social prejudice. I think it is a must read for everyone, especially right now. Picoult aggressively pushes her readers into issues of race. I read it at around the same time as one of my good friends and it became the main subject of our discussions for a full month. I highly suggest sharing this title with a few friends and book clubbing it.
Now grab your cup of coffee and get reading!