I didn’t blog a lot about reading in 2016, but I did read 28 books! Here are some of my favorite books of the past year (that you should read, too).
THE LITTLE PRINCE by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Where I Read It: In French with my French class, actually!
Why You Should Read It Too: This book is really, really good and either super sad or super lighthearted, depending on whether you have the mindset of a “kid” or that of an “adult.” I read this when I was 16 years old, which is kind of right between kid/adult, and it was fun to read it and discover that I could see the ending both ways. It’s such a simple, easy read but it makes you think.
PYGMALION by George Bernard Shaw
Where I Read It: AP Literature class
Why You Should Read It Too: I have two words for you, Pygmalion doubters, and they are Henry Higgins. Because obviously villainous and logical are my two favorite traits in a person. Pygmalion is an insanely funny critique of the middle class and our society, an a glimpse into the human psyche. And Eliza is definitely one who’d join the women’s empowerment movement of any time in history. We read this aloud in class, and I’d definitely recommend at least reading it out loud in a group instead of reading it alone. If you don’t have enough friends to play all the parts, read it out to yourself. Then reassure passersby that you’re not crazy.
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING by William Shakespeare
Where I Read It: AP Lit class (again)
Why You Should Read It Too: Beatrice and Benedick’s conversations are the best. Of possibly ever, because this is Shakespeare we’re talking about. Also, Shakespeare masterfully uses Beatrice and Hero to validate women of all stripes, whether they’re witty or pretty or a combination of both, which is basically the definition of modern feminism and something lacking in almost every book I’ve read?
GREAT EXPECTATIONS by Charles Dickens (original ending)
Where I Read It: Ashland, Oregon in preparation for a play version (2nd reading)
Why You Should Read It Too: A lot of people hate Charles Dickens because his books are long and his prose is weird due to the fact that he was literally paid by the word. And a lot of people hate Great Expectations because (1) they were forced to read it in English class as children, (2) Estella is super uppity, and/or (3) Pip is utterly clueless and stupid the entire novel. I like this book because (1) I was forced to read it in English class as a freshman, (2) Estella is super uppity, and (3) Pip is utterly clueless and stupid the entire novel. Also, Dickens’s writing is very English and reminds me of the Enid Blyton books I read as a kid.
THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY by Trenton Lee Stewart
Where I Read It: Probably in bed for the fiftieth time because this is an amazing book
Why You Should Read It Too: This book is so amazing I wrote college essays about it. It’s not the best book ever, or the smartest, but it’s fun and has lots of mind puzzles in it and reminds me to always have the curiosity of a small child.
AND THEN THERE WERE NONE by Agatha Christie
Where I Read It: On a beach in France on the recommendation of my mother
Why You Should Read It Too: People are mysteriously invited to an island. One by one, they are murdered, with barely a clue left behind. It’s creepy, but not too creepy. It’s mysterious, but not the kind of mysterious where the author “surprises” you by hiding the clues. Christie, ever the queen of mystery, gives you all the clues the police have found at the end of the book, and if you solve this, you are literally geniuses.
5/5 Wagging Tails to these paper-y masterpieces