Because I’ve made some good progress on my reading goal for the year, I decided to do an update and write mini reviews of the books I’ve read thus far. Here we go!
1. Paper Towns, by John Green
I officially adore John Green and everything he writes, but this wasn’t my favorite of his books. This was the third of his that I’ve read (after The Fault in Our Stars and Looking for Alaska), and I really expected to love it, but I didn’t think it quite lived up to those two. However, it was still certainly better than most other YA lit, so I would recommend it whole-heartedly.
2. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott
Obviously this is a well-known book, but it was my first time reading it. I love the story, but there are a few things in the plot that I wish were different (eg. WHY must Amy and Laurie get married? He’s meant to be with Jo. That’s all I ask). I’m not Amy’s biggest fan in general, though, so I guess this frustration was always going to exist. These qualms aside, it’s a great, classic book, and definitely worth a read.
3. The Shining, by Stephen King
As I believe I mentioned in a previous post, I’m a major Friends fan. So, since there’s an episode in which Joey and Rachel exchange their favorite books (Joey’s is The Shining, Rachel’s is Little Women), I decided to read these to back-to-back as an homage to my favorite show and in the hope that I might experience some great insight from reading them together. Not so much, but it was very fun to read. I was already familiar with the story from the movie, but the book added a much deeper level of character development and overall creepiness that makes it completely worth reading.
4. An Abundance of Katherines, by John Green
I continued my John Green journey with another of his older novels, which was, in my opinion, a better alternative to Paper Towns. This story was much more comedic that some of his others, but it still features quirky characters on a quest. Another job-well-done by Mr. Green.
5. Hog’s Head Conversations
As part of my college curriculum, I’m starting a long-term research project on the Harry Potter series, and this was the first essay collection I finished reading for my research. Though only a few of the essays refer directly to my topic, they were all very interesting and worth reading if you’re a Potterhead. Featured subject included: Dumbledore’s homosexuality, the epitaphs in Deathly Hallows, and the literary legitimacy of the series.
6. Top of the Rock, by Warren Littlefield
Top of the Rock is essentially a collaborative history of the Must See TV era at NBC, told through interview snippets from NBC executives, writers, directors, and stars of the late 1980s into the early 2000s. Overall, it was a very interesting story to read as it’s full of insight into the world of entertainment and features great information from some of my favorite actors of the time (thanks for the tears, Matt LeBlanc). However, the book left a bit of a bad taste as the final chapter is essentially a 20-page rant session about how terrible NBC (and all TV) is currently; it read to me like a group of whiney, bitter children rather than very accomplished professionals. Not to mention the fact that I think there are still plenty of great shows on TV, but I felt like that last chapter should have been written and put in a drawer somewhere to get closure, not the conclusion to an otherwise enjoyable book.
Six books down, 34 to go!