Little Brother

little brother

Cory Doctorow’s book is an action packed, fast-paced sci-fi that mixes mystery,  intrigue, terror and friendship. With shades of 1984, but with a closer to home feel, the book follows the missteps of a group of friends that are suspected of terrorism in their own home town after a disastrous explosion. The group are young gamers and are able to circumvent the “gait recognition” security cameras of their high school to skip out and play the scavenger game Harajuku Fun Madness. They use their gaming expertise to build an underground resistant to the evil government.

You can download the book for free here

Eleanor and Park

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This is a love story. I am saying this up front because, even though the story is solid and has some twists and turns, it is ultimately a love story. It is certainly an unlikely love story. It starts out, after all, in a high school bus on the way to school. Park gets stuck sitting beside the “new” girl. Theirs is not a relationship born out of conversation, rather a shared open comic book or a mix tape.  What seems as a casual beginning becomes a matter of life and death as time goes by. Rainbow Rowell carries you along and it is easy to associate your own experience with young love. A good read for the romantic at heart.

A Visit from the Goon Squad

Jennifer Egan talks about her book:

I began A Visit from the Goon Squad without a clear plan, following my own curiosity from one character and situation to the next. My guiding rules were only these: 1) Each chapter had to be about a different person. 2) Each chapter had to have a different mood and tone and approach. 3) Each chapter had to stand completely on its own. This last was especially important; since I ask readers to start over repeatedly in A Visit from the Goon Squad, it seemed the least I could do was provide a total experience each time.
 
In other words, you can read this book without making a single connection between any two chapters. They were written—and published—as individual pieces, apart from the book as a whole. So, as you read A Visit from the Goon Squad, don’t worry about whether you’re “getting it” or whether it’s really a novel, or what connections you might have missed. None of that matters. The point is to have fun reading a tangle of stories in a lot of contrasting styles. If you’ll do that, then you’re exactly the reader I’d hoped for.

Beloved by Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison writes a Nobel Prize winning visceral novel about  what it was really like to survive slavery in the deep South and live after the Civil War. Read this novel if you want to know the truth.

Excerpt:

There is a loneliness that can be rocked. Arms crossed, knees, drawn up; holding, holding on, this motion, unlike a ship’s, smooths and contains the rocker. It’s an inside kind – wrapped tight like a skin. Then there is a loneliness that roams. No rocking can hold it down. It is alive, on its own. A dry and spreading thing that makes the sound of one’s own feet going seem to come from a far-off place.

 

Amercian Dervish

Ayad Akhtar brings us the story of a Muslim boy growing up in Milwaukee, a perspective that is innocent, yet full of clarity and understanding. It all begins as a college student looking back at his childhood, a well to do family where home life is stormy at best but interrupted by the arrival of Mina, a childhood friend of his mother. This is where his spiritual journey begins as he navigates his way through both Muslim and Jewish cultures. An intimate look at his coming of age story.

Read the New York Times Review HERE