Chilly greetings from the Northern Indian Plains where winter has truly set in now!! My guest today is the lovely Soumya Prasad from Bangalore who won over my everlasting loyalty (the kinds where you help murder and then hide the body types ) by an incredible gesture this year. Yes I made a new friend this year and I am so happy to have her over on my blog to talk about her top ten books to read to get one out of their reading slump. Without much ado, here she is:
‘Saying it the way it is‘, – I live life in black and white, there is no grey for me. I believe in the truth, karma and live life my way. I love cooking, writing, reading and anything else that titillates my creativity.
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Reading has always been a priority in my life and I feel that it has immensely helped in making me the person that I am today. I’ve been an avid reader since I was very young. I’ve loved lapping up books day and night and have read quite a lot of them so far. While I have been pretty regular with reading, there was a phase in my life that forced me to take a break from reading. Too much was happening in life and it kept me so busy that I barely found time to read. When the frenzy died down, and I was finally back to reading, I found it hard to start again.
While I had the zest and interest to read, I somehow was not focused enough. It was almost like the mojo had died down. Maybe I wasn’t choosing the right books or I was getting way too distracted, I don’t know the exact reason; but I was finding it really hard to get back to the reader habit and end my reading rut of more than a year. With time and the right books, I was able to get back my reading pace and I’m so glad that I persisted and did not give up.Here are 10 books that would help you get out of a reading rut. These are from various genres, but they have it in them to keep you hooked. They will not let you look up from the page and you will only tend to rest once you have finished it.
1. The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern
This book is magic in the best form. The genre is not entirely fantasy and is called as phantasmajorical, which means something in a dream or created by an imagination, something having the appearance of an optical illusion. This exactly is what this book is all about. The magical circus is only open and night and holds a lot of secret within it. At the root of this story is love and the way it all comes together is so beautiful and magical. This book completely absorbs you within it and lasts with you even after you have finished reading it.
2. Like Water For Chocolate – Laura Esquivel
If you even remotely love food, then this book will drive you crazy! Touted to be an erotic novel, this book does seduce you with the love for food that is woven intricately into the story. Love remains the core of this book, but the whole concept is so well conceived. Every chapter starts with a Mexican recipe and food plays a very important role in the story. You will not be able to put this down for the sheer brilliance of the concept and no matter how much you want to detach yourself from this uncertain love story, you will hold on to the book until you learn what happens to the lovers.
3. The Millenium Trilogy – Steig Larsson
This is probably the darkest book/series that I’ve ever read and also one of the best. The Millenium Trilogy consists of three books. The girl with the dragon tattoo, The girl who played with fire and The girl who kicked the hornet’s nest. Each book is fabulous in its own way and since the story is related, you would want to read all of them back to back. With crime at its core, this book makes one take a deep look into society and the people in power. The protagonist, Lisbeth Salander is one of the best ones ever created for the fictional world. If this one doesn’t get you out of a reading rut, nothing else will.
4. Wonder – R. J Palacio
If I say that this book changed my life, I would not be lying. This book makes me look at life through a different lens and made me unlearn a lot of things that I knew. It made me a much better person and I felt connected to every single character in this book. Although a children’s novel, this book is also a must read for adults. While the story deals with a boy with facial deformity, what stands out the most in this book is the love and support the family has for him. The Pullman’s are now my favorite family in the whole world. This book goes on to show that if you are a nice person and have a nice supportive family behind you, nothing is impossible. It also teaches you a lot about kindness and its importance. Because being kind is always more important than being nice.
5. Any other book by Keigo Higashino
Keigo Higashino is the master of mystery and thrillers. His books do not reveal the mystery until the last line of the last paragraph of the last page. Most importantly, you cannot predict anything in this stories. Everything is so spontaneous, so detailed and so wow inducing. The devotion of suspect X is one of the best thrillers that I’ve ever read till date followed by Salvation of a saint. His book is super fast paced and there is a twist in every page. The book consumes you totally and you cannot rest until you learn how it ends. This my friends, is a challenge.
6. The Book Thief – Marcus Zusak
When death narrates a story, you have to listen. Well, that’s this book for you. This was my first historical novel and I fell lead over heels in love with it. The book has a little girl and war at its core. How both grow and how both mould the other forms the story. This book also exposes the reader to the atrocities of the Nazi regime and it sure was a learning and shocking experience. The book also focuses a lot on books. The little protagonist develops a love for books and is looking to steal as many as she can before the Nazi party destroys them all. Though difficult to read emotionally, this book would be the best one to break your reading fast.
7. The Silver Linings Playbook – Matthew Quick
Read this book at any phase of your life and it will give you hope. While the story is slightly melancholic, this book is a slice of life story that teaches you many a thing about love, loss, life and hope. Like the title suggests, this book is all about finding the silver lining on a cloudy day. So, this is one of the books that will push your reading rut away and show you the silver lining.
8. Erotic Stories For Punjabi Windows – Balli Kaur Jaiswal
I’m surprised too to have an Indian author on this list, but trust me this book is worth it. While the book has ‘erotic’ in this title, the book is not only about the erotic stories. It has abundance of humor and event an element of mystery in it. Since the entire story focuses on the lives and needs of women, it was more special for me.
9. The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
Having one of the most complex stories ever, this one takes you around in a whirlwind. Although mostly fiction, this can also fall into the science fiction or fantasy genre. This is the love story of a boy who time travels without any control on it and a girl who stays behind and waits for him to return. Their love goes through every possible trial and they try their best to deal with it. The story is out of the world, quite literally at times. Never predictable, this book will keep you hooked and leave you wanting for more.
10. A Man Called Ove – Frederick Bachman
This book should be made mandatory reading for one and all. This book is purely based on life and relationships and it talks about them so beautifully. There is no filter when it comes to Ove. The way he looks at life is so simple and honest that you cannot help but fall in love with him. Although fiction, by the time you are done with the book, you would have identified so many Ove’s in your life. The book is an easy read with a story and is one of the best books to start reading with after a break.
So there you have it folks – have you read these or are these on your TBR? What did you think of them and which ones do you think could have been included here?
Leaving you with one book recommendation of mine that I feel will get you out of a reading rut – The Twilight series