- High School
As an avid book reader and lover, I am always on the search for new books. Each book is unique, no matter the theme or genre it follows, making it stand out to its fated reader. So if you are like me and wish to pursue your own journey of finding new books, here are my top 5 reads for this December.
1. The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider
Perhaps one of my top recommendations, this book is perfect for readers wishing to dive deep into the life of a character, but also stay connected to reality. Do not be misguided by the title of this book though, as it is far from the profound name it disguises to be. The novel follows the life of high school student Ezra Miller, who suffers the aftermath of a car accident, with a knee injury. Originally considered the “golden boy” of his school, Ezra is stripped away from his Tennis team captaincy, his popularity, and his girlfriend. However, he gradually regains his confidence and is redirected to a better path, as he reconciles with a childhood friend, joins a group that appreciates him for who he is, and develops feelings for the new girl Cassidy, who isn’t afraid to voice her thoughts. Although this book may seem stereotypical with its teenage conflicts, it explores themes of friendship and tragedy in a unique way.
2. Flawed by Cecelia Ahern
Another book I strongly recommend, “Flawed” is great for any reader that craves a mix of thriller, action, and romance, as it incorporates these themes in a way that adds to its Dystopian feel. Following the life of Celestine North, a model student and daughter, this book is set in a future society that determines your social class by perfection. Therefore, one single mistake is all that it takes, to make everything you’ve worked for disappear, and mark you as flawed. After acting on instinct which goes against the government’s law for perfection, Celestine, originally a perfect citizen, is deemed flawed in a trial, and questions the system of her nation. Filled with both emotion and action, this book gives off more than it shows. Some might even say it has a perfect balance of action and emotion. As it is accompanied by a sequel called ‘Perfect’, I promise, if an intense read is what you seek, both books will not disappoint.
3. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
Although a children’s book, I would say this one is quite a long and soulful read. Inspired by a Chinese folklore, “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” tells the story of a young girl from a mud village, at the base of a Fruitless Mountain known as Minli. She sets off on a journey to find the Old Man in the Moon, which her father used to tell her stories of, hoping that one day she could bring their village fortune, as the Old Man had by granting a person’s wish. Along the way, she encounters many hardships but also gains many friends, including a flightless dragon, who eventually helps her reach the top of the mountain where the Old Man in the Moon waits. As a book that received the 2010 Newbery Honor and Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Children’s Literature, I’d say that this book is heartwarming and enjoyable for all ages, and once you pick it up, you would not be able to put it back down.
4. The Stars We Steal by Alexa Donne
For all the hopeless romantics and drama seekers, this is the book you have been looking for. With a unique plotline and a few twists, if you want a book that will keep you on edge, this book will deliver. “The Stars We Steal” is a romance and sci-fi novel, centered around a society that now lives in space. The book is about the life of a financially troubled princess, Leo, who navigates the struggle of finding a suitable fiance that will help her family. Elliot, Leo's first love who had disappeared 3 years prior to the story, returns as the most eligible bachelor who is rich enough to help her family regain their status. As the story goes on, Leo faces challenges with friends, family, and love, whilst uncovering past truths that may be the source of the many problems aboard the spaceship.
5. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Definitely the most classic out of all the books mentioned, if this book was not on your English Reading List at least once, then it is a must-read for anyone who craves the thrill of science fiction and conflicts. Vonnegut manages to creatively incorporate themes of free will and anti-war ideals, in this 1969 novel of his. This novel is centered around the life story of Billy Pilgrim, focusing on his experiences before and after the war. Along with the time when he traveled to an entirely different planet during the war, the narrative shifts back and forth between times. Themes of betrayal and trauma are also significantly highlighted in this novel, which I promise will be a great read for everyone, as it will cause you to think and feel for the characters, as well as their experiences.
If you are looking for a few striking books to read this month, cozied up next to a heater, wrapped in your blankets with a cup of hot cocoa in your hands, I highly recommend one of these. Even if you might not be a book lover, I assure you that at least one of these will turn you into one. Since every author has their own secrets that essentially creates a book’s unique style, it can also be interesting to simply find unique dialogues and texts that appeal to you. Everyone can find a book that fits their ideal genre, as we must remember that there is always more to writing than what we merely read in the lines.