What Should I Read?

If you love to read, and read a lot, it can be hard to find well-written books that meet the standards of a bibliophile. Even harder when the bibliophile is looking for something specific.

We all have specific tastes; we know what we like, and what we don’t like. With the advent of online book selling, I can’t tell you how many times I have ordered a book based on the description, only to find upon arrival that it wasn’t quite what I was looking to read.

Below, we have compiled a list of websites that can help you find exactly what you are looking to read! Continue reading

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The Rules Of Magic by Alice Hoffman

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Alice Hoffman returns, 22 years later, to tell the first part of the story. The Rules Of Magic follows Franny, Jet, and Vincent Owens as they uncover the mystery of their witchy heritage, and try to break the curse that haunts their fate. This prequel to the 1995 best-seller Practical Magic is an essential prelude to the first book, providing a fundamental understanding of the family and the secrets that follow them.

In The Rules Of Magic, we are introduced to Maria Owens, the Salem witch Hoffman uses to root the family tree in witchcraft and magik. The plot opens with Franny, Jet, and their younger brother Vincent, and explains to readers why they are the way that they are. Witch-y.

“What mattered was the blood that ran through him, the same blood that flowed through Maria Owens.” (53).

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Lotería

Lotería was the 2013 debut novel of Mario Alberto Zambrano.

With her older sister Estrella in the ICU and her father in jail, eleven-year-old Luz Castillo has been taken into the custody of the state. Alone in her room, she retreats behind a wall of silence, writing in her journal and shuffling through a deck of lotería cards. Each of the cards’ colorful images—mermaids, bottles, spiders, death, and stars—sparks a random memory.

Pieced together, these snapshots bring into focus the joy and pain of the young girl’s life, and the events that led to her present situation. But just as the story becomes clear, a breathtaking twist changes everything.

This book was stippled with Spanish aphorisms and phrases, and included an impressive amount of vocabulary in-context, to help teach Spanish to non-speakers. A full deck of Lotería cards is presented back-to-front, to mark the chapters, as if the reader is flipping a card when turning the page, reminiscent of Isabelle Allende and Salvador Plascencia’s magical realism. Image result for loteria el nopal

“I didn’t feel like remembering today so I laid out the cards close to each other so that they were touching like tiles, like El Nopal.” (175).

Luz associates her memories with the Lotería cards, using them to prompt her, to spark her memories. Than she writes about it in her journal. As we read her diary — addressed to “You”, always capitalized, in reference to the reader, or in reference to a higher power — we understand the trauma she is trying to run from. Continue reading

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The Crown

This book is the official companion to the Emmy-winning Netflix drama chronicling the reign of Queen Elizabeth II, and starring Claire Foy and John Lithgow, The Crown by Peter Morgan, featuring additional historical background and beautifully reproduced archival photos and show stills.

Elizabeth Mountbatten never expected her father to die so suddenly, so young, leaving her with a throne to fill and a global institution to govern. Crowned at twenty-five, she was already a wife and mother as she began her journey towards becoming a queen. As Britain lifted itself out of the shadow of war, the new monarch faced her own challenges. Her mother doubted her marriage; her uncle-in-exile derided her abilities; her husband resented the sacrifice of his career and family name; and her rebellious sister embarked on a love affair that threatened the centuries-old links between the Church and the Crown. This is the story of how Elizabeth II drew on every ounce of resolve to ensure that the Crown always came out on top.

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Fliers: 20 SMALL POSTERS WITH BIG THOUGHTS

This collection of viral fake fliers is at once strange, thought-provoking, and hilarious. Printed on heavy, cardstock-like paper, these 20 “fake” fliers both celebrate and embody surreal posters–like the kind plastered all over college campuses, only taken to the next level. As a bonus feature, the sturdy paperback comes with a french-fold jacket that, when removed, opens up to reveal a larger poster. Images include a photo of a found duck mistaken for a dog that the poster is now keeping and an anonymous group posting about a quiet universe. There is something in this collection for everyone.

Fliers has an element of Gothic irony and sarcastic wit that makes it perfect for the freak or geek in your life. Russell’s imagined posters for the real-world are sharp and ironic, making a statement on the infinitesimal space we humans inhabit in this universe. Russell’s posters suggest our ineffectiveness on this world (that is, the non-impact we humans can make) and offer solace in the fact that we are not alone. We are all just trying to navigate this world, and get through it. Let Fliers be your guide.

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What We See in the Stars: An Illustrated Tour of the Night Sky, by Kelsey Oseid

A richly illustrated guide to the myths, histories, and science of the celestial bodies of our solar system, with stories and information about constellations, planets, comets, the northern lights, and more.

Combining art, mythology, and science, What We See in the Stars is a tour of the night sky through more than 100 magical pieces of original art, all accompanied by text that weaves related legends and lore with scientific facts.

This beautifully illustrated book details the night sky’s most brilliant bodies, covering constellations, the moon, and planets, as well as less familiar celestial phenomena like the outer planets, nebulae, and deep space. Even the most educated stargazers and scientists alike will surely learn something new when reading this book!

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FLAVORWIRE’S Ultimate Literary Calendar

Ever have a hard time keeping track of those hard-to-remember literary dates? Need a theme for your party, but don’t know what to celebrate? Want to know which famous author died on your birthday? If you have any of these common concerns, relax. Flavorwire has come to your rescue with an enormous infographical literary calendar, complete with a literary event for every day. Even the random ones. So without any further ado, behold the epic Flavorwire literary calendar — and never go without a literary event to celebrate again. Continue reading

Rupi Kaur, The Sun And Her Flowers

The Sun and Her Flowers by [Kaur, Rupi]Books of poetry should be regarded as of the most readable genre of our time. Reader’s attention spans are shorter than they have ever been before; the average person typically will read snippets of text on social media and advertisements throughout the day, but will not sit to read a … technology is changing our reading habits… and poetry offers a reading experience that mimicks the way we read, today. Short and simple verses, accompanied by original drawings, is very similar to the way we read through Instagram or Twitter. Quick but effective, Rupi Kaur’s poigneint poems keep readers flipping through pages, allowing readers to get lost similar to the way they can loose themselves scrolling through a feed. This is the type of book that can be read in a day, and will leave readers returning to it forever.

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Her free verse poetry forgoes the difficult metaphors of what we traditionally associate poetry with, in favor of clear, plain language and simplicity. Continue reading