Summer Book Reviews 2011

I have read a couple of books so far this summer. And I thought I’d dedicate a blog post in recommending some books for you to read. Of course, there’ll be bias because I haven’t read all the books in the world, but I have read some pretty nice books this summer. And here they are so far not in any particular order –

The amount of stars given reflects the satisfaction I received after reading the book.

Kafka’s Metamorphosis
This is a very short book concerning the external and internal changes of a family. If you want to just read a very short book – perhaps in one sitting – then this is a great book to do so. However, Metamorphosis is slightly uneventful and creepy, but you’ll be treated with some feel-good symbolism at the end. 2.5/5 stars

Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men
Ripping apart the dogma of ‘staying together’, Of Mice and Men is extremely lonely and disconcertingly eery. About the dreams of two men and the differences between then. A very quick book for a strong soul. 3/5 stars

Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea
This is possibly the best book I read this summer with no vocabulary more difficult than phosphorescence. Filled with symbolism, brutality, and the dignity of the catch, The Old Man and the Sea is simplistic yet sensational. 4.5/5 stars

Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse 5
Vonnegut explores the depravation of a war from an unique perspective. Deeply contemplative, Billy Pilgrim tells the story in a fantastical and somewhat delusional nonlinear order, capturing the extent of human mantras and emotions. 4/5 stars

Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby
Modern Library ranks this book as the second best book of all time, but personally I feel this great american novel is somewhat overhyped; it’s still very good however. One cannot feel anything but great sympathy for the outcasted and Gatsby. His misdirected dream, his character, his greatness. 4/5 stars

King’s Insomnia
The longest book and the only book I read this summer that’s not considered an american classic, Insomnia was a great read, unrelentless until the absolute finish. A play in three acts, Ralph explores the harmony of his life and the world around him. 4.5/5 stars

Barrie’s Peter Pan
The lightest book I read ever, Peter Pan is about a boy who never grew up. Without any restraints and obligations of those that are aged. The book is like a childhood game where the end isn’t near and the everything’s near in Neverland. 4/5

Ellison’s Invisible Man
About the insignificance of an unnamed black individual, the book is powerful and insightful, gripping and deep. There are bunches of symbolism and great little anecdotes that makes one rethink life. 4/5

Sinclair’s The Jungle
Highly pessimistic but addicting, Sinclair tells the story of the desolate Jurgis who attempts to find a good life. However, Chicago robs away everything from him and he slowly adapts to the horrors of reality. A book to shake your perception of things. 4.5/5

Shakespeare’s A Midsummer’s Night Dream
Shakespeare shows the extent to which people would love in a creative way. Despite the retired Shakespearean humor, the idea and the opulent language is very refreshing. The SparkNote No Fear version is recommended so the book is more of an enjoyment than a learning experience. 3.5/5

Steinbeck’s Cannery Row
Steinbeck shows that you don’t need a tangible plot to create a sensational book. Sensational characters work on their own depicting the extraordinarily complacent and diverse lives of a community. 4/5


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