There is a multitude of books to read, no matter the genre. Personally, the mass of books I see on the internet overwhelms me. In an attempt to read the best, we often miss out on a few treasures that don’t make it to the Bestselling lists. With quarantine that has changed, and we’re now digging into the depths of the community to explore and read more than ever.
Today I give you three books that you might have heard of but never read. These are gems I cherish and believe should be on every book lover’s TBR.
NEVER LET ME GO – KAZUO ISHIGURO
Written by the author of Remains of the Day, Never Let Me Go is a masterpiece, to say the least. The book follows three students through their boarding school years in a dystopian 1990s world. As you gulp the pages down, you begin to realize that the book isn’t as simple as it appears. A reason the book has been a part of many discussions is because of a topic it so starkly brings forth – bodily autonomy and the ethics surrounding it.
It’s not one of those books one should read when one is down in the dumps. Precisely because it doesn’t lift you up. What it does do is make you think. After I read the book, I went on a reading spree. I read everything I could find related to the themes in the book. We even discussed it in sociology class during a lesson on medical ethics. That’s the thing about this novel – it will always be relevant.
I believe Never Let Me Go is much more a perfectly plotted meditation (and its style is itself quite meditative) on the human condition, the place of our own hands in shaping our destinies, and what it means to live. These could all be clichéd topics but Ishiguro approaches with such a vaguely detached sublimity that he breathes (through Kathy his narrator) a certain verdant spirit into these thingsSeth T. on Goodreads
THIS MODERN LOVE – WILL DARBYSHIRE
This Modern love is a book by Will Darbyshire that gives a take on love in the 21st century. Work on the book started months prior to the release. Darbyshire put a message on his social media accounts asking followers to send letters with things they’d like to say to their current, past, and future relationships. A crowdsourced book, I believe that it takes one on a whirlwind of emotions.
Raw and unedited, the monochrome pictures accompanying many pieces add to its charm. Acting as memorabilia, it’s one of those books that makes you feel close to the people who’ve contributed to the book. It’s as if you hold a time in their lives when they were at their best, or worst, based on the part of the book you read.
People have the different way to express their love, and I’m afraid if I rate this book, it would seem disrespectful, as if they have to write letters with unusual vocabularies and poemish style to attract the readers, but the truth is they wrote it because they felt like it and all of these letters were meant for real people—people they love—out there.Dina on Goodreads
ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE – GAIL HONEYMAN
Eleanor Oliphant, the protagonist in Gail Honeyman’s debut novel leads a routinized life that is carefully chalked out to minimize social interactions. She has been working at the same production firm for the past nine years, spends her weekends glugging two bottles of vodka, treats herself to a frozen pizza from Tesco and makes weekly phone calls to ‘Mummy’. At the surface, Eleanor seems 100% fine. Not good, not excellent, but just fine.
While things may appear to be normal on the surface, nothing is as it seems. She is the centre of ridicule at her workplace and finds interacting with people rather cumbersome. Her life begins to take a turn when she is forced to interact with Raymond and together, they save an elderly gentleman who fainted on the road. This orbit of human connections sweeps a reluctant Eleanor gradually. The novel traces Eleanor’s journey from a traumatized past to one where she is finally able to ‘enjoy life and not merely exist’.
Given the myriad of books that exist on mental health; it comes as a surprise that it has taken so long to address an issue that has plagued the modern world – loneliness. Honeyman meticulously highlights the reasons behind Eleanor’s isolation. Her heartfelt writing is bound to melt even the hardest of hearts. The book even made it to Reese Witherspoon’s bookclub and is all set to be adapted into a film soon!
Beautifully written and incredibly funny, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is about the importance of friendship and human connection. I fell in love with Eleanor. An eccentric and regimented loner, her life beautifully unfolds after a chance encounter with a stranger; I think you will love it too!Reese Witherspoon