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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    What Are You Reading This Summer?

    Good summer reads are hard to come by, good summer movies are even harder. Yet, this summer, the literary goodness has showered nearly bountiful with a collection of thought-provoking non-fictional works and some expected as well as unexpected fictional works. Here is a roadmap for the next four weeks of the summer (presuming, of course, that as faithful readers you will digest a book per week!)

    Week 1. Start with a challenge. Pick up Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner and while you are at it, don’t forget his newest gem, A Thousand Splendid Suns. I first read the former in my freshman writing class here at Stony Brook University. Now, I have pretty much become a fan of this physician’s writing. His latest venture does not pick up from where The Kite Runner ended. Instead, it is an extension of the backdrop of Afghanistan and narrates a tale of two women submerged in 30 years of war history. This is one book that might leave you breathless if your idea of summer reading has been Nora Roberts. But prepare yourself for some more, dare I say, developmental reading.

    Week 2. You have probably already heard of Yann Martel’s Life of Pi. If you are a fan of Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead, this book’s size and metaphors might appeal to your sensibilities. On the other hand, if you hate books of that magnitude, this book’s ability to draw you into a lengthy, yet equally entertaining adventure will still keep you turning page-after-page. For 227 days, you will accompany the main character, Pi, on a boat with a Bengal tiger. And for once, you will take the time to put the book aside to mull over our relationship with nature and question our faith. But, onto less heavier reads…

    Week 3. Give a try to Above the Law, Below the Springs by none other than, a timeless comic, Woody Allen. Mostly about rural crime reporting, words in this work simply string together to make you laugh at almost every other sentence. I can assure you that your extremely bored neighbor at the beach will not hesitate to take a peek at this read. Even lines out of context, such as ‘The driver, Beau Stubbs, had recently escaped from San Quentin, where he had been incarcerated for littering,’ sound funny now.

    Week 4. I want you to end with something different. Think of it as a summer resolution. Crack open one of the most-uniquely contemporary biographies I have read – Einstein by Walter Isaacson. This work brings forth new information from some of Albert Einstein’s personal letters. Isaacson’s writing is phenomenal and fresh and as a former Managing Editor of Time Magazine, he introduces a human interest narration that smartly bridges the divide between physicists and non-physicists.

    So, here is a collection that should keep your summer busy. If even a single book outlined above pops a question in your minds, don’t ignore it. Dare to answer it. Summer reading, after all, should be more than just straight reading.

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