The perfect summer, fall reads to get into now

Melaina Lawrence

Staff Writer

 In April, Netflix aired the first season of Heartstopper. Readers and nonreaders alike fell in love with the TV show, and while it is absolutely perfect, I must suggest that you dive into the graphic novels first. The series, by Alice Osman, is the perfect summer read. It features all the angst of young love, and the perfect amount of quirkiness that will leave you wanting more of Nick and Charlie, which is exactly what Osman delivers in her next novella, Nick and Charlie.

Here, we learn even more about our inseparable pair. Except, Nick leaves for university soon and Charlie still has a year of school left. Prepare to find out if all first loves are in fact doomed to fail. After reading and falling in love with all the characters, then and only then, is the best time to then snuggle into a blanket and binge the TV series and fall for them all over again.

It should be everyone’s mission to read at least one Taylor Jenkins Reid book this summer. So, to get you started, I suggest the Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. Monique Grant’s life is not exactly pitch perfect at the moment; her husband has left her, and her career is not exactly where she hoped it would be by now. Evelyn Hugo, a Hollywood star, recruits Monique to write her biography and so the story sets off with them in Evelyn’s apartment with Evelyn reciting the journey of her career, her seven husbands, and forbidden love. Now you, like Monique herself, may be wondering why her? Why a random journalist that isn’t even at a top position at her firm to tell the story? Well, read to find out all the ways the lives of both women intersect. 

This next read is more heartbreaking than the previous two, but precious, nonetheless. In You’ve Reached Sam, Dustin Thao presents the heartbreaking story of Julie and Sam. The two make plans for their lives and relationship beyond high school. Sam dies. Heartbroken, Julie decides to call him one last time. To both Julie’s and my surprise, Sam answers. Just as he promised he’d always answer if she calls. She has a chance to say goodbye properly, but does she want to? Is she willing to now let Sam go? In their story, we get to see the most devastating story of a first love, but also have the most beautiful experience reading about relationships–both the romantic and friendly kind.

 In Instructions for Dancing, Evie no longer believes in love. She has seen it fail time and time again all around her and has decided it is not worth the pain. While donating old books, she gets one in return that has the address of a dance studio. After receiving the book, she also has this new power of seeing how couples first met and all the heartbreak that will tear them apart. Upon visiting the studio, she meets X. His lifestyle involves saying yes to everything and living spontaneously. It was never in the cards for Evie to fall in love, but when the spark begins with her and X will she be able to let herself fall completely and irrevocably in love knowing the risks involved?

 To end us off on a gory note, the next suggestion is a horror novel, To Be Devoured by Sara Tatlinger. This unnerving read is about Andi who develops an obsession with vultures. As she watches them devour their carrion, she observes that the vulture in some ways, have simply immortalized their prey—vultures have been around for ages, and anything they’ve eaten becomes a part of them. A mere observation turns into a burning desire to not only join vultures but to emulate their lifestyle, including feeding habits. Andi has to know what a carcass tastes like, she has a desire to sink her teeth into rotting flesh that cannot be tamed. Stitching together wings of her own, she hopes to join a flock of vultures and gain her freedom. This read is not for the queasy or faint readers, but definitely worth checking out if you can handle it.

 This summer, take some time to cuddle up with a good book and fall in love with (or hate, your choice) characters and stories.

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