Even if you won’t be going on a tropical getaway this spring, set yourself free with these great springtime reads.
Eat, Pray, Love
Author: Elizabeth Gilbert
This memoir, now turned movie, is a must-read. Elizabeth Gilbert leaves behind her comfortable, American lifestyle and her recent divorce to find what she truly needs from life. The author studies three different aspects of herself amid three different cultures: In Italy, she explores the art of pleasure; in India, the art of devotion; and on the Indonesian island of Bali, where she not only finds a balance between the pleasure and devotion but love as well. This book will have you exploring new countries without ever having to step on a plane, making it a great read for spring.
Lunch in Paris: A Love Story with Recipes
Author: Elizabeth Bard
Part memoir, part cookbook, “Lunch in Paris” is a delightful read that will transport you to the City of Lights. When an American student living in London falls in love with a Frenchman she doesn’t anticipate falling in love with his country’s cuisine as well. This love story is filled with French cuisine recipes that will inspire you to get cooking.
Water for Elephants
Author: Sara Gruen
After Jacob Jankowski’s parents die in a car accident, he finds out that they’ve mortgaged everything for his veterinarian schooling. Living during Depression-era America with no money or family to turn to, Jacob decides to run away and join the circus. Once there, he meets an array of interesting characters, like Uncle Al, the circus impresario, who beats up his workers, and August the insane animal trainer. Jacob helps and treats the abused animals of the circus and along the way finds the true meaning of love.
The Book of Awesome
Author: Neil Pasricha
Based on the award-winning blog on 1000awesomethings.com, “The Book of Awesome” will remind you of the small pleasures in life. The book includes 1,000 of the simple things in life we can be grateful for, from hitting several green lights in a row while driving to waking up believing it’s Monday and realizing it’s Saturday. This quick and easy read will surely bring a smile to your face.
Gone with the Wind
Author: Margaret Mitchell
An old classic, “Gone With the Wind” tells the story of spoiled Southern belle Scarlett O’Hara and her struggle to protect her family during the Civil War. Scarlett’s harsh life and her difficulty with love make for an intriguing story set in the Confederate South. Her personal growth will give you an interesting insight into human nature.
The Dirty Life: On Farming, Food, and Love
Author: Kristin Kimball
This memoir tells the story of author Kristin Kimball’s drastic change from city life to country life. At 30-something and with an unfulfilled life as a Manhattan journalist, she interviews a young farmer and instantly falls head over heels for him. Without looking back, she abandons her life in New York and starts a farm with her new love. Kristin finds the commitment she craved for with her husband and their land. After reading ”The Dirty Life,” you’ll be wishing you lived on a farm, too.
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
Author: Gregory Maguire
You’ve seen the play, now read the book. Wicked is the story of the Wicked Witch of the West from the “Wizard of Oz” by Frank L. Baum. If you ever wondered where the witch came from, what her past is like or why she became so evil, this is the book for you. After discovering the Wicked Witch’s side of the story, you won’t be able to see her the same way again.
Author: Veronica Roth
Imagine a society that has you choose your future at the age of 16. In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago this is exactly what life is like. In this alternate society there are five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue: Candor focuses on honesty, Abnegation is all about putting others before yourself and being selfless, Dauntless is for the brave, Amity houses the peaceful, and Erudite’s focus is on intelligence and being studious. On an appointed day of every year, all 16-year-olds choose which faction they will devote their entire lives to. However, Beatrice doesn’t like any of the choices presented to her and makes a choice that surprises everyone, even herself.
The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Written in first person, this young adult novel is a thrilling read for spring. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen lives in a post-apocalyptic world in the country of Panem, formerly known as North America. The Capitol is a highly advanced metropolis that holds absolute power over the nation. This is where The Hunger Games occur, an annual event in which one boy and one girl from each of the 12 districts are selected at random to compete in a televised battle in which only one person will survive. A movie adaptation will be released on March 23, 2012, however, I advise you to read the book before watching the movie.
Everyone Loves you When You’re Dead: Journeys into Fame and Madness
Author: Neil Strauss
Neil Strauss is the author of the New York Times bestsellers “The Game,” “Rules of the Game” and “Emergency.” “Everyone Loves You When You’re Dead” is a collection of 228 candid interviews with famous celebrities, including Lady Gaga, Johnny Cash, Ozzy Osbourne, Britney Spears and Snoop Dogg. Neil Strauss will take you into the lives of some of the most well-known stars, getting past their facade and uncovering who they truly are.