Beach Reading

Okay, classes of 2017 and 2018: I know you’ve got another seven weeks or so before I give you a quiz, but I’m curious about what you’re reading now. I just finished The Book Thief and I’m about to begin The Free State of Jones. I anticipate that I’ll take some brain candy to the beach a little later this summer. Plus, I promised Kishan Patel (the younger) that I’d make a valiant effort to finish The Mahabharata this summer.

What are you reading? How good is it?

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18 Responses to Beach Reading

  1. Vivian Van says:

    We need to have a discussion about The Boof Thief. Personally, I am working on reading the list for UE II.

    • Thomas_Easterling says:

      As I mention above, I enjoyed The Book Thief—it’s solid. Do you think it’ll be the sort of book that’s taught in classes in 20 years?

      • Jenny Nguyen says:

        Vivian, I agree. A discussion about The Book Thief is needed. I read the book first and then watched the movie, but it struck a chord both times. (And by struck a chord, I really mean that I cried while reading the book and watching the movie.)

        Right now, I am trying to make it through Hamlet. However, my summer reading has been mostly journal articles about DNA and DNA repair mechanisms. (I can already hear Wagner and her laughing).

  2. Jax Dallas says:

    I’m currently reading Beowulf for the “recommended” reading for UE II. It is an interesting read, primarily due to the age of the text but to say it is dry is an understatement. What I’m really looking forward to reading is big bad love by Larry Brown, hopefully I can pick it up soon. Also I read the book thief last summer and I loved it, death as a narrator was fascinating to me.

    • Thomas_Easterling says:

      YAY! Larry Brown! You’ll love BBL—move through Beowulf lickety split to get to it. (As I say in class, the whole reason for the history of the English language is to get to 20th Century American Literature.)

      The Book Thief is solid. Having Death as the narrator allows a kind of dispassionate discussion of intensely personal, painful things—though I do think Death gets a bit sentimental occasionally. Keep reading!

      • Jax Dallas says:

        I am really excited for BBL, I really enjoyed dirty work. After that I am out of ideas for things to read. I would like to get more versed in southern (or even Mississippi) literature. Do you have any suggestions?

        • Thomas_Easterling says:

          Lots of scholars look at Walker Percy’s The Last Gentleman as the book that ushered the South into its post-Faulkner era. It’s beautifully written, which is often code for “not much happens.” But I like it. My favorite brain candy from the region is James Lee Burke’s Dave Robicheaux series; Greg Iles is a Natchez author of all kinds of thrillers; Harrison Scott Key is the male answer to the Sweet Potato Queens. See what you think.

          • Jax Dallas says:

            Thanks, i’ll definitely check those out and report back at the beginning of the year.

  3. Griffin Emerson says:

    Beowulf (the Seamus Heaney translation at least) is amazing! It’s one of the few legitimate looks into a foreign, yet strangely familiar, era available to us. Of course, it’s not something to curl up with; the poem’s like reading a newspaper from the fifties: interesting, but not entirely engaging for those who know how the story will end. There’s also an unopened copy of paradise lost sitting on my dresser next to an unwrapped stack of post-it notes. The next few weeks should be exciting.

    (I’ve also been enjoying Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time series as a guilty pleasure. There’s not much substance, but it brings back warm memories of the… *gulps and hangs head in shame* …Lord of the Rings series…)

  4. Jackson Sparkman says:

    Let the Circle Be Unbroken. Its the sequel to a Pulitzer Prize winning book, and a fantastic book about racism in Mississippi

  5. Darby Meadows says:

    Over the summer I tried to read The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography. Sadly, I was not able to finish it. I have trouble reading it because it is like reading a textbook, but the little I read taught me a lot. I hope one day I will be able to finish the book!

  6. DeeDee says:

    The Color Purple is good to me. I watched the movie first, so I kinda just wanna see how good the book is in relation to the movie. It is an epistolary novel about the life of a young woman subjected to rape and abuse, both verbal and physical, so it seems like it will be cool.

  7. Kayla Patel says:

    Over the summer I read Me Before You, and to be honest I had only heard of it once before the news of it becoming a movie. I read through it in about a day and a half, and it was amazing! Not only about the love story, but it also makes you think about life and how short it is to wait for anything. A really big point made in this book is to not limit yourself to what is “normal” or in reach, sometimes you have to reach for what you can not see and hope that is it there. Strive to be what you want to be and do not compare to others because they are not you!

  8. AK Mynatt says:

    I just finished We Were Liars by E. Lockhart. It was different than most of the reading I do. Throughout the book, the reader is confused about what is actually going on. Then at the end, there is a huge plot twist that explains everything. This book was not just a good read for me, it was also a lesson. The author is successful in efficiently maintaining the reader’s attention as well as promoting a few ideals to live life by.

    “Be a little kinder than you have to.” -We Were Liars

  9. Brent Styles says:

    Over the summer, I read a few books on the history of physics and mathematics. Most of them were left unfinished, as I lost the will to finish them. I hope to eventually regain interest in these books and pick them up once more. One of the authors is Anne Rooney who wrote both The Story of Physics and The Story of Mathematics.

  10. Kamal Bhalla says:

    As of right now, I am reading a book called Please Look After Mom which is by a Korean author who talks about a family whose mother gets lost in a subway station. The story unfolds from each family member talking about their mom and how they regret doing the things that they did. This books can make oneself reflect on their family and how they are making an impact in it, and seeing if that impact is a good one or not.

  11. Samuel Patterson says:

    I am reading the fault in our stars, my physics concept book, and reviewing the wonderful sonnets of John Donne. My readings are awesome and I am really enjoying them all.

  12. Shuchi Patel says:

    Over the summer, I read the Fault in Our Stars. I then proceeded to watching the movie. The book was pretty enjoyable, but is overrated like any other young adult novel. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I did not expect what happened to happen. It was a good quick read.

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