Great Summer Reads for College Students

Summer is a great time to relax, catch up with friends, and take a break from studying and schoolwork. Summer is also a great time to catch up on your reading. I’ve had many friends tell me that school can take all the fun out of reading, but now is a great time to sit back, relax, and crack open a good book. If you’re like me and always looking for a great new book, check out some of the books below. Happy reading!

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao – Junot Diaz : This novel, published in 2007, was the winner of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize. The book follows the life of Oscar, a young Dominican boy living in New Jersey whose obsession with science fiction and fantasy isolates him from his family and peers. The book also focuses on the lives of Oscar’s sister and mother, the Dominican diaspora, and the legacy of dictator Rafael Trujillo.

Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls – Alissa Nutting : This collection is divided into eighteen short stories centered on different women, each with different occupations and professions. These include Zookeeper, Alcoholic, Porn Star, and Ant Colony: a story about an actress who houses a colony of ants inside her bones. These stories are both surprising and evocative.

The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven – Sherman Alexie : One of my favorite books of all time, this book of interconnected short stories follows two young men living on a Spokane Indian Reservation. This is one of the only books that makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time.

Fun Home – Alison Bechdel : This autobiographical graphic novel centers on the childhood of author Alison Bechdel and her complicated relationship with her father. Bechdel is a very talented artist, and her drawings are reason enough to read the book, but the manner in which she exposes the profound and nuanced way that families leave their mark on each other is masterful.

The Oregon Trail is the Oregon Trail – Gregory Sherl¬† : This collection of poetry, inspired by the computer game of the same name, is both irreverent and profoundly moving. The first poem of the collection, “The Oregon Trail Taught Me How to Love,” begins, “In my dreams, we always ford the river./In the wagon, I cover you with blankets/when you sleep. You often dream of ghosts/while I hunt bison wherever bison live”. This is a great collection, especially for those who have not had much exposure to contemporary poetry.

 

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Brianna Low

Brianna Low

Brianna Low is a rising senior at DePaul University pursuing a double major in English and Spanish. Brianna enjoys reading, writing, and traveling. She currently works for DePaul's Art Department as a receptionist and hopes to one day work in a library. Brianna is happiest when surrounded by books.
Brianna Low

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