A&L Desk Recs: must-read books

Illustration by Grace Everett | Photo Editor

By Erianne Lewis | Arts and Life Editor

Finding time to read for leisure in college can be extremely difficult sometimes. If you are able to find a 20 minute break, then the bigger issue becomes finding what to read. Don’t worry! The A&L desk & friends are here to give you some of our favorite book recommendations.

Erianne Lewis | Arts and Life Editor & Rachel Royster | Editor-in-Chief

“The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Erianne: I will always recommend this book, because it honestly was the first book I read outside of class in years. It sparked my joy for reading again, and it was such an easy read. It has several elements of what I consider to be a good read: romance, drama, death and a twist.

Rachel: My desk, my windowsill and the chest under my TV are all stacked high with books, but the “Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” has a special place right next to my bed beside the book I’m currently reading. It’s the only book on my Goodreads account with five stars and a review, which says a lot because I typically refuse to leave reviews for anything. This fast-paced fiction novel pulled me in even further every time I thought I’d had the plot all figured out. It stole my attention away from Netflix, friends and the Irish scenery I was surrounded by over the summer — and you won’t hear me complaining one bit.

Avery Ballmann | Arts and Life Writer

“Everything Everything” by Nicola Yoon

I’m not the biggest book worm, but when I have time I like to read young adult romance novels. My favorite book I’ve ever read is “Everything Everything” by Nicola Yoon. This book is about a girl who is immunocompromised and cannot go outside because she will get very sick. However, she falls in love with the boy next door and escapes her bubble to be with him. The author’s writing is beautiful, and there are so many twists and turns throughout the book.

Emma Weidmann | Arts and Life Writer

“On the Road” by Jack Kerouac

Road trips, poetry, jazz and indefensibly horrible main characters — if you like those four things, I have a feeling you’ll like “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac. This is one of those books that spoke to a generation of washed up, counter-cultural rebels in the mid-20th century. It spoke to me with its sense of adventure and entertained me with its characters’ messy, chaotic lives. “On the Road” is a book you can live through.

Ruhi Thapar | Arts and Life Intern

“The Shadow of the Wind” by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

This is an incredible book which combines rich historical fiction with mystery and fantasy. It is poignant, superbly written and overall almost impossible to put down. I highly recommend.

Clay Thompson | Arts and Life Intern

“The Haunting of Hill House” by Shirley Jackson

Yes, this was a book before it was turned into movie and Netflix adaptations. A perfect book just in time for spooky season, “The Haunting of Hill House” delves into not only the supernatural, but also shows the worst horrors the human mind can create when it is afraid.

Tatum Mitchell | Opinion Editor

“Book Lovers” by Emily Henry

This book made me laugh out loud and ugly cry all in one sitting. Book Lovers is not your typical romantic comedy, you will fall in love with the characters just as hard as they fell for each other. It’s the definition of a page turner, and if you aren’t a romance novel fan, you will be after reading this book.

Matt Kyle | Assistant News Editor

“Dune” by Frank Herbert

All hail Shai-Hulud. After getting hooked on the movie last year, I needed more of the “Dune” world, so I bought the first book. It’s a great story full of twists and turns set in a rich, developed universe full of interesting characters and lore. For those patiently waiting for “Dune: Part Two,” set to be released next October, reading the book is the perfect way to satiate your craving for spice.