10 Must Reads for This Summer

Whether you're relaxing on the beach or rewinding after work on a sweltering summer day and find yourself wanting to get lost in a story or learn something new, look no further. The following is a list of 10 books I have hand picked, varying from classics to newbies, which are perfect to be read in the warmer months.

Please note, this collection of short stories, poems and novels are best read with a cocktail in hand. So grab a drink, stretch out under the sun and enjoy a guaranteed solid read this summer. 

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1. Palo Alto - James Franco

'Palo Alto' contains a collection of painfully youthful stories, written and compiled by the multi-talented James Franco, yes he not only acts but writes well too. With a slightly nostalgic feel, Franco's portrayal of teenage awkwardness and rebellion is intimate and close to home for many. These stories will transport you back to memories of your youth and allow you to appreciate the teenage experience through the eyes of various characters.

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2. The Course of Love - Alain de Botton

De Botton's novel tells the story of a married couple who become irritable and contentious after their 'honeymoon' stage has ended. The Course of Love shows that life after falling in love isn't as simple as 'happy ever after'. Vividly realistic, having fallen deeply in love, the couple "marry, they will suffer...they'll sometimes want to murder one another and on a few occasions to kill themselves. This will be the real love story". It will make you deeply empathise with the couple as an embodiment of an imperfect relationship which may mirror many of our own and of others we know.

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3. The Catcher in the Rye - J. D. Salinger

The epitome of coming of age stories, Salinger's painfully relatable novel details the adventures and pitfalls of a young Holden Caulfield in metropolitan New York of the 1950s. 'The Catcher in the Rye' deals with adolescent isolation and loneliness and proves being an outsider is not always a downfall. Best read multiple times to grasp the existential concepts and underlying issues the novel contains. 

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4. Jasper Jones - Craig Silvey

This thrilling mystery details the investigation of the murder of a young girl which is undertaken by an unlikely pair. Soaked with Australian scenery and language, Silvey's book is the perfect balance between teenage angst and life threatening issues. A perfect summer read that pushes the boundaries of small town beliefs and values and showcases the strength of friendship in the face of trauma and racism.

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5. the sun and her flowers - Rupi Kaur

Rupi Kaur has blessed us mere mortals with yet another collection of poetry, one which delves even deeper than her first release. Whether you're a poetry lover or not, you will find something for you in this collection as Kaur deals with some of the most profound and widespread life events,“wilting...falling... rooting...rising and blooming”, in her writing. 'the sun and her flowers' is a heart felt beautiful assortment of words, strung together expertly.

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6. On The Road - Jack Kerouac

 

Jack Kerouac's classic will drive you to want to go on a road trip, with no destination. Set in America in the 1950's, the central character, Sal Paradise, travels around the country documenting his experiences and observations of those he meets on the way. Racing towards sunsets with his mysterious buddy Dean Moriarty, their seemingly never ending journey is filled with jazz, sex, drugs and adventure, enough to keep you turning page after page to see where they end up.

Memorable quote - "the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn"

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7. Honeyed Stories - Elle-Louise Burguez

Artist by trade, Elle-Louise Burguez injects her innate creativity and unique view of the world into 'Honeyed Stories'. Burguez fills 180 pages with her personal experiences and melodic poetry, sweet like honey, to make for a relaxed and inspiring reading experience.

Memorable Piece: "We began our life inside the core of a mother, of course, we now sometimes seem lonely"

 

 

 

 

 

8. The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

If you liked Baz Luhrmann's 2013 dramatic adaptation, you'll love the heart and soul of the original. Fitzgerald's evocative novel is an outsiders tale, through the eyes of Nick Carraway, which shows the fallacy behind the facade of a life of glitz and glamor. If you didn't study this piece to death in High School, this one is a must read for any time of the year. 

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9. Girl Boss - Sophia Amoruso

The inspiration behind the hit Netflix show, this biographical book follows the uprising of the young and passionate Sophia Amoruso, the eventual creator of the online sensation 'Nasty Gal'. Amoruso's writing is set apart from the sea of other inspiring biographies through its reliability and the way it delves into the real struggles we face in life and business.Written and compiled in a fun and interactive way, you'll be inspired to to get off your butt and kick goals after reading this one.

 

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10. A-Zine - The Team

Keep updated with all things art, fashion, politics and culture through new and exciting content published every week by the hardworking gals behind the operation. We have big plans for the summer, as I'm sure you all do to, so stay tuned and be sure to come visit the blog when you're not too busy relaxing, book in hand, under the sun. 

Christina Karras