The Giver. I was not expecting to read this book this month, but on an unusually beautiful september weekend I was in maryland visiting a couple of college friends and we decided to read all day in the pool. I finished this book in two sittings, it was so quick, but so good. Jonas lives some time in the future in a kind of Pleasantville ish town where everyone is a bit blah. Everyone joins a family with two parents who didn't birth them, all families have two children, each age group up to twelve years old wears the same clothes, gets particular privileges at particular times, and then after twelve, everyone gets assigned a job to do for the rest of their life. It's a very routine type of society where the members even apologize for things in the exact same way. Jonas is given the most important job in the community and begins to understand what it is to feel, and what it is to love, but he cannot share any of it with anyone else except for his predecessor, The Giver. Jonas beings to realize that he is different and wants more from the life that was chosen for him. It's such a great book, I think I could read it a hundred times and have a different experience with it every time because there are so many components to it. It's definitely a must read.
"The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It's the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared."
A Long Way Down. This book was kind of a disappointment for me. My friends and I decided to start a monthly book club so that we can each read a book together to talk about and this was the first pick. It seemed like an interesting premise, but to be honest, it was just so slow that I really struggled through it. Had we not chosen it to talk about together, I may have actually stopped reading it in the middle, which is something I almost never do. I found the characters really difficult to relate to, and no matter how different characters are from you, the author's job is to make you feel for them anyway, but Nick Hornby didn't do this at all. So I felt very disconnected during the whole thing. I thought all of these grand, life changing events were going to go down, but it turns out the plot was actually a bit awkward and nonsensical. Not my favorite book at all, though there were a few funny quips here and there.
"We spend all those years talking about the stuff that we had in common, and the last few months noticing all the ways we were different, and it broke both of our hearts."
17/25 of my 2014 reading goal complete. Though these books were not on it, check out my paperback lust list for this year.