Mar 31

Springtime Reads

Springtime Reads chosen by charvermont
“Spring, the sweet spring, is the year’s pleasant king” - Thomas Nashe.

Honeycomb by Joanne M. Harris (fantasy; short stories)
This intricately woven collection of short story snippets makes for a metamorphic, fantastical read (with the bonus of completely stunning artwork, too!). Spanning hundreds of years, Honeycomb follows the circuitous life of the Lacewing King, the handsome and wickedly cruel ruler of the Silken Folk. Someday he’ll have to change his heartless ways, won’t he?

Bluets by Maggie Nelson (poetry, memoir)
This beautiful little book is all about the author’s unending love for the color blue. And as flowers start to bloom, the lake unfreezes, and the blue days of April showers return, soon enough all you’ll be seeing is blue. What better way to celebrate the return of color to our lives than with a book dedicated to the complete worship of one? (And, may I add, the single most loved color in the world.)

Poison for Breakfast by Lemony Snicket (realistic fiction; mystery)
Ah, Lemony Snicket: the brilliant mind behind the addicting saga of A Series of Unfortunate Events. Snicket’s latest work, Poison for Breakfast, is a bit different than Unfortunate Events, though just as enthralling to read. It’s a delightful little mystery that involves “the proper way to prepare an egg, a perplexing idea called ‘tzimtzum,’ the sublime pleasure of swimming in open water, and much else” (The StoryGraph). An absolute must-read. 

Love and Friendship by Jane Austen (classic; short stories)
Spring is often regarded as the most youthful and hopeful of the seasons. Love and Friendship is the widely adored collection of Jane Austen’s absurd and satirical juvenilia. It’s the perfect choice to read this spring if you’re looking to relax with a classic, rather than something more modern. Quick piece of advice: Austen’s witty “History of England” is one particularly enjoyable little story to spend an afternoon with, being completely fantastical and silly in every way possible.

Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger (realistic fiction; short stories)
Slightly more mature than the stories of Love and Friendship, Franny and Zooey “brilliantly captures the emotional strains and traumas of entering adulthood” (The StoryGraph). This two-part novel is all about growing up and figuring out who you want to be, centering specifically on the two youngest sisters of the Glass family, who spend their time either at their small liberal-arts colleges or in the Upper East Side of New York City. All that Franny and Zooey want is to know who they are, and to make it through springtime to the summers of their youth. 

The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki (magical realism)
Benny Oh’s father has just passed away, and he’s beginning to hear voices. Soon, though, it becomes clear that what he’s hearing is real: at the library, all truths come into being and Benny discovers his Book (who quickly becomes the guide to all things in his life). The Book of Form and Emptiness will capture your mind and your heart, mesmerizing you with its fantastical concepts.

Circe by Madeline Miller (historical fantasy)
Circe, mythologized daughter of the ocean nymph Perse and the sun god Helios, is newly reimagined in this engrossing story. Having discovered early on in her life that she has inherited no powers from her parents, she turns to the dangerous mortal world of witchcraft. This possession of human magic leads to her irreversible banishment from Zeus’s world. She lives many years in a calm, solitary exile, but soon things begin to change and she must once again choose between her golden lineage and the mortal world of life and death.