YA literature is juicy, hot, delicious, and filling -- but is that enough?
Whether you’re a young-at-heart adult like us, or a real live bona fide teenager, we could all use some variety in our literary diet. It’s like the food pyramid, but with books: consuming different genres, styles, and subjects will help you grow strong and healthy bones -- er, brains. So if you’re trying to figure out how to add veggies and fiber to your reading feast, we’ve got a few tasty ideas.
(Note: This will be a recurring feature. Probably. Unless you hate it. In which case, we weren’t here and this never happened.)
THE LANGUAGE OF FLOWERS by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
Recently we stumbled onto this absolute GEM of a book. Seriously, go get it now and be prepared to transform.
The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. Now eighteen and emancipated from the system with nowhere to go, Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But an unexpected encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning what’s been missing in her life. And when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness.
You will laugh and groan at Victoria’s social ineptitude. You will scream at her when she is SO FREAKING CLOSE to happiness but still can’t figure out how let herself have it. Your heart will break and mend, break and mend.
Do yourself a favor and read this book. It’s too lovely not to.
BRIDGET JONES’S DIARY by Helen Fielding
Maybe you’ve heard of this one? (Or watched it. Mmm, Colin Firth…) Well, even if you’ve seen the movie, the book is worth a read. But be warned: you might find yourself snorting with laughter, so don’t drink anything unless you’re cool with it coming out your nose.
Bridget Jones’s Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget’s permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement -- a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult -- and learn to program the VCR. Over the course of the year, Bridget loses a total of 72 pounds… but gains a total of 74. She remains, however, optimistic.
In a world full of vampires, werewolves, and fallen angels, not to mention evil governments and brutal battles to the death, we could use an awkward, optimistic heroine. Bella may be wish fulfillment, and Katniss may be a role model, but Bridget Jones is real. Bridget Jones is the everywoman. Bridget Jones is funny, ridiculous, British. What more do you need?
Well, those are our ideas for today. What about you guys? Read any good non-YA lately?