September Book Recommendations
by Dimitra Karagiannopoulou
Summer may have officially ended, but our summer mood remains. Some of you may be eagerly awaiting the return to university, while others are wondering how the holidays passed by so quickly. Whichever is the case for you, here you will find some book suggestions that will either prolong your summer feeling or pull you into autumn escapades.
Call Me by Your Name, Andre Aciman (2007)
Seventeen-year-old American-Italian Eliot is on the edge of adulthood, witty and ready to seize his future. Twenty-six-year-old American student Oliver, a summer guest at Eliot's parents' house, seems to have everything under control. Between them will be created a passionate summer romance in Italy of the 80s.
Andre Aciman's novel depicts youthful love as it is: intense, impetuous, and unforgettable. His poetic writing takes the reader on a journey to the Italian Riviera and back in time, to his first love.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky (1999)
What's it like to cross the strange, uncharted world of high school? Freshman Charlie is set to find out. Cunning and shy, he defines himself as a wallflower. He tries to adapt to high school and ends up part of a group of seniors, among whom is the humorous and confident Patrick as well as the beautiful Sam. These siblings, full of life, will inspire him to be himself and entice him into the unexplored paths of adolescence through music, the Rocky Horror Picture Show, and, of course, love.
It's a deeply touching coming-of-age story that will remind you of the carefreeness and dramas of high school, as well as this perfect song that makes you feel infinite.
The Outsiders, S.E Hinton (1967)
The rivalry between the Socs and Greasers, two teenage gangs from different social classes, lasts for a long time. The Socs are the popular rich kids who have fun drinking and hitting the Greasers who are poor and are considered bad kids by the way they dress and behave. Fourteen-year-old Ponyboy, a member of the Greasers, knows two things: that he can always rely on his brothers and friends and that they will never be able to defeat the Socs. But everything will change one night after which he will understand that things are not always as they seem
The Outsiders is an authentic and real novel that, although it is addressed to teenagers, also touches the hearts of adults. I would recommend this book as, through its characters, we realise that finding yourself is difficult for everyone, regardless of social status.
The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger (1951)
Sixteen-year-old Holden Caulfield, the offspring of a wealthy New York family, recounts the events that took place in December 1949, when he was once again expelled from his boarding school. Fearing the reactions of his parents and not having anyone to trust, apart from his little sister, he takes us with him on an emotional roller coaster journey in this beautiful coming-of-age novel.
The author, using the protagonist as a narrator, makes the story realistic, while the provocative language conveys the revolutionary teen that we all hide inside of us. It is a wonderful story in which the hero tries to salvage innocence in a world of phonies.
My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologises, Fredrik Backman (2013)
This book was recommended to me by my best friend and is now one of my favourites. Its protagonist is seven-year-old Elsa, who has a hard time making friends. Her only friend is her grandmother who everyone considers as completely wacky. In the evenings she finds sanctuary in her grandmother’s stories about six imaginary kingdoms where no one is obliged to behave normally. But everything changes when her grandmother gives her a mission: to deliver a bunch of letters to people with whom she had argued and wants to apologise to.
This is a touching and subversive novel that highlights everyone's right to be and live as they choose, make mistakes, and apologise for them.