Monday, August 20, 2018

Top Ten Books to Get You Out of a Reading Slump

I'm linking up with That Artsy Reader Girl for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Some housekeeping first: I can not get Disqus to send me notifications as of my last three blog posts. It just stopped working, and Disqus will not provide personal troubleshooting unless you're a paid customer, which is ridiculous. So I apologize for not realizing I was getting comments on here! If anyone has any suggestions (besides disabling and re-enabling notifications, which I already tried), please let me know!

Most avid readers have had the experience at least once of getting into a reading slump. For me, this looks like making excuses to do other things rather than pick up any of the books I'm currently reading. When I do pick up a book, I can't focus on reading because it's not holding my attention. In those times, it's great to pick up a book that sucks you in and can be read in a couple of days. Here are ten of my recommendations if you find yourself in a reading slump.

1. The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
This book is like Forrest Gump meets Ocean's Eleven where Forrest is now 100 years old. After a century of unwittingly getting involved in most of the major world events, our protagonist leaves his nursing home and falls in with a group of small-time criminals. It's bizarre and funny and the characters are delightful, and the book never takes itself too seriously.

2. Bossypants by Tina Fey
This is the female comedian memoir that every female comedian has tried to emulate since it came out. It's both funny and fascinating, a good combination of jokes, true stories, and life advice that you'll eat up in no time.

3. Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
A suspenseful thriller is one good option for getting out of a reading slump. This book is narrated by a high schooler accused of murdering her best friend, told in nonsequential passages flashing between the fatal Spring Break trip and the trial. It's definitely young adult (having my book club of mostly older adults read it was an adventure) but I loved it.

4. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
Frankie isn't allowed to join her school's secret society because she's female, but she finds a way to infiltrate it and pull the strings to get the guys to do her bidding and pull off subversively feminist pranks. It's a fast-paced, suspenseful book as you wait to see if and how Frankie will get caught, and also a great read about some of the less-obvious consequences of a patriarchal society.

5. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
If you've somehow managed to get this far without reading this yet, this will definitely pull you out of a reading slump. Even my husband, who rarely reads, blew through this in no time at all because he couldn't put it down. The farther in you go, the twistier the plot becomes!

6. Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
I dare you to read this without laughing out loud! Lawson is hilarious and weird and has the most bizarre true stories.

7. Pastrix by Nadia Bolz-Weber
"Shit," I thought to myself, "I'm going to be late to New Testament class." So opens this amazing, honest, beautiful, cranky memoir about how to navigate being a Christian when you generally hate people but just can't stop believing in God. This may just pull you out of a reading slump and a faith slump.

8. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
This is another book that my non-reader husband couldn't put down. It's more or less a straightforward adventure book, but set in a virtual world in the near future with a puzzle to solve that requires both skill and knowledge of '80s trivia.

9. Still Alice by Lisa Genova
This book about early-onset Alzheimer's definitely isn't a fun or light read, but I did find it very readable and would recommend it as a book to get absorbed in when everything else is too dense or dry at the moment.

10. When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
When all else fails, read an adorable YA romance! Unlike most YA romances, which I find too cliché (it was love at first sight!) or dramatic (OMG which boy will I choose?), Dimple and Rishi are both sweet, realistic characters who are trying to navigate conflicting life priorities and expectations.

What books would you recommend for a reading slump?

Looking back:
One year ago I was reading: Infinite Jest and We Should All Be Feminists
Five years ago I was reading: The Age of Innocence and The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Ten years ago I was reading: The Book of Sarahs

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