Friday, June 27, 2014

My Summer Reading List

Summer has officially started as of last weekend!  I think most people I know are out of school now, too.  That means it's time for summer reading, especially for those of you who take weekend trips or longer vacations!  One of my favorite things to do is pick up a good book and get lost in it for hours and hours. Sometimes, audiobooks work better for me, so I listen to them as I blog or clean.  It definitely makes chores more enjoyable!   Maybe that's a better option for you.   This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

Without further ado, here are my top ten books to read this summer.  They are in no particular order.

1.  The Fault in Our Stars by John Green- This story is about Hazel, who has terminal cancer.  Her doctor encourages her to join a support group, where she meets a boy named Augustus.  The story follows Hazel and Augustus along their adventures.  Hazel's story is completely rewritten.

My goal was to read this book before the movie came out.  It was a great read.  Hazel is hilarious.  It is definitely a book you can read in one sitting.

2.  Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail (Vintage) by Cheryl Strayed- This story is about a young woman who lost her mother, had her family scatter, and whose marriage was destroyed.  She decides to go on a 1,000+ mile hike along the Pacific Crest Trail through California, Oregon, and Washington.  She did it alone as well.  It is the story of the journey that strengthened and healed her.

I will begin this book soon.  The movie with Reese Witherspoon comes out this fall/winter, so I would like to read it before then.  I have such admiration for people who choose to go on journeys such as this, so I thought it would be a fantastic read. 

3.  House Rules by Jodi Picoult- This story is about a young boy with autism who has a specific interest in forensic analysis.  He is always showing up to crime scenes and telling police officers what to do.  There is a murder in his hometown, so the police come to him.  However, they start to think that behaviors characteristic of Asperger's are guilt.  The family has to do a lot of soul-searching to determine if he really did commit murder.

I've been wanting to read this book for awhile now, but never had the time.  Jodi Picoult books are always fantastic, and I'm sure this one will not disappoint.  I respect her for taking on difficult topics, especially since she spends a large amount of time researching every aspect of those topics.

4.  The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism by Naoki Higashida- This is a memoir which details how a person with autism thinks, feels, perceives, and responds.  It is a unique perspective on autism but also life in general.

This is the first book in Simply Speech's Summer Book Club.  I also think this will be a great book to help me try and understand what is happening inside the heads of some of my students.  I think the book will provide great insight and will better my practice as an SLP.

5.  Twirling Naked in the Streets and No One Noticed: Growing Up With Undiagnosed Autism by Jeannie Davide-Rivera-  This is another memoir of a child growing up with autism.  However, Jeannie did not discover that she had Asperger's syndrome until she was an adult.  She chronicles her life starting at age three and working her way through adulthood.  The book discusses issues and "weirdness" she has faced daily.

What first drew my attention to this book was the title.  It just sounds interesting from that alone, doesn't it?  I often wonder if there are people (including students of ours) who go undiagnosed and what life is like for them.  I also have a family friend who experience something similar, so I thought I would read it to better understand what he and his family are going through.

6. The Best of Me by Nicholas Sparks- Amanda and Dawson fell in love one summer in high school, but they decided to part ways.  Years later, they are brought back to the same town for the funeral of a mutual friend.  Neither can forget the love they felt for each other.  That weekend, they are forced to discuss painful memories and make decisions about moving forward.  In true Nicholas Sparks style, the story is told from different points of view.

I have always liked Nicholas Sparks books and the movies made based on them (The Notebook, anyone?).  This one particularly interested me because of the story line and because reviews had mentioned a hint of mystery involved.

7. The Vow: The True Events that Inspired the Movie by Kim Carpenter-  Two months after they were married, Krickitt was in a car accident that left her with a traumatic brain injury and in a coma for a few weeks.  Krickitt woke up and had no idea who Kim, her husband, was.  She also experienced some personality changes that come with traumatic brain injuries.  Against all odds, they fell in love again, and this book tells that story.

Traumatic Brain Injury is something that has interested me recently.  It is so fascinating and affects everyone differently.  Of course, I saw the movie when it came out a few years ago.  I never got a chance to read the story from the Carpenters themselves, though, and am looking forward to doing so this summer.

8.  The One and Only by Emily Giffin-Shea has spent her entire life in Walker, Texas.  She lives and breathes football, so she stays in town to attend college and ultimately work at the college after graduation.  An unexpected tragedy strikes the town, and Shea begins to discover the truth about the people and things she has trusted the most.  The story is about her confronting her deepest fears, desires, and secrets as well as stepping out of her comfort zone.

Emily Giffin is actually from my hometown, and I always like to support people who make it big from there.  She has written several other novels that I enjoyed, so I thought I would check this one out.  Besides, it's been getting a lot of press coverage ever since it was released a month or so ago.

9.  Save the Date by Mary Kay Andrews- This story is about a florist who has the opportunity to do a huge wedding which will make her career.  However, she doesn't believe in love.  The bride goes missing, and the wedding is therefore up in the air.  The story follows Cara as she searches for the missing bride and discovers what she truly believes about love.

This book has been on many must-read lists for this summer, so I thought I would add it to mine.  It sounds cute and would be an interesting read before my wedding this fall!

10. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart- This story is about a distinguished family who prides themselves over appearance.  It is the story of four friends (The Liars) whose friendship is ultimately destructive.  It is about revolution, an accident, and a secret.

This book has been suggested by so many people.  Once you start, you may not be able to put it down.  It is apparently full of twists and turns that will make you not want to stop until the end.

What are you reading this summer? 

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