National Book Month: Five Ing Staff Favorites to Add to Your Reading List

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Nothing is quite as soothing as getting cozy with a nice cup of hot tea or coffee and a good book to keep you company, especially during chilly months. So it seems almost perfect that October is National Book Month; temperatures are dropping, pumpkin spice lattes are back, sweaters are being brought out of storage and it is the best time to curl up with a good book.

In honor of National Book Month, some ing staff members are sharing their favorite book.

Allison Bertram,
On Writing by Stephen King

“My favorite book is Stephen King’s memoir, On Writing. It was published in 2000, but there’s a 2010 edition with an updated book recommendation list. King writes stories about his personal life, analysis on his famous characters and vital tips for writing and editing. He even includes his own copy editing excerpt on one of his short stories. This was “the book” that really got me inspired to become an editor myself, and his tips helped me become a better writer in general.”

Reyna Hurand,
Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier is the first of a historical fantasy series called Sevenwaters. It’s a retelling of an Irish Legend. The main protagonist is Sorcha, the only daughter of Lord Colum. An evil enchantress casts a spell on her six brothers, and the only way to break it is for Sorcha to stay completely silent. From there, we follow her long journey. (I don’t want to give too much away!) I highly recommend this book. Juliet Marillier is one of my favorite authors. She mainly writes historical fantasy novels, and her stories are extremely compelling. Daughter of the Forest has everything: magic, romance, action, drama—you name it.”

Danielle Schwartz,
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

“The book takes place in what is now Ghana and paints a picture of the slave trade’s centuries-long effects. The story begins with Maame, who flees her village immediately after giving birth to Effia. Less than a year later, she starts a family in another local village, giving birth to Esi. Effia and Esi are unaware of each other, even when Effia finds herself married to James Collins, a powerful white man, and living in the Cape Coast Castle, where Esi is being held in a dungeon with hundreds of other women being shipped to America. With one chapter dedicated to Effia, Esi and 12 of their descendents, readers follow a single family line from the birth to the abolishment of slavery. Intense, emotional and eye-opening, I would recommend Homegoing to everyone.”

Kelsie Donaldson, The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp

“Published in 2008, this book follows Sutter Keely, a hilarious, impossible-not-to-like teenage boy, as he navigates his senior year of high school—and his breakup with long-term girlfriend Cassidy. Enter Aimee Finicky, a quiet, nerdy girl that might just be the one to snap Sutter out of his alcohol-filled and carefree life. As the year and their relationship progresses, Aimee and Sutter teach each other things about life—that is, the past, the future and the spectacular now. Although the characters are in high school, the book touches on many adult themes, and the characters’ discussions about the unknowable future are sure to resonate with any college student. Above all, The Spectacular Now is a book full emotions good and bad, so grab a box of tissues and prepare to feel all the feels.”

Jessica Kukla, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

“For those unfamiliar with the story, Gone Girl is about an unhappy housewife who slowly frames her seemingly perfect yet cheating husband for her murder. Gone Girl is my staff pick because it was fun to read, but totally left me unsettled; you root for both characters, but also kind of hate them. We can’t help but feel empathy toward Nick as his life falls apart because his wife got jealous of his 22-year-old mistress. At the same time, you’ve got to admit, Amy is totally brilliant and badass for getting revenge on a cheating husband.”

Emma Moller is a junior majoring in professional writing. She hopes to take her dreams and goals to the big city one day, but for now she can be found sipping on Starbucks, listening to Alternative Rock, and trying to find her aesthetic. Follow her on Twitter, @_emma_moller, and let her know how that aesthetic search is going.

Tags: books, gone girl, national book month, staff picks