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What's on your reading list?

February 11, 2009

Leslie Braat

I've been reviewing applications since November, with a couple of months still to go before we mail our decision letters. I've noticed quite a few students' essays discuss a love of reading, an obsession with reading or an addiction to books. Many teachers are describing students as being "voracious readers".

So I wonder if you would offer your suggestions to me? While I enjoy reading application essays, it's nice to take a break and I'm looking for some books to add to my reading list. Do you have a favorite book or author to recommend? Thanks in advance!

Responses to this Entry

I've been reading The Omnivore's Dilemma, and it's fascinating! I'm not sure how I managed to never read it before. It's also all about food, so it makes reading it at lunchtime particularly fun.

Posted by: Elizabeth on February 11, 2009 10:36 AM

In the same food vein, I'd highly recommend A Cook's Tour, by Anthony Bourdain. He travelled around the world searching for the perfect meal... and not just the classic comfort food. He ate snakes and drank with Russians and rode camels and got lost in Cambodia. It's a great book, and a good escape from Oberlin.

Posted by: Ma'ayan on February 11, 2009 11:30 AM

Faulkner! Faulkner! Faulkner!

Also "The Rest Is Noise" by Alex Ross, and "Music Downtown" by Kyle Gann.

Posted by: Will on February 11, 2009 4:13 PM

"The Devil's Highway" by Urrea...a compelling narrative about immigration!

Posted by: Alice on February 11, 2009 4:53 PM

If you remember my ED app essay about Zhuangzi, you might be interested in reading this Taoist classic. It's a great read, only if you can spare an ample amount of time to contemplate on his esoteric poems and what they mean. It's certainly not a beach reading, but the challenging nature of all Chinese classics is definitely worth learning it.

Posted by: Yun Jin Joo on February 11, 2009 5:56 PM

The Dark Side by Jane Mayer. It's not pretty, but a good read.

Posted by: Max on February 11, 2009 8:07 PM

The Arrival, by Shaun Tan. We read it in Dan Chaon's "Graphic Narrative" class and I honestly think it's one of the best books I've ever read. It has no words, just images.

And "Middlesex." And "Kafka on the Shore."

And any play Tom Stoppard wrote, particularly Arcadia.

And the poem "Sunny Prestatyn" by Philip Larkin.

Posted by: Aries on February 12, 2009 2:11 AM

Among the Missing, Falling Man, Bee Season, and F. Scott Fitzgerald's short stories.

Posted by: Stephanie on February 13, 2009 6:20 PM

I second Kafka on the Shore, or anything by Haruki Murakami. "The Wind-up Bird Chronicle" and "Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World" are great as well.

Posted by: Kate on February 13, 2009 10:46 PM

"The Shack" by William Young

Posted by: Christina on February 14, 2009 10:34 PM

I just finished reading the sequel to "The Omnivore's Dilemna", it was called "In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto". It was really interesting and from now on I'm definitely looking at the ingredients list before I eat anything. Right now I'm reading, "The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down" by Anne Fadiman. It's one of the best I ever read. Anything by Agatha Christie like the Poirot or Miss Marple series is good too.

Posted by: Harriette on February 16, 2009 4:29 PM

It looks like Murakami's been taken, so I'll go ahead and suggest Paul Auster's The Brooklyn Follies. It's fun and hilarious, and is still considered Serious Fiction by the fiction powers that be.

Posted by: john on February 20, 2009 1:38 AM

Try anything by Paulo Coelho or Yann Martel. I'm in the middle of "This is your brain on music" a great psychological study of how our brains and minds work with music.

Posted by: JJ on February 22, 2009 10:14 PM

Nice info and can give an inspiration. its interesting for my kids education blog in indonesian language. thanks ps: can you give me a link from this blog?

Posted by: Membaca on February 25, 2009 2:04 AM

I would suggest Aleksey Tolstoy and his "The Hyperboloid of Engineer Garin" and "Aelita". Science fiction, yes, but extremely enjoyable (words from a girl who never reads sci-fi)

Posted by: Aulikki on February 28, 2009 6:14 AM

"The Orphaned Anything's" - Stephen Christian
Christian's the lead singer of the band Anberlin =P

Posted by: Mark on March 1, 2009 4:04 PM

"The Orphaned Anything's" - Stephen Christian
Christian's the lead singer of the band Anberlin =P

Oh really? I'm gonna read this book sometime. I like Anberlin!! :-)

Posted by: Liang Yiting on March 6, 2009 11:01 AM

I like the style a lot: first-person stream of consciousness. I'm not sure if that is the correct way to describe it, but it's the closest to which I can come.

And concerning Anberlin: I'm still confused as to whether I like them or not...

Posted by: Mark on March 6, 2009 10:25 PM

Kabul Beauty School by Deborah Rodriguez

It is a memoir of an American women that decided to open up a beauty school in Afghanistan in order to help women there. People often say it is "a window to the life of Afghan women." It is also an eye-opener, and a beautiful story despite the disturbing facts that occur in Afghanistan. I hope you enjoy if you do read it!

Posted by: Stephanie Fernandez on August 18, 2009 11:01 AM

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