You are a year or two away from finishing school. It is time to make some big decisions and dive deep into study mode. Your parents are worried, the school is emphasizing performance, and you are trying hard to do your best to secure good marks.
In the middle of all this chaos, taking some time to sit on a rainy evening with a cup of tea (or coffee, your choice) and a book will go a long way in keeping you rejuvenated. Here are some books that will not just entertain you, but will enrich your knowledge as well.
Make sure to tick them off well before you prepare yourself for college!
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
I would rank this book right at the top of the list of books one must read. It has been written from the perspective of a high functioning autistic boy. According to the author, the book is about being an outsider, being different.
When 15-year-old Christopher discovers his neighbor’s dog dead, he decides to find out what happened to it, just like his favorite detective Sherlock Holmes would.
Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy
A book I’m sure anyone in school will relate to. Dumplin’ is a hilarious, roller coaster ride that revolves around the life of Willowdean, an overweight high school girl, who is comfortable with herself and her body.
Fearless and intelligent, she signs up for a beauty pageant to show the world that she deserves to be there as much as anyone else.
Sita by Devadutt Pattanaik
If you are looking for your dose of mythology, Devadutt Pattanaik is the author to go to. A mythologist in his spare time, his stories of the Indian gods are not just re-told for a contemporary audience, they are explained with their metaphors, too.
Also, all his stories are accompanied by illustrations, making them simple to understand.
The Prophet by Khalil Gibran
This book is almost eternal in its meaning and ageless in its demographic.
If you are feeling tired, blue or have questions about anything, turn to the warm, comforting words of this Lebanese poet to soothe your soul.
Train to Pakistan by Khushwant Singh
If you have a taste for history and a particular interest in the events that happened during India’s partition, this is a must-read. Based in the border town of Manu Majru, the book chronicles the horrors of the country’s partition, bringing to light stories of loss, cruelty, religious violence, and several poignant issues that are relevant in our society even today.
The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
India and its mythology are so intrinsic that you cannot escape from its multitude of stories. What sets this book apart is that it recounts the Mahabharata from the point of view of Draupadi, also known as Panchali. As you read this book, you will understand the complexity of the popular Indian epic from a completely different perspective.
Malgudi Days by R.K. Narayan
Few can master the simplicity of R.K. Narayan’s stories, which continue to enthrall generations of readers. A collection of short stories based in the fictional town of Malgudi, this book is a look at simpler times. It gives you a glimpse into what life is like in a small town. It also beautifully captures the essence of India and its people.
A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
This book will evoke various emotions inside you — anger, happiness, sadness and a sense of knowing. Set in Mumbai during the 1970s emergency, the book masterfully weaves the story of four central characters from different backgrounds. The book will bring to light and challenge many of your notions of politics and society.
A Clutch of Indian Masterpieces: Extraordinary Short Stories from the 19th Century to the Present by David Davidar
The title says it all, really. This collection of 39 short stories is from an entire century of writers, starting with Rabindranath Tagore. David has done an exceptional job curating these stories that will expose you to the country’s rich storytelling tradition and will change your perspective of life as you read them.
Matilda by Roald Dahl
Even if you have not watched the movie, you can experience the magic of Roald Dahl’s world through the eyes of his beloved ingenious character Matilda. A telekinetic who uses her powers to help people, Matilda is a laugh riot and a classic from the master of children’s tales.
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