You don’t have to say you love me: A Memoir – Sherman Alexie
This stunning memoir filled with angry, funny, profane, tender memories of a difficult childhood is the result of the complicated relationship the author shared with his mother and the introspection that followed after. Sherman Alexie’s bond with his mother Lillian was more complex than most. Her passing away shook Sherman and his remembrance of her with the incongruities that defined his mother. Featuring 78 poems, 78 essays and intimate family photographs, the unflinching and unforgettable remembrance is a powerful, deeply felt account of a complicated relationship.
Quote- “My name is Sherman Alexie and I was born from loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss and loss.”
Hunger – Roxane Gay
The author, after a devastating incident of sexual abuse, sadly came to believe that if she ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if she made herself big, her body would be safe. In her novel replete with candor and vulnerability, Roxane explores her own past and what it means to learn to take care of yourself in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes. She has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health
Quote- “My father believes hunger is in the mind. I know differently. I know that hunger is in the mind and the body and the heart and the soul.”
Kafka on the shore – Haruki Murakami
In what can be called an extremely strange but magical novel where cats talk, fishes rain and other strange things happen, Murakami does what he does best – blending popular culture, mundane detail, magical realism, suspense, humour, an involved plot, and potent sexuality. Metaphysics is a central theme of the novel and other bold themes are self-sufficiency, the relation between dreams and reality, the threat of fate, omens and prophecies, and the influence of the subconscious. Kafka on the Shore is a tale by two remarkable characters and thus displays the storytelling prowess of one of the world’s great storytellers.
Quote- “Silence, I discover, is something you can actually hear.”
The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Easily one of the most read, translated and celebrated novels, The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince in French) is a novella that spans the journey of the author Antoine de Saint-Exupery who was exiled to North America after the onset of the Second World War. In the midst of personal upheavals and failing health, he produced this moral allegory and spiritual autobiography which is a tender tale of loneliness, friendship, love, and loss. The book comes with a timeless charm that tells the story of a little boy or the Prince fallen to Earth who leaves the safety of his own tiny planet to travel the universe and learning the intricacies of adult behaviour through a series of extraordinary encounters.
Quote- “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
The rules do not apply: A Memoir – Ariel Levy
In her memoir, Levy spills words for the adventure and heartbreak of being “a woman who is free to do whatever she chooses.” This honest memoir picks you up and hurls you through the journey of the rise of her unconventional life and its downfall all with great speed. For someone who wanted everything but realizes we can’t have it all. Her story of resilience becomes an unforgettable tale of the shifting forces in our culture for Levy like much of her generation was raised to resist traditional rules about work, about love, and about womanhood.
Quote- “There is nothing I love more than traveling to a place where I know nobody, and where everything will be a surprise, and then writing about it. It’s like having a new lover—even the parts you aren’t crazy about having the crackling fascination of the unfamiliar.”