Bored of hearing the same book recommendations over and over again? Well look no further; here are five weird, wacky, yet amazing books you may not yet have heard of. Finally, you will be able to fulfil that dream of being the hipster book reader of your friendship group.
1). Flux by Ferret Steinmetz
For lovers of fantasy or sci-fi, this book should definitely be the next you read. Set in a fascinating world where a drug named ‘flux’ can grant you the life of your dreams, those who are brave enough (or stupid enough) to partake, must endure harsh consequences. Sounds amazing right? Well not only does this novel have a compelling plot, it is also published by Nottingham’s very own sci-fi and fantasy publishing company ‘Angry Robot’, so it goes without saying, this book is an absolute must read.
2). Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King
It is an embarrassing fact that I only read this because John Green told me I should. However, I am so glad that I did! The plot is difficult to summarise as this is not a tale about ‘a big event’. Rather, it is a down to earth story of the awkward yet heartbreaking endeavours of fifteen year old protagonist Lucky. He is the most stereotypical awkward teenager you could imagine, yet somehow you will manage to fall head over heels in love with his character. My biggest reason for enjoying this book, however, is the powerful female protagonist Ginny Clemens. Beautiful in both looks and personality, Ginny is sharp, funny and intelligent and is a girl whom we can all be inspired by. This is certainly a book that everyone can enjoy, guys and girls alike.
3). Lucifer: Book One by Mike Carey (Author) and Peter Gross (Artist)
Yes, that’s right, I am including a graphic novel on my list. Although I am usually wary of the graphic novel genre, when I was bought this to read over summer, I was pleasantly surprised at how much the story and illustrations moved me. In this story we are introduced to the charismatic Lucifer Morningstar, who has recently taken leave of hell to enjoy retirement (if retirement involves plotting to build another universe) and thus, the story follows his quest to achieve this feat. If the fact that this sounds too much like a horror story puts you off, I can assure you the elements of horror are overshadowed by the sheer beauty of the poetic style. But just in case you don’t believe me, here is a small snippet: ‘There is a trilling in the wires–a high inhuman sound…and a million cats are mewling in a million hypothetical boxes. A million triggers are pulled…destiny rides on the bullets’.
4). The Garbage King by Elizabeth Laird
This one is a throwback to my high school days. This novel is indeed targeted at young readers, but nonetheless, it will manage to hit you in all of the feels. The story weaves together the lives of two young boys: Dani who comes from a wealthy family and Mamo who is raised in poverty. It seems like these two boys should never have means to cross paths; however, in a crazy twist of events, both end up running away from their respective lives to end up on the streets where their stories combine. This is a book that has stuck with me ever since I read it as a young teenager, and it saddens me that nobody seems to have heard of it. The switching of perspectives coupled with a poignant story of liberation, makes this a story that should be read by all ages.
5). When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr
It suddenly feels like I am having some sort of flashback to my high school days, as this book is also one I read as a young teenager. This book follows the child protagonist Anna who lives in Germany with her Jewish family. In order to escape the danger of persecution, the family moves around Europe seeking a safe refuge. I have to admit that from a synopsis it sounds a little boring. However, Kerr’s decision to write this from a child’s perspective throws us into the terrifying and deeply confusing realm of growing up and not understanding the strange politics of adults. Just like the beloved character of Scout Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird, Anna is forced to understand the harsh reality of prejudice and racism at an all too innocent age. If you love a good Bildungsroman then you will love this book.
Image credited to quattrostagioni via Flickr