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Top 5 books to add to your summer reading list

Everyone anticipates the freedom that comes with summer. There is the lack of responsibility, time to lounge and to spend with family and friends. For some, summer is a great time to pick up a new hobby or a new book. Here are just a few recommendations of good reads this summer:

1. “Divergent”

Veronica Roth’s “Divergent” is an action-packed dystopian novel. The adventure unfolds in an alternative, post-apocalyptic Chicago. The main character, Tris Prior, is exploring this new society where people are identified by five different factions. Readers also get a glimpse of romance between Tris and her trainer, Four. This highly-rated book is filled with excitement and will keep you interested the whole way through. It also gives some background to the movie “Divergent,” which was based on the novel and released in March of this year.

2. “Gone Girl”

Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl” is an intense thriller that you will not be able to put down. On the morning of Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary, Amy goes missing. Nick Dunne is wrapped up in the middle and has the community questioning how well they know their neighbors and whether Nick is behind his wife’s disappearance. As Nick tries to defend his innocence, the story unfolds into an incredibly well-written page turner that will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole way through.

3. “Wild”

When author Cheryl Strayed finds herself at her lowest point after the loss of her mother, her marriage and her family at only 22 years old, she decides it is time to do something for herself. After four years she makes the impulsive decision to journey alone across the Pacific Crest Trail for over one thousand miles, with no training and no previous experience. Strayed travels from the Mojave Desert, through California and Oregon to Washington State. The book tells her incredible experience and is filled with suspense, humor and strength.

4. “The Glass Castle”

This memoir by Jeanette Walls spent countless weeks in the New York Times Bestseller list and has received great reviews across the board. The story of Jeanette’s upbringing talks about her stubborn, non-conforming parents, her poverty-stricken childhood, and ultimately her escape. Walls tells how she and her siblings were forced to fend for themselves with a selfish mother and an alcoholic father, and how she was able to get away. The storyline is hard to follow at times, but Walls emphasizes unconditional love, despite her hardships.

5. “The Art of Racing in the Rain”

This novel takes a unique stance, told from a dog’s point of view. Author Garth Stein writes a book about a dog named Enzo, who believes in a Mongolian legend that a dog who is prepared will come back as a human in their next life. His owner, Denny Swift, who is a race car driver and representative at a high-end car dealership, is helped along the way by his loyal companion. Enzo’s journey to become human is a fascinating one and will keep readers intrigued by this unusual but heartwarming story of a man’s best friend.

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