Top Ten Books that Make for an Easy Distraction
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Top Ten Books that Make for an Easy Distraction

Sometimes we need a distraction - why not try a book?

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Top Ten Books that Make for an Easy Distraction

Ally Carter recently posted a thread about why she writes novels that don't tackle serious issues, but are light and funny instead. She cited a time when she took her friend's children to the movies so they could be distracted from how much their lives had been changing at home and said that this day is what made her stop feeling embarrassed about the fact that her books are light and funny. Her outlook changed because she realized that even though her books aren't tackling serious issues, they can help people escape what's making them sad and make "a sad person smile". She concluded her thread by urging people to create and write the stories they need to read because there are other people that need to read them too.

When we got the news that our spring break would be extended, and eventually that we would be finishing our classes remotely, I found myself spending a lot of my time doing things I don't normally have time to do during the semester. One of those things was picking up my never-ending list of books to read.

Even though I was enjoying finally cracking away at my list, part of me was starting to feel guilty about how much time I was spending escaping and wondered if I should be using all of my time educating myself, instead of sharing time.

The past three months have arguably been the most difficult and troublesome times any of us have probably ever faced. It's been a time where paying attention to the news and keeping yourself educated has been incredibly important, but for some, there can also come a point where educating yourself can get overwhelming, and like Ally said, there comes a point when you feel you need to be able find your mini escape, so I want to share with you ten books that make temporarily distracting yourself easy.

1. ) Love, Rosie – Cecelia Ahern

Love, Rosie is an epistolary novel, following Rosie Dunne and Alex Stewart's lives from their early childhood until they're in their fifties, depicting everything through emails, letters, and instant messages. This novel is so easy to get lost in – it's cute, it's funny, romantic, nostalgic, it can be serious, it can be raw, emotional, and you'll find yourself laughing and crying along with Rosie on all of her crazy escapades, and at its core is the importance of friendship. Something that I think is so special about this book is its elements of realism – this book covers everything from childhood, broken hearts, friendships, loss, having children – and even though I was completely lost in the story, I still found that when I finished the novel, I had learned so much about my own life from it. The book harps on things like friendships, communication and miscommunication, the concept of home, and struggling to find the happiness that you've been dreaming of since childhood. Cecelia Ahern has such a gift in being able to write passages that are important to the story in itself, but that also so applicable to life outside of the story's context as well, which is another thing that makes this novel so special.

p.s. listen to Dan + Shay's album Where it all Began when reading this, it'll make it even more special, I promise!

2.) Anna and the French Kiss – Stephanie Perkins

This is one of those novels that will make you wish you lived in a book and gives you faith you're going to meet the love of your life. It's easy, especially in college, to get jaded about love and realize that love isn't as simple as you thought it would be when you were a child, but this book will reignite that hope you once had and bring you back to what it felt like to be a kid again. It starts when Anna moves from Atlanta, GA to Paris to attend a boarding school for her senior year, and let's be honest, we all wish we could've gone to high school in Paris.

3.) Wanderlost by Jen Malone - or - I See London, I See France by Sarah Mlynowski

Both of these are travel novels where a girl travels across Europe and falls in love, and since we can't really be traveling right now, these are the perfect fix and the perfect dose of romance!

4.) The Fill in Boyfriend – Kasie West

Honestly, anything written by Kasie West is an absolute masterpiece and all of her books will give you those perfect love butterflies, but if I had to pick, this one stands out amongst the rest. I literally read this book in one sitting; it's the perfect mix of relatable high school drama, empathetic and dynamic characters, and romance.

5.) Breakfast with Neruda – Laura Moe

This is a novel about two characters who meet while completing community service over the summer. It's a greatly character driven novel – it has a great romance arc, but the characters and their backgrounds are what drive the plot, not their romance. It has a great tie in with the poet Pablo Neruda, and like Cecelia Ahern's novel, there were some great quotes about life and writing in here which are applicable both to the plot of the novel and to our lives as readers as well.

6.) All Fall Down – Ally Carter

This is the first book in a trilogy called Embassy Row, which depicts the lives of the kids who live in their country's embassies in a place called Adria. Even though Ally said she doesn't write about serious topics, this is a brilliant novel which tells Grace's story after she witnesses the death of her mother and is struggling with various mental illnesses. This book is wildly compelling and you empathize and struggle with Grace as she pieces together the aftermath of her mother's death and realizes that love might just be within reach. It's a quick and captivating read, and just one piece of an exciting and intense trilogy, where nothing ends up as you'd predict.

7.) Flawed and Perfect – Stephanie Perkins

This is a short series that takes place in a society that lives under strict rules, and if even one is broken, you can be branded Flawed. They are two super unique novels that include budding, adorable, and realistic romance while highlighting the importance of empathy to make a masked critique on our society. They are so easy to get lost in, but will also really make you think about the world we live in. [Flawed takes a little bit to really get into the story, but once you do, it's completely worth it!]

8.) Emergency Contact - Mary H.K. Choi

This is a quick read about a college freshman who meets a boy in a coffee shop and they become each other's emergency contact. Though the two rarely speak or see each other outside of their ongoing string of texts, they're able to sustain a relationship and support one another until their walls are broken down and they put themselves to the test to see if they can be something more. It was a cute and nostalgic read, and the characters are so realistic that it felt like I was just as much a part of their story as they were.

9.) Distant Waves – Suzanne Weyn

This is a unique historical fiction novel that plays upon the events of the Titanic and mixes it with science and the supernatural. It's also special because there's so much to learn from the story if you're interested in it, [i.e. about history and inventors who usually don't get the necessary recognition] but you'll still love the story even if you don't like history, because the historical facts are only supplementary to the story. It's a quick and easy read, and has a wholesome teenage romance which, like Perkin's and West's books, will give you those nostalgic love butterflies. This has, and always will be, one of my favorite novels.

10.) A Visit from the Goon Squad – Jennifer Egan

This is a novel I read for class and was probably the most captivating and entertaining books I've ever found on a syllabus. The story traces the lives of a group of friends and people those friends know, and each story is told through a different person's point of view. It is not told chronologically, and it's like a puzzle that you, as the reader, get to put together as you read, the whole time battling with the question: who the Good Squad?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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