April Book Recommendations


Molly Bomar, Journalist

Mid-January I gave a drawn out spiel on my personal reading goals for 2021 and some recommendations to kick off the year. I know we are deep into the rough stretch of the spring semester while our schedules are packed full of academics and end of the year celebrations, but I thought an update on some recent reads and more suggestions would be worthwhile. 


Artforum by César Aira


A novel originally written in Spanish follows a no-name narrator whose obsession with the art magazine, Artforum, leads him to spend years and extensive amounts of money to find each and every monthly copy. After the subscription company proves its inconsistency, the narrator contemplates his purchases and true necessities in a materialistic society. 


With the challenging, symbolic search and lack of structure within the plotline, Artforum tells the story of Aira’s eccentric struggles and psychological observations. 


There were some chapters in this short story I truly want to reread over and over again. Aira’s wordplay and humanitarian awareness is not only fascinating but eye opening in an all-consuming world. 


The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 


While most of us read this book during middle school, we probably were unable to fully grasp the density of darkness from World War II. As many world history classes focus on the gruesome times of wars, The Book Thief portrays the widespread death in a lighter fashion while still representing the intensity of the time period. 


Told from the perspective of Death, the novel is loosely based around young Liesel Meminger, an orphan and rebellious girl, whose love for reading is looked down upon in Nazi Germany. Struggling to find her way in a broken nation, Liesel finds peace in stealing books and befriending the hidden Jew in her basement. 


Similar to “Jojo Rabbit”, a 2019 film which pokes fun at the Germans’ submission to Adolf Hitler, The Book Thief sheds lights on the few that resisted silently. A quality presentation of the culture and tense lifestyle, the poignant word choice and storyline will tug at your heartstrings and remind you of the basic freedoms we take for granted.


Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë 


Classic literature is always a must-read! Despite the tough word choice and slightly incestual bloodline, Wuthering Heights is enthralling and a fascinating look into the early 19th century. 


If melodrama, romance, and gothic fiction interests you, Wuthering Heights is the book for you! Told through multiple points of views, Catherine Earnshaw, despite passionate temptations, allows societal class to infiltrate her lovelife. Marrying into a wealthy family leads to revenge and bitterness; the following generations soon follow suit. 


Painted under romanticism and a multitude of romantic affairs, the tragic plot line is thought evoking. It is absolutely impossible to not immerse yourself into the drama and intense character-driven story Brontë develops. 


It is completely plausible that some have read these books and do not agree with my opinions, but please remember these are simply suggestions from different genres and older literature. I personally enjoy page-turning and thought-provoking novels, though am just one person. 


Stay tuned for more suggestions for summer reads!