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Best Books to Bring on Vacation

A relaxing vacation is a great time to dive into a compelling novel. Whether you’re looking for something to kill time on the plane or a way to unwind on the beach, reading a good book can hit the spot. Here are a few recommendations based on genre that will be a journey of their own:

If you’re looking for a love story that’s equal parts deep sighs and dark secrets, check out “Confess” by Colleen Hoover. The book explores the importance of honesty in relationships through Auburn Reed’s relationship with a the mysterious artist, Owen Gentry. Owen is keeping important information from Auburn: Confessing could destroy their relationship, but it also might be the only way to save it.

“Confess” is intriguing and emotionally honest, and will leave you wondering whether ignorance can really be bliss.

If you poured through “Gone Girl”, check out the author’s debut, “Sharp Objects”. Follow along as Camille Preaker, a young reporter returning to her home town for a story, investigates the murder of two young girls. Her research into the crime reveals more about Camille than she bargained for, and she ends up uncovering some of her own mysteries.

Equal parts haunting and gripping, “Sharp Objects” tackles the ways trauma echoes through one life and into others.

“John Dies at the End” by David Wong falls solidly in the dark end of the comedy spectrum, set against a solid backdrop of abject horror. David Wong (not the character’s real name) and the titular “John” come across a strange drug (“soy sauce”), which opens their minds to surprising things, like floating jellyfish or people who suddenly explode. It’s a rough time for David and John, who have to fight off the sudden onslaught of monsters while coming up with an excuse for all of the dead bodies that keep appearing around them.

This book is enormously funny, and the humor doesn’t lighten the eerie mood one little bit. Pick it up for a cross-genre novel that will creep you out and crack you up all at once.

Don’t be discouraged by this books “Young Adult” status: “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak should be on your to-read list. Book lovers of all sorts will find a kindred spirit in Liesel Meminger. This young girl living in Munich during World War II finds solace in stolen books. This story goes to show the impact books can have on our lives, and their uncanny ability to give us light even in the most serious kind of darkness.

Rajia Hassib’s debut novel, “In the Language of Miracles” highlights how tragedy can send shock waves through a family. After moving from Egypt, the Al-Menshawy family experiences a complicated loss: their oldest son kills himself after murdering a neighbor. They not only have to work through losing a son, but also dealing with the horrific acts that led to the loss.

Hassib delicately and beautifully weaves through the emotions the family experiences, focusing on each member individually. It also shows how the family’s Islamic background affects not only their internal struggles, but also the way the community around them reacts to the tragedy. Nuanced and heartbreaking, this book will give you that ache in your chest that only comes from a genuinely touching story.

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