Reading books make you more smarter. This is a scientifically proven fact. I think it was Ernest Hemingway who said, “Hey you, why don’t you read a book?” Then he got loaded, shot his rifle off and curled up to cry in the fetal position, but that’s a different story all together. The point is this: books are the gateway to stuff that was written that you don’t know about yet. TV is great, I love television, don’t get me wrong, but we humans need to read books, if we don’t our brains will fall off. TV can only get us so far because they have these things called program directors. Program directors are people who decide what to put on the screen and, subsequently, into the tortured regions of your mind. With books though, you’re the program director! You decide what’s playing and what’s on next.
Summer is a great time to read books because I heard someone say that once. I’m not sure why it’s any better than fall or winter, but apparently it is. So curl up with a nice book as you get skin cancer on the beach, here’s a list of some great stuff that I’ve read this summer, in case you’re a little indecisive and can’t find any yourselfÃ¢Â?Â¦
Maus I & II by Art Spiegelman
These are the famous graphic novels/long comic books about the Holocaust. The Jews are mice and the Nazis are cats. It sounds stupid but it’s actually really classic and hip, a lot of schools teach it. Plus, comics are easy to read.
Hell’s Angels by Hunter S. Thompson
This is so-called pre-Gonzo Hunter S. Thompson, in other words: he still had most of his classic journalistic integrity intact. I found it to be a great book, very informative, while hinting at the style that would make Thompson a (sort of) household name.
Little Children by Tom Perrotta
This is a novel by the guy who wrote the book Election (it was turned into a movie with Reese Witherspoon and Matthew Broderick, yeah that one). It’s kind of a trashy and light read, but I couldn’t put it down.
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
You have to have a certain kind of stomach to read Bryson in the first place, but you really have to have an iron gut to get through this one. The title sums it up perfectly and I definitely felt marginally smarter when I was done with it.
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
You might have read this in high school but I read it this summer, so get off me. I’m a slow learner. This is Bradbury’s legendary sci-fi novel about censorship. Somebody needs to make an updated movie version of this book.
A Man Without a Country by Kurt Vonnegut
This is famed American author Kurt Vonnegut’s most recent effort. The octogenarian wrote in 2003 and it took me about 45 minutes to read. He’s lost some of his fine-tuning with age but he makes some good points here and there.
Why My Wife Thinks I’m an Idiot by Michael Greenburg
This looked like pure fluff on the surface, but I found a subtle deepness to it that surprised me. Greenburg, an ESPN sportscaster, is actually a pretty good writer. Written in memoir form it details his struggles with adulthood.
Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga by Stephen Davis
I am a sucker for rock n’ roll bios and this is one of the best. Led Zeppelin was one of the most debauched bands of all time but they were also one of the most talented, Davis gives both aspects their due.
Blood Done Sign My Name by Tim Tyson
Half history text and half personal memoir, this book is harrowing tale of racism and murder in the South and more specifically the North Carolina town of Oxford. Well written and engaging, this was probably the most important book I read all summer.