As Oscar Wilde famously said: The only thing to do with good advice is to pass it on. It is never of any use to oneself; in this case, books. I love asking my friends for advice, book recommendation, as well as researching for new ideas, creatives, and sharing them with others. So on this last (for now) edition of 5 Books Recommended By Friends, I give you books from diverse genres, authors of diverse backgrounds, and literature that will make you see the world in another way.
1.Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton
Summary: Mortals rule the desert nation of Miraji, but mythical beasts still roam the wild and remote areas, and rumor has it that somewhere, djinn still perform their magic. For humans, it’s an unforgiving place, especially if you’re poor, orphaned, or female. Side summary: Rebel of the Sands reveals what happens when a dream deferred explodes—in the fires of rebellion, of romantic passion, and the all-consuming inferno of a girl finally, at long last, embracing her power. via Goodreads
Recommended: Very fun read visually pleasing, but some parts really were not that exciting(especially the middle). Enjoyed how it took place in the Middle East and the strong female-lead protagonist.
2.Blue Is the Warmest Color by Julie Maroh, (Ivanka Hahnenberger -Translator)
Summary: A graphic novel about growing up, falling in love, and coming out. Clementine is a junior in high school who seems average enough: she has friends, family, and the romantic attention of the boys in her school. When her openly gay best friend takes her out on the town, she wanders into a lesbian bar where she encounters Emma: a punkish, confident girl with blue hair. Their attraction is instant and electric, and Clementine find herself in a relationship that will test her friends, parents, and her own ideas about herself and her identity. via Goodreads
Recommended: Graphic novels are the best, but sometimes the progression was confusing, but that was the only downside–there’s a film out now so you can watch it, it helps when you don’t understand some sections of the book. Overall, the book was amazing, appealing and I’d recommend it to anyone.
*The book is originally written in French so that might be why some things were lost in translation*
3. The Eternaut by Héctor Germán Oesterheld,
Summary: For the first time in English, this seminal Argentinian science fiction graphic novel whose main character is still viewed as a symbol of resistance in Latin America.This originally appeared as weekly installments from 1957-59. Juan Salvo, the inimitable protagonist, along with his friend Professor Favalli and the tenacious metal-worker Franco, face what appears to be a nuclear accident, but quickly turns out to be something much bigger than they had imagined. Cold War tensions, aliens of all sizes, space and time travel-this one has it all. via Goodreads
Recommended: The book and the story itself were informative, inspiring, and educational. I did some research in between because I wanted to immerse myself in history and I’m glad I did. An eye opener loved the relationships and dynamics of the characters. Interesting to know/learn that the author was a victim and he wrote this from a first person point of view
4. The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, Mattias Ripa (Translator Part 1), Blake Ferris (Translator Part 2), Anjali Singh (Translator, Parts 3 and 4)
Summary: The story of Satrapi’s unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming–both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland. It is the chronicle of a girlhood and adolescence at once outrageous and familiar, a young life entwined with the history of her country yet filled with the universal trials and joys of growing up. via Goodreads
Recommended: Once you pick up this book you won’t want to put it down. This was my first graphic novel, so I was a little hesitant, but I loved the “as a matter of fact” protagonist and the sequence of events. It felt as if I was living through the revolution and I could visualize everything. I enjoyed the book and since I’m big on memoirs/semi-autobiographies, this book and the subject matter kept me intuned.
5. Shanghai Baby by Wei Hui
Summary: Publicly burned in China for its sensual nature and irreverent style, this novel is the semi-autobiographical story of Coco, a cafe waitress, who is full of enthusiasm and impatience for life. She meets a young man, Tian Tian, for whom she feels tenderness and love, but he is reclusive, impotent and an increasing user of drugs. Despite parental objections, Coco moves in with him, leaves her job and throws herself into her writing.
Recommended: This one is recommended by yours truly, I enjoyed this book, the characters weren’t one-dimensional (except for maybe one), which is what I loved about the book. Everyone had layers and insecurities and that was refreshing to see. The book also addressed entitlement, indulgent, “abnormal” relationships, and mental health and so much more. I’d recommend this book to anyone who enjoys semi-autobiographical work, characters who sometimes indulge in affairs and self-loathing, quarter-life crises, settings in China, is kind of a “coming of age” and “finding your place” in this thing we call life kind of book.
Rate: 3.5/5 (the book can get overwhelming, so take some time for yourself when you read it)
Check out my Review
Hope you enjoyed this list, please look forward to the next edition: Books That I Would Not Recommend But You Might. Check out the first and second part below.