Melanie Kibler

LAKE MICHIGAN CATHOLIC – While Christmas break is full of hanging out with friends and family, there is a point when you either need a break from the craziness or just have nothing else to do.  Instead of going and watching television, a much better way to spend your time is by reading a book.

Now you might be thinking I don’t know what to read or I don’t like to read.  If you don’t know what books to read, well this list is for you.  If you don’t like to read, well too bad these books are amazing and you should read at least one of them (there is no particular order to these books, other than in the order I thought of them).

  1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling

I know this is not a new series, but that doesn’t mean it is not one of the best series of all time.  I dare you to read this book and not fall in love with the characters.  In case you don’t know, this book is about a wizard named Harry Potter whose parents were killed by a dark wizard.  He doesn’t know he is a wizard until he gets a letter from Hogwarts.  There he, with the help of his friends, goes on an adventure to stop something horrible from happening. While this book does have some dark magic in it, the amount is very small and unimportant.  The main theme of this whole series is that sticking with and listening to friends you can overcome any evil.

  1. The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

This is the first book of a series as well, but instead of magic it is about teenagers who have abilities that the FBI spend years training to get.  The FBI round up a group of 5 teenagers with these special abilities (Cassie, a natural profiler; Dean, also a natural profiler; Micheal, natural emotion reader; Lia, natural lie detector; Sloane, a natural with numbers and probabilities).  The story follows Cassie, whose mother died when she was very young.  She is recruited for this “Naturals Program” and finally feels like she sort of fits in.  Then she starts to receive threatening gifts from an anonymous source, who the FBI suspects is a serial killer that they are trying to catch.  This is a mystery that you will not want to put down until you figure out “whodunit.”

  1. The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner is the first book in a sci-fi dystopian series.  In this book a group of boys are trapped in a maze with no memory of where they came from before.  There is a box in the middle of the place within the maze that the boys live and it regularly sends up supplies and other boys.  Thomas is sent up and decides that they need to find a way out of the maze that they are trapped in.  Then the whole world that the boys know is tilted on its side when a girl is sent up, rather than a boy.  This is a story of people who are unwilling to give up and want to save others, even if it ends up killing them.  It’s a good book to read if you’re looking for a fun story with an awesome adventure.

  1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

There might be a recurring theme with first books of series happening, but try and prove it.  Cinder is a Cinderella retelling in a futuristic world.  Cinder is a cyborg who lives with her mother-in-law and her two sisters.  She works as a mechanic in a booth at the market place in New Beijing. Then her younger step-sitter contracts a disease, called Blue Fever, so her step-mom sells her to be used to help with researching this disease.  There she finds out that she is not what she seems and with the help of the doctor she decides to overthrow the Lunar government.  (The Lunars are a race of people who live on the moon.)  There is a lot to this story and I know that this review is kind of confusing.  Just trust me when I say this is book with amazing characters and an awesome story.

  1. When the Wind Blows by James Patterson

Look, a book that isn’t part of a series.  When the Wind Blows is an amazing book written by James Patterson, but it isn’t like all of his mysteries.  The book’s main character is a vet named Frannie O’Neill whose husband was murdered.  No one will tell her what happened and if they have any idea who did it.  Not long after her husband’s death another strange murder occurs.  The FBI sends out an agent by the name of Kit Harrison to try and figure out what is happening.  He ends up staying in Frannie’s guest house.  Strange turns to weird when Frannie finds a girl named Max who has been scientifically altered to have wings.  Frannie helps Max and together they uncover science that is both inhumane and evil.  This is a very impactful and wonderful book that is definitely worth a read.  

  1. The Lord of the Flies William Golding

This is an older book that is very famous, but just because it is taught in school sometimes does not mean that it isn’t a great book.  The Lord of the Flies is a story about what happens when a plane with all boys crash and there are no adult survivor.  The boys try to make a government and divide the work among all the people, but it doesn’t stay that way for long.  Quickly some of the boys break off and start their own government, but it is much darker than they planned.  I won’t go into all the details because I don’t want to ruin the book.  If you don’t mind reading something that is more than a little disturbing, then this is the book for you.  It’s more than just disturbing, though, it teaches many life lessons throughout the book.

  1. Tick Tock by Dean Koontz

Dean Koontz is an author that is known for having some of the most terrifying books of all time, but don’t worry, this is the only book he has written that won’t stop you from sleeping at night.  Tommy Phan is a novelist who has everything he ever wanted.  This all changes one night when Tommy comes home and finds a white cloth doll on his front porch.  He brings it in his house and that’s when he hears the strange popping noise.  He looks over at the doll to find that the stitching on its heart and eyes breaks off.  Something evil was living in that doll and for reasons unknown to Tommy, it wants him dead.  It follows him wherever he goes and not only that, but it has given him a message on his computer: The deadline is dawn.  TICK TOCK.  The book is both funny and suspenseful.  It will not let you put it down until it’s finished.

  1. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Almost everyone has seen, or a least knows of, the movie Jurassic Park, well what if I told that it is based off of a book.  I know it’s crazy, but it’s true.  The book was written by Michael Crichton, who researches all the science that is involved in his stories.  The movie and the book are very simliar.  There are, however, some slight differences.  For one the book goes into a lot more detail and also there are parts that the movie is missing.  The characters are the same, but there are some plot twists that the movie did not cover.  I am not going to tell you what, of course, but if you liked the movie, this book will be great for you.

  1. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

This is one of the best coming of age books of all times.  In this book Charlie is writing letters to someone, we don’t know who, and through those is how he tells the story.  He befriends two seniors that teach him how to truly live life to the fullest.  Before he met them he was the person on the side of the party, but now he realizes how to live.  This is one of those books that can change a person’s life by reading it.  It’s so awesome and really make you think about your own life.

  1. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

This is one of the weirdest books that I have ever read, and trust me I read a lot.  Still, it had to be on the list because of its originality.  This book centers around a man named Arthur Dent who has a friend that is an alien named Ford Perfect.  He doesn’t realise that Ford is an alien until a different group of aliens comes and blow up the earth.  Both Arthur and Ford survive because they caught a ride on the ship that came and blew up the earth.  They then go on an adventure, meeting quite a few odd characters along the way.  It is hard to give you a whole plot summary because there is so much going on.  This book is light hearted, a quick read, and just an all around fun book.

So there you have it, a nice list of all the books that would be great to read if you have some down time over Christmas break.  I hope that you at least read one of these books and also that you have a lot of fun during your break.