Monday, April 23, 2012

5 Books You Should Read

It is another day, and another week. Welcome back to ThibeauTime. This Monday's post is going to be a small list of books that I would highly suggest you take an opportunity to read. Merely a suggestion; advice implies you should do it. I am simply pointing out several examples of great literary works, why I enjoyed them and why I think you will too. I hope that the day has found you all content and at peace. I'm also curious to hear any suggestions you might have for me as reading material. Please feel free to leave some reading ideas in the comments section. So, without further adieu, in no particular order here are five books I think you should take the time to read:

1. The Alchemist by Paul Coelho - This is one the greatest books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. It was recommended to me by a friend from San Francisco some years ago. When I finally got around to it I was a little skeptical; it was short. I was mistaken; not about being short but about judging it. This story follows a young boy who follows the visions of a dream he has. It leads him on an amazing journey which he will not soon forget. What I enjoyed most about this book was the end: it was quite possibly one of the best endings to a story I've ever read. Needless to say everyone in the library was staring at me after I had finished the book. Trust me on this one, it is worth the read.

2. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand - This novel is not for the faint of heart. As far as novels go it is one of the most advanced in terms of language and by far the longest in terms of page numbers that I have ever read. I have read it several times and each time I am required to research or look up something to understand it. I also learn something new from it each time but like I said, if you are looking for a challenging novel to read, this is it. It is a socio-economical-political novel with no exact time setting. It is the story of a mysterious John Galt and the disintegration of society into darkness. I warn you that if you are a staunch Socialist or Communist or anything besides open-minded or a Capitalist you may have a hard time enjoying this novel. Personally I find the book is less about this system or that system but rather is a creation of an entirely different system. Regardless, all I can tell you is that every time I read this book it completely changes my outlook on life. This book changed my life.

3. The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams - If you enjoy nonsensical comedy than this book is for you. A science fiction comedy, it has brought more smiles to my face over then years than I could possibly recount. You may remember that they made this into a movie and although I feel they did a good job on it, it is nothing like reading the book. Adams was a very gifted writer with a very distinct and peculiar sense of humor. This novel follows a young British man after he wakes up one morning where he and the rest of the world discover that the Earth is being demolished to build an inter-stellar highway off-ramp. That is just the beginning of the silliness. If you are looking for a book that will keep you smiling and make you laugh while at the same time keep you engaged, look no further and of course: Don't Panic (you'll get that if you read the book).

4. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury - This novel took me a long time to read. I had learned about it in English class in High School and though it always peaked my interest, I never got around to reading it for many years. When I finally did, I was not disappointed. The story is based in the not-so-distant future where Firefighter's no longer fight fires, they start them. Books are illegal in this sci-fi future and the Firefighter's are the one's responsible for burning them once someone is discovered with an illegal stockpile. It is an interesting and unique perspective of the eventual results of total censorship; especially when one considers the current events going on today. You should really pick this one up; short, sweet and to the point. Do not watch the movie; I have yet to see it but I have heard many terrible things. Stick with the book; at least I know for sure you're certain to enjoy.

5. 1984 by George Orwell - I am sure to some of you that this particular choice is of no surprise to you considering my recent anti-government actions with the Occupy Nova Scotia movement. Heck, it may be that novels like this influenced me to question my government and not let them just get away with criminal activities. Regardless, if you have been unfortunate enough to not have read this great, short novel by one of 20th century's greatest authors, go out and do it now. You will not be sorry. Another futuristic novel where the government has enforced complete censorship and control of the population through fear and manipulation (not very much unlike the war on terror and other such manipulations and propaganda going on around the world). They have even pilfered the language of the people into something they call doublespeak. I can explain that without you ever having read the book. This language of doublespeak is almost like the sort of conversation you have on your cell phone when you text. Illegible, unintelligible, incomprehensible ramblings of abbreviations and semi-words. Language to dumb down the people because an uneducated population is easier to control. Trust me when I say you should read this; it is more important now than the paranoid nuclear period in which it was written.

Of course there are just an endless amount of fantastic pieces of literature out there. I've only mentioned five here today and those were also works of fiction. I could write a seemingly endless blog post on all the great novels or writings I have read that I think would positively influence you in some way. However, there are other days coming and other blog posts to write. This will not be the last time I offer you suggestion on reading material I have come across over my life that has influenced me in some way. I hope you have the best day you can with what you have and remember: Don't Panic.