Weekend recs


The perfect teenage love story is about discovery: finding self, a beloved, a messed up world and the promise that love can save the day. Warm Bodies presents this satisfying combination through a zombie Romeo and a living Juliet, outcast from their respective houses, who connect over vintage music and teach the grownups how to get along. Clever writing, flickers of depth, genuine fun without treacle or angst. Also, Nicholas Hoult is adorable. DVD release June 4 — Ramona Wengler


Like Jennifer Egan’s A Visit From the Goon Squad a couple years ago, Jess Walter’s Beautiful Ruins is experimental fiction masquerading as a gripping, plot-driven beach read. A heartbreaking family drama? A lyrical love story? A multigenerational war saga? A hilarious satire skewing the worlds of art, music, and film? Yes! Last year’s universally loved novel, but don’t let that stop you. Read it before the inevitable movie adaptation. — Rachel Berkowitz

animal's people

Set in a fictional Indian city (based on Bhopal), Indra Sinha’s 2007 novel is loaded with quirky characters who are easy to fall for. The narrator, Animal, walk on all fours – he was deformed by a corporate chemical spill – and claims not to be human: he is different, wild, a creature formed from catastrophe. But he uses his animal status as self-protection from intimacy, and despite his protestations, Animal’s story bears universal hallmarks: coming of age and recognizing love’s power despite life’s tragedies. — SSW

2 responses to “Weekend recs”

  1. Bryan says:

    I’m in on 1 & 2. For 3: I taught Animal’s People in my Contagion course last year. My students wrote several blog posts that might be interesting to people who’ve read the novel or want to fish around. Start here and move forward if you’re inclined.

  2. swells says:

    Rach: just bought my first summer read; thanks. One chapter in I’m dreaming of plane tickets to Cinque Terra.