5 books to read while you're on lockdown
We all have time to kill. There's no better way to do it than kicking back with your favorite beverage, a bit of quiet time, and a good book. Here are five timely books to get you through these odd days.
1) Man's Search For Meaning by Viktor Frankl
Yeah, okay, not exactly a pick-me-up read. Frankl is a holocaust survivor and he recounts his days in the concentration camp, so be prepared for some heavy stuff here. But he also examines humanity's resiliency and analyzes what exactly makes us human at our core: our ability to react to a situation in any way we want. Seems like a good time to do exactly that.
2) The Institute by Stephen King
Kids trapped in isolation in a creepy, sterile building in the woods of Maine? I think we can all relate to the feeling of being trapped. King's novel hums along with an unnerving tone throughout; and as always, there's a monster. But this monster doesn't lurk in sewers or feature slimy skin or big sharp teeth. It's all about humanity, once again.
3) Brass by Xhenet Aliu
I'm throwing this one in, even though it doesn't have much thematically to do with the rest of the list, for a couple reasons: First, it's set in my hometown, Waterbury, CT, and it's written by a Waterbury native; second, it is such a great read, and Aliu's prose is a pleasure to read; and third, I find it to be a disquieting book about abusive relationships and how the places we live can foster such abuse. Aliu pokes the wound with delicious ferocity.
4) Last Night by James Salter
It's about sex. Do I need to say more?
Okay, fine, I will. It's not just about sex. Salter's sparse prose is a joy to read, regardless of topic. We find his characters at their most intimate, grappling with themselves in that scenario as well as their partners. So there's love, loss, identity...and sex. There's some sex, did I mention?
5) Hold the Dark by William Giraldi
This one's all about the thrill. Escape to the dark, snowy woods of Alaska where wolves have taken three children from a village. A wolf expert — and our hero, of sorts — is called into the tiny village to investigate and finds a much deeper predatory reality beyond the sharp teeth of the wolves.