- Kathy Hu
- Jun 15, 2017
Summer is always a great time to catch up on your reading. Don’t put your summer to waste, and check out some of these books before you start university!
1. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Set in occupied France during World War II, the novel follows the story of a blind French girl and a German orphan who finds himself being recruited into the Hitler Youth. Winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize, this novel has always been a personal favourite of mine. The novel explores the tragedies of WWII and explores the dangers of human intelligence and technology. Moreover, Doerr depicts the human aspect of war and its effects on the individual. This is a thought-provoking read that you definitely will not be able to put down
2. The Kite Runner by Khalid Hosseini
The Kite Runner is a coming-of-age story following the life of Amir from his childhood in Afghanistan to the rise of the Taliban to his eventual escape to America to start a new life. However, Amir’s guilt for his actions in his childhood drives him back to Afghanistan where he attempts to redeem himself. Growing up in a world that is becoming more and more borderless, it’s important to understand the variety of culture that is present in our global community. Most of the movies we watch and the books we read tend to be created by Western artists depicting Western culture. Hosseini’s depiction of Afghanistan, both pre- and post-revolution will open your eyes to a new perspective and culture.
3. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Brave New World sets itself in future London where human life has become industrialized and highly controlled, keeping all of its members happy and satisfied. Bernard Marx is discontent with his way of life and harbours an unnatural desire for solitude. While this novel is packed with messages and themes for the reader to take away, one of the most important, and applicable messages, is to question things in life. In university, you will be taught by individuals who are experts in their fields. However, this should not stop you from trying to probe further and achieve a deeper understanding for the material you learn.
4. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
This self-help book is packed full of lessons on how to handle people, win friends, bring people to your way of thinking, and be a great leader. This book discusses the psychology of human relations and how to use it to your advantage. In my first year at Western, this was hands-down the most recommended book. From resume workshops to conversations with current HBA student, I had people constantly recommending that I read Carnegie’s legendary book. An important aspect of life, not just in the business world, requires building personal relations. This book how taught me how to motivate others while I am in a leadership position but also how to network and make connections with fellow students and potential employers.
5. David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell
Like Ivey, David and Goliath focuses on individual case studies. Through different stories of underdogs, Gladwell provides examples of how perceived disadvantages turns out to be the key in overcoming obstacles. This is a great book to read before entering university. For many of us, university will be the toughest challenge we have had to encounter. David and Goliath is filled with inspiration of others overcoming challenges and serves as a reminder that what we perceive our disadvantage to be may be used to our advantage. Do not be frustrated before you even begin your attempt.