Sunday, June 19, 2011

What Everyone Seems To Be Reading

There are many ways to find the next book you'll love or the next best way to enjoy your commute. Here are five books I've seen people reading this past week, with enticing summaries provided by publishers and Amazon:


1.

Twenty-four are forced to enter. Only the winner survives. In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. Each year, the districts are forced by the Capitol to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the Hunger Games, a brutal and terrifying fight to the death - televised for all of Panem to see. Survival is second nature for sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who struggles to feed her mother and younger sister by secretly hunting and gathering beyond the fences of District 12. When Katniss steps in to take the place of her sister in the Hunger Games, she knows it may be her death sentence. If she is to survive, she must weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

#1 Most Read Book this week at GoodReads
Not currently in the Top 35 of The New York Times Bestseller List



2.The Hunger Games, Book 3: Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena alive, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Who do they think should pay for the unrest? Katniss. And what's worse, President Snow has made it clear that no one else is safe either. Not Katniss's family, not her friends, not the people of District 12.

#3 Most Read Book this week at GoodReads (Catching Fire, the second book in The Hunger Games trilogy is #2)
Not currently in the Top 35 of The New York Times Bestseller List


3.

Before Liz Lemon, before "Weekend Update," before "Sarah Palin," Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher. She also had a dream that one day she would be a comedian on TV. She has seen both these dreams come true. At last, Tina Fey's story can be told. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon -- from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence. Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we've all suspected: you're no one until someone calls you bossy.

#6 Most Read Book this week at GoodReads
Not currently in the Top 35 of The New York Times Bestseller List


4.


Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.

Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.

Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.

Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.

#4 Most Read Book this week at GoodReads
#1 on The New York Times Bestseller List


5.


Rachel White is the consummate good girl. A hard-working attorney at a large Manhattan law firm and a diligent maid of honor to her charmed best friend Darcy, Rachel has always played by all the rules. Since grade school, she has watched Darcy shine, quietly accepting the sidekick role in their lopsided friendship. But that suddenly changes the night of her thirtieth birthday when Rachel finally confesses her feelings to Darcy's fiance, and is both horrified and thrilled to discover that he feels the same way. As the wedding date draws near, events spiral out of control, and Rachel knows she must make a choice between her heart and conscience. In so doing, she discovers that the lines between right and wrong can be blurry, endings aren't always neat, and sometimes you have to risk everything to be true to yourself.

#24 Most Read Book this week at GoodReads
#9 on The New York Times Bestseller List

Truthfully, these are books I have seen people reading on buses and trains for weeks and weeks now. I was surprised to see where they fell on GoodReads and on the NY Times Bestseller List-- and how the two sets of statistics compared.

How do you decide what to read next? Does seeing these book covers and reading the official blurbs pique your interest?

2 comments:

Kate G said...

I've read The Hunger Games trilogy (took about a week!) and The Help. Both were highly recommended by several friends whose opinions about such things I value. High literature? Not in the least. Decent "Summer Reads"? Definitely. I usually choose books via personal recommendation or by The New York Times book review. (Not necessarily their best-seller list--but by the reviews themselves.)

Want Chyi said...

Good call, Kate! I do think seeing the same book in different people's hands makes a difference, but it seems the tipping point is often a personal recommendation or other trusted source.