Tuesday, August 6, 2013

What I've Gleaned from My Summer Reading

My Summer break is nearly over. With school starting back at the end of the month, I'm trying to finish the last couple of books of my summer reading list. On my list, I've read On The Road, The Bell Jar, The Moviegoer, The Old Man, The Turn of The Screw, and One Hundred Years of Solitude (almost finished). My last two books are The Seven Storey Mountain and Tropic of Cancer.

For me, fiction is not really an escape. It's a way for me to dive into different places and experience what is not possible for me at the time. There are lessons to be learned and insight to be gained, and it awaits inside the pages of books. 

Here are the lessons I've gleaned from my Summer reading books:

  1. On The Road by Jack Kerouac taught me that filling one's life with all the experiences youth has to offer does not make one's life full. 
  2. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath made it clear that negativity doesn't solve any problems, and that it's okay to want something different for yourself than what society expects.
  3. The Moviegoer by Walker Percy showed me that we are all on a search for something, and while pastimes are nice to have, they shouldn't become escapes from more important things like relationships and spiritual growth.
  4. The Old Man by William Faulkner teaches that nature is unpredictable, and the forces of nature do not discriminate.
  5. The Turn of The Screw by Henry James shows us that ghosts aren't always "scary" in a stereotypical way, but they remain as they were in life, which is an eerie quality in itself. The story also exhibits the ambiguous nature of "evil."
  6. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez demonstrates that one generation is not much different from the preceding one, and that humanity doesn't change much. 

Fiction is like a lit candle in the dark, so take hold and keep moving forward. 


  1. Lovely post, short and informative. Nice that you reviewed the books as lessons learned :)

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you appreciated it.

  2. I kind of miss school, for the simply reason that reading was part of the curriculum and I could indulge in it without guilt. I'm pretty sure that the only books I've picked up in the past few months were law textbooks.

    Enjoy it while you can :)

    1. These were no school books; these were simply for pleasure. However, I'm lucky to be an English major where fiction is in the course curriculum. I can see where law school would interfere with pleasure reading. I heard it's very reading intensive.

    2. We've just finished an entire 900 page textbook. In 4 weeks. And started another one.


      That sounds idyllic. Lucky you :)