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Summer Reading List   Tags: books, fiction, non_fiction, reading, recreational_reading  

Need ideas for good reads this summer? Check out the NMSU Library's cool picks for hot summer reading. Why not send us your suggestions at goodreads@lib.nmsu.edu?
Last Updated: Jun 28, 2013 URL: http://nmsu.libguides.com/summerreading Print Guide RSS Updates

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Suggested novels from NMSU faculty & staff

All the novels in this list were recommended by NMSU faculty or staff.

Do you have a good book to recommend to this list? We would love to hear from you. Other than the author and title, consider telling us a little bit about the book, why you feel others might want to read it, what you found interesting or inspiring about the book. Send us an e-mail at goodreads@lib.nmsu.edu

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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Call Number: PZ7.S1273 Ar 2012
Recommended by Ellen Bosman, Department Head Technical Services, NMSU Library, NMSU - Las Cruces

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The Awakening - Kate Chopin
Call Number: PS1294.C7 A9 1972
"Beautiful ambiance of New Orleans and coastal American life and the social pressures of gender roles, their double standards, and one woman’s dissonance with them." - Suggested by Beth Humphreys, Assistant Professor, NMSU - Grants

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Bloodlines - Richelle Mead
ISBN: 1595143173
“When alchemist Sydney is ordered into hiding to protect the life of Moroi princess Jill Dragomir, the last place she expects to be sent is a human private school in Palm Springs, California. But at their new school, the drama is only just beginning.” Recommended by Justine Lopez, Student Employee, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy
Call Number: PS3563.C337 B4 1992
Also by Cormac McCarthy: Suttree and Child of God. “Raw, literary explorations of life, violence, existence, and moral turpitude. McCarthy embodies a literary style and aesthetic all his own.” Suggested by Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Broken Harbor - Tana French
Call Number: PR6106.R457 B76 2012
ISBN: 9780670023653
A seemingly happy family is murdered, and it is up to the Dublin Murder Squad to solve the case. Great police procedural with a gloomy Irish feel. Recommended by Wendy Simpson, Library Specialist, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Canada - Richard Ford
Call Number: PS3556.O713 C36 2012
Publication Date: 2012-05-22
" 'First, I'll tell about the robbery our parents committed. Then about the murders, which happened later.' This is how Canada begins and instantly the reader is pulled in to a lonely and haunting tale. Fifteen year old Dell's parents are arrested for robbing a bank in Montana leaving him and his twin sister, Berner, to fend for themselves. Berner flees and Dell ends up in Saskatchewan with Arthur Remlinger, an enigmatic and charismatic American who tries to hide his dark and violent nature. This is an odd coming of age story but one that had me riveted." Recommended by Susan Beck, NMSU Library - Las Cruces

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Candide - Francois Voltaire
Call Number: PQ2082.C3 E5 1966
“A satire of some of Leibniz's philosophical positions, primarily his theodicy. A fantastical, quick-paced plot packed with philosophical investigation, violence, and some naughtiness.” Suggested by: Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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City of Bones - Cassandra Clare
Call Number: PZ7.C5265 Cit 2008
“Suddenly able to see demons and the Dark-hunters who are dedicated to returning them to their own dimension, fifteen-year-old Clary Fray is drawn into this bizarre world when her mother disappears and Clary herself is almost killed by a monster.” Recommended by Justine Lopez, Student Employee, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Clockwork Angel - Cassandra Clare
Call Number: PZ7.C5265 Cl 2010
“When sixteen-year-old orphan Tessa Fell's older brother suddenly vanishes, her search for him leads her into Victorian-era London's dangerous supernatural underworld, and when she discovers that she herself is a Downworlder, she must learn to trust the demon-killing Shadow-hunters if she ever wants to learn to control her powers and find her brother.” Recommended by Justine Lopez, Student Employee, NMSU - Las Cruces

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The Complete Saki - Saki (Contribution by); H. H. Munro
Call Number: PR6025.U675 A15 1939
“Master of bitter irony.” Recommended by Matthew Huchmala, J.D., NMSU - Dona Ana

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The Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
Call Number: PQ2226 .A33 1996
“The plot is excellent and the characters well developed.” Recommended by Matthew Huchmala, J.D., NMSU - Dona Ana

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Delirium - Lauren Oliver
Call Number: PZ7.O475 Del 2011
“Lena looks forward to receiving the government-mandated cure that prevents the delirium of love and leads to a safe, predictable, and happy life, until ninety-five days before her eighteenth birthday and her treatment, she falls in love.” Recommended by Justine Lopez, Student Employee, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Don Quixote - Miguel de Cervantes
Call Number: PQ6329 .A2 2003b Copy 1
“Best novel ever. It manages to be both ridiculous and poignant at the same time and the characters are always showing new sides of themselves. It has about eight levels of reality going on; it's great.” Recommended by Matthew Huchmala, J.D., NMSU - DACC

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Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club - Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Call Number: PS3569.A27 E94 2012eb
"This collection of short stories, by local author Ben Saenz, looks at various borders as experienced in the Kentucky Club, a bar in Juarez two blocks south of the border. This book recently won the 2013 Pen/Faulkner Award for Fiction." This is an e-book
Suggested by John Sandstrom, Acquisitions Librarian, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Gentlemen of the Road - Michael Chabon
Call Number: PS3553.H15 G46 2007
“A lively, smart piece in historical fiction. Interesting character development with a fun, flowing plot. Moral motivation, existential exploration, and culture clashes add to the fun.” Suggested by Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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The Golem and the Jinni - Helene Wecker
Call Number: On Order
Chava, the Golem, and Ahmad, the Jinni, are magical creatures trying to fit in to life in turn of the century New York City. The two protagonists are contrasted in several ways. Among these are the disparate cultures of their magical origins: the Golem, from the Jews of eastern Europe; the Jinni, from the Bedouin of the Syrian desert. They are both elemental beings, one of earth the other of fire. One is dutiful and circumspect; the other spontaneous and carefree. In spite of their differences, they find common understanding and friendship.

A key theme of Wecker’s tale is knowledge and the different ways that it can be used, for good or evil, for generosity or greed, to benefit or hinder. Wecker also juxtaposes, through plot twists, the themes of destiny and free will. Not only am I enjoying both the folklore and the philosophical aspects of this book (I'm on page 345!) but I really like reading about Ellis Island, the Bowery, Hester Street, rooftop life, Central Park, and all the other descriptions of 1899 New York that make this book so fascinating and enjoyable." Recommended by Susan Beck, NMSU Library - Las Cruces.

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Hard to Have Heroes - Buddy Mays
Call Number: PS3613.A9726 H37 2012
"It’s 1957 and fourteen year old Noah Odell and his widowed mother have decided to leave their poverty stricken life behind in rainy Gold Hill, Oregon, to join Noah's colorful uncle Bud on his newly purchased “kettle wrench” outside of Tularosa, New Mexico. Soon after their arrival Uncle Bud presents Noah with a cantankerous mule named Brimstone, and that’s where the adventures begin. Noah and Brimstone encounter some strange characters: green space monsters, eccentric Apache professors, jackalopes, royal Spanish ghosts, and an inept gang of local bullies. I laughed from start to finish. It's a quick and fun read." Recommended by Susan Beck, NMSU Library - Las Cruces

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Headhunters - Jo Nesbø
Call Number: PT8951.24.E83 H6313 2011
"Det. Harry Hole has many vices--alcohol, cigarettes, fear of elevators and inability to commit--but his virtues are that he is an excellent detective and a devoted cop. Set in Oslo, during an early summer heat wave, Harry is assigned to work with his enemy, Det. Tom Waaler, to find a serial killer who cuts off his victims fingers and leaves a tiny five pointed red star as his signature. Other Harry Hole novels are The Redbreast, Nemesis, The Snowman, The Redeemer and The Phantom. If you like Henning Menkell's Kurt Wallender police procedurals and Stieg Larsen's Lisbeth Salander series (both set in Sweden), you might enjoy lurching through Oslo, Norway with Harry as he solves this and other mysteries." Recommended by Susan Beck, NMSU Library - Las Cruces

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The House on Mango Street - Sandra Cisneros
Call Number: PS3553.I78 H6 1994
"Novella of short “chapters,” each one a portrait on its own, hilarious and moving, with a narrative voice that changes with awareness and maturity. Insights that everyone can relate to." Suggested by Beth Humphreys, Assistant Professor of NMSU - Grants

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Human Comedy - William Saroyan
Call Number: PS3537.A826 H7 1989
"Evokes both laughing and crying, showing the impact of war on those back home. Interesting juxtaposition to the current technological world." - Suggested by Beth Humphreys, Assistant Professor, NMSU - Grants

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The Human Stain - Philip Roth
Call Number: PS3568.O855 D95 2001
Also by Philip Roth: Dying Animal “Fictional forays into mortality, discrimination, social mores, sexual desire, and abuse. Beautiful prose.” Suggested by : Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Hush, Hush - Becca Fitzpatrick
Call Number: PZ7.F5777 Hus 2009
“High school sophomore Nora has always been very cautious in her relationships, but when Patch, who has a dark side she can sense, enrolls at her school, she is mysteriously and strongly drawn to him, despite warnings from her best friend, the school counselor, and her own instincts.” Recommended by Justine Lopez, Student Employee, NMSU - Las Cruces

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The Plague - Albert Camus
Call Number: PQ2605.A3734 P43 1972
“Deep and sometimes dark existential investigations of a range of characters who come to know what they are (personally and morally) when serious tragedy and despair come their way.” Suggested by : Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Pudd'nhead Wilson - Mark Twain
Call Number: PS1317 .B7 1969
"I recommend anything by Twain. America's best author of the 19th century (and probably any century); put that in your pipe and smoke it, Melville.” Recommended by Matthew Huchmala, J.D., NMSU - Dona Ana

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Saturday - Ian McEwan
Call Number: PR6063.C4 S27 2006
“A very rough (fictional) day in the life of a neurosurgeon, who engages in serious introspective reflection upon the nature of people and the relationships holding between the biological and the psychological.” Suggested by Jean-Paul Vessel, Associate Professor of Philosophy, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Shadow of Night - Deborah Harkness
Call Number: PS3608.A7436 S53 2012
ISBN: 9780670023486
"Although the vampire/witch love story is a bit overdone, following a modern-day woman into Elizabethan London is enjoyable for its atmosphere and historical detail." Recommended by Wendy Simpson, Library Specialist, NMSU - Las Cruces

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Starship Troopers - Robert A. Heinlein
Call Number: PS3515.E288 S75 1987
“It is a fine science fiction adventure in and of itself, but the concepts in government and society that it explores within the story are very thought provoking.” Recommended by Robert Hastings, College Instructor, NMSU - Dona Ana

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