When I was pondering what to blog about on this rainy Monday morning, one of my best friends suggested I make a list of “Rainy Day Reads.” You know, since the weather today is as ugly as my soul. And before I could start, she already had a list of her own ready to go. Since I’ve been dying for her to Guest Blog for me, I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to get her feet wet in this whole messy blogging business.
By Guest Blogger Dinah Alobeid
On a rainy day, there’s nothing better than cuddling up with a great book in bed, on a couch, or nestled into a sweet double papasan.
On this specific rainy day (one of many in the past week and if the weather forecasters are right for once, one of many more to come), I’ve come up with a list of my top five rainy day reads. Here are my picks:
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (aka Harry Potter 7): The final installation of the much-beloved series is one that I can sink my teeth (and heart) into any time of day, or year. But rainy days are especially perfect for this grand epic. It feels like home — nurturing, exciting, bringing you moments of pure joy and painful bouts with reality, heartbreak and loss. It’s one for the ages, it is. Plus, it’s good and long, making it that much easier to stay put while marinating in your pajamas surrounding by fluffy cushions and possibly a fuzzy blanket or two. The only thing missing is Butterbeer or a hot cup of Fire Whiskey.
- The End of the Affair by Graham Greene: This book is quite short, but anything but a quick read. It’s a classic opus in contemporary literature from English novelist and playwright Graham Greene. Set in London right after World War II, this book centers on the intertwining lives and literal romantic entanglements of the three main characters, and the inevitable loss those relationships endure. It’s a sad piece of work, but always makes me feel nostalgic. It’s beautifully written, and is one of my favorite books of all time.
- The latest issue of the New Yorker (or any issue of the New Yorker, really): As a print subscriber to this magazine (yes, this makes me feel like I’m about 55 years old), I enjoy everything about this magazine — from the current events, to the “Table for Two” column on intriguing new restaurants, to the “Shouts & Murmurs” section I continue to attempt to submit a comedic piece of venting for (and failing at). The New Yorker is more than just an iconic New York City staple; it’s a gateway to an intellectual plane that few exist on. World issues are discussed and analyzed, up-and-coming fiction writers showcase their finest, and no topic is off limits from private school sexual abuse to the latest Justin Timberlake movie, to the plight of those fighting the revolution in Syria. It just makes me feel educated, and intelligent and involved. It’s nice to be part of the larger conversation sometimes (even from the convenience of home).
- The Paris Wife by Paula McLain: I’m obsessed with everything about Ernest Hemingway: from his books, to his life, to his wives, to every piece of culture pertaining to him (“Midnight in Paris” is one of my favorite moves EVER). This book takes a whole new look at good ol’ Papa, as it’s a piece of fiction written from personal accounts in letters and other pieces of history from Hemingway’s first wife, Hadley. It’s a wonderfully entertaining and realistic look at the life of a writer, not to mention one of the greatest writers, before he was the colossal entity known as Hemingway. Providing colorful glimpses at the Fitzgerald’s, Gertrude Stein and Alice, Ezra Pound and other seminal characters from that period of time, it was a beautiful read that left me wanting more HEMINGWAY.
- The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins: This is more than just a science fiction book about a fiery 16-year-old girl living in a dystopian future, it’s about childhood, vanity, global resources, empathy and so much more. It’s about valuing the important things in life, and being a resilient, contributing member of society. The first installation in the three-part series is my absolute favorite. It’s descriptive and enjoyable, proving that you don’t need to use vulgarities and curse words to write powerfully. I dare you to try to not fall in love with Katniss when reading this book. I know I have many, many times already with each time I re-read it. The book makes many significant statements on society and our culture, through a tale that is easy to fall into, especially on a rainy day. Make sure to order some baked goods, and a piping hot loaf of bread so you’re not left standing by the side of the road when the tears start flowing at numerous points throughout the book.
Get the hot cocoa ready and put on those fuzzy socks, because it’s time to get reading on this rainy day!
Enjoy the rain. Each drop makes for a bit more #BeautifulChaos!
Hello blogger world, I’m Dinah Susan Alobeid. I’m guest blogging on my best friend Steven’s delightfully entertaining blog, “beautiful chaos,” and couldn’t be more excited to do so. I’m a public relations consultant, and fill my days and nights with all things literature (writing AND reading), dance, and music. I’m a born and raised New Yorker, and love everything about the city and surrounding areas. Steven and I are always talking about our favorite books, what we’re writing, and discussing deep thoughts on how much brie is too much brie, the best backyard sprinklers for 20-something birthday parties, and what sumptuous treats to make for dinner.