The Song Of Achilles, by Madeline Miller. You will cry, you will smile, you’ll cry again, you’ll smile sadly, then you’ll bawl like a baby. Honestly this book is amazing, it’s beautifully written, and it has two incredibly rare things; canonically LGBT main characters and a centaur. READ IT.
The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood. Hahaha imagine a dystopian world where women were seen simply as vessels for babies…wouldn’t that be horrible….sure glad that hasn’t happened…..
The Gospel Of Loki, by Joanne Harris. It’s Loki’s autobiography of how he destroyed the world and was a cheeky handsome little shit. Need I say any more?
Romeo And Juliet, by William Shakespeare. Honestly I’m usually not one to read plays but I loved this. Mercutio is the best minor character ever, and it’s genuinely so beautiful to read (even if you’re not into love stories).
Prince Of Shadows, by Rachel Caine. It follows the same storyline as Romeo and Juliet but it’s from Benvolio’s point of view and it’s so good omg. Also Mercutio is the best minor character ever (did I already mention that?).
Blind Beauty, by KM Peyton. Okay so you know that one girl in your class who was always obsessed with horses? That’s me. I got this book when I was 9 and I still love it 7 years later. Even if you’re not a horse person, you’ll love this book. The main character is a strong independent badass girl who wants to be a jockey, her step dad’s evil, her horse is practically a donkey, and it’s so good. I cried.
Born To Run, by Michael Morpurgo. Technically a kid’s book, I read it when I was 6 and I never forgave any of the people who let me read it because it broke my heart. I still love it tbh.
Not Bad For A Bad Lad, by Michael Morpurgo. Okay it’s another kid’s book, and it’s just a short story, but like I said I was the horse girl and it was my favourite when I was little.
A Tyranny Of Petticoats, by Jessica Spotswood. Do you like short stories? Do you like historical fiction? Do you like badass female leads? Do you like diverse characters? READ THIS BOOK NOW
“Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn’t matter whether you’re the lion or a gazelle - when the sun comes up, you’d better be running.”
Then one day, while playing in Germany to a crowd of sixty thousand, I wandered off to the far side of the stage’s runway. The sound of my new band, projected by tons of stage-front sound equipment, drifted far off into the late afternoon, and the setting sun was turning everything and everyone in the large crowd golden, but there on a green hill, high at the edge of the amphitheater, stood a lone fan, holding aloft a sign that simply read, “E Street.” He was a true-blue loyalist. I waved and smiled. There would be other times and places.
… I had felt enough of Catholicism’s corporal and emotional stain. On my eighth-grade graduation day, I walked away from it all, finished, telling myself, “Never again.” I was free, free, free at last… and I believed it… for quite a while. However, as I grew older, there were certain things about the way I thought, reacted, behaved. I came to ruefully and bemusedly understand that once you’re Catholic, you’re always a Catholic. So I stopped kidding myself. I don’t often participate in my religion but I know somewhere… deep inside… I’m still on the team.
I took comfort in the illusion that I could go back [to my hometown]. But I’d been around long enough to know history is sealed and unchangeable. You can move on, with a heart stronger in the places it’s been broken, create new love. You can hammer pain and trauma into a righteous sword and use it in defense of life, love, human grace and God’s blessing. But nobody gets a do-over. Nobody gets to go back and there’s only one road out. Ahead, into the dark.
When you came to work with me, I had to be assured you’d bring your heart. Heart sealed the deal. That’s why the E Street Band plays steamroller strong and undiminished, forty years in, night after night. We are more than an idea, an aesthetic. We are a philosophy, a collective, with a professional code of honor. It is based on the principle that we bring our best, everything we have, on this night, to remind you of everything you have, your best. That it’s a privilege to exchange smiles, soul and heart directly with the people in front of you. That it’s an honor and great fun to join in concert with those whom you’ve invested so much of yourself in and they in you, your fans, the stars above, this moment, and apply your trade humbly (or not so!) as a piece of a long, spirited chain you’re thankful to be a small link in.