West and Grand

Staff Picks: Favorite July Reads

Ashley’s Pick | The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan

Yale senior Keegan’s nonfiction essay for the Yale Daily News — regarding her desire for “the opposite of loneliness” and her fear of losing the security of her college bubble of friendship — immediately went viral after publication. Keegan had a job lined up and all her plans in order, when she died suddenly in a car crash five days after her graduation.

What follows is a two hundred and forty page collection of her best works, fiction and nonfiction, covering heartbreak, losing and gaining friendships, and ultimately fighting that steady sense of loneliness. At the end of the day, all people want is to no longer chase that feeling, but to belong.


Grace’s Pick | Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Mystical, supernatural and beyond our realm, anyone will be captivated by the story Ruby tells. Told through the hazy eyes of eighteen year old Finn O’Sullivan, living in the small, sleepy farm-town of Bone Gap with his older brother, Sean and the Polish girl, Roza.  Worried about getting into college and the suddenly developing feelings for the local beekeeper’s daughter, Finn’s woes intensify when he witnesses the kidnapping of Roza and struggles to recall the kidnapper’s face. The tale of Finn’s desperate attempt to bring Roza home will take you on a breathless, entrancing ride.


Mike’s Pick | Hall of Small Mammals by Thomas Pierce

Pierce’s first collection of short stories, with a sense of magical realism, cleverly highlights his deeply perceptive view of modern, everyday life. For instance, Pierce opens with the tale of Tommy, the talk show host of “Back From Extinction”, who brings home a miniature woolly mammoth to his mother, unprepared for the practical and philosophical challenges that ensue. If you haven’t yet immersed yourself in a collection of short stories, Pierce’s fast, stunning, magical world is the place to start.


Laura’s Pick | The Green Road by Anne Enright

Enright’s novel portrays the lives of four children — Dan, Emmett, Constance, and Hanna — living in rural Ireland with their mother, Rosaleen, who never seems satisfied with their acheivements.

The first half of the book details their childhood, while the second describes the children as they homecoming as adults, when Rosaleen reveals that she wants to sell their childhood home, and would like one more Christmas with them all together again. During their final holiday in their childhood home, Enright takes you on an emotional journey through the rise and fall of familial relationships.

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