Spring has finally arrived, bringing warmer days and gorgeous flowers. With schoolwork ramping up in preparation for finals, it's more important now than ever to find a moment where you can go sit on the grass to enjoy the sunshine. As you break out your shorts and venture outside, here is a list of five books for every kind of mood, whether it be enjoying spring or de-stressing from exams.
If you’ve been enjoying the spring flowers (particularly the cherry blossoms in D.C.): “Anne of Green Gables” by L.M. Montgomery
There is no story that entails the hopeful and tumultuous joy of spring more than that of Anne Shirley. Many may be vaguely familiar with Anne’s story due to the successful Netflix adaptation “Anne with an E.” While the source material for the show is a little more quaint in scope, it holds the same irrevocably loveable and winning characters. “Anne of Green Gables” follows the story of Anne, an orphan girl who is sent to the Cuthbert family — quiet, gentle Mathew and his stern sister Marilla — in place of the boy they ask for help on the farm. Before they can send her back to the orphanage, Anne wins them over with her vibrant, yet sometimes melodramatic imagination and generous spirit. Anne’s attitude, along with her appreciation of the world, embodies the wonder and beauty that spring brings. This is an essential classic for every reader and the perfect way to celebrate spring breezes and blooms.
If you’re looking for a heartwarming story for new beginnings: “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
Set in 1946 London, this novel follows author Juliet Ashton as she searches for the topic for her next book. An opportunity arises after she receives a letter from a man, a native of an island called Guernsey, she’s never met who found her written in a copy of a book by Charles Lamb. Their correspondence gives Juliet a peek into a world of eccentric and lovely characters and a look into what life under German occupation looked like. Written in the form of the various letters Juliet and the other characters write, this book is a quick read that is a heartwarming look into the love and bravery that can be found in the human spirit. It also tells the story of people recovering from difficult and extraordinary circumstances, which all of us have become intimately familiar within the last year. Therefore, this book serves as a comforting escape and a gentle reminder of the capacity for love and resilience even after the worst of times.
If you’re looking for the strength to have your own spring renewal: “the sun and her flowers” by Rupi Kaur
Springtime is often hailed as a time for renewal and new beginnings, but sometimes new beginnings aren’t as easy and beautiful as a flower blooming. Kaur takes the reader through all of the stages of growth in the follow-up to her New York Times best-selling poetry collection “milk and honey.” “the sun and her flowers” is a breathtaking portrayal of breaking down and rebuilding. The book is broken into five parts that mimic the transformations of a flower — wilting, falling, rooting, rising and blooming. It takes the reader through the different stages of learning to deal with the loss of love, cultivate self-love and embrace different backgrounds. Kaur communicates the strength in vulnerability, creating a space for the reader to grieve and grow with her. This book of poetry is perfect for those of us who have felt a little trapped in quarantine and are struggling to grow into a world slowly returning to normal.
Reading Robinson’s work is quick because they’re written in essay form, so it’s easy to put down if you need to get back to studying. Robinson, one part of the duo for the podcast “2 Dope Queens” (also great for a laugh if you need it), writes with incredible wit, humor, poignancy and moving authenticity. She writes about everything from race, gender, feminism and body positivity to her love of Bono, the lead singer of U2. This book will leave you laughing and thinking about some of the deeper systemic social issues of today. Her first book is centered around Black hair — though not exclusively dedicated to it — and the relationship that society has with it and the people who have it. Her second collection of essays is written about the post-2016 election world and once again leaves you laughing without shying away from difficult topics. In both books, Robinson brilliantly points out the absurdity of modern daily life without letting anyone off the hook because of the humor. This book is perfect if you’re looking for something that’ll make you laugh while also challenging you.
With spring finals rapidly approaching and summer on the horizon, it's time to grab one of these titles, spread out a blanket on the lawn and enjoy the day.