A Bit Bookish

The name's Luna.
24/Los Angeles/wannabe blogger & researcher
Just another freak in the Freak Kingdom.
A place for me to ramble about books I love... also probably the only blog I'll ever have that will keep its theme. I don't want my page to be a mess so I'm only going to shelve books starting with what I've read in the past year.
I'm not always eloquent, and I'm certainly not pretentious. I am just a huge nerd who lurks in used bookstores and likes to read and do research for fun.
Geeks unite.

60 Recommendations

The bold titles of books are links, and they don't just link to the booklikes/goodreads page. They are usually interesting articles or related info, or sparknotes. Once in awhile you might get an amazon or Barnes & Noble page because of an especially favorable review. Just a note. Hope you can find something good! I'll probably come back and edit some of these if I think of better choices. Happy hunting!


1. Favorite books in all categories
I'm going to go with The Great Gatsby for this one, even though I know we've pretty much all read it already. 

2. Start to a series
The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman! What an amazing series, for young adults and regular adults alike. It actually gets pretty deep. I didn't read it 'tIl I was 19 and I fell in love right away. 
3. By an author who's written over 5 books total
The Witching Hour by Anne Rice - I think this is probably her best book... The Witching Hour is massive and complex and spans multiple generations of witches but she keeps you glued to the page like no other. 
4. Classic Literature
On the Road by Jack Kerouac... yeah, Jack Kerouac and a lot of Beats were sexist and whatever but I mean come on. They changed literature. On the Road is a good book, even if the people in it are kind of assholes. 

5. Banned Books
changed my life- Allen Ginsberg's wild, free-flowing poetry was everything to me in high school.  
6. Featuring an assassin
This one took some thought, but I think I'm going to go with the manga series Death Note. A notebook where whoever's name the owner writes dies... it works for this! Another high school obsession. 
7. In a world with Dragons
The Hobbit
! To be honest, aside from Harry Potter this is the only book I've read that involves dragons in any major way. 
8. Male Main Character
SHERLOCK  , SHERLOCK , SHERLOCK, did I mention how much I love Sherlock? (all of those links are different btw)

9. Female Main Character
Soulless by Gail Carriger. I love Alexia and her parasol badassery. 
10. Retelling of another story
I actually couldn't think of one for this so I explored the interwebs and found this gem: The Meowmorphosis ... it's going on my 'to read' list. 
11. Book with a Gorgeous Cover
I couldn't find a copy that looks as nice as mine online so I'm just posting a picture for this one:
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(I love love love fashion coffee table books) - also Penguin has a wide variety of amazing covers and I want all of them. 
12. Debut book of any author
I don't know if memoirs are okay or not but oh well - Please Don't Kill the Freshman by Zoe Trope. I'm picking this one to add some variety and also because I read it when I was in 7th grade and it had a huge influence on my writing style. It also made me a much more open-minded and accepting person- I'm a straight woman, but the main character is struggling to figure out her sexuality and many of her friends are gay, which is a big part of the book. All the kids she hangs out with are very smart and strange... it's hard for me to explain what makes it special... It's a very unique writing style, journal-like and poetic. I haven't read it in years but I still bring my taped up old copy with me everywhere I move. 
13. Fantasy in general
14. Finale for a series
Have to go with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows because like how do you not?!
15. Graphic Novel
Phonogram is neat and I got into Johnny the Homicidal Maniac back in the day because it's done by the guy who made Invader Zim

16. That you paid over $15 for (and was worth every penny)

I have a leather-bound book of TS Eliot poems and a really awesome Edgar Allen Poe collection, both Franklin Library. I paid about $30 for each and they're so beautiful! In storage at my parents' house right now though, so these pics are from the internet.

17. Published after 2010
I'm gonna stick Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes right here because I just realized I have no idea what else I've read that came out after 2010. 
18. Featuring a Princess/Prince or Queen/King
And I'm now realizing I can't think of a book off the top of my head for this one either... the last princess-centered book I remember reading is Ella Enchanted, which I read in 5th grade. 
19. Thriller
A lot of people hate on Dan Brown but I thought Angels and Demons was pretty rad. And speaking of Dan Brown...
20. You read because it was a bestseller
The DaVinci Code
. I mean come on everyone read The DaVinci Code. Plus there were all these History Channel and NatGeo specials about it, it was so much fun!
21. Involving drugs
Smack by Melvin Burgess is depressing but very well written. And it's not like, preachy and annoying. It's honest. And apparently it's the winner of the 1996 Carnegie Medal in Literature.
22. Memoir
I really enjoyed A Story Lately Told by Anjelica Huston. It's short and simple and she really takes you there, you know? I can see her mother's vanity with all her little trinkets or the trendy London thrift shop she used to frequent in my head. Very atmospheric. She has a part two that came out last year called Watch Me.

23. Favorite completed series as a whole
Harry Potter
, of course! 

24. Book with witches/warlocks
Just to put something that isn't Harry Potter, I'm going to recommend Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison. I randomly picked it up on a dollar rack one day, not expecting much, and within two chapters I cleared my schedule for the day. 
25. Historical Fiction

It's really lame that the author didn't credit the person he interviewed for research and had to go to court and all that, but when I read Memoirs of a Geisha a few years ago I really enjoyed it... I read a lot of books that are more like Sin in the Second City - they're not novels but they're written so that the facts read more like one. 
26. Ugly Cry book
Uh I'm going to have to stick Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows right here. It's the only book that turned me into a puddle on the floor. The 6th one did a little bit too. 
27. Realistic Fiction
The Casual Vacancy
by [Queen] J.K. Rowling. It's one of the very few depressing books that I absolutely love. 
28. Dystopia
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep
by Philip K. Dick ... I was absolutely enthralled. I haven't seenBlade Runner yet, but my copy is a collectible paperback with a cool movie-inspired cover.  
29. Time Travel

The Time Machine by HG Wells... this is the first Victorian-age novel I read and I remember being floored by how smart and ahead of its time it was.

30. Elf or Dwarf Main character
 by Holly Black has a faerie as the main character... sort of, I think she's half human. All the fantasy I read is about witches or faeries or vampires... but I'm about to get into LOTR thanks to Troy! Here's the link to the group. 

31. Favorite incomplete series either by you or not yet finished by author
Sara Gran's Claire Dewitt novels- I'm really excited to find the second one! My review for the first one ishere

32. Literary Fiction
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami is absolutely incredible. 

33. Non-Fiction (Anything, cookbook, self-help, etc)
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Hunter S Thompson is one of my biggest writing influences. The way he plays with reality, warping it but essentially giving you a journalistic viewpoint all the same... it's amazing. He shows you the real darkness of America. The 'Fear and Loathing'... Also, anyone who can write a book about the '72 election (that link is a really neat article btw) that is still entertaining today should go down in the history books as the best god damn journalist that's ever lived. 
34. Middle Grade Novel
I read Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech for the first time in 6th grade- I loved it and I could relate to it. I didn't read it again until I was 21 and I enjoyed it just as much. Gingerbread by Rachel Cohn was my other middle school favorite. 
35. Includes sword/knife fighting
! We read it in my senior H.S. English class and my friend Matt and I had the best time with it. Our teacher was really awesome and made it really fun to read. We thought it was pretty badass. We drew comics and stuff after we watched the Ian Mckellen version of the play. 

36. Something mysterious is afoot
Can I just stick the entire Goosebumps series here? I still collect everything Goosebumps. :D (and I just found out there's about to be a Goosebumps movie coming out this year!? whaaaaaat!?)
37. Diverse Reads (main character non-white/non-straight)
Esperanza Rising
by Pam Munoz Ryan is really beautifully written. I read it around the same time I readWalk Two Moons- they were my two favorite books for a while. My mom read it too and loved it. I need to read it again. 
38. Wanderlust book
I Celebrate Myself: The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg
took me to New York City, San Francisco, Mexico, India, Tangier... this book inspired me to travel. Bill Morgan is an incredible biographer and Allen Ginsberg's life provides material unlike any other. There are page numbers corresponding to Ginsberg's Collected Poems so you can follow the story through his poetry at the same time.
39. Unreliable Narrator
Shannon in Invisible Monsters (Remix), Chuck Palahniuk's twisted version of a road trip/finding yourself story. This version is arranged to read like an article in a fashion magazine, skipping pages back and forth. It was interesting. 
40. Character with mental illness
Esther in The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath, Craig in It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
41. Sci-fi in general
Cat's Cradle
by Kurt Vonnegut is technically sci-fi even if he's not a "sci-fi writer" and that's one of my favorite books of all time. 
42. Paranormal Main Character
Lestat de Lioncourt
, of course. 

43. Horror
I loveloveloveloved Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill. I like when horror stories are more ghost/mystery based rather than revolving around a psychotic, torture-loving human. 
44. Books with murder in them
I guess the Battle Royale manga series. Ya don't get much more murder-y than that!
45. Set in a time of war (real or fictional)
Slaughterhouse Five
- I remember the beginning vividly but I can't seem to recall the ending, so this needs to go on the re-read list. I had to speed read it for an online class I never kept up with... I was an idiot my first year of college. 
46. Set in the place you live
White Oleander
by Janet Fitch. When I was in high school this was my very favorite novel, I read it like 4 times. It's beautiful and sad and surreal. I haven't read it since I've lived in LA but I remember passages and think of it often. 

47. Book with servants in some manner
There are a couple I already used that could have worked here... couldn't think of any other ones, so have some romance I found on goodreads: Prisoner of My Desire by Johanna Lindsey :D 
48. Book eventually adapted to a movie

Girl, Interrupted. I actually like the movie better; I used to watch it every other day my freshman year of college.
49. Book you've read more than once
I couldn't think of any recent ones that I haven't already listed, so I'm going to put Holes right here. I'm pretty sure I re-read it almost immediately in 4th or 5th grade. I still think it's a damn good story!
50. A Good Zombie Book 
I know probably everyone put this but World War Z blew my freakin' mind! The movie though... my roommate a couple years back was watching it and I had to leave the room. (That link is to a discussion about why the book is awesome and the movie blows.)

51. A love story

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. I thought it was incredibly romantic. 
52. Set in space
I've got to pick Rautavaara's Case by Philip K. Dick even though it's a short story (the collection it's included in is what's pictured). It's probably one of the craziest things I've ever read. I can't even... you just have to read it.
53. Multiple POV
Can't think of one for this... so I'm going to put Game of Thrones, because it's on my 'to-read' list. 
54. Erotic for people who don't read erotic novels

Apparently Outlander by Daiana Gabaldon is actually really intelligent and a sexy-time book all at once? It's on my list. I'm one of those people who don't read erotic novels. 

55. Written by an author who has died (recently or a very long time ago)
Even though I've never read any of the Discworld series, I've been told I really need to read Terry Pratchett. 

56. Written by an author who is still living

I'm reading The Ghost Bride right now and really I can't recommend it enough. It is a truly unique story and touches literary fiction, historical fiction, and fantasy all at once. I'm going to do a review on it soon! 

57. Childhood favorite
James and the Giant Peach
by Roald Dahl. Highly enjoyable for all ages and both the book and movie were a huge influence on my own weirdness. 

58. A long book (Let's say at least 450 pages minimum)
I've already recommended the longest books I've read so I'm going to put one that is on my to-read list: 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

59. Young Adult book in general
I really loved Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. It's a beautiful story about a girl who refuses to be anyone but exactly who she wants to be. Stargirl (Susan) inspired me a lot back in the day. I really want to read this book again. 

60. Adult book in general

Go by John Clellon Holmes. It's a book chronicling the Beat generation, but he was a little bit more outside of the main gang (and a little more sane than the rest of them) so it's a truly unique account of that time period. I can't believe this is my last recommendation because it's one of my very favorite books of all time. Recommended to those who enjoy Beat literature, of course. And I would also recommend it to people who don't- even if you didn't like On the Road, try Go. Trust me. 

Currently reading

The Two Towers
J.R.R. Tolkien
Progress: 35 %
Jane Eyre
Charlotte Brontë, Susan Ostrov Weisser
Progress: 126/608 pages
The Man in the High Castle
Philip K. Dick
Progress: 154/288 pages
The Complete Sherlock Holmes 2
Arthur Conan Doyle, Kyle Freeman
Progress: 433/709 pages