Books to Gift Your College Grad

Have a friend or family member that is graduating from college this fall? Still haven’t found the perfect gift for them? This is both a time of change and of new beginnings for an almost graduate, so they need all the help that they can get.  A book can be a wealth of knowledge and stress reliever that will be desperately needed in the coming months. We have a couple of book suggestions that could be the perfect fit for your college grad.

  1. Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson                                                                                            The whimsical and philosophical adventures of Calvin and Hobbes are a classic. You can be 6 or 84 and still learn something from this series. These two fun-loving characters provide a comical, witty, and new perspective on any topic that comes to mind. College grads can turn to this for life advice or just something to laugh at after a stressful day. The final line of the series is something that they can definitely resonate with. You don’t know where you’re going. You have no clue, but “it’s a magical world out there. Let’s go exploring.”
  2. Grow the F*ck Up by John Kyle                                                                                                    This provocative title is the jump start that some recent grads may need to kick it into high gear. There are some things we don’t know, and it’s too embarrassing to admit it, but this book can tell you without having to ask it. Learn how to jump start a car, change a smoke detector, and how to actually iron your cloths. A plus is that there are pictures included in the book, so if you cannot figure it out just by reading, they got you covered.
  3. Happy Little Accidents: The Wit & Wisdom of Bob Ross                                                                If you have watched an episode of Bob Ross’ show, then you probably know him for being great at painting, soft-spoken, and sprinkling some everyday wisdom into his TV specials. These tidbits of advice can be great for the psyche of an overwhelmed college grad. It is light-hearted, enlightening, and helpful in your greatest of existential crisis needs.
  4. Lean In For Graduates by Sheryl Sandberg                                                                                  This book is the one stop shop for all your work-related needs. Chalked full of information from business gurus, this a read that you do not want to skip out on. The real world can be daunting and full of questions that may not have been answered in the classroom, but this book was made to help bridge the gap. Think about this book when you are deciding between what gift to get at your nearest bookstore.

Whether they know it or not, recent graduates need a little guidance after college. It’s a daunting world out there, so we hope that some of these books will help to be on the path to success. Congrats to everyone who made it this far!

Have any other suggestions for a post-college grad book? Leave a comment or visit us at FacebookTwitter, or Instagram to tell us!

Good Reads For Teens

We live in a world where teens are practically attached to their phones or some other form of technology, so it is important to set time aside and take a break from the technological world around us. What better way to do just that than by reading? Here are some of the most popular books that have been published in the past seven years, guaranteed to enthrall teens of all ages!

(2010) Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

In 1878, Sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray comes to London in search of her older brother. When she arrives, Tessa is faced with the Downworld, where vampires, warlocks, and other supernatural beings await her. Only the Shadowhunters are able to keep the world in order. When Tessa is kidnapped by The Pandemonium Club, she discovers that she is a Downworlder, and she possess a rare power. Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters, who promise to help find her brother if she uses her power to help them.

(2011) Divergent by Veronica Roth

Beatrice Prior lives in a dystopian future where the world is divided into five factions- Abnegation (the selfless), Amity (the peaceful), Candor (the honest), Dauntless (the brave), and Erudite (the intelligent). On Appointed Day, Beatrice makes the decision to transfer to Dauntless, which will affect her and her family’s life forever. Beatrice is carrying a secret. She is Divergent. And if anyone were to discover her secret, she and everyone she loves will be in danger.

(2012) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Life hasn’t always been kind for Hazel Grace Lancaster. She has a tumor, and she also has cancer, which requires her to carry around a portable oxygen tank. When her mother convinces Hazel to attend a cancer patients’ support group, her life seems to turn towards the better. She forms friendships, and she catches the eye of Augustus Waters, who is now cancer free after having his leg amputated. As Hazel and Augustus grow closer, they face many struggles and try to power through the pain and loss that is thrown their way.

(2013) Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Eleanor Douglas and Park Sheridan live opposite lives. Eleanor lives in a home where her stepfather, Richie, is physically and verbally abusive to her mother. Eleanor wears loose-fitted clothes, ribbons in her hair, and is bullied in school. Park lives in a home that is surrounded with love. Park gets along with the popular kids in school. Against the odds, Eleanor and Park form an unlikely friendship that soon blooms into more, all the while trying to rise against the struggles that surround them.

(2014) We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Cadence doesn’t remember what happened during her 15th summer at Beechwood Island. She battled with chronic headaches and can’t even remember what caused it. It isn’t until Cadence’s 17th summer at Beechwood when she begins to recall the event of her 15th summer. As she begins to remember, her relationship with her group of four friends—the Liars—becomes destructive. As Cadence’s memory returns, she will have to redefine herself as her and her friends’ loyalty, trust, and acceptance are put to the test.

(2015) Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Madeline Whittier has severe combined immunodeficiency, which is a rare disease that makes her allergic to almost everything. Madeline cannot leave her house, and is cared for by her mother and her nurse Carla. When a family moves in next door, Madeline forms a friendship with Olly. Olly begins to sneak into Madeline’s home to see her, but when her mother finds out, she bans Madeline from ever seeing Olly again. Olly and Madeline go to Hawaii where she discovers secrets about her past and illness.

(2016) The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

The Sun is Also a Star focuses on the story of Natasha Kingsley, a Jamaican teenager who has to be deported in the next twenty-four hours, and Daniel Bae, a Korean-American who is on his way to Yale. As Daniel is going to his college admissions interview, he stumbles across Natasha, who is jamming out to music. Danielthen proceeds to follow Natasha around New York, trying to convince her about their instant connection. The bond between the two grows stronger, but Natasha’s deportation comes ticking closer with every second.

(2017) The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Starr Carter balances moving between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives, and the prestigious prep school she attends. The balance is shattered, however, when Starr witnesses one of her childhood friends, Khalil, being fatally shot by a police officer. When his death becomes a national headline, peopledescribe him as a thug and a drug dealer while others protest in his name. The police officers and a local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family as everyone tries to figure out what truly happened. And the only one who has that answer is Starr.

Favorite Books Series: Staff Picks

October, just in case you didn’t know, is National Book Month, aka the perfect excuse to read, read, read! Fall is the best time for reading. It’s getting cold and chilly out, so you can snuggle up with a blanket and some fuzzy socks and hot chocolate and just lounge to your heart’s content. We’ll be showcasing some of our favorite books this month in celebration. To start, here are our favorites, picked from our own bookshelves.

Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
Recommended by BJ Robinson, Director

Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy written by Shakespeare between 1598 and 1599. Lies, trickery, and deceit run rampant and prove that communication is important in a relationship! Don Pedro woos Hero for Claudio; Beatrice and Benedick are tricked into confessing their feelings; Hero fakes her own death. It’s a story where miscommunication is king, and chaos reigns.

Fun Fact: The majority of the text is written in prose, not iambic pentameter.


The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn 
by Mark Twain

Recommended by Corey Parson, Managing Editor

One of the most commonly banned books of all time The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn follows Huck where The Adventures of Tom Sawyer left off. First kidnapped by his drunkard father, then given over to be “sivilized,” Huck decides the only thing to do is fake his own death and run away. And that’s not even the craziest part. Huckleberry Finn is an adventure story, filled with bad luck and worse timing.

Fun Fact: It was first published in the U.K. It took two months before it was published in the U.S.

Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery
Recommended by Jillian Murphy, Assistant Managing Editor

Anne of Green Gables features Anne-with-an-E Shirley, accidentally adopted and supposed to be a boy. Written by Montgomery in 1908, the novel follows Anne and her life in the small, magical town of Avonlea. The novel became an instant classic and is considered one of the best children’s novels of all time. Anne lived a life of adventure and could do all the things we wished to (including cracking a slate over someone’s head. Childhood dream.).

Fun Fact: Anne of Green Gables is incredibly popular in Japan. Enough so that there’s a recreation of Green Gables in Hokkaido.

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
Recommended by Emilee, student worker

What would you do if the gods of old were still here? Would you know? Would you maybe even be one of them? That’s who Percy Jackson is: Demigod, son of Poseidon, and supposedly the lighting thief. Percy was never told who his father was until it was almost too late. Now, he has to find Zeus’ lightning bolt and clear his name. Riordan’s series started as bedtime stories for his son which is why they translate so well to kids and adults today.

Fun Fact: There is a musical version by the same name. It first premiered in 2014 and was re-released in 2017.

The First Bad Man by Miranda July
Recommended by Sam, student worker

The First Bad Man is the debut novel of Miranda July, and it’s a work of surrealism that can’t be clearly defined. It’s protagonist, Cheryl, is fortysomething, aggressively polite, and clearly going through an unresolved crisis. Cheryl’s bosses convince her to let their daughter (Clee, 21, certainly aggressive, not exactly polite) live with her. From there starts a path of chaos that is certainly odd, but oddly enthralling and which will guarantee a wild ride to any reader.

Fun Fact: Before the book was released, July auctioned off items from the story. These include a jester hat, a Tibetan cloth, and special shoes (green flip-flops with nails sticking out the bottoms).

Like our book recs? Disagree with one of our choices? Want to suggest a book? Leave a comment or visit us at Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to find more great content.