Edris Roman’s quarantine reading guide

Senior, Edris Roman has a passion for entertainment. Check out this piece where she reviews and recommends her latest reads from her blog, ReaditBingeit.

Ziggy, Stardust & Me by James Brandon   

Where do I even start with this novel? Ziggy, Stardust & Me by James Brandon is one of the most amazing novels I’ve ever read. It is written so beautifully, and the emotions are so raw. It is set in the 1970s in Creve Coeur, Missouri during the Vietnam War times. Brandon tells the story of a teen named Jonathan who has one huge secret: he is gay. During these times being homosexual was considered a disease and Brandon vividly shows this by describing Jonny’s horrible experiences in conversion therapy. Living just with his alcoholic father, Jonny can’t wait until he is cured of his disease and can graduate high school, but the story takes a turn when gorgeous Web is the new mysterious boy in school. What will it take for Jonathan to realize that he isn’t sick? If you choose to Readit, I hope this story impacts you as much as it impacted me. 10/10 s


Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen

From the very first page to the very last, Ever’s journey is one that will keep you on your toes. Ever is an Asian American 18-year-old who’s parents have forced her to follow a path in medicine. As the first chapter begins with many emails from colleges she applied to for medicine, we find out she only got into two. Well, one really… since the other is NYU Tisch; the school that offers her to continue her dream and passion: dancing. But this is a school she applied to in secret, and when her parents find out, consequences follow. One of them being Ever being sent away all the way to Taipei, Taiwan for a summer school program specifically for Asian students. Fear consumes her because all she’s ever known is the United States and the English language. But dear Ever finds herself surprised as rumors start to go around that the nickname of the school she’s been sent to is “love boat.” This novel tells an amazing coming of age story that explores themes of identity, love, and freedom while showing the beauty and reality of Asian culture. And it is one that I definitely recommend to young adults as we all are on a journey of our own. I hope that you Readit. 10/10 s


milk and honey by Rupi Kaur

While I do love coming of age and romance stories like the ones above, sometimes I just need a break from that structure. I like to read to escape reality, to the point where I fall in love so deeply with the characters that I cry if something doesn’t go the way I wanted to in the book. Yes, I know I’m dramatic. But I also find reading as a way to relax and heal emotional wounds. A great way to do that is by reading poetry. Poetry has a way of being written with no sense and yet making sense. It can mean something different than it does to me. “Milk and Honey” by Rupi Kaur does exactly that. It is split into four sections: the hurting, the loving, the breaking, and the healing. Kaur does a phenomenal job at using her words exquisitely so they can get to your heart within all of these sections. Topics ranging from sexual abuse/assault, and heartbreak to self-discovery and self-love make the poems a journey themselves, and I encourage you to take it and Readit. 10/10 s


Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

If you read Albertalli’s Simon vs the Homosapiens Agenda or simply saw the movie Love, Simon like me (I know, don’t judge me, readers) then I have good news for you. Leah on the Offbeat is a sequel focusing on Leah Burke’s, Simon’s best friend, point of view. It is senior year of high school which means *drumroll please* college decisions! YAY! Joking, not yay because just like Leah, I know how stressful that process is. Which is why it’s a book I recommend to young adults. As Leah deals with senior year and the college process, she reveals that she’s bisexual. But this revelation is one that only she and the readers know. Throughout the novel, she struggles to come out to her friends as she slowly falls for one of them: Abby. There’s just a tiny little problem, Abby has a boyfriend. But luckily for Leah, they’re both interested in attending the University of Georgia and a college visit during Springbreak leaves the two of them alone. Will she be able to finally be her true self around her friends? And what will happen on that trip? I guess you’ll find out when you Readit. 10/10 s