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June Picks: Memoirs, Sci-fi Horror and More! | AC Staff Recommends

Written by Alexander College in Lifestyle on June 26, 2023

In Canada, one thing children are familiar with are summer reading lists.

Libraries, wanting to encourage children to read during their summer break when school is out, have annual summer reading programs where children can fill out a list of books they’ve read over the summer. In September, children can hand in their completed lists to receive a reading medal.

Unfortunately, adults have no such incentive programs. However, this doesn’t mean consuming media is a joyless task.

Many people consume media for a variety of reasons, whether it is to learn something new or just to take a break from reality for a little while.

Influential figures occasionally share lists of recommended media as well. For example, former US President Barack Obama recommends a list of books, music, and movies almost every year.

With this in mind, we asked AC staff for media recommendations and this is what they recommend this month:

Until I Meet My Husband (Essay Novel) by Ryousuke Nanasaki

Until I Meet My Husband is a memoir written by activist Ryousuke Nanasaki. This collection of essays follows his life as a gay man in Japan and documents his experiences from his childhood until his eventual marriage in the first religiously recognized same-sex wedding in Japan.

This essay novel was also adapted into a manga which is also available in English.

This is what Sophie from the Web team has to say about it:

Until I Meet My Husband is a great read for Pride Month as it shows the journey of discovery and acceptance that many people who identify as 2SLGBTQIA+ can relate to in Japan and around the world where 2SLGBTQIA+ is not widely accepted, or even legally recognized.

The novel explores the ups and downs of finding love and self-acceptance but ultimately leaves the reader with hope for the future that all forms of love will be equally accepted.

cover of Until I Meet My Husband

Let’s Talk About Mental Health hosted by Jeremy Godwin

Let’s Talk About Mental Health is a weekly podcast hosted by Australian writer Jeremy Godwin. This podcast explores topics in mental health and wellbeing, with each episode of the podcast covering one topic.

Since its launch in 2019, this podcast reaches listeners in over 170 countries around the world and weekly episode transcripts are available in three different languages. A book based on the podcast under the same name is also available.

This is what Mariam from the Web team has to say about it:

I really enjoy listening to this on my daily walks, it helps me destress at the end of the day and have better perspective in life.

podcast thumbnail of Let's Talk About Mental Health

Spy x Family by Tatsuya Endo

Spy x Family is a manga series that follows the daily lives of a spy and an assassin who become a family for their own personal reasons. Along the way, they adopt a child who secretly has telepathic powers and a dog who has premonitions of the future.

Despite becoming a family under false pretenses, the characters experience the joys of day-to-day family life and the two adults learn what it’s like to be a true family.

This manga series received positive reviews and has since been adapted into an anime series with a movie being announced for late 2023.

This is what Sebastian from the Web team has to say about it:

While the plot sounds like it could be an action spy thriller, the main draw of the series is how wholesome the family becomes. Even though they all start off as “coworkers” with a common goal, they eventually grow to care for each other as a real family.

For instance, father figure Twilight uses all of his spy coworkers and resources in order to create this intricate yet hilarious spy themed birthday for his adoptive daughter Anya (she ends up loving it!).

While reading you’ll smile, laugh and maybe shed a tear when you see this group of misfits learn to embrace their adoptive family while also preventing the espionage world from collapsing!

cover of volume 2 of Spy x Family

Cursed Bunny by Bora Chung

Cursed Bunny is an anthology of short stories that blend horror, sci-fi, fairy tales and more. This unforgettable book is the first of the Korean author’s books to be officially translated into English and it’s no wonder.

The book was shortlisted for the International Booker Prize – an annual award that’s awarded to a work of fiction that has been translated into English.

This is what our resident librarian Mary has to say about it:

I love the writing style, even though it’s translated from the original language, which is Korean. The writing is concise and describes the right amount of detail.

It’s horror and I don’t get scared from horror in writing but the way the author writes as an eeriness to it.

cover of Cursed Bunny

From true stories to horror fiction, we hope these recommendations pique your interest and encourage you to pick up a book, audiobook, or podcast during the summer!

If you’re a student or staff interested in these titles or any other books, check out our Library or contact a librarian.

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