We’re back again with Top 5 Tuesday! This lovely post is brought to you through the inspiration of Shanah @ the Bionic Bookworm, who has set the theme for this Tuesday to be:
Books Set in Your Own Country!
Needless to say, I had an easy/difficult time with this list, because I live in the great, bit USA and there are many, many books set here. So, plenty to choose from, but that’s always a double-edged sword because having so many options means having too many choices! It was so hard to narrow it down!
But I think I’ve come up with a pretty good list for you all and I hope you’ve either read some of these books before (because they’re awesome!) or are going to read some/all of the books on this list (because they’re awesome!) So, without further ado:
1. The Radium Girls – Kate Moore (New Jersey, Illinois, & Connecticut)
I was fascinated by this story and as I read more, I became furious at the systems in place in America that let this happen. Not only is it difficult to demand safety in the workplace, when many companies want/are are able to get away with shortcuts to provide more product, it is also difficult for employees to sue for damages and harm to self. The list of women taken advantage of and discarded so carelessly in this book is long, their story is bleak, and their victories over the companies that hurt them are few, but finally their story is being told.
This is such a fascinating book and I can’t recommend it enough! If you like history, especially women’s history, this book is a great choice!
2. Every Hidden Thing – Kenneth Oppel (South Dakota)
Historical fiction pick! I couldn’t resist. I love, love, love this book and I love the archaeology and the romance and everything. It’s such a well written book and I think it’s really unique to the genre. Also, powerful female alert! I’ve talked about it before, but Rachel Cartland is a badass! Please read. That is all.
3. Not If I See You First – Eric Lindstrom (Anywhere, USA)
First of all, I read this in a book club and the overall feelings were mixed about this book. When I read it, I enjoyed it immensely, also – I didn’t have problems with Parker, the main character, or her rules. She might come off as a snob, tactless, and insensitive and her rules might seem unfair, but I felt she was justified in a lot of ways.
One of the main things I love about this book is that it depicts a blind teen’s life. Parker’s story is not meant to be a sob-story, it’s meant to be an example of another kind of teen life. It’s real, it’s raw, and it forces you to listen. This book may not be for everyone, but it’s pretty up there for me on the enjoyable spectrum.
4. Hour of the Bees – Lindsay Eagar (New Mexico)
This book is targeted as a middle-grade book, but as an adult, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s so well written, the story is so universal and timeless, and it’s just beautiful. It tells the story of 12 year old Caroline, “Carol,” as she wants to be known, as she spends her summer break helping her family move her grandfather to a senior citizen’s home because he has dementia. She’s never met her grandfather before and she doesn’t know how to be around him.
But there’s a bit of magic wrapped up in this book as her grandfather tells her this story that sounds like a fairytale but also seems wound up with the real events of his life. It’s a story within a story and it’s so, so good!
5. Walk on Earth a Stranger – Rae Carson (California)
Carson’s Gold Seer trilogy is excellent. This first book is my favorite, and it’s a tale that spans across the US. It’s basically an Oregon Trail story, but the end destination is California. It’s another historical-fiction book, set during the time of the Gold Rush and there’s also a bit of magic! Leah’s ability to sense gold is pretty cool, and, tied in with historical events, it leads to some interesting conclusions.
I love, love, love Leah and her best friend/love-interest Jefferson. I think the story is fantastic and unique and I love the setting. I highly recommend you give it a read!
So there you have it!
I know this list is a little YA heavy, but honestly I could have chosen from so many books, so I really just went with books that shot straight to my mind to put on this post to make it easier. I hope you enjoyed the list and I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below! Let me know what you think of my choices, if you’ve read any of these books, or if you’re thinking about it!