Summer Reading-Stories of Good Men
“A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman
A story about a grumpy old man, Ove, who lost his wife and was planning to kill himself, but his neighbors interrupted him, demanding his attention. He ended up becoming very involved in his neighbors’ lives and helping them. The neighbors became his family, and he was no longer lonely. Readers got to see the grumpy old man was a sweet man. Ove was a hard-working, earnest, loyal, and kind man who would offer any bystander a hand when in need. The story reminds us how we shouldn’t judge people on the surface and overlook the genuine human kindness underneath each person.
“The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper” by Phaedra Patrick
Arthur’s wife died, and he found a bracelet of charms of hers left behind. Out of curiosity, Arthur set out to find the history of his wife represented by each of the charms. His adventures led him both to different parts of England, and to different parts of the world. Arthur celebrated his wife’s life by visiting her pasts. And it rewarded him with wonders, awes, and new friendships in the process—a heartwarming story about a full circle of life where hidden adventures can await what looks like ordinary life.
“The Fault in Our Stars” by John Green
Two cancer-stricken teenagers met at a remission support group and fell in love. Hazel, a seventeen-year-old with thyroid cancer that spread to her lungs, had to go around with an oxygen tank. She caught the eyes of a sixteen-year-old cancer survivor, Augustus, who had osteosarcoma, a bone cancer. He wore a prostatic leg after getting his leg amputated.
They read each other their favorite novels. Hazel’s was a novel written by an author in Amsterdam, but she didn’t like the ending, and she wished to talk to the author. Augustus used his wish from Grant A Wish charitable foundation for cancer children, to get Hazel’s wish. It was a trip for two to Amsterdam. Augustus wanted to take Hazel to fulfill her wish, to see her favorite author. He gave Hazel the taste of love and the trip of her lifetime, and then he died shortly after, when his cancer returned. A sad and touching story indeed. A young man gave his last wish to someone he loved. It’s not a book about cancer. It’s a story about the will to live life fully despite challenges.
These books are classics that would make one want to read them over and over again. I hope these books can take your imagination far to other parts of the world if you can’t visit in person. Or maybe the stories will inspire you for a trip someday.