Today I’m going to be talking about books that my boyfriend has read and enjoyed. Lucas and I have been dating for over 2 years; we met in the tenth grade, but didn’t start dating until our senior year. Now, Lucas was not much of a reader at the time – his focus was on videogames and drumline. A couple months into our relationship, however, he told me that he wanted to get back into reading, and talked about the Demonata series by Darren Shan, books he loved when he was a kid.
Ever since then I’ve been buying him books for every occasion that calls for gifts (birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries) although he, too, has made his own book purchases.
1. The Reckoners Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson
Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills.
Nobody fights the Epics…nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.
And David wants in. He wants Steelheart — the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David’s father. For years, like the Reckoners, David’s been studying, and planning — and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.
He’s seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.
I have never seen Lucas get so excited for a book as much as I’ve seen him get excited over this series. He finished Steelheart in 1 day, and Firefight in less than. Calamity just recently came out so he doesn’t yet have his hands on it (spoiler alert: his birthday is in less than a month). He keeps telling me that I need to read this trilogy, so I will probably pick it up pretty soon.
2. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
It’s the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place.
Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets.
And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune — and remarkable power — to whoever can unlock them.
For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday’s riddles are based in the pop culture he loved — that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday’s icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes’s oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig.
And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle.
Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt — among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life — and love — in the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.
A world at stake.
A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?
This was the first book I ever bought for Lucas, and if I’m being honest I also bought it because I, too, wanted to read it. I let him read it first, though, don’t worry. He took it with him to school and ended up really enjoying it – one of his friends even commented about how he had read and enjoyed it. I read it immediately after he did, and it was funny having him to talk to about it.
3. Vicious by V.E. Schwab
Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?
Lucas keeps reminding me that, whenever I get around to reading this book, I need to tell him so we can discuss it. I take this to mean “Becca you really really need to read this book so I have somebody to fangirl with.”
4. The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
An orphan’s life is harsh — and often short — in the island city of Camorr, built on the ruins of a mysterious alien race. But born with a quick wit and a gift for thieving, Locke Lamora has dodged both death and slavery, only to fall into the hands of an eyeless priest known as Chains — a man who is neither blind nor a priest.
A con artist of extraordinary talent, Chains passes his skills on to his carefully selected “family” of orphans — a group known as the Gentlemen Bastards. Under his tutelage, Locke grows to lead the Bastards, delightedly pulling off one outrageous confidence game after another. Soon he is infamous as the Thorn of Camorr, and no wealthy noble is safe from his sting.
Passing themselves off as petty thieves, the brilliant Locke and his tightly knit band of light-fingered brothers have fooled even the criminal underworld’s most feared ruler, Capa Barsavi. But there is someone in the shadows more powerful — and more ambitious — than Locke has yet imagined.
Known as the Gray King, he is slowly killing Capa Barsavi’s most trusted men — and using Locke as a pawn in his plot to take control of Camorr’s underworld. With a bloody coup under way threatening to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the Gray King at his own brutal game — or die trying…
This is actually the first book in a series called the Gentleman Bastard. Lucas got the first book on his own a while back, and has been taking his time reading it. He keeps telling me about how “juicy” it gets, all the plot twists, and so many character deaths. Yet another series where nobody is truly safe. At this moment he is nearing the end of the first book, and he will probably pick up the rest of the series over time.
Bonus: What’s Lucas reading next?
I got him the Mistborn Trilogy for Christmas, so as soon as he finishes with Locke Lamora he’ll probably be starting that soon.
Thanks for reading!