Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

The perfect read for iconic UT locations

Michele Pinilla

True bibliophiles understand the importance of setting the right mood before reading to fully immerse themselves in the world of a good book. Yet, the demanding schedules of college students often leave them with little time to retreat to the cozy confines of their apartments for a reading nook or a comfortable chair. The Daily Texan compiled a list of the perfect spots on the Forty Acres to complement students’ next read.


The Secret History by Donna Tartt — Life Science Library

With the closure of the Architecture and Planning Library, the Life Science Library, nestled in the heart of UT, provides the perfect dark academia atmosphere for Donna Tartt’s “The Secret History.” Tartt’s tale of six brilliant and eccentric classics scholars at a quaint liberal arts college invites readers to delve deep into their own morality amidst impending tragedy. Tall windows and inscribed quotes on eight beams characterize the Hall of Noble Words. The thrilling sense of intrigue in this novel will only further intensify when the inevitable clatter of a dropped water bottle interrupts the silence of the library, mimicking the shocking twist hidden within its pages.


Lady Bird Johnson: Hiding in Plain Sight by Julia Sweig — LBJ Lawn

While readers might not immediately think of a book on his wife as the perfect read for the LBJ Lawn, author Julia Sweig’s revealing and original biography of Austin’s First Lady (maybe second only to Dolly Parton) Lady Bird Johnson argues why she deserves just as much credit for Lyndon’s rise to power. “Lady Bird Johnson: Hiding in Plain Sight” reveals the role she served as Lyndon’s most indispensable and trusted advisor during his most critical moments. Readers can look over Austin as Lady Bird did in her college years as a UT student to understand her dedication to nature preservation and public service. Alternatively, after visiting his museum, readers wanting to pick LBJ’s brain further could read his memoir, “The Vantage Point,” on the iconic hill, which provides a unique viewpoint of the campus.


Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir — Physics, Math, and Astronomy Building

Author of “The Martian,” Andy Weir’s science fiction novel, “Project Hail Mary,” presents the perfect opportunity to take a break from the endless scrawl of math equations and lab work and escape to another planet in which readers know as much as narrator Ryland Grace, a man with no memory of how he became suspended in a spacecraft far from Earth. Whether perched on a bench outside the PMA or huddled inside the PMA library, readers experience the same sense of mystery as Grace through unfolding, intermittent flashbacks.


ArtCurious: Stories of the Unexpected, Slightly Odd, and Strangely Wonderful in Art History by Jennifer Dasal — The Blanton Museum Grounds

The newly-finished Blanton grounds, which opened at the beginning of the summer, now benefit from the perfect fall breeze to make reading, or basically doing anything outside, bearable again. Jennifer Dasal’s “ArtCurious: Stories of the Unexpected, Slightly Odd, and Strangely Wonderful in Art History” treats art history lovers with a collection of fascinating and amusing stories about their favorite artists like Claude Monet, Andy Warhol, Norman Rockwell and Hieronymus Bosch. The new quirky petal sculptures of the Blanton will put readers in the mood to learn about this book’s offbeat anecdotes. For fans of audiobooks, the podcast version of the book, ArtCurious provides an entertaining and informative soundtrack while they explore the grounds.


On Trails: An Exploration by Robert Moor — Pease Park

Although not technically a part of UT’s sprawling campus, a short walk or bus ride off the yellow brick road to Pease Park presents the perfect place to read Robert Moor’s part memoir, part treatise on the beauty of the path “On Trails: An Exploration.” Moor offers an alternative perspective on the unassuming and oft-overlooked trails, inviting readers to contemplate humanity’s intricate relationship with both technology and the natural world while pondering the choices people make on their life journeys. Shaded by oak trees, readers can engage in silent reflection in Pease Park and find solace as they explore the nuanced intersections of humanity and the trails that guide our lives.

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