65 Books You Need To Read In Your 20s


65 Books You Need To Read In Your 20s.

This article caught my eye on my Facebook feed. Now, I would have considered myself well-read and I am in my 20s.. but man… I feel so inadequate having read this list. Inadequate yet inspired.

I have read  a couple of the books on this list (The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plaith and the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman) and I have heard of a dozen or so of these books, but there are so many I haven’t heard of and from reading the (often too short) descriptions of the books given in this article, I feel that there are more than a few I want to pick up and read soon.

Surely I am not the only one out there who was surprised at how many books on this list I haven’t read? As with most of these lists, the selection is all based on one reviewer’s opinions, but still, to have let so many good books pass by me I think I really need to expand my horizons more and be more accommodating to titles I haven’t heard of before instead of trying to read all the ‘famous’ books out there!

Also, one more thing – is it not weird when someone gives a list of however many books, but then clumps trilogies and series together as one entry? I see why it is done, but technically there are more than 65 books here to read!

How many of these have you read?

1. The Emperor’s Children, by Claire Messud

2. What She Saw…, by Lucinda Rosenfeld

3. The Deptford Trilogy, by Robertson Davies

4. The Secret History, by Donna Tartt

5. Giovanni’s Room, by James Baldwin

6. A Visit from the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan

7. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Díaz

8. Lucy, by Jamaica Kincaid

9. The Moviegoer, by Walker Percy

10. White Teeth, by Zadie Smith

11. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, by Michael Chabon

12. Infinite Jest, by David Foster Wallace

13. Bright Lights, Big City, by Jay McInerney

14. The Namesake, by Jhumpa Lahiri

15. Call Me by Your Name, by André Aciman

16. The Rachel Papers, by Martin Amis

17. Song of Solomon, by Toni Morrison

18. The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway

19. Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro

20. A Home at the End of the World, by Michael Cunningham

21. The Sandman Series, by Neil Gaiman

22. The Group, by Mary McCarthy

23. Quicksand and Passing, by Nella Larsen

24. Pastoralia, by George Saunders

25. Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline

26. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, by Dave Eggers

27. The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath

28. Main Street, by Sinclair Lewis

29. His Dark Materials trilogy, by Philip Pullman

30. Generation X, by Douglas Coupland

31. The Fortress of Solitude, by Jonathan Lethem

32. Housekeeping, by Marilynne Robinson

33. I Love Dick, by Chris Kraus

34. On the Road, by Jack Kerouac

35. Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, by Tom Robbins

36. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, by Haruki Murakami

37. Bossypants, by Tina Fey

38. Kitchen Confidential, by Anthony Bourdain

39. How to Lose Friends and Alienate People, by Toby Young

40. The Dirt, by Mötley Crüe and Neil Strauss

41. Lunar Park, by Bret Easton Ellis

42. Just Kids, by Patti Smith

43. Another Bullshit Night in Suck City, by Nick Flynn

44. Oh the Glory of it All, by Sean Wilsey

45. I Don’t Care About Your Band, by Julie Klausner

46. Wild, by Cheryl Strayed

47. Lit, by Mary Karr

48. I’m with the Band, by Pamela Des Barres

49. Dear Diary, by Lesley Arfin

50. The Complete Poems of Anne Sexton, by Anne Sexton

51. Actual Air, by David Berman

52. The Collected Poems of Kenneth Koch, by Kenneth Koch

53. Alien vs. Predator, by Michael Robbins

54. The Collected Poems of Audre Lord, by Audre Lord

55. Me Talk Pretty One Day, by David Sedaris

56. How to Be a Woman, by Caitlin Moran

57. My Misspent Youth, by Meghan Daum

58. Slouching Towards Bethlehem, by Joan Didion

59. Up in the Old Hotel, by Joseph Mitchell

60. How to Cook Everything, by Mark Bittman

61. How’s Your Drink?, by Eric Felten

62. The Elements of Style, by Strunk & White

63. Letters to a Young Contrarian, by Christopher Hitchens

64. Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, by Betty Edwards

65. He’s Just Not That Into You, by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo


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