Books to Read in Your 20s

It’s been too long. I’m looking forward to December when I graduate, and will have more time to read for fun. I will have the book I am currently reading, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay done by Thanksgiving, but thought I would provide the 79 book list of “Books to Read in Your 20s,” that I am currently reading through. I’m not reading them in a particular order, just as I get my hands on them.


Books to Read in Your 20s

  • The Year of Magical Thinking (Joan Didion)
  • The Sun Also Rises (Ernest Hemingway)
  • Bastard Out of California (Dorothy Allison)
  • What She Saw…(Lucinda Rosenfeld)
  • The Deptford Trilogy: Fifth Business/The Manticore/World of Wonders (Robertson Davies)
    • This is technically 3 books, bringing the list to 82
  • Giovanni’s Room (James Baldwin)
  • A Visit from the Good Squad (Jennifer Egan)
  • The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (Junot Diaz)
  • Lucy (Jamaica Kincaid)
  • The Moviegoer (Walker Percy)
  • The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay (Michael Chabon)
  • Infinite Jest (David Foster Wallace)
  • Bright Lights, Big City (Jay McInerney)
  • The Namesake (Jhumpa Lahiri)
  • Call Me by Your Name (Andre Aciman)
  • The Rachel Papers (Martin Amis)
  • Song of Solomon (Toni Morrison)
  • The Color Purple (Alice Walker)
  • Never Let Me Go (Kazuo Ishiguro)
  • A Home at the End of the World (Michael Cunningham)
  • The Group (Mary McCarthy)
  • Quicksand (Nella Larsen)
  • Pastoralia (George Saunders)
  • Ready Player One (Ernest Cline)
  • A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (Dave Eggers)
  • Main Street (Sinclair Lewis)
  • Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture (Douglas Coupland)
  • Housekeeping (Marilynne Robinson)
  • I Love Dick (Chris Kraus)
  • Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (Tom Robbins)
  • How to Lose Friends and Alienate People (Toby Young)
  • Lunar Park (Bret Easton Ellis)
  • Another Bullshit Night in Suck City (Nick Flynn)
  • Oh the Glory of it All (Sean Wilsey)
  • Dear Diary (Lesley Arfin)
  • The Complete Poems (Anne Sexton)
  • Actual Air (David Berman)
  • How to be a Woman (Caitlin Moran)
  • My Misspent Youth: Essays (Meghan Daum)
  • Slouching Towards Bethlehem (Joan Didion)
  • Up in the Old Hotel (Joseph Mitchell)
  • How’s Your Drink? Cocktails, Culture, and the Art of Drinking Well (Eric Felten)
  • Cherry (Mary Karr)
  • The House on Mango Street (Sandra Cisneros)
  • The Collected Stories (Lydia Davis)
  • Drinking Coffee Elsewhere (Z.Z. Packer)
  • Villette (Charlotte Bronte)
  • A Room of One’s Own (Virginia Woolf)
  • Bluets (Maggie Nelson)
  • Ariel (Sylvia Plath) ***I can’t wait to read this again, so I’m not crossing it off the list***
  • The Girl in the Flammable Skirt (Aimee Bender)
  • The House of Mirth (Edith Wharton)
  • The House of the Spirits (Isabel Allende)
  • Contents May Have Shifted (Pam Houston)
  • Love, an Index (Rebecca Lindenberg)
  • An Untamed State (Roxane Gay)
  • The Complete Stories (Flannery O’Connor)
  • boygirls (Katie Farris)
  • Play It as It Lays (Joan Didion)
  • A Year Without Make-Up: Tales of Yoder, a 20-Something Traveler (Stephanie Yoder)
  • The Secret History (Donna Tartt)
  • Yes Please (Amy Poehler)
  • The Liars’ Club (Mary Karr)
  • Pippi Longstocking (Astrid Lindgren)
  • Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
  • Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
  • Franny and Zooey (J.D. Salinger)
  • Weetzie Bat (Francesca Lia Block)
  • The Best of Everything (Rona Jaffe)
  • The Pursuit of Love (Nancy Mitford)
  • Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx (Adrian LeBlanc)
  • Pilgrim at Tinker Creek (Annie Dillard)
  • Heartburn (Nora Ephron)
  • Delta of Venus (Anais Nin)
  • How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale (Jenna Jameson)
  • Self-Help (Lorrie Moore)
  • Making Faces (Amy Harmon)
  • The Portable Dorothy Parker (Dorothy Parker)
  • Alanna: The First Adventure (Tamora Pierce)
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