We are the generation the experts can’t seem to figure out, and maybe that’s just fine. With life changing faster than we can say “Millennial Generation,” it’s hard to find time for leisure reading. But perhaps that’s why it’s become more important than ever to periodically immerse ourselves in an imaginary world or take a moment to ponder life as seen through the lens of a favorite author. Whether you’re looking for a novel you can’t put down or a self-help book that will change your life, read on.
10) Fun Home by Alison Bechdel
Although written about a gay woman’s experiences growing up, this graphic novel is relevant to all women, regardless of sexuality. Bechdel explores her relationship with her parents (specifically her father) from her childhood to adulthood. She questions how they influenced her adult self and if those influences are positive, negative or a complex mixture of both. It’s technically a memoir, but Fun Home is structured like carefully-crafted fiction novel, with ingenious illustrations to boot.
What to expect: superb drawings, countless literary references, a relatively quick read and some serious self-reflection.
9) The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter
With a pen in hand, Carter is unstoppable. Her prose is flawless, and the way she structures a sentence is truly beautiful. In The Bloody Chamber, Carter’s first short story collection, traditional fairytales are reimagined from a decidedly feminist perspective. The story of Beauty and the Beast is reborn in the form of The Tiger Bride. With Carter, the “Beauty” becomes an fully-realized character who refuses to politely demure to the men in her life. The result? A love story far more touching than anything produced by Disney.
What to expect: kickass heroines, familiar fairytales made fresh, beautiful prose and feelings of empowerment.
8) Women, Food and God by Geneen Roth
Geneen Roth is an internationally recognized self-help guru. Appearing on Oprah in 2010, her teachings of self-love, compassion and honesty have skyrocketed ever since. Roth primarily deals with food and body image issues, but her teachings are applicable to every woman (and man) struggling to live an authentic and meaningful life of self-love. It’s hard to appreciate yourself with constant media bombardment and impossible standards of beauty, but Roth shows that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
What to expect: Roth as a relatable guide, unexpected self-love and newfound feelings of freedom
7) The Magicians by Lev Grossman
For a generation who grew up with the mystical worlds of Harry Potter and Narnia, this book is a must-read. Grossman deconstructs the notion of a “magical world” by creating his own. Much like Harry Potter, extraordinary humans are invited to attend a prestigious and hidden school of magic. Unlike Harry Potter, Grossman’s wizarding world is the opposite of sterile. Complete with sex, drugs and existential crises, The Magicians explores what would happen if a secret world of magic truly existed.
What to expect: serious exploration of the fantasy genre, disillusionment and a stellar story
6) The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Although a staple on countless self-help and spirituality “must-read” lists, this book has earned its spot. Tolle seeks to spread awareness about living a more spiritual and fulfilling life by the simple notion of being present. Learn how to get a handle on your ego, overcome constant feelings of distraction and ultimately learn how to live a life of peace.
What to expect: attainable wisdom, easy-to-use tips for a better life and feelings of inner peace
Be sure to stop by next week for our reveal of the final five! What’s your number one book for every twenty-something year old?