100(ish) Books to Read before I’m 30

After stumbling across a lot of “books to read in your 20’s” and “books to read before 30” lists I decided to compile my own list of books that I want to read before I turn 30.  Just consider this my ultimate reading challenge for the next 5 years.


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 Junet Diaz

8. Lucy by Jamaica Kincaidthesecrethistory

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 Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

20. A Home at the End of the World by Michael Cunnigham

21. The Sandman Series by Neil Gaiman

22. The Group by Mary McCarthy

songofsolomon   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. Generation X by Douglas Coupland

  30. The Fortress of Solitude by Johnathan Lethem

31. Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson

32. I Love Dick by Chris Kraus

33. On the Road by Jack Kerouac

34. Even Cowgirls get the Blues by Tom Robbins

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

36. Bossypants by Tina Fey

37. Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain

38. How to Lose Friends and Alienate People by Toby Young


39. The Dirt by Motley Crue and Neil Strauss

40. Lunar Park by Bret Easton Ellis

41. Just Kids by Patti Smith

42. Another Bullshit Night in Suck City by Nick Flynn

43. Oh the Glory of it All by Sean Wilsey

44. I Don’t Care about Your Band by Julie Klausner

45. Wild by Cheryl Strayed

anotherbullshitnight  46. Lit by Mary Karr

  47. I’m with the Band by Pamela Des Barres

  48. Dear Diary by Leslie Arfin

  49. The Complete Poems of Anne Sexton

  50. Actual Air by David Berman

  51. The Collected Poems of Kenneth Koch

  52. Alien vs. Predator by Michael Robbins

  53. The Collected Poems of Audre Lord

54. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

55. How to be a Woman by Catlin Moran

56. My Misspent Youth by Meghan Daum

57. Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion

58. Up in the Old Hotel by Joseph Mitchell

59. Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert

60. The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck

61. Getting Things Done by David Allen

how to be a woman  62. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey

  63. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

64. Walden by Henry David Thoreau

65. The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz

  66. Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely

  67. The 4-Hour Workweek by Time Ferriss

  68. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

69. Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

70. 1984 by George Orwell

71. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

72. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

73. The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason

74. Quitter by Jon Acuff

75. The Success Principles by Jack Canfield and Janet Switzer

76. The Paradox of Choice:  Why More is Less by Barry Schwartz

orwell_198477. The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman

78. The Art of War by Sun Tzu

79. The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowieckiv

80. The Power of Full Engagement by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz

81. Switch:  How to Change Things When Change is Hard  by Chip and Dan Heath

82. The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz

83. Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt

84. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

85. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

86. Bad Behavior by Mary Gaitskill

87. The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood

88. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

89. White Teeth by Zadie Smith

90. The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing

91. Nightwood by Djuna Barnes

92. Delta of Venus Anaïs Nin

93. Self-Help by Lorrie Moore

94. The Portable Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker

95. The Complete Claudine by Colette

96. The Liars’ Club by Mary Karr

97. You Can’t Keep a Good Woman Down by Alice Walkerthe-art-of-war

98. The Silent Woman by Janet Malcolm

99. Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link

100. The Complete Stories of Flannery O’Connor

101. Against Interpretation by Susan Sontag

102. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

103. Sula by Toni Morrison

104. Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison


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