Top 10 Books Every Millennial Should Read

Top 10 Books Every Millennial Should Read

I promise to stay away from the typical high school classics.

If you know me, you know I’m a reader. I LOVE books. I love stories and I love learning and I love reading. I’ve been known to stop dinners so that I can look something up and read a detailed article, plus 4 more opinion pieces, on a particular topic of debate. I started a book club with my brother, where we read and discuss books monthly. I have a book collection currently housed in my room, where I most definitely do not have enough room for my books. But I still consider myself a book novice. There’s so much literature out there, and I’ve only read a fraction of it. I hope someday I can say I’m well-read. Still, I’ve put quite a few Goodreads under my belt. Here’s a list of my top ten books that I think everyone should get around to reading at least once in their lives, if not a few times.

1. Never Let Me Go – Kazou Ishiguro

This book earned me my high school diploma, so it's fitting that I would have some strong feelings about it. Ishiguro is a master of subtleties as he explores the human condition in this novel. It may seem confusing at first, but it's well worth the read and very artfully written. (If you wanna read more about why this is such a cool book-- hit me up, I'll share my project with you).

2. The Help – Kathryn Stockett


The Help was one of those books that you actually can't put down. I'm sure you've at least heard of, if not seen, the academy-award winning movie adaptation of this novel, and so you know how the story itself is gripping. The writing is even more so. I remember being devastated when I finished the book because the characters felt so real, I wanted to keep reading about them. Stockett has immense talent in writing.

3. Now I See You: A Memoir – Nicole C. Kear


Memoirs are my favorite genre of books, especially when they're written this well. This is the story of a woman who's slowly going blind and decides that carpe diem is the way to go until she has children. The most memorable part of this novel is the ending-- one of the most beautiful and touching book moments. Also, it definitely gave a brand-new appreciation for my own eyes and for the unpredictability of life.

4. The Book of Lost Things – John Connolly

This is one of the creepiest, utterly weirdest novels I've ever read. But it's brilliant nonetheless. It perfectly captures a world of fantasy with imagination in a rather odd coming of age story. For younger kids, it's not the best story and may just creep them out, even though it's written as a children's novel. But there are subtleties and dark themes hidden behind the seeming innocence of this novel. It certainly leaves you with a lot to think about.

5. No Matter The Wreckage – Sarah Kay

Granted, this is the only poetry book I’ve ever read in its entirety, it’s definitely a must, must read. Sarah Kay has an unimaginable way with words. Her poetry is one of the first that’s actually made me feel something after reading it. She writes about everything, from heartbreaks, to brother, to teachers, to feminist-esque poems. She’s truly amazing. Her spoken word poetry and her Ted-Talks are also well, well worth the watch.


6. Room – Emma Donoghue

Room was absolutely haunting. Donoghue writes through the voice of 5-year-old Jack, in a chilling, truly realistic way. But the matter at hand is most certainly not 5-year-old material. Jack is innocent, naive, but his story is not. It's a book that you want to tear your eyes away from, but just can't. When you think it can't get any better (or any worse?), it does. Another book with an Academy-award-winning film adaptation, Room is a book to add to your must-read shelf.

7. The Handmaid's Tale – Margaret Atwood

Another book from my high school English class, The Handmaid's Tale is a very, very important read. Atwood's greatness as an author is known far and wide, and it most certainly is true. If you've been avoiding this book despite all the buzz around it, I highly, highly suggest that you stop avoiding it and pick up a copy today. You won't regret it. Especially in today's political climate, a novel with feminist tones such as this is jaw-dropping and inspiring. And if you've watched the series already, I still highly, highly recommend reading the novel – it'll be well worth your time, sincerely. It's a chilling, mind-boggling story that will stay with you for a long time.

8. A Man Called Ove – Fredrik Backman

This book is absolutely adorable; one of those hit-you-in-the-feels, make-you-feel-warm-inside books. It's a story about a grumpy old man with a touching past, who meets a family that'll change his life. It was especially touching for me because I read it while also being thoroughly annoyed (but with lots and lots of love) by my grandpa who was visiting for the summer. I could relate HARD. Backman is also an incredibly talented writer; he writes every chapter as its own story, a true chapter in every sense of the word, yet the story is cohesive and culminates in one ending. It's a wonderful read, especially if you're in the mood to tickle your feels.

9. Following Atticus – Tom Ryan


Books about dogs and their bonds with their owners are always a favorite of mine. These are the books I usually find myself crying over to no end. I could fill the entire list with books that are about dogs, but if I had to pick my most favorite, it would be this one. Ryan's relationship with Atticus was touching, and again, caught me in the feels. It was well written, too. A great book, and a very inspiring story, all around.

10. The Namesake – Jhumpa Lahiri

I know it seems like I only ever pick books that are made into movies, but it's because they're good books!!! The Namesake is no exception. It was a wonderful story, that hit home for me being that it is about a first-generation Indian kid growing up in the States. The relationship that he has with his mother, father, sister and culture is such a beautiful, intricate, and complex tapestry; one that Lahiri paints wonderfully.


Feel free to comment with your favorite books!

Cover Image Credit: Riya Gupta

Popular Right Now

Why I Listen to Depressing Music Even Though I'm Depressed

Music that's powerful, music that speaks to me, music that means something.

It took me a long time to find my preferred genre of music. In middle school, I remember listening to pop songs that I often heard on the radio. I could (and still can) rap the entirety of Super Bass by Nicki Minaj and I dreamt about my crush professing his love to me by serenading me with Stereo Hearts by Gym Class Heroes. 

By my freshman year of high school, those songs were no longer cool, so I went along with the crowd and started listening to the next most popular type of music: trap music. In my experience, these artists talked solely about fucking bitches and smoking ganja, even though, at that point in my life, I had no intent of having intercourse or "doing" the marijuana (boy was I naive). Though I listened to these genres to appease everyone else, I never felt completed like so many people claimed to feel when they listened to music. I did not have a passion for any bands or artists and I did not feel any sort of deep connection while I was listening.

It wasn’t until my sophomore year that I decided to explore certain genres that I hadn’t yet explored. The first bands I really grew to love were the Arctic Monkeys, Cage the Elephant, and The Kooks. Their music not only sounded great, but the lyrics actually meant something. They spoke about relationships, internal struggles, mental issues, and societal problems. Their lyrics resonated with me, and, surprisingly, the most depressing of their material resonated the most.

I have suffered from depression for as long as I can remember, though I was not diagnosed until a little over a year ago. I’ve been on meds and have learned coping techniques, but the most counterintuitive of those techniques is listening to these depressing songs.

One of the hardest struggles I have with depression is not being able to tell people how I am feeling, not because I don’t want to, but because I don’t have the words. I find that listening to others put into words the exact emotions that I have not been able to convey myself is quite reassuring.  These songs help me better understand my own emotions and give me an idea of how to turn those emotions into spoken language. 

When Alex Turner says “you can shriek until you’re hollow or whisper it the other way” or when AJJ says "everything is real, but it's also just as fake” I feel as if someone has entered my thoughts and put into lyrics the fears and feelings I struggle with on a daily basis. These songs make me feel as if there is a whole community of people out there who experience the same, seemingly-lonely experiences that I do. I feel more connected to the world when I listen to this type of music. I feel understood.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Two Inspiring Movies Everyone Should See

Movies that take you on an emotional roller coaster.

I have always loved watching movies, especially ones with inspiring and emotional storylines. I get very invested and intrigued (maybe a little too much), but I love having that whirlwind of emotions throughout the entire movie.

Recently, I got the opportunity to see two amazing movies that I think are very important and had a huge effect on me. The films were “Lady Bird” and “Call Me by Your Name”. Both of these films came out in 2017 so they are fairly new. They are making a huge impact and receiving a lot of deserved recognition.

“Lady Bird” has such a special storyline. It follows the relationship between a mother and daughter in such a realistic way. As many girls know, a relationship with a mother is not always an easy one and the film really captures that frustration.

It follows the life of a young girl that is about to leave to go to college. So many things change for girls during this time and there are so many emotional challenges and obstacles. I absolutely love how this film displays this situation and many relationships in a very graphic and honest way. I think it is so important for young girls to watch this film and channel all those feelings. It is incredibly relatable and it reminds girls to be courageous.

“Call Me by Your Name” is seriously one of the best movies I have seen in a long time. It is a love story, which we have seen is countless movies, but this film displays a relationship in such a unique and beautiful way.

The best thing about this movie is that it is awkward at some points and maybe even a little uncomfortable. I admire this because love and relationships aren’t always magical and perfect. It expresses a type of love that is so unapologetic and pure. I could watch it over and over and still have the same inspiring feeling at the end. If you are a fan of emotional love stories or small independent films watch this movie. You will not regret it.

Cover Image Credit: Connor Limbocker

Related Content

Facebook Comments