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10 Books You Must Read Before You Die
It was really hard to narrow it down to only 10 books but I tried to make it as well-rounded as possible, just kinda genres for everybody.
The first book I'm gonna recommend is
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
This book is a classic. It's just like a piece of literature that I feel like everyone needs to read before they die. I mean, there's a reason why this is assigned reading in school but I know it's not fun when you're forced to read it and you're getting graded on it but I swear, with fresh eyes and reading recreationally, this book is gonna take you on a journey.
It's about two families, the Trasks and the Hamiltons and there's just a whole lot of drama. The tea has been spilt and it goes on generations. I feel like this book has everything you need in a story. It's got guilt, it's got rivalry, it's got the struggle to be loved and finding acceptance and also, I feel like this book has the best villain of all time, Cathy. She is psycho, she's crazy and just raunchy and she does like the craziest stuff and she just kept me thoroughly entertained. Every time she was in a chapter, I was like, ah, my girl is back. It's very clear, easy to understand and it's just a masterpiece.
Moving on to book number two.
Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami.
I have read a number of Murakami books like Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Norwegian Wood but Kafka on the Shore will always remain my favorite. It's about a boy, a teenager. He runs away from home and he tries to find his lost mom and his lost sister and he ends up spending some time in this little town and he works at a library and that's where things start to get a little twisted, a little dark and very, very surreal. One of the main reasons why I love Murakami is that he really takes you on psychological mind-benders.
You really don't know where he's gonna take you and he creates such vivid scenes that I would have never imagined and I love the fact that he just takes you from point A to B to C to Z, just everywhere. I remember when I was reading this, I was really trying to learn how to lucid dream. I was drinking all these teas and all this stuff and reading a Murakami just made me feel like I was dreaming. That was the closest I've ever come to lucid dreaming. I've never met an author or I've never read an author like Murakami and so I think it's so cool that he has his own distinct way of writing and storytelling. If you're the type of person that needs all the buttons buttoned and all the ends tied in a pretty bow, I'm not sure if you'll like this because this is more about the journey and the experience than a clear explanation.
The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom.
This is one of those books that you can just smash out in a day or read on vacation. It's one of those nice, happy books. It's about an old man named Eddie and he just kinda lived a dull, meaningless life and on his 83rd birthday, he dies and that's not a spoiler alert. It happens within the first chapter and also clearly he dies because heaven is in the title but each one of these people he meets, they explain his connection with him and how they changed his life or vice versa knowingly or unknowingly. Some people might think it's corny or cheesy but I love this book. It left me feeling all happy and warm inside and so if you're looking just for a quick, happy read, this is the one for you.
Alright, gonna keep cracking on.
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
This was actually recommended by a bunch of you guys so thank you.
You know me so well. This is one of my favorites now. This is a sci-fi dystopian novel which is right up my alley. I love books like this and it is in a world where just everything is in shambles. Pretty much everyone's living in poverty because global warming has just taken a toll and a lot of people just escape this world by going into this virtual reality called the OASIS.
It's kinda like The Matrix and internet. The main character is a teen named Wade and he spends all his time in the OASIS and he is dying to play this scavenger hunt game because the winner of that game, it's kinda like winning the lottery so a lot of people see that as their way out of poverty and Wade just has to go through all these crazy adventures and there's so many 80s references and I love it. It really takes you on thrilling adventure. Definitely recommend it if you're looking for just a fun adventurous read.
Moving on to more dystopias, I had to feature
1984 by George Orwell.
This is another literary classic. Highly recommend. It's about a world where the government controls absolutely everything even the way people think and there's no sense of individuality. There's no speaking up. It's like a tyranny where just the government is constantly watching. Big brother's watching. And it follows a man named Winston and his job is an editor so he rewrites documents and just Photoshops photos so these historical documents follow the government story. From an outside perspective, Winston's a good man following and showing face but in actuality, he is just freaking miserable and he's trying to find a way to rebel and resist. This is a very bleak read but I just, I find these stories so fascinating because this could have easily happened to where we live now and there are places in the world where this is a reality and not just a story. So this is my last book on dystopias I promise.
Had to mention
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
In this world, women have absolutely no rights. They can't have a job, they can't have money, they can't read, they can't write. They're all assigned to these roles and some women are wives. Those are the better off women and then some of them are aunts which are kinda like the maids, facilitators and then there are handmaids and the handmaids are the ones that literally just have to give birth and I mean, it's not a good role. These women get raped every month and this is also a TV show on Hulu so if you are not gonna read this book, I highly recommend the TV show. It's the best, every Wednesday. So yeah, check out the book or check out the show.
So my next book is
The Secret History by Donna Tartt.
It is a story of a group of students in this really prestigious elite university and it's a murder mystery. The main character is named Richard and he doesn't come from money so he's just kind of plopped into this world where just, where everyone's just wealthy and everyone's super posh and he's in a class, a very small class that studies ancient history and one of the students dies but you don't know who did it or why so that's where the story just kinda takes off.
This kinda reminds me of And Then There Were None but the teenage version. I mentioned this book not too long ago in my favorites but it's
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde.
I love this book. Quick summary, it's about a man named Dorian. He's very attractive, young and he gets his portrait painted and he meets this man named Lord Henry Wotton and he lived just a super hedonistic lifestyle. He gives zero for anyone but himself. So Dorian gets very inspired by that and he ends up selling his soul so he can look young forever and he just lives this very materialistic life and he's just living for himself, just selfish and he's just a big dick.
I read this book when I was 18 or 19 and it taught me just to balance, not go overboard. It taught me the importance of not being so decadent and knowing my limit.
My next book recommendation has such sentimental value to me.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
I read this book when I was 15 and it just left such a huge impact on my life because this was one of the first books that I read outside of my assigned reading. So when I read a book like this and I followed the story, it was a storyline that I was just interested in and there were a lot of characteristics of the main character, Charlie that just, that I felt like he just got me. He was sensitive and introverted and those were the personality traits that defined me especially when I was younger and when I reread it as an adult, there was just this huge overwhelming wave of nostalgia.
It's crazy that when you revisit something from your past that you love you so much, to be transported and feel that same way is just, it's insane. It's like a time machine. So this book will always have a special place in my heart and it's very interesting and an unconventional coming of age story but I feel like I understand why this has affected so many teens.
My last book is my first non-fiction on the list.
7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey.
I have also mentioned this in my monthly favorites but I had to mention it again because this is, this has changed my life in such a positive way. I feel like I'm always trying to find ways to increase my productivity, my efficiency and my self-growth and this book just hit all those targets for me.
Obviously, this book is about seven habits that make you more effective but I feel like it's beyond just that. This book has taught me to be more self-aware and to be a better person and I could easily just tell you what the seven habits are but they're not gonna make sense until you read the book, read each of the stories attached with the lessons and then you'll really absorb it. I'm actually on my second time reading this book because it's not one of those books that you just read once and you're like ah. I just wanna remember these lessons for the rest of my life and apply 'em that way.
Alrighty, guys, those were my top 10 favorite books of all time and honestly, I had so much talking about these books. I mean, I don't know if you guys would be interested in me doing another book countdown.
I have so many other recommendations. I could just do another 10 more favorite books or I can do books on just self-help or just sci-fi or just fiction.
I hope you guys enjoy my 10 Books You Must Read Before You Die, hope you have a beautiful day and I'll see you guys in the next one.