I live and breathe for these must-read books

Throughout my life, I periodically became what I suppose you could refer to as a reader. 

I was never the child to cast reading aside as irrelevant or old-world. Many primitive hobbies tend to trend, however, in the seasons of my life, my time and engagement stray from that of reading and are occupied by the multitude of allurements that constrict my life. 

As my schedule condenses with my age, I have worked to put more of a conscientious effort toward reading. I just love allowing myself to experience things I never will have the opportunity to live, and reading provides me with just that. 

In reality, my time spent reading tends to solely be the few moments and pages turned lying in bed or in the few minutes between notes in math, but I have discovered a few books that force me to completely indulge in the content: stories that I must absorb to truly exist. 

Honestly, on occasion, it bothers me that I am not the only one who gets to flourish in these alternate worlds—that anyone has access to these realms—yet, I feel it a disservice to keep these to myself.

To avoid spoilers of course, here are just the traits that make these books just so desirable to me. 

The Nightingale

I breathe for this book. The entirety of my being wishes I could experience this book for the first time again. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah began my obsessive phase with historical fiction, and I am forever grateful. I love this story for a few significant reasons. For one, the balance between a tragic love story and tragic historical events was executed so flawlessly. No regrets stand for the multitude of tears I spilled onto my library edition because truly, I cried for the characters.

No regrets stand for the multitude of tears I spilled onto my library edition because truly, I cried for the characters.

Hannah does a brilliant job pulling you into the characters’ emotions and truly making you live the story. 

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

I thoroughly believe that everyone should read this book by Taylor Jenkins Reid. The shocking plotline is simply everything. I have forced each and every one of my friends into reading this, and it’s safe to say that no one has been left disappointed. It is so much more than your average love story, and the twisted relations are truly unpredictable. 

The Great Alone

Reading books twice, I believe, is simply absurd; in almost all cases I refuse to do it. However, I was forced into it for a class assignment, and I am grateful to live this beautiful and sickening story again. Kristin Hannah is able to let me feel for the characters and understand a type of love I have never been able to grasp. It is heart-wrenching and eye-opening. 

Between Shades of Gray

I cannot explain why I love to read such sad and twisted stories, yet here is another one to add to the list by Ruta Sepetys. The past has isolated and violated so many people, and only by reading their stories can I begin to feel what they have. The underlying love story that threads through this dismal series of events forced me to continue to read in hopes of how the story may end. I am able to feel everything and be present in the book just by flipping through the pages. 

Killing November

I haven’t been one for fantasy and dystopian worlds since my Harry Potter phase in fifth grade. However, this book and its sequel, Hunting November, by Adriana Mather have let my love for the genre come back to play. It is most definitely a page-turner, and I love the thrill a novel like this can provide. All of my favorite historical fiction novels just don’t serve the same purpose as a book like this. 

For everyone, especially those who don’t deem themselves a reader, please give these few books a try. It would be selfish of me not to encourage everyone to live and experience the tales they hold.