Imagine being able to travel to a different world without having to leave the comfort of your favorite reading spot. Books allow you to escape reality and enter into a world of wonder, knowledge, fantasy, and more. Reading is a great way to educate yourself, escape the stresses of everyday life, and simply a fun hobby. If you’re a ready, you’ll want to make sure these books are on your shelf, but more importantly your long list of books to read.
Leaves of Grass | Walt Whitman
A 19th century American poet, Walt Whitman, published the first edition of Leaves of Grass – a 12 volume poetry collection. This work of history offers highlighted celebrations of love, nature, the human body, and democracy. Self-published at Whitman’s own expense, Leaves of Grass takes you on a journey to find beauty in both life and death. Considered a controversy during it’s release in the mid to late 1800s, Leaves of Grass is open and honest, but most importantly, a must-read. Although Whitman’s poetry may have not received the appreciation it has earned today, Whitman remains a great American poet in our history.
The World of Tomorrow | Brendan Matthews
Three brothers face trials within three factors: love, blackmail, and betrayal. Taking place in New York dating 1939, The World of Tomorrow is an incredible read about two brothers escaping Ireland to live with their other brother in New York. Having stole funds from the IRA, the brothers are tracked down and suffer fatal consequences. This novel will walk you through vivid paths of experiencing life during the pre-40’s era and the jazz age. A true page turner, you’ll want to make sure this book is on your reading list.
The Great Gatsby | F. Scott Fitzgerald
This is a widely known, classic novel of rich life and lavishing parties during the 1920s, in Long Island. F. Scott Fitzgerald was inspired to write The Great Gatsby from the parties he attending himself, but also from his wife, Zelda. Season 1 of “Z: The Beginning of Everything” gives you a behind the book look into Fitzgerald’s life, as well as Zelda’s. Fitzgerald died in 1940, believing he was a failure and that his literature was nothing but forgotten. This book was revived during World War II and has been a required reading book for high school students ever since.
To Kill a Mockingbird & Go Set a Watchman | Harper Lee
Harper Lee published To Kill a Mockingbird in 1960. This timeless book portrays raw history and human behavior. With love, innocence, kindness and cruelty, To Kill a Mockingbird was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and later became an Academy Award-winning film. What was supposed to be a simple love story became a piece of classic American history and also a teaching novel used in high schools around the country.
In 2015, Harper Lee published Go Set a Watchman, although it was written before To Kill a Mockingbird. Go Set a Watchman is an additional novel that focuses on a main character, Jean Louise Finch, but twists the focus to a father-daughter relationship in the south during a time of racial controversy. Together, these two books go hand on the bookshelf as must-haves.
Any Book You Pick Up
There are way too many amazing books in the world to narrow down a list of just 5. Next time you see a book that peaks your interest, pick it up and read it.