Being a college student at Babson, surrounded by FME deliberations, MAC/TOM stress, and job-hunting conversations, I’ve been making an effort to devote more time to reading various types of books. While I’ve read and re-read some of these books at least 10 times, others have just recently been relieved of their place in my Amazon cart. While our business classes and ET&A (Entrepreneurial Thought and Action) mindsets are the backbone of Babson, it’s important to remember that books, and reading in general, can help us develop as people and make us better students. Below, I’ve listed 7 “must-reads” for this fall, in the hopes that, in a world of black screens and technology, students don’t forget the novelty and value of curling up with a hard-copy of a good book.
1. Wild by Cheryl Strayed
One of my all time favorites, Cheryl Strayed’s Wild broke my heart and then put me back together again. As someone who is an avid hiker and enjoys the outdoors, yet has experienced hard times just like anyone else, this book was humbling to read. Strayed chronicles her trek across the Pacific Crest Trail, and explains to the reader how she found herself while getting lost (literally and metaphorically) more than once on and off the trail.
2. Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin
One of my all time favorites, Emily Giffin’s book tells the story of the classic “good girl,” Rachel, and how she falls for her best friend’s fiancé, Dex. When Darcy throws Rachel a surprise party for 30th birthday, Rachel and Dex wake up the next morning together, determined to put the one-night fling behind them. When Rachel discovers she has real feelings for Dex, she has to make a choice between right and wrong before Darcy and Dex’s wedding in September.
3. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
As a lover of European History, I’ve read all of Philippa Gregory’s books; however, The Other Boleyn Girl is one I’ve read at least 5 times. An incredible historical drama that chronicles the life of Mary Boleyn, Anne Boleyn’s overlooked sister, and her rise to fame in one of the most fascinating courts in Europe, the Tudor Court. Filled with romance, heartbreak, passion, and determination, this novel is one I’m sure you’ll read more than once.
4. Losing It by Cora Carmack
Tired of being the only virgin among her friend group, Bliss Edwards, a senior in college, decides the best way to solve her problem is to lose it as simply as possible: a one night stand. To Bliss’ horror, the next morning, the guy she sleeps with is the professor who walks in to teach her college English class. A lighthearted read that involves the classic “crushing on your professor” mentality, I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a page-turning read.
5. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
Another one of my favorite historical fiction novels, Wolf Hall is one of Hilary Mantel’s best books. Mantel tells the story of Thomas Cromwell through his rise in social hierarchy at Tudor Court. Cromwell goes from a blacksmith’s son to becoming Henry VIII’s chief minister, and forms alliances with the king and his mistress, Anne Boleyn, along the way.
6. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
To begin, the TV show does not do this incredible book any justice. In 1946, after WWII, a young Englishwoman named Claire Beauchamp Randall goes to the Scottish Highlands with her husband, Frank. When Claire leaves Frank behind at their bed and breakfast to explore the Scottish Highlands, she is accidentally transported back to 1743, and experiences a parallel life. Claire ends up falling in love with a clansmen named Jamie, whom she was originally forced to marry, and must adapt to life 200 years before her time. This book is an absolute favorite of mine, and I guarantee you’ll love it too.
7. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
This story is about of Francie Nolan’s coming-of-age at the turn of the 20th century. Coming from an Irish-American family with their fair share of struggles – including alcoholism, immigrating to a new city, and growing up in the slums of Williamsburg. While there are small victories for Francie here and there, seeing the world at a pivotal moment in American history through a young girl’s perspective provides both an eye-opening and uplifting story.