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5 Books That You Have to Read

Books are one of the most important pieces in a person’s life. They have the ability to shape your mind, change your heart, and impact you until the end of time. There are millions of books out there, but here are just a few that you need to read: 

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1.  The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid’s Tale is one of the most popular shows in the world right now. But before it was a critically acclaimed show on Hulu, it was a book written by Margaret Atwood. The book follows the tale of Offred in a hyper conservative future in the Republic of Gilead. In the future, many women have become infertile and the fertile women are captured and used by the government to bear children for important public figures. The story follows Offred as she tries to navigate this new world with the other handmaids to try to find peace. While you can watch the show on Hulu, the book contains so many extra details that add to the story and it will truly change the way that you view the world.


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2. The Princess Bride by William Goldman

The Princess Bride by William Goldman is considered one of the most classic romance stories of all time. The story follows the romantic tale of Buttercup and Westley and the journey of their relationship in the kingdom of Guilder. But this story is more than just a classic romance story. The humor inside of this novel translates perfectly to modern times that even the youngest reader can appreciate. Not to mention all of the characters and their backstories are so interesting that you can see the growth in all of them through the novel. Some of the most amazing side characters include Inigo, the Spanish fencer, Fezzik, the giant man, and Humperdinck, the spoiled prince of Guilder. Personally, I can say that I would not be the person I am today if I had not read The Princess Bride

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3. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey is an extremely influential book because it opens the world of society versus the mentally unstable. The main character, Randle Patrick Murphy, enters a hospital and immediately rebels against the harsh structure instilled by Nurse Ratched. He and the other patients begin to sneak out of the hospital, gamble and even smuggle women in at night. What makes this book important? It challenges your views on who is right in a given situation. Is Nurse Ratched right for instilling rules on the mentally unstable? Or is Randle right because he wants to free the oppressed? Ultimately, this book touches upon is the fight between freedom and the government and how there is always a power struggle between the two. 

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4. A Separate Peace by John Knowles

If there was ever a book to teach you about hardship and friendships it would be A Separate Peace. This story follows the characters Gene, a lonely introvert, and Phineas, a charming daredevil athlete through the early period of World War II. When reading this book for the first time I was skeptical about whether I could be emotionally connected to two boys from the World War II era. But through reading this novel I found that I could relate to the struggles of keeping friendships and the difficult choices that we all have to make. This book will pull on your heartstrings and may even leave you in tears by the end. Overall, it is a book that will touch your heart forever. 

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5. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger 

Navigating life as a young adult is tough for anyone. No one knows this more than Holden Caulfield, the main character in The Catcher in the Rye. Holden is a judgemental, stubborn, and lazy individual who leaves school in order to figure out his life. But what is amazing about this book is how it touches upon major themes in any person’s life such as death, artificiality of life, and sexual confusion. You can feel the struggle he goes through and can see those struggles in aspects of your own life. This coming of age book is important for any young adult to read due to these relatable real life issues that Holden goes through. 

There are thousands of books that could have been added to this list and I’m sure you have some ideas of your own. But I had chosen these books because they either are highly influential on society or have shaped me into the person that I have become today. If you would like to find more books too read I highly suggest you check out Goodreads’ “Popular 100 Books To Read Before You Die Shelf” list. It is filled with amazing classics that will expand your mind. Happy reading!

Cover photo by Jacalyn Beales on Unsplash

I am a Video/Television and Film major with a Journalism Minor who is passionate about animals, movies, television, music, beaches and hiking. I enjoy spending time with my friends and going on adventures whether it is hiking or just taking a road trip.
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