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Required Books For School That Are Actually Worth Reading

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Rollins chapter.

Do you find it hard to pick up a good book when school readings tie you down? Professors constantly assign academic articles and textbook passages that make your eyes roll back into your head and your brain ache. What’s the point in picking up a book when you’d rather watch something mindless on TV? Then suddenly, a professor will sprinkle in a page-turner or two that keep you engaged longer than an episode of Love Island and make your school readings enjoyable at the end of the day.  Here is a list of books that students agree are worth reading. 

The Last One by Fatima Daas 

This fictionalized memoir follows Fatima Dass as she explores her relationship with sexuality, religion, family, and class. Daas’s novel tackles her experience growing up outside of Paris in a family of Algerian Muslim immigrants. The chapters are short and read like a poem, morphing into something lyrical. The Last One was published in France in 2020 and is Daas’s debut novel. 

A Visit From The Goons Squad by Jennifer Egan 

This novel follows thirteen interrelated stories of characters associated with a record label executive in the 1970s. A Visit From The Goons Squad won the Pulitzer Prize in 2011 for exploring themes of trauma, growing older, and the urgency to relive memory. 

Beloved by Toni Morrison

In this classic, Beloved is a haunting story about how a family copes with generational trauma. Published in 1987, Toni Morrison shocks readers with her poetic style to examine the effects of slavery in the post-civil-war era of the United States.

Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Machado 

In a collection of short stories published in 2017, Carmen Machado reimagines contemporary fiction to paint an evocative portrait of the power placed on women’s bodies. A dark portrayal of love and violence, Machado puts words to people’s deepest fears. 

Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton 

This memoir follows Alderton’s journey as she navigates love, friendship, and self-discovery during her early twenties. A notorious time in people’s lives, Everything I Know About Love, published in 2018, reminds readers that it is okay to have nothing figured out when you’re young.  

Sadie Webster

Rollins '25

Sadie Webster is a writer at the Her Campus Rollins College chapter. She covers culture, wellness, and life verticals on the site. Beyond Her Campus, Sadie is interested in the intersection between art, feminism, and literature. She studied abroad in Paris in the spring 2023, and spent time curating an exhibition on gender identity in photography. Sadie is currently a junior at Rollins College, majoring in art history and minoring in sexuality, women, and gender studies. In her free time, Sadie enjoys listening to music, reading, thrifting, and cute coffee shops. She loves waking up early, and is a secret Jersey Shore fan.