100 Books You MUST Read This Summer (Reader Generated)

Well, folks, summer’s here, and it was time for me to start jotting down books for my summer reading list. I’ve been meaning to get around to reading the books that my readers had recommended in the past, so I started to jot down all the recommendations my readers had left in the comments of past book recommendation posts. Then, as I was writing up this list, I realized that such a list would be incredibly helpful to all of you, too. So, I’ve listed all the books that my readers have recommend in the past below.

Enjoy and happy summer reading!

much love,


100 Books You MUST Read This Summer


Recommendations taken from 5 Books You MUST Read Before You Die and 5 Underrated Books You Think Deserve More Attention

It by Stephen King

Generica by Will Ferguson

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

Youth In Revolt by C.D. Payne

Pillars of The Earth by Ken Follett

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Exodus by Leon Uris

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

The Elegance of The Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery

For Whom The Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint-Exupery

Dune by Frank Herbert

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Extremely Loud, Incredibly Close by Johnathan Safran Foer

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

The Brothers K by David James Duncan

The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

Transmetropolitan Series by Warren Ellis

Good Omens by Neil Gaiman

Death at Intervals by Jose Saramago

The Sound and The Fury by William Faulkner

Lord of The Flies by William Golding

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genuis by Dave Eggars

The Poisonwood Bible Barbara Kingslover

Anything by Kathleen Woodiwiss

Stones From The River by Ursula Hegi


Recommendations taken from 5 Books You MUST Read Before You Die (Non-Fiction)

You Were Born For This: 7 Keys to A Life of Predictable Miracles by Bruce Wilkinson

Local Wonders by Ted Kooser

My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor

Left To Tell: Discovering God Amidst The Rwandan Holocast by Immaculee Ilibagiza

Deep Survival by Laurence Gonzales

Stiff by Mary Roach

Ava’s Man by Rick Bragg

All Over But The Shoutin’ by Rick Bragg

The Prince of Frogtown by Rick Bragg

1 Dead In The Attic by Chris Rose

The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan

The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff

Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan

Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey


Recommendations taken from 5 Books To Read During Long, Sleepless Nights

Stephanie Plum Series by Janet Evanovich

Anything by Mary Higgins Clark

The Sandman by Neil Gaiman

Tales of Unease by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Lisey’s Story by Stephen King

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway

Strange Happenings by Avi

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Grimm’s Fairytales by The Brother’s Grimm

Homeland by R.A. Salvatore

The Jesus Incident by Frank Herbert and Bill Ransom

The Lazarus Effect by Frank Herbert and Bill Ransom

The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle

The Huanting of Alaizable Cray by Chris Wooding


Recommendations taken from 5 Characters You MUST Meet Before You Die

Up Country by Nelson Demille

Anything by Michael Connelly

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Casino Royale by Ian Fleming

Notes From The Underground by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Dracula by Bram Stoker

The Milagro Bean Field War by John Nicholis

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

Sherlock Homes by Sir Athur Conan Doyle

No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell


Recommendations from 5 Plays You MUST Read Before You Die 

Othello by William Shakespeare

Hamlet by William Shakesperae

A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare

The Crucible by Arthur Miller

The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

Death of A Salesman by Arthur Miller

A Street Car Named Desire by Tennessee Williams

Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams

Cat On A Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams

Wit by Margaret Edison

A Raisin in The Sun by Lorraine Hansberry


Recommendations taken from 5 Books You MUST Read Before You Die (Non-Fiction)The Book That Every Beginning Writer Needs to Read, and The Book That Every Writer Editing Their Book Needs to Read

Story by Robert McKee

Your Writing Coach by Jurgen Wolff

How to Write A Damn Good Novel, II by James N. Frey

Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell

The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler

Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury

Double Your Creative Power by S. L. Stebel

The Writer’s Digest Guide to Query Letters by Wendy Burt-Thomas

Book Proposals That Sell by W. Terry Whalin

How To Write Fiction and Fantasy by Orson Scott Card

Characters and Viewpoints by Orson Scott Card

What books are on your reading list this summer? Please share with us in the comments below!

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20 comments on “100 Books You MUST Read This Summer (Reader Generated)

  1. Christina says:

    I would also add Kathryn Stockett’s The Help if you haven’t read it yet – it’s my new all-time favorite. Beautifully rendered characters, incredible theme, funny and meaningful.

    Also anything by Edith Wharton.

    • Ollin says:

      Yeah, I’ve heard a lot about that book, especially with the movie coming out. Can’t wait to read it! Thanks for the recommendation.

  2. Thanks for this awesome list Ollin! 😀

    Here’s a question for you and your readers though – how many books can you get through in a regular week? I’m just interested because I need to step up my reading.

    Chloe xx

    • Ollin says:

      Well, for me, it depends on how busy I am. A great book of about 300 pages I can get through in a day–if I have nothing else to do. Say on the weekend. Otherwise, if I’m busy it may take me up to a week. But in college I used to average a couple books a week. I have no idea how I did that, now that I think about it. I probably wasn’t paying attention most of the time and skimmed. But these days I really try to get the whole book in, I don’t skim, and sometimes I go back and re-read passages I just read to fully understand them. For me, that’s part of the joy of reading.

      As far as my readers, I’ll let them tell you. 🙂

  3. Great books on that list. I won’t argue with any of them.

  4. Wonderful collection of lists. (gotta agree about “The Help” mentioned above
    also the best I’ve read recently is “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy

    • Ollin says:

      Man, I can’t wait to read the Help! I wonder, should I read the book first then watch the movie? Or do you think it matters?

  5. Alexis says:

    Hi Ollin. I recently linked to your blog and gave it an award! http://lexisjen.wordpress.com/2011/06/12/a-blog-award/

  6. Unabridged Girl says:

    I am glad to say that I’ve already read many of these books! I lack many of the “how to write” books, as that is the genre I made up to list them in. Ha. Sometimes I find it difficult to read those books, because they feel gimmicky to me or something. But there are a few here that I will check out!

    • Ollin says:

      Wow. You are way ahead of me. I haven’t read most of the books here. I got to catch up! How fast to you read, by the way, if you don’t mind me asking?

      • Unabridged Girl says:

        It depends on the book and my mood, to be honest. LoL But collectively, I can read up to 4-5 books a week. (Oh, and I hope you know I meant that I’ve read most of these books over time, not this summer! 😄 )


  7. The Poisonwood Bible is my absolute favorite book. I love it so much. It’s a wonderful read.

    • Ollin says:

      I’m excited to get around to it soon! Thanks for sharing your thoughts! I LOVE it when people get passionate about books.

  8. […] many books can you read in 3 months? Well, Ollin Morales has a list of 100 Books You Must Read This Summer. You’ll find at least a few you’ll want to pick […]

  9. […] weeks ago, I shared a list of my readers ALL-TIME favorite books. My readers love sharing their favorite books–but they also love blowing raspberries at some […]

  10. This was fascinating, Ollin, to see what your readers recommend. What I read is so far off, I won’t even mention them. It fascinates me to see what others read.

    • Ollin says:

      Yeah, many of these titles I had never head of before. But so far I started reading them and I am very satisfied. My readers have great taste!

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