I know, I know — the majority of us don’t even want to think about reading over summer vacation.

After all the assigned reading during the semester, all of the reviews of scholarly articles and required essay writing, the last thing you may want to do is pick up a book—but let me try to convince you otherwise.

It can be said that there is a book for everyone, and the summer is a great time to read what you want to rather than something that is required for a course. And if you’re having trouble finding a good one, here are a few suggestions to help you out.



If you like to read poetry, try “Bright Dead Things” by Ada Limón for a thrilling collection with existentialist and feminist themes, or “The Woman Who Fell From The Sky: Poems by Joy Harjo” for work that draws beautifully on the experience of Native Americans.

“Pick up Night Sky With Exit Wounds” by Ocean Vuong  is another option for an honest, open account of human pain and common experience.

For a gripping prose fiction series, try the “Neapolitan Novels” by Elena Ferrante, beginning with My Brilliant Friend. Some more great prose fiction includes the bildungsroman novel “Americanah” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and highly-acclaimed “White Teeth” by Zadie Smith.

If you’re a fan of “The Hunger Games” or “Divergent,” the “Gone Series” by Michael Grant is a great dystopian series with a similar tone. Another dystopian series to add to your list is the “MaddAddam Trilogy” by Margaret Atwood, beginning with Oryx and Crake.

For fans of mystery and suspense, “Murder on the Orient Express” is one of Agatha Christie’s most famous novels and is being adapted into a feature film. “Son of a Gun: A Memoir” by Justin St. Germain is an incredible true story about the murder of the author’s mother. Another non-fiction mystery can be found in “The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir” by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich.

More great non-fiction can be found in “Hidden Figures” by Margot Lee Shetterly, which recounts the amazing true stories of three ground-breaking female African-Americans working for NASA during the space race.

“A House of My Own: Stories from My Life” is a non-traditional autobiographical work by and about famed author Sandra Cisneros.

Finally, if you’re really resisting picking up a book to read, try listening instead to audio books such as “Gone Girl” or “The Life of Pi” to keep you connected to the literary world.

Whatever your interests, hopefully some of these great books will provide you with some new worlds to explore this summer!

Gabriella Rivera is a journalist for the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at news@dailylobo.com or on Twitter as @gabbychlamps.