Here are some of the most readable and enjoyable books of all time:
The Lord of the Rings
J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic fantasy saga was a book that created the genre of high fantasy. It was the inspiration behind most epics that came later. Most importantly it was ahead of its time. Tolkien’s universe is rich in imagination and detail, complete with mythical races and languages. Tolkien even created runes and alphabets as well as a staggering amount of background history. The best part is I had just as much fun reading it at 32 as I did when I was 12. I recommend this amazing work to everyone who wants to dabble in literature.
The Count of Monte Cristo
This book was the basis for the 2002 film of the same name starring Jim Caviezel. I found it to be a gripping drama of trust, betrayal, revenge, torture and love. It’s an absolute masterpiece by the famous French author Alexandre Dumas. First published in 1844, it has cemented its place in literature ever since. I find it to be a nice change of pace when taking a break from contemporary literature. Character depth and development is one major reason to immerse yourself in this book.
The Harry Potter series
While J.K. Rowling’s magical storytelling was intentionally intended for kids, the span of the book was almost 8 years. This meant Rowling’s audience grew older as the books progressed and so did her depth of storytelling. One reason that makes Harry Potter just as enjoyable now is the originality of Rowling’s magical world. It is a manifestation of people’s desire to escape from the dull drudgery of this life into a magical world. Harry Potter is even taught in literature courses in many schools all over the world.
The Runaway Jury
This is perhaps John Grisham’s best-known work. It catapulted him into the ranks of serious bestselling authors and established him as a writer of ability. The story revolves around a historic tobacco lawsuit and is surrounded by drama both in the courtroom and out. It is a wild ride full of deception, corruption, wealth and revenge as the trial progresses. There are several plot twists that will leave you stunned as the book picks up the pace. The Runaway Jury is gripping every time you read it and it should be one of the books you read this year.
When discussing World War 2 fiction, it doesn’t get any better than Alistair MacLean’s action/adventure novel that was later made into an acclaimed film. The story revolves around a desperate group of Allied soldiers trying to sabotage a gun placement against insurmountable odds. MacLean’s writing style captures the desperation and grim realities of warfare, against the backdrop of Greece’s island setting. The story is raw, gripping and emotional and will have you hooked right from the first chapter. I find the Guns of Navarone to be welcome, adventurous relief from daily reading material.
A Million Little Pieces
A Million Little Pieces is a memoir by James Frey of his battle with drug addiction and substance abuse. Frey gives us an insider’s view of the life of a serious drug addict, painting a picture that is painful and hopeful simultaneously. Frey takes you on an emotional ride, baring all the emotional upheaval that comes with addiction and rehabilitation. Frey’s brutally honest writing style is something quite unique, adding a darker element to his storytelling. I would definitely recommend this book for weekend reading.
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Dante Alighieri’s Inferno is the first part of his 14thcentury epic poem The Divine Comedy. Dante’s writing style is much more archaic than the other books on this list. However, the imagery described in this book formed many of the concepts about Hell that we come across in religious art and iconography. In fact, Inferno convinced a lot of people that Dante had in fact actually made a journey to Hell and came back.
There, you have my shortlist of the most readable books of all time. They are also some of the most accessible. I can find them in the bookstore next to the Windstream near Me or on various other digital libraries. And so can you. Happy reading.