Shine Your Youth with These Best Books to Read in Your 20s

best books to read in your 20s

Books have always been considered to be our best friends. Unlike human beings, books have a positive influence on building our personalities. The prime time to build character is, of course, our youth. The 20s is an exciting decade. It shows the ultimate battle of life. 

The dilemma of being someone between a naive kid and a responsible adult makes you more puzzled at this time. And this issue can lead to common psychological problems like depression, inferiority complex, superiority complex, and many more. 

Books can be your ultimate savior at this phase of life. You will know yourself and the world well. You will also be able to trace the ultimate goal of your life by the habit of reading the best books in your 20s.

10 Best Books To Read In Your 20s At Your Prime Time

1.The Picture of Dorian Gray

It is one of the best books to read in your 20s. Penned by the famous author Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray is a philosophical novel that was published in 1891. Lippincott’s Monthly Magazine first published the novel as a serial story in July 1890. 

Bewitched by his own magnificent portrait, Dorian Gray trades his spirit for everlasting youth and beauty. He then embraces a corrupt double life influenced by one of his friends and then gives shape to his deepest, darkest desires secretly. In the eyes of the elite society, he is still a gentleman. Only his portrait is the carrier of his decadence. 

The credible plot and exciting events of the piece will stick you to this book in your 20s.

2.The Great Gatsby

This American classic by F Scott Fitzgerald was first published in 1925. This is a quintessential novel of the jazz age and has always been acknowledged by generations. Surprisingly this novel, which is claimed to be one of the best American classics, was unsuccessful upon publishing!

The book extensively recounts the tragic tale of Jay Gatsby, the independent millionaire, and his quest for Daisy Buchanan, a well-off young lady whom he adored in his youth. The novel has been so popular among people that a film of the same name has been made based on this novel. 

We must say, it is one of the best books to read in your 20s. 

3.On Beauty

Third, on our list of the best books to read in your 20s, we pick On Beauty. This 2005 novel was so popular that it enlisted itself in the Newyork Times and the San Francisco Chronicle as the best seller book. 

This particular book, written by Zadie Smith, is a must-buy book for the 20s that depicts the story of two fighting professors living in the university towns of Wellington and Massachusett, outside Boston. 

By the course of the events in the novel, we find this piece to deal with class politics, interracial differences, black identity, infidelity, Body image, and much more. The cultural misadventure and the combustive crash between the two on personal as well as political aspects make this one a must-read piece in your 20s. 


This can possibly be called Toni Morrison’s Magnum Opus. The story mainly focuses on nostalgia with a bit of a gothic plot. The protagonist was born as a slave, and she escaped to Ohio to be free. But after eighteen years, she finds herself imprisoned within her own confinement. 

The book also shows how severely she has fought to protect her children. But the ghost of the child, who dies namelessly, haunts her every now and then. The maternal love and passion with a solid moral message are what the book presents us with. Even if you picked this book in your high school days, do give it a go once more for a better understanding in your 20s.

5.Pride and prejudice

You must have heard of the name of this widely popular book by the famous author Jane Austen. The classic novel portrays the flourishing bond between the two protagonists, namely, Elizabeth Bennet and eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy. The first impression of Darcy to Ms. Bennet was not too impressive because of her judgemental thoughts. 

On the other hand, Darcy was indifferent to the charming looks and jolly nature of Ms. Bennet. MS. Bennet thought him to be one of the snobbish arrogant young men. Later, when the story proceeds, we find Darcy trapped in his own issues, and the misconception was finally smashed. 

The comic and witty events in the books, along with the typical portrayal of the middle-class lifestyle, have stolen thousands of hearts. I am pretty sure you will also be enthralled while reading it. Do let us know if you will also count it as one of the best books to read in your 20s. 

6.The Namesake

The famous Indo-American diasporic author Jhumpa Lahiri’s debut book ‘The Namesake,’ was initially published in The New Yorker. Later it was extended to a full-length novel. The novel asserts the story of an immigrant Bengali couple and the events that took place afterward. 

This book focuses on a kid who was dissatisfied with his name ‘Gogol.’ Eventually, his family’s bonding started to break. Gogol starts smoking, dating numerous girls, and so on.

But Gogol was unaware of the idea behind naming him this way. His deeds, behavior led him to loneliness. As the story unfolds itself, Gogol realizes his father’s words, accepts his name, and picks the Russian author’s novels that his father gifted many years ago.

The ups and downs in the Ganguli family and Gogol’s sinking into the darkness make this book one of the best books to read in your 20s.

7.The Diary of a Young Girl

A 15 years old little Jewish girl, Anne Frank, had faced the dirty and cruel truth of life when Nazis occupied Anne’s homeland Netherland during World War II. A diary which was Anne’s 13th birthday gift is now one of the finest war stories. The journal was initially in the Dutch language, but in 1952 it was published in English. 

After Anne’s death, Miep Gies found the book after WWII and gave that to Frank’s father, the only survivor. Anne’s diary, ‘Kitty,’ was filled with her emotions, days that she had spent in the concentration camp, and her likes and dislikes. 

The innermost feelings, the relationship with Peter, the bonding with her father, and the lack of daughterly love for her mother, and so many emotions filled Anne’s Kitty. With its informal approach to Anne Frank’s life during the dreadful WWII, this novel will win your heart. And this makes it more interesting to read in your 20s. 

8.The Alchemist

Paulo Coelho’s most famous book, The Alchemist, was originally published in the Portuguese language in 1988. Later, in 1993, English translation became popular worldwide. 

The Brazilian author in his book amalgamates mysticism, magic, wonder, and wisdom while telling the story of an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago. 

His quest for treasure and self-discovery is what blows thousands of minds across the world. Many people consider this to be one of the best books to read in your 20s or any time around.

9.Oliver Twist 

This novel is Charles Dickens’s second novel which was published serially from 1837 to 1839. The story is a prude satire on the cruel society, child labor, poverty, class struggle, and criminality in London in the mid 19th century. This book can be one of your best books for a lifetime.

10.A Thousand Splendid Suns

This novel was written by the Afgan-American writer Khaled Hosseini and was published in 2007. It is essentially a “Mother-Daughter story” that explains two women’s plight for being forced to accept the marriage proposal despite their disagreement. 

With his extraordinary literary skills and usage of lucid language, Hosseini has dealt with the novel wisely. I will recommend you to give it a read in your 20s for a better insight. It is perhaps one of the best books from the oriental genre.

Final words

Books are possibly the most supportive and engaging tools we can ever have. They provide you with information, entertainment, and a plethora of knowledge. Different genres can serve different tastes that you must have. Books enrich you both philosophically and informatically. Nowadays, several complex psychological issues are grasping youngsters. 

And the very reason behind this is their own hesitative personality and lack of knowledge. With the habit of reading the best books, confidence and knowledge can be restored. Thus you finally succeed in becoming a wise reader with focused curiosity. Automatically you become a better citizen as well as an innovative, intelligent, and intellectual individual.

Do comment below and let us know if you have anything to add more. We would like to hear what else you consider as the best books to read in your 20s. 

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