College Students’ Summer Reading List

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Summer Reading List: 5 Best Books for College Students

This summer, we invite students to rediscover the joy of reading. The best books for college students go beyond the average textbook, and they challenge us to think in new and inspiring ways. Below, check out a summer reading list for students, recent graduates, and the young-at-heart. We hope you’ll enjoy these five books on the beach, with a cool beverage in hand.

College Students' Summer Reading List  1

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

by Yuval Noah Harari

Though this in-depth history was released in 2015, it was recently recommended by Bill Gates, Barack Obama, and other influential figures. Sapiens tells the story of humanity, starting 70,000 years ago. Homo sapiens were fighting many other human species for dominance, such as Homo erectus and Homo neanderthalensis (Neanderthals). The book even dedicates an entire section to mankind’s future, with theories about artificial intelligence and genetics. It’s an enlightening read for almost any age group.

College Students' Summer Reading List  2

Meet Me in the Bathroom

by Lizzy Goodman

Next, music fans will love Lizzy Goodman’s oral history of New York City during the early 2000s. Iconic rock bands like The Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Interpol finally get to tell their wild story, and it’s equally seductive and self-destructive. We think it’s one of the best books for college students, because it shows the dark side of the rock lifestyle, straight from the rock stars. If you’ve always wanted to learn about this legendary NY music scene, Meet Me in the Bathroom draws upon almost 200 interviews to create a singular and vivid portrait.

College Students' Summer Reading List  3

The Answers

by Catherine Lacey

Catherine Lacey is one of America’s most talented young novelists, and her newest book challenges the typical narrative structure. When confronted with a debilitating illness and overwhelming medical bills, protagonist Mary Parsons finds a job posting to be an “Emotional Girlfriend” for a famous actor. Through Lacey’s winding prose, we witness the main character try to fulfill her employer’s needs, while also questioning her views on love and intimacy. It’s a powerful, original novel that captures our increasingly complex world.

College Students' Summer Reading List  4

Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children’s Literature as an Adult

by Bruce Handy

Sometimes, we need to be reminded that reading is fun. Few things are more pleasurable than kicking back with a great book, and in that spirit, Bruce Handy decided to revisit classic children’s stories with an adult perspective. The Cat in the Hat, Where the Wild Things Are, and Goodnight Moon all receive the full treatment, along with many other stories. It’s clear that Handy is a huge fan of children’s literature, and his enthusiasm is infectious.

College Students' Summer Reading List  5

Things That Happened Before the Earthquake

by Chiara Barzini

Sometimes, we need to be reminded that reading is fun. Few things are more pleasurable than kicking back with a great book, and in that spirit, Bruce Handy decided to revisit classic children’s stories with an adult perspective. The Cat in the Hat, Where the Wild Things Are, and Goodnight Moon all receive the full treatment, along with many other stories. It’s clear that Handy is a huge fan of children’s literature, and his enthusiasm is infectious.

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Additional College Reading Lists
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