This is not a typical list of books. Listing a bunch of books often conveys that these books, according to me, are the best. Rather let us take a break from tradition and just call this list- ‘A Record of Suggestions’. These suggestions were hatched with the view that there are so many people who want to read but just have no idea as to where to start.
Here are a few things that The Bridge had in mind before coming up with these suggestions-
1) Branch out. Don’t stick to one particular genre (We want to give you space to discover your own interests)
1) Entertaining and illuminative
2) Short and sensible (We didn’t go right ahead and suggest heavy reads. We are saving that for entirely another list (grins mischievously))
Every book under this list is a beauty in its own right and it checks off each one of those boxes. Trust me and give these humble suggestions a chance.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Read it for Jay Gatsby and for Fitzgerald’s beautiful prose. It doesn’t matter if you have already seen the movie, give the book a chance.
Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach
Written in the form of a novella, this book about a seagull who wants to perfect the art of flight and stand out from a crowd will leave you wondering about your life.
On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz
"You missed that. Right now, you are missing the vast majority of what is happening around you. You are missing the events unfolding in your body, in the distance, and right in front of you.
By marshalling your attention to these words, helpfully framed in a distinct border of white, you are ignoring an unthinkably a large amount of information that continues to bombard all your senses: the hum of the florescent lights, the ambient noise in a large room, the places your chair presses against your legs or back, your tongue touching the roof of your mouth, the tension you are holding in your shoulders or jaw, the map of the cool and warm places on your body, the constant hum of traffic or a distant lawnmower, the blurred view of your own shoulders and torso in your peripheral vision, a chirp of a bug or a whine of kitchen application."
This excerpt from the book says enough. A refreshing read.
Interpreter of Maladies and other stories by Jhumpa Lahiri
This book is collection of short stories that established Jumpha Lahiri as a writer to look out for. Highly praised and awarded for the right reasons.
The Road by Cormac McCarthy
Terrifying, heart-breaking and emotionally-shattering are the words that are used to describe The Road. The story of a father and son journeying across a post-apocalyptic landscape.
Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
Kafka has served as an inspiration for several authors in the likes of Albert Camus, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Haruki Murakami and Jean-Paul Sartre. ‘Kafkaesque’ is the term used to describe situations indicative of Kafka’s work. One of the most influential works of the 20th century.
100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Written in the style of Magic Realism this book is the most noted work of the Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
"It is the genius of the mature Gabriel García Márquez that fatalism and possibility somehow coexist, that dreams redeem, that there is laughter even in death. Not being a genius, I don’t know how he does it, but I am grateful." -John Leonard
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Roy’s first and also her only novel (at the time of writing) has been translated into 40 languages. It deals with subjects of Indian family, society, class and forbidden love.
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
At the end of the day, we have to give it to the Queen. Hercule Poirot’s little grey cells are at their best.
Ariel by Sylvia Plath
A poetry collection written shortly before her death, Plath strikes us with potent verses.
A few honorable mentions-
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Voices from Chernobyl by Svetlana Alexievich
1984 by George Orwell
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Atonement by Ian McEwan
We had a very hard time narrowing the list to just 15 books. If you need more suggestion please feel free to mail us. If or when you get a sudden urge to read, please do! There is no greater pleasure.
Have a great time reading.