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“Books are the plane, and the train and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home”- Anna Quindlen

Endless pages and infinite words have been written on how reading can transform the way you look at the world. Books inform, educate, inspire, transport you to a different era, unfurl countless fantasies, excite your imagination and are something that can never grow old. Of the countless pieces of literature that you can pick, there are a few masterpieces that you simply cannot afford to miss.

Whether you are a novice looking for some suggestions or already an avid reader, here are 20 books that you should read before you die:

Books

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Unquestionably the greatest piece of literature one could lay hands on.Storytelling simply cannot get better than this.

2. Moby Dick By Herman Melville

A compelling story written in Melvile’s poetic style of writing, it’s considered a masterpiece worldwide.

3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Containing elements of social criticism, sexuality and religion, this is one novel admired for being way ahead of its time.

4. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

A perfect balance between comedy and romance, it sums up everything from flirtation to courtship in its pages.

5. Vanity Fair by William Thackeray

Offering a delightful satire on the Victorian British society and an insight into the hypocrisy of men, this is one book you simply cannot put down.

6. To kill a Mockingbird By Harper Lee

A favorite book among many booklovers, this classic never ceases to amuse, even today.

7. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Receiving universal acclaim, this story is complete with delightful characters and has been translated, read and re-read umpteen number of times.

8. 1984 by George Orwell

A political and science fiction, the book has a rich plot and unique style. This coveted piece of fiction is a marvel in itself.

9. Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe

A far exciting tale, laced with tragedy and amusement, than Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, this book manages to capture the reader’s attention from start to finish.

10. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

This tantalizing tale of passion and tragedy is something that’s a must on every book lover’s shelf.

11. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

A masterpiece of epic proportions, this is one book that demands to be read to know what all the hype is about.

12. Dracula By Bram Stoker

Introducing a character so iconic that it’s used almost everywhere, Bram Stoker’s Dracula is a horror story one simply cannot forget.

13. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

A beautiful tale of childhood, freedom and rebellion, this classic page-turner is a must-read.

14. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger

Although a controversial novel, it has since become popular among adolescents owing to its theme of teenage rebellion.

15. The War of the Worlds by HG Wells

A popular science-fiction novel, this is one of the earliest books to introduce extra-terrestrials, and keeps the readers amused to the end.

16. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

A fictional first person account of a Geisha working in Japan, this book incorporates a style that’s unique in its own right

17. Harry potter series

It is no literary marvel, but this series is what made several non-readers to take up reading in the first place.

18. The Hound of Baskerville by Sir Arthur Canon Doyle

Perhaps the best adventure of Sherlock Holmes, this tale of thrills and mystery will leave you befuddled.

19. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

Easily Agatha Christie’s best work, a mystery book with a baffling ending, it far outsmarts other books in the same genre.

20. The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien

An epic fantasy with thrilling action, this tale needs to be lived rather than read.

Now that you have the list, why not get one and start reading. You will definitely be in love with all.

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Posted by Hilda Simpson

Hilda Simpson freelance writer for globalessays.org.

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