Books For Late Teens and Twenties
An avid reader might be familiar with this feeling when you read a good book, and enjoying it of course, but realise that you could enjoy it more if you would discover it a bit earlier in life. “I wish I’ve read that when…” kind of feeling. This can be clearly seen from criticism some of these books receive on Good Reads. Some people pick up these books too late to appreciate them. So this is a short list of books, which in my experience could be better experienced by young adults.
Stranger In A Strange Land by Robert Heinlein. Classic, very good, must read, but very much for young adults. From late teens to mid twenties I would say. In order to immerse in this book, a reader must feel like the stranger in this world, like so many young people do.
The Fountainhead and The Anthem by Ayn Rand. When it comes to modern philosophers, Ayn Rand is one of the more entertaining ones and her writing is so light and easy to digest, with larger than life characters, it is as if she intended her books as educational material for young adults. The two of the books above are a good read with a very strong message. The Anthem was first published a decade before Orwell’s 1984 but with a similar – “society vs. individual” – scenario.
Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Cart. Even though I read this book in my late twenties, I enjoyed it completely. This is, in my opinion, one of the best science fiction ever written, and following books in series are no exception. However, I think that if I would read it while I was still in early education, high school or university, I would “feel” it much more. I also think this is an excellent book to introduce young people to science fiction.
1984 and Animal Farm by George Orwell. As with Heinlein and Ayn Rand, this is another example of excellent classic books, but with the message better received by the young audience. After all, as future leaders, they are the ones that will benefit from the moral of the story the most.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. While this was a decent read, I couldn’t help rolling my eyes a little while reading it. This kind of “peptalk” is much better digested by young teens than skeptical adults for sure. While I find the “moral of the story” questionable at best, this book is still worth reading.
His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullmann. Very enjoyable for all ages, but definitely more educational for younger readers.