The best 33 Adult books

Navigating adulthood can be both exciting and overwhelming. From career choices to personal relationships, there's a lot to figure out. That's why we've curated this book list to help you navigate the challenges and opportunities of adult life.
Whether you're looking for advice on personal growth, financial management, or finding fulfillment, these books offer valuable insights and practical tips. Get ready to embrace the adventure of adulthood with these essential reads.

How do we create content on this page?
1
Adult Books: The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green

The Anthropocene Reviewed

John Green
Essays on a Human-Centered Planet
4.1 (14 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
00:00

What's The Anthropocene Reviewed about?

The Anthropocene Reviewed (2021) offers a unique collection of essays exploring the human experience in the current geological age known as the Anthropocene. It delves into various aspects of human life and the world, reviewing them on a somewhat satirical five-star scale, blending humor with deep reflection on the complexities and paradoxes of modern human existence.

Who should read The Anthropocene Reviewed?

  • Environmental enthusiasts exploring the impact of humans on Earth
  • Young adults interested in introspective, reflective writings
  • Admirers of John Green's narrative style and humor

2
Adult Books: The Help by Kathryn Stockett

The Help

Kathryn Stockett

What's The Help about?

Set in 1960s Mississippi, "The Help" tells the story of African American maids working for white families and the complex relationships they form. Through the perspectives of three women, the novel explores themes of racism, friendship, and the power of speaking out against injustice. It is a compelling and thought-provoking read that sheds light on the realities of the civil rights era.

Who should read The Help?

  • Readers interested in stories that challenge racial and social norms
  • Those who enjoy historical fiction set in the civil rights era of the United States
  • People who appreciate narratives that explore the complexities of human relationships and personal growth

3
Adult Books: The Last Story of Mina Lee by Nancy Jooyoun Kim

The Last Story of Mina Lee

Nancy Jooyoun Kim

What's The Last Story of Mina Lee about?

The Last Story of Mina Lee is a gripping novel that unravels the mystery behind a mother's sudden death and her daughter's quest to uncover the truth. Set against the backdrop of Korean immigrant culture in America, the book delves into themes of family, identity, and the secrets we keep from those closest to us. With beautifully crafted prose and a compelling narrative, Nancy Jooyoun Kim's debut novel is a poignant exploration of the bonds that tie us together and the untold stories that shape our lives.

Who should read The Last Story of Mina Lee?

  • Fans of contemporary fiction with themes of family, identity, and immigration
  • Readers who enjoy stories that explore the complexities of mother-daughter relationships
  • Individuals interested in diverse voices and stories from underrepresented communities

What's The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands about?

In this book, Dr. Laura Schlessinger offers practical advice and insights on how women can improve their relationships with their husbands. She emphasizes the importance of understanding and meeting their husbands' emotional and physical needs, and provides tips on effective communication and conflict resolution. The book aims to help women create a loving and fulfilling marriage by nurturing their husbands and fostering a strong partnership.

Who should read The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands?

  • Individuals who want to improve their relationship with their spouse
  • People who are seeking practical advice on how to create a strong and fulfilling partnership
  • Couples who are looking to enhance their communication and deepen their connection

5
Adult Books: What Made Maddy Run by Kate Fagan

What Made Maddy Run

Kate Fagan
The Secret Struggles and Tragic Death of an All-American Teen

What's What Made Maddy Run about?

This book delves into the tragic story of Madison Holleran, a talented young athlete who took her own life. Through interviews and research, Kate Fagan explores the pressures and expectations placed on young athletes, as well as the impact of mental health issues in today's society. It offers a thought-provoking examination of the factors that contributed to Maddy's untimely death and raises important questions about the pursuit of success and the well-being of young people.

Who should read What Made Maddy Run?

  • Individuals who are interested in understanding and raising awareness about mental health issues
  • Athletes, coaches, and sports enthusiasts seeking insight into the pressures and challenges faced by student-athletes
  • Parents, educators, and counselors working with young adults and supporting their well-being

6
Adult Books: There There by Tommy Orange

There There

Tommy Orange

What's There There about?

"There There" is a powerful novel that weaves together the stories of twelve characters from the urban Native American community in Oakland, California. Through their interconnected narratives, the book explores themes of identity, belonging, and the impact of historical trauma on indigenous peoples. It offers a raw and unflinching portrayal of the challenges and complexities faced by Native Americans in contemporary society.

Who should read There There?

  • People interested in exploring the experiences and perspectives of Native Americans in urban settings
  • Readers who enjoy character-driven novels with multiple narrative voices
  • Individuals looking for thought-provoking literature that addresses themes of identity, belonging, and cultural heritage

7
Adult Books: Educating Esme by Esmé Raji Codell

Educating Esme

Esmé Raji Codell
Diary of a Teacher's First Year

What's Educating Esme about?

Educating Esme is a memoir by Esmé Raji Codell that chronicles her experiences as a first-year teacher in a challenging inner-city school. Through a series of journal entries, Codell shares the highs and lows of her teaching journey, offering insights into the education system and the power of connecting with students. It is a heartfelt and inspiring account of one teacher's dedication to making a difference in the lives of her students.

Who should read Educating Esme?

  • Teachers or educators looking for inspiration and fresh ideas to engage their students
  • Parents who want to support their children’s education and understand the challenges in the classroom
  • Anyone interested in the personal journey of a passionate and dedicated teacher

What's My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry about?

This heartwarming and humorous novel tells the story of a young girl named Elsa who embarks on a journey to deliver letters of apology from her late grandmother to the people she has wronged. Along the way, Elsa discovers the magical world her grandmother created and learns valuable lessons about love, forgiveness, and the power of storytelling. It's a touching tale that celebrates the bond between generations and the importance of embracing our differences.

Who should read My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry?

  • Readers who enjoy heartwarming stories about family and friendships
  • Individuals who appreciate whimsical and imaginative storytelling
  • People who are looking for a blend of humor, emotion, and profound lessons

9
Adult Books: Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison

Down the Rabbit Hole

Holly Madison
Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny

What's Down the Rabbit Hole about?

In this memoir, Holly Madison takes readers on a journey through her time as a Playboy bunny and her relationship with Hugh Hefner. She reveals the dark and twisted reality behind the glamorous facade of the Playboy Mansion, and shares her personal growth and empowerment as she breaks free from the confines of that world. Down the Rabbit Hole is a captivating and eye-opening account of one woman's quest for independence and self-discovery.

Who should read Down the Rabbit Hole?

  • Individuals curious about the behind-the-scenes of reality TV
  • People interested in the life of a celebrity beyond the glitz and glamour
  • Readers looking for an honest and personal memoir about navigating fame and relationships

10
Adult Books: Golden Son by Pierce Brown

Golden Son

Pierce Brown

What's Golden Son about?

Golden Son is the second book in the Red Rising trilogy, a gripping science fiction series set in a dystopian future. Written by Pierce Brown, the novel follows the protagonist Darrow as he navigates the dangerous world of interplanetary politics and warfare. Filled with action, intrigue, and complex characters, Golden Son explores themes of power, loyalty, and the cost of revolution. It's a thrilling read that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end.

Who should read Golden Son?

  • Fans of science fiction with a passion for fast-paced and action-packed stories
  • Readers who enjoyed the first book in the series, "Red Rising," and want to continue the thrilling journey
  • Those who appreciate complex and morally ambiguous characters in a dystopian setting

11
Adult Books: Lady Clementine by Marie Benedict

Lady Clementine

Marie Benedict

What's Lady Clementine about?

Lady Clementine is a historical fiction novel that offers a captivating glimpse into the life of Clementine Churchill, the wife of Winston Churchill. Set against the backdrop of World War I and World War II, the book explores Clementine's unwavering support for her husband and her own contributions to the war effort. It delves into her personal struggles and the pivotal role she played in shaping history. A compelling and inspiring read for anyone interested in the untold stories of remarkable women.

Who should read Lady Clementine?

  • History enthusiasts looking to learn about the remarkable life of Lady Clementine Churchill
  • Readers interested in exploring the influence of influential women in history
  • Fans of historical fiction novels that offer a unique perspective on key events and figures

12
Adult Books: Hole in My Life by Jack Gantos

Hole in My Life

Jack Gantos

What's Hole in My Life about?

In this memoir, Jack Gantos recounts his reckless youth and the consequences of his poor choices. After getting involved in drug smuggling, he finds himself in prison and reflects on the hole in his life that led him down this path. Gantos ultimately discovers his passion for writing and the power of redemption. It's a raw and honest account of one man's journey towards self-discovery and transformation.

Who should read Hole in My Life?

  • Individuals who are interested in memoirs or personal stories
  • Adolescents or young adults who are struggling with making life choices and decisions
  • People who are looking for inspiration and motivation to overcome challenges and find their passion

13
Adult Books: She Walks in Beauty by Caroline Kennedy

She Walks in Beauty

Caroline Kennedy
A Woman's Journey Through Poems

What's She Walks in Beauty about?

A collection of poems and essays that celebrate the beauty and strength of women. Drawing inspiration from her own life and the works of famous poets, Caroline Kennedy explores the many facets of womanhood and the power of inner and outer beauty. This book is a tribute to the resilience and grace of women everywhere.

Who should read She Walks in Beauty?


14
Adult Books: Breaking Night by Liz Murray

Breaking Night

Liz Murray
A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard

What's Breaking Night about?

Breaking Night is a memoir by Liz Murray that tells the inspiring story of her journey from a troubled childhood to becoming a successful student at Harvard University. Murray shares her experiences of homelessness, drug-addicted parents, and the challenges she faced in pursuit of education. It is a powerful and uplifting tale of resilience and determination.

Who should read Breaking Night?

  • Individuals looking for inspirational stories of perseverance and resilience
  • Those interested in understanding the struggles faced by individuals in poverty
  • Readers who want to gain insights into overcoming adversity and achieving personal and professional success

15
Adult Books: Zoo Story by Thomas French

Zoo Story

Thomas French
Life in the Garden of Captives

What's Zoo Story about?

Zoo Story takes readers behind the scenes of Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, offering a captivating look at the lives of the animals and the dedicated staff who care for them. Through vivid storytelling and in-depth research, Thomas French explores the complex relationships between humans and animals, and the challenges faced by modern zoos in their mission to educate, conserve, and protect wildlife. It's a thought-provoking and heartwarming read for animal lovers and anyone interested in the ethical and practical considerations of zoos.


16

What's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close about?

This novel tells the story of a young boy named Oskar Schell who embarks on a journey to uncover the secrets of his father's death in the 9/11 attacks. Through a series of letters, photographs, and encounters with strangers, Oskar learns about love, loss, and the power of human connection. The book explores themes of grief, resilience, and the search for meaning in the face of tragedy.

Who should read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close?

  • People who enjoy unconventional storytelling and unique narrative formats
  • Readers interested in exploring themes of grief, loss, and resilience
  • Individuals curious about the effects of historical events on personal and collective memory

17
Adult Books: Spare Parts by Paul Craddock

Spare Parts

Paul Craddock
The Story of Medicine Through the History of Transplant Surgery

What's Spare Parts about?

Spare Parts tells the inspiring true story of four undocumented Mexican-American high school students who form a robotics club and enter a national underwater robotics competition. Despite facing numerous obstacles, including financial struggles and immigration issues, the students demonstrate incredible determination and ingenuity as they build their robot and compete against well-funded teams. This book celebrates the power of education and the potential of young minds to overcome adversity and achieve greatness.

Who should read Spare Parts?

  • People who are interested in true stories of resilience and triumph
  • Those who enjoy reading about the power of teamwork and ingenuity
  • Anyone who wants to be inspired by the potential of everyday individuals to change the world

18
Adult Books: Friday Night Lights by H.G. Bissinger

Friday Night Lights

H.G. Bissinger

What's Friday Night Lights about?

This non-fiction book follows the story of a high school football team in a small town in Texas. It explores the impact of the sport on the community and the lives of the players, coaches, and families involved. Through vivid storytelling, it delves into the pressures and expectations placed on these young athletes, and the sacrifices they make in pursuit of victory on the Friday night lights.

Who should read Friday Night Lights?

  • Fans of American football or sports in general
  • Readers interested in exploring the cultural impact of sports
  • Those who enjoy immersive and compelling narratives

19
Adult Books: Push by Sapphire

Push

Sapphire

What's Push about?

Set in Harlem in the 1980s, "Push" tells the story of Precious Jones, an illiterate and abused teenager who finds the strength to overcome her circumstances and pursue a better life. Through raw and powerful prose, Sapphire explores themes of resilience, trauma, and the power of education. This novel offers a poignant and unflinching look at the harsh realities faced by many young women, while also celebrating the possibility of redemption and self-discovery.

Who should read Push?

  • Readers who are interested in exploring the themes of trauma, resilience, and personal growth
  • People who enjoy character-driven, emotionally impactful stories
  • Individuals who appreciate raw and gritty storytelling that tackles difficult subjects

20
Adult Books: An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks

An Anonymous Girl

Greer Hendricks

What's An Anonymous Girl about?

An Anonymous Girl is a psychological thriller that delves into the world of ethics, manipulation, and obsession. When Jessica Farris signs up for a psychology study on ethics and morality, she becomes entangled in a web of deceit and danger. As she becomes increasingly involved in the study, she realizes that she may not be the only one keeping secrets. Gripping and suspenseful, this novel will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end.

Who should read An Anonymous Girl?

  • Readers who enjoy psychological thrillers
  • People who like exploring morally ambiguous characters
  • Anyone who wants to contemplate the blurred lines between right and wrong

21
Adult Books: Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li

Portrait of a Thief

Grace D. Li

What's Portrait of a Thief about?

When a renowned art collector's prized possession is stolen, detective Alex Chen is called in to solve the case. As he delves into the world of high-stakes art theft, he uncovers a web of deception and betrayal. But as the investigation progresses, Alex begins to question whether the thief is really the villain or if there's more to the story than meets the eye. "Portrait of a Thief" is a gripping mystery that will keep you guessing until the very end.

Who should read Portrait of a Thief?

  • Those who enjoy psychological thrillers
  • Readers who appreciate complex and morally ambiguous characters
  • People who are fans of suspenseful and twisty narratives

22
Adult Books: City on Fire by Bill Minutaglio

City on Fire

Bill Minutaglio
The Forgotten Disaster That Devastated a Town and Ignited a Landmark Legal Battle

What's City on Fire about?

City on Fire is a gripping account of the 1969 fire at the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio, and its profound impact on the environmental movement. Through meticulous research and compelling storytelling, Bill Minutaglio explores the events leading up to the fire, the aftermath, and the political and social changes it sparked. This book sheds light on the power of grassroots activism and the urgent need for environmental reform.

Who should read City on Fire?

  • Readers who enjoy immersive non-fiction narratives
  • People interested in understanding the complex dynamics of urban politics and social movements
  • Anyone looking to gain a deeper insight into the history and culture of New York City in the 1970s

23
Adult Books: Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain by Zaretta Lynn Hammond

Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain

Zaretta Lynn Hammond
Promoting Authentic Engagement and Rigor Among Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students

What's Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain about?

This book explores the intersection of neuroscience and culturally responsive teaching, offering practical strategies for educators to create an inclusive and engaging learning environment for all students. Drawing on research and real-life examples, Zaretta Lynn Hammond provides insights into how students' cultural backgrounds and experiences can impact their learning, and offers tools to help teachers leverage this knowledge to support their students' academic success. It is a valuable resource for educators looking to enhance their teaching practices and promote equity in the classroom.

Who should read Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain?

  • Educators who want to create a more inclusive and supportive classroom environment
  • Individuals interested in understanding how cultural backgrounds impact learning and behavior
  • Teachers looking for practical strategies to engage students from diverse backgrounds

24
Adult Books: Funny in Farsi by Firoozeh Dumas

Funny in Farsi

Firoozeh Dumas
A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America

What's Funny in Farsi about?

Funny in Farsi is a memoir that tells the story of Firoozeh Dumas, an Iranian immigrant, and her experiences growing up in America. Through a series of humorous and heartwarming anecdotes, Dumas offers a unique perspective on cultural differences, family dynamics, and the challenges of assimilation. With wit and charm, she shares her journey of finding a sense of belonging in a new country while staying true to her Iranian heritage. It's a delightful and insightful book that celebrates the beauty of diversity and the universal language of laughter.

Who should read Funny in Farsi?

  • People interested in humorous memoirs that provide insight into different cultures
  • Readers who enjoy stories of personal growth and adaptation
  • Individuals looking for a lighthearted and entertaining read

25
Adult Books: How Dare the Sun Rise by Sandra Uwiringiyimana

How Dare the Sun Rise

Sandra Uwiringiyimana
Memoirs of a War Child

What's How Dare the Sun Rise about?

This memoir tells the powerful and inspiring story of Sandra Uwiringiyimana, a young girl who survived a massacre in her home country of Congo and eventually resettled in the United States as a refugee. Through her courageous journey, she sheds light on the harsh realities of war and the resilience of the human spirit. It is a testament to the strength and determination of those who dare to rise above adversity.

Who should read How Dare the Sun Rise?

  • Individuals interested in stories of resilience and overcoming adversity
  • Readers seeking to gain insight into the experience of being a refugee
  • Those wanting to explore the strength of the human spirit in challenging circumstances

26
Adult Books: Kill Switch by Penelope Douglas

Kill Switch

Penelope Douglas

What's Kill Switch about?

Kill Switch by Penelope Douglas is a gripping thriller that delves into the dark and twisted world of revenge. When Damon, a man with a troubled past, seeks retribution against those who wronged him, he sets his sights on Winter, the one person who betrayed him. As the tension escalates and secrets unravel, the line between predator and prey becomes blurred, leaving readers on the edge of their seats until the very end.

Who should read Kill Switch?

  • Readers who enjoy dark romance and psychological thrillers
  • Those looking for a complex and intense love story
  • Individuals who appreciate a flawed and morally ambiguous protagonist

27
Adult Books: Message in a Bottle by Holly Hogan

Message in a Bottle

Holly Hogan
Ocean Dispatches from a Seabird Biologist

What's Message in a Bottle about?

"Message in a Bottle" is a heartwarming novel by Holly Hogan that tells the story of a young woman who finds a mysterious message in a bottle washed up on the shore. As she unravels the secrets and emotions behind the message, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery and unexpected connections. This beautifully written book explores the power of love, hope, and the unbreakable bond between strangers. It will leave you feeling inspired and believing in the magic of fate.

Who should read Message in a Bottle?

  • Readers who enjoy heartwarming stories with an emotional punch
  • People who appreciate themes of love, loss, and second chances
  • Those who are interested in exploring the power of human connection and the healing nature of forgiveness

28
Adult Books: Riding the Bus with My Sister by Rachel Simon

Riding the Bus with My Sister

Rachel Simon
A True Life Journey

What's Riding the Bus with My Sister about?

This memoir tells the story of Rachel Simon's relationship with her sister, Beth, who has a developmental disability. After years of estrangement, Rachel decides to reconnect with Beth by spending time with her on the bus rides she takes every day. Through their conversations and experiences, Rachel gains a deeper understanding of her sister and learns valuable lessons about acceptance, love, and the true meaning of family.

Who should read Riding the Bus with My Sister?

  • Readers who enjoy heartfelt personal narratives
  • People looking to understand and empathize with individuals with developmental disabilities
  • Those interested in exploring the complexities of family and relationships

29
Adult Books: Somebody's Daughter by Ashley C. Ford

Somebody's Daughter

Ashley C. Ford

What's Somebody's Daughter about?

In this powerful memoir, Ashley C. Ford shares her journey of growing up as a Black girl in America, navigating family dynamics, abuse, and the search for her father. With raw honesty and vulnerability, she explores the complexities of identity, forgiveness, and the enduring love between a parent and child. Somebody's Daughter is a compelling and thought-provoking read that sheds light on the universal experience of longing for connection and belonging.

Who should read Somebody's Daughter?

  • Anyone interested in memoirs that explore complex family dynamics
  • Readers who enjoy personal stories that blend vulnerability with resilience
  • People seeking insights on identity, forgiveness, and finding one's place in the world

30

What's The Distance Between Us about?

This memoir tells the story of Reyna Grande's childhood in Mexico and her journey to the United States to reunite with her parents. It explores the complexities of family, immigration, and the pursuit of a better life, while highlighting the emotional and physical distance that separates loved ones. Grande's powerful and poignant writing offers a unique perspective on the immigrant experience.

Who should read The Distance Between Us?

  • Readers who are interested in coming-of-age stories
  • People who want to gain insights into the immigrant experience
  • Those looking for a memoir about resilience and determination

31
Adult Books: The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell

The Last Kingdom

Bernard Cornwell

What's The Last Kingdom about?

The Last Kingdom (2004) is a historical novel by Bernard Cornwell that takes place during the early 10th century. It follows the story of Uhtred of Bebbanburg, a Saxon nobleman who is captured by the Danes and raised as one of their own. The book delves into the political and military struggles between the Saxons and the Danes, as Uhtred finds himself torn between his loyalty to his birth country and the people who raised him.

Who should read The Last Kingdom?

  • History enthusiasts who are curious about the Viking invasion of England
  • Fans of historical fiction with vivid descriptions of battle and political intrigue
  • Readers who enjoy following the journey of a complex and charismatic protagonist

32
Adult Books: City of Thieves by David Benioff

City of Thieves

David Benioff

What's City of Thieves about?

City of Thieves by David Benioff is a gripping novel set during the siege of Leningrad in World War II. It follows the unlikely friendship between two young men, Lev and Kolya, as they embark on a dangerous quest to find a dozen eggs for a Soviet officer. Filled with humor, suspense, and poignant moments, this book explores the resilience of the human spirit in the face of unimaginable hardship.

Who should read City of Thieves?

  • Readers who enjoy historical fiction, particularly stories set during World War II
  • Those with an interest in Russian history and culture
  • People who appreciate vivid and engaging storytelling with a mix of humor and intensity

33
Adult Books: The Tender Bar by J. R. Moehringer

The Tender Bar

J. R. Moehringer

What's The Tender Bar about?

The Tender Bar is a heartfelt memoir by J.R. Moehringer that takes us on a journey through his unconventional upbringing. Set in a Long Island bar where his uncle works, the book explores the author's coming-of-age story and the father figures he finds in the bar's regulars. It's a beautifully written and poignant reflection on family, friendship, and the search for belonging.

Who should read The Tender Bar?

  • Readers who enjoy coming-of-age stories
  • People interested in memoirs and personal journeys
  • Those who appreciate honest and relatable storytelling

Related Topics