Happy New Year! It’s January, and you know what that means, there’s a whole bunch of “new year, new me” going around. Most of the time, these resolutions don’t last because the goal doesn’t seem tangible enough. This year why not set yourself the goal of finishing just 3 books? Aim to read just a paragraph a day, or read for 15 minutes a day, and I promise you’ll get through those books in no time. To get you started, here are 3 books that are fantastic and super easy to get through… I would know, I’ve read them!

The Perks of Being A Wallflower

Stephen Chbosky

Genre: Contemporary Young Adult Fiction

What’s in the pages? Charlie is a “wallflower.” Join him as he navigates his journey through adolescence. He encounters love, loss, glorious triumph, devastating defeat and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. He is caught between trying to enjoy his life and wanting to run away from it simultaneously. It’s the quintessential coming-of-age story.

Why should you read it? Word’s cannot explain just how unique this book is. By presenting Charlie’s story in an epistolary style (through letters), Chbosky manages to pull you right into the world of Perks of Being a Wallflower. This is a beautiful example of a coming-of-age story done the right way. Chbosky captures all the highs and lows of being an adolescent in a genuinely relatable way. It’s full of the types of life lessons you wish you’d had in your teens, but are still poignant no matter what stage of life you are at. It’s a modern classic in every sense, and even better, it’s unputdownable!

Fahrenheit 451

Ray Bradbury

Genre: ‘Classic’ Science Fiction

What’s in the pages? In a world where houses are fireproof, firemen have a new job: to destroy the most illegal commodities, the printed book. Guy Montag is one of those firemen, he never questions his career or his existence. He leads a bland life with an unfulfilled marriage to Mildred. When he meets a young girl named Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn’t live in fear and a present where books can be used as weapons of free thought, his life changes.

When Mildred attempts suicide and Clarisse disappears, Montag begins to questions everything he has ever known, leading him down a dangerous path.

Why should you read it? The irony of a book about censorship being banned. Fahrenheit is an essential part of Sci-Fi and Literacy canon. Bradbury manages to convey the personal growth of Montag from blissfully ignorant to a painfully aware person in a seductively beautiful piece of prose. In my opinion, this book gets increasingly relevant as time goes on. While people often cite Orwell’s 1984 as a reflection of modern society (most of the time without actually having read it), I would argue that Fahrenheit 451 is the real reflection. This is essential reading for everyone at least once in their lives; I guarantee you will fall in love with at least one part of this book!

Just Kids

Patti Smith

Genre: Autobiography

What’s in the pages? An immersive story of youth, friendship, love and hardship set against the mythical backdrop of the 1960s and its most famous landmarks – The Chelsea Hotel, Max’s Kansas City and Warhol’s Factory. This is a story of two kids who promised to care for each other and ended up changing the world. Introducing Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe.

Why should you read it? Preface: You don’t have to like Patti Smith to read this book – but you should read it anyway. I was reluctant to pick up this novel for that reason, but I am so glad I did! It is one of the richest autobiographies I have ever read, Smith’s use of language is second to none, beautiful, heartfelt and undeniably charming. Furthermore, the backdrop of the 60s has never felt more poignant to a story as it does in this one. I would recommend this book to anyone and would go so far as to call it a classic of the modern age.

For more book recommendations follow Joel’s Instagram @neurodiversebookworm.