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New year, new unreasonable reading goals to accomplish! If you feel bad about your recent book reading habits, remember, you could be a way worse person. You could be that totally unhinged Goodreads user who review-bombed a bunch of books for personal gain. But if you need some help getting out of your reading rut, I got you.
This is not just another roundup of 2024 books to read based entirely off of a BookTok algorithm. No, this is a hyper specific, slightly offensive, offering of curated books based on the type of reader you are. From translated Polish novels to pop culture essay collections, I’ve gathered books for all tastes. (And what it says about you.)
As the year progresses, I will be updating this list of best books of 2024 so if you feel like your niche has been left out, don’t be afraid to leave a snarky message in the comments. Now, go forth and spawn book clubs!
If You Just Want To Keep Up With Pop Culture
You probably don’t have time to scroll endless on Twitter because (unfortunately) you weren’t included in your company’s last round of layoffs. These are the books you need to read if you wanna know what anyone in the group chat is talking about. You’re welcome.
I read somewhere that this poetry collection is like if Rupi Kaur wrote for Raya. If you’re a fan of Jennifer’s Body and/or Tumblr micro poems, this book is for you.
Colleen Hoover’s 2016 novel “It Ends With Us” went viral on BookTok for some reason so the producers are turning it into a movie. Blake Lively is starring in the adaptation alongside Jenny Slate and Justin Baldoni, so read the book and tell me what it’s about.
Pop culture commentary by the queen of satire.
If You Enjoy Being Scared On A Deep, Psychological Level
You clearly had a good childhood if you willingly find scary things to haunt your dreams. Good for you. Here are the latest and greatest thrillers that won’t make you pee your pants, but will have you questioning America’s lack of mental health facilities.
Everyone knows horror is infinitely better when it’s “based on a true story.” Well, this book is based on a fictionalized memoir of Ellis’s senior year of high school, it’s a coming of age story but with a serial killer on the loose.
If you’ve ever wanted more mystery in your science fiction or more sci-fi in your thriller, then look no further than Yume Kitasei’s debut novel. Set in space, “The Deep Sky” is fast-paced so you won’t have to fight your attention span too hard.
I’m not lying when I say that I read this in two days and it would’ve been one day if I didn’t need to take food and bathroom breaks. This thriller is addicting and surprisingly queer. Just read it!
Unhinged domestic thriller! Need I say more?
If You Just Want Easy Breezy Reads That Don’t Make You Think Too Hard
We all know reading wasn’t your strong suit in 2nd grade and that’s haunted you into adulthood. Good thing there are books that are equally if not more enjoyable than War & Peace with half the amount of pages and twice as much entertainment.
From the author who made beach reads cool again, Emily Henry is back with her latest “Happy Place.” Don’t worry, this story takes place on vacation too.
Think if Bridgerton was queer af.
Okay less easy breezy and simply hilarious. If you just want to laugh and laugh and seem super mysterious with your very funny book then this is the read for you.
If You Like Non-Fiction Because Novels Are Just A Book Of Lies
You don’t read for pleasure, you read to learn things. God forbid you mistake autofiction for a memoir! I bet you also know how to play chess and do crossword puzzles for fun. I hope you enjoy these books but for the love of god don’t contact me about any fun facts you learned.
Read this if you need to deprogram from society. (So like, everybody.)
Okay if you don’t already know this, Leslie Jamison is one of the best essayists of our time. She’s been compared to Joan Didion and Susan Sontag, and has been praised by Mary Karr. (This is a big deal.) In this memoir, she looks at what it means for a woman to be many things at once — a mother, an artist, a teacher, a lover — and it’s wildly relatable.
Dr. Gagne shares their experience of being a sociopath, so if you also have a morbid fascination with mental disorders then this memoir should scratch that itch.
After her closest friend dies of suicide, Sloane goes on a quest (yes, I just wrote “quest”) to answer the question: how do you hold onto the past without being consumed by it? Because grief is confusing and isolating and reading about it can make things a little less lonely.
If You Want Fiction That’s Just So Literary And Cultured
I’m sorry your self-published poetry collection didn’t take off on Tumblr the way you hoped. You clearly strain to find beauty in the mundane even if it means you are the most annoying person at every dinner party.
Roxane Gay called it an “absorbing, sprawling, wonderfully written novel about the building of the Panama Canal.” I’ve never been interested in the Panama Canal before now.
Family drama! Small town secrets!
Two words: lyrical prose. If that’s your shit, then this book is for you! Personally, I love novels that kinda sound like poetry but with a more established plot.
Yes, this book was originally published in 1904, but it’s relevant I swear!! The book is being adapted into a movie starring Robert Gulaczyk, Sonia Mietielica, and Miroslaw Baka (I don’t know who they are but they sound cool). You’re welcome for making you sound really cultured.
If You Think Unlikable Characters Are Hot
You’re a sick people pleaser who lives vicariously through your messiest friend. Sure, you want everyone else to do it for the plot but are terrified of making your own mistakes. Be a bitch? That would mean having the confidence to be unlikable.
If you missed this book last summer, where the fuck were you? It was THE It girl for a reason. The narrator was young, hot and a horrible person. Also, Emma Cline is literally one of my favorite authors so I will send every single one of you her way!
College kids, a professor and some weird dark deeds.
If you love fucked up narrators, “Yellowface” is for you. The protagonist literally steals someone’s book and then pretends to be Asian American (?!). The plot is so twisty and turny and just an absolute wild ride filled with suspense.