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32 Books That Will Actually Change Your Life


still nobody's bitch
32 Books That Will Actually Change Your Life

This is worth clicking the link, for those of you anti-link-clickers

Interesting that It is on the list; I never thought of that as a life-changer.

A few of my favorite books are on the list - White Oleander and Prodigal Summer

This would be a good list to take with me to the library when I'm not sure what I want to read next.


It's not me, it's you.
I have read 2 of those books, White Oleander and Me Talk Pretty One Day. I do not feel like either of these books changed my life, per se. I did enjoy reading them, but life changing? No.

However someone recently asked me what book I had read that had changed my life, and I said none. It's entertainment for me, nothing more.


Well-Known Member
I've actually read 7 of the books on that list.

In the order that they appear on the list.

Cat's Cradle
World War Z
The Giver
A Brief History of Time
Crime and Punishment
Life of Pi

I wouldn't say that any of these would "actually change your life", that's a bit extreme. A Brief History of Time is extremely atheistic and opinionated. Crime and Punishment is just one of the worst books I've ever read, I don't know how anybody can actually finish that book and like it. Life of Pi was bad to a lesser extent (I do realize many people like this novel)

The only two I've read of those seven that I enjoyed would be The Giver and Catch-22 because they were actually good books. I wouldn't say that they changed my life though. Catch-22 may have redefined exactly what the word "crazy" means though :lol:.
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I've only read one of them. White Oleander. I don't think it changed my life at all. I did enjoy it though, it's a good book. I also have the film and I like that.


Son of Liberty
I've only read Catch-22 and It from this list. I'm disappointed Fahrenheit 451, 1984, Animal Farm and The Grapes of Wrath aren't on this list. Those books had a much bigger impact on me that those two.


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I've read:

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
Cat's Cradle
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Me Talk Pretty One Day
Sophie’s World

I'd say Zen, Cat's Cradle, and Sophie's World probably effected me the most, with Sophie's World helping to kick off a decade's long obsession with philosophy for me. Zen made me rethink the descriptive/normative dichotomy, and also the shoddy efforts I put into the maintenance of things. :) Cat's Cradle creeps into my mind constantly with its notion of granfalloons, which helps the gadfly in me bother my propensity towards a tribal unification of semi-arbitrary groupings of people with my ego. Not enough that I completely forgo it, but y'know.

I have to say I enjoyed all those books, though.


Well-Known Member
I've only read Catch-22 and It from this list. I'm disappointed Fahrenheit 451, 1984, Animal Farm and The Grapes of Wrath aren't on this list. Those books had a much bigger impact on me that those two.
I was really surprised not to see 1984 or Animal Farm on the list.

Of all of them, i've only read 100 Years of Solitude. Been meaning to read World War Z though.

I'm actually interested in reading a quite a few of those, so i've saved the list for later. Thanks Di.


For a Free Scotland
I've read Me Talk Pretty One Day, World War Z, and The Joy of Cooking (well, people don't read it cover-to-cover). I've also read books by Sherman Alexie and Toni Morrison, just not the ones listed. And like many people, I own a couple (Cat's Cradle, A Brief History of Time), but they are presently unread.

I'm slogging through a far too academic volume on Vikings, and the collected writings of Bakunin. It feels like I'll never work on lists like this at this rate.


I'm serious
I know I've never been a big reader, but I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I've only read one of the books on this list, and even more embarrassed that that one book is IT. :-/

I do plan on reading a lot more and actually planned on getting some books over the weekend, so this list is very handy. Thanks. 1984 has been recommended, so I will be starting with that one though.

The closest a book has ever come to changing my life would be Paulo Coehlo's The Alchemist.
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