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POPxo Bookclub: 100 Books Every Woman Must Read In This Lifetime

POPxo Bookclub: 100 Books Every Woman Must Read In This Lifetime

Brace yourself for what’s coming up. A mammoth list of 100 books that should be marked ‘To-Read’ or ‘Read’ on your Goodreads’ profile. These are the books that make you laugh or cry, inspire you to do better, and touch your heart in a way like nothing else ever could. Words on paper that you cherish; dogeared pages that you proudly pass on to your favourite people; and some titles that you’d never part with.


Here, you will find everything from romance to self-help, so bookmark this page for your next pick-me-up at the bookstore.

To Kill A Mockingbird: This Pulitzer-winning novel by Harper Lee talks about justice, heroism, discrimination and childhood fancies. It’s a must-read coming-of-age book that’ll always remain a classic. Buy now: Rs 222

Animal Farm: George Orwell reflects on a political revolution with this powerful allegory. This 20th century book uses animals as protagonists and sends a strong message. Buy now; Rs 70

Atlas Shrugged: You will either hate it, or you’ll love itthere’s no middle ground when it comes to Ayn Rand’s magnum opus. It talks about the philosophy of life and the world of creators. Who is John Galt? The answer is in the pages. Buy now: Rs 319
100 books to read

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Pride and Prejudice: The story of the spirited protagonist Elizabeth Bennet and proud Mr Darcy hits the right notes when it comes to wit, humour and romance. Buy now: Rs 137

The Book Thief: Markus Zusak’s hard-hitting novel takes you back to the war-hit Germany and tells the tale of a young girl and her love for books, and a Jewish man hidden in her basement. Buy now: Rs 324

The Handmaid’s Tale: Margaret Atwood’s dystopian book talks about a totalitarian world where women have been given roles that they can’t run from. Offred, the narrator, is a handmaid and her only job is to breed. Through the book, she remembers another life when she had a family, a job, a choice. The spine-chilling narrative is also translated into a TV series. Buy now: Rs 329

Looking For Alaska: “If people were rain, I was like drizzle and she was a hurricane.” John Green’s idea of love is so relatable! The book will leave you looking for your own ‘hurricane!’ Buy now: Rs 200

Harry Potter Series: The magical story of Harry and his best friends Ron and Hermione is something you can’t help but love. We all have waited for our Hogwarts letter, haven’t we? Buy now: Rs 3,099

The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck: The title says it all. Buy now: Rs 318

The Laws Of The Spirit World: By Khorshed Bhavnagri, this spiritual story is loved by those who’ve suffered the loss of a loved one. Buy now: Rs 199

How To Be A Woman: British author Caitlin Moran tells it like it is. Through a personal account of her life, she manages to make you laugh out loud at some of the biggest issues faced by women. Buy now: Rs 400

Princess: An anonymous Saudi princess reveals what really happens behind the tall walls of a palace in Riyadh. Buy now: Rs 326

Matilda: This classic by Roald Dahl deserves space on every young girl’s bookshelf. A story about how a five-year-old uses kindness, books and magic to get her happy ending. Buy now: Rs 209

Lean In: Women, Work, And The Will To Lead: If you’re looking for advise on how to balance your life, career and relationships, Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg’s guide would be a big help. Buy now: Rs 450

Boy Meets Girl: Kate Mackenzie is a 20-something girl who cares about making the world a better place, can’t stand her current boss, is trying very hard to get rid of her good-for-nothing ex-boyfriend and falling in love with her gorgeous lawyer. Could her life be more relatable? Buy now: Rs 175

I Am Malala: What happened when a young Pakistani girl refused to take instructions from the Taliban. Malala, who was banned from studying in Swat Valley, Pakistan, is now a student at Oxford University. Buy now: Rs 395

A Song Of Ice And Fire: Sure, you could watch The Game Of Thrones on HBO, or you could read the book it was based on. Buy now: Rs 358

The Forty Rules Of Love: An ordinary woman finds Rumi’s mysticism in a book and its author introduces her to another life, of love and harmony. Buy now: Rs 352

Memoirs Of A Geisha: A true literary sensation, it is the story of an underprivileged girl who was sold to a Geisha house at the age of nine. You’ll be captivated by the story of how she transforms her unpleasant circumstances and becomes one of Japan’s most celebrated Geishas. Buy now: Rs 175.

The Devil Wears Prada: Whether you love fashion or have experienced a nightmarish job, you need to read this book STAT. If you already have, we’re pretty sure you love reading it again and again. Buy now: Rs 210.

Me Before You: A heartbreaking story that will make you laugh, warm your heart and leave you a blubbering mess. It will give you a new perspective on love and will leave you wondering, what do you do when making the person you love happy will also break your heart? Buy now: Rs 287

Confessions Of A Shopaholic: You’ll instantly fall in love with Becky Bloomwood, the adorable protagonist of the series. She’s chic, stylish and writes an advice column on personal finance, while drowning in financial debt herself. Buy now: Rs 326.

The Age of Innocence: Set in the 20th century, this Pulitzer-winning book by Edith Wharton tells the story of a man caught between two worlds and his struggles with love and social conventions. Buy now: Rs 124

Fear Of Flying: Raised in a country where no one talks about sex, Erica Jong’s semi-autobiographical novel is an eye-opener no matter what year or space you read it in. Sometimes scandalous, often relatable and always witty, this novel talks about the inner workings of a women’s sexuality like no other. Dear 50 Shades Of Grey readers, this 40-year-old book is as real as it gets about women’s sexual fantasies. Buy now: 480.

The Old Man And The Sea: A story of perseverance, purpose and an unlikely friendship, this short book by Hemingway has a heartwarming tale and simple life advices that every young person needs to read. Buy now: Rs 78

Shantaram: The journey of an escaped convict who comes to Bombay for another shot at life. He befriends philosophical gangsters and big-hearted slum-dwellers. It’s a story of both love and war. Buy now: Rs 394

Great Expectations: In this Charles Dickens literary classic, orphaned Pip dreams of becoming a gentleman, but along the way, loses sight of what really matters in life. Buy now: Rs 163

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower: The book helps you see the brighter side of things and teaches you how not being okay is completely okay. Buy now: Rs 202.

Moby Dick: The story of the revenge of Captain Ahab who sets out to kill Moby-Dick, the whale he lost his arm to. A harmless expedition at such, it’ll make you question your concepts of good and evil! Buy now: Rs 100

The Kite Runner: Set in a torn Afghanistan, this story of friendship between a boy and his servant’s son touches a chord with its powerful narrative. Buy now: Rs 259

The Odyssey: The Trojan War is over and Odysseus is struggling to make his way back home to his wife, Penelope, who has been waiting for years for his return. This Greek mythological poem by Homer is a masterpiece. Buy now: Rs 135

The Help: Welcome to 1960s Mississippi, that’s riddled with racism. Black maids in white households don’t get any respect, while social status trumps feelings of love and empathy. Here, an unlikely friendship is formed and this world is stirred. Buy now: Rs 257

The Diary Of A Young Girl: In the Nazi era, a jewish girl called Anne Frank went into hiding and continued journaling her life. The book will leave you heartbroken, but the world needs this chilling experience to understand the cruelty we’re capable of. Buy now: Rs 158

Gone With The Wind: There is a reason this book is on every ‘must-read’ list. It managed to combine the American civil war, slavery and the romance between Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara. Buy Now: Rs 250

The Time Traveler’s Wife: Time travelling isn’t always as glamorous as it painted to be in movies. Henry disappears without his will, at any time, and struggles to have a normal life with his wife, Clare. Buy now: Rs 338

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: If you want to be successful in life, you need to introduce seven habits in your daily routine, the author highlights in this book. Buy now: Rs 299

Life Of Pi: Yann Martel’s bestselling novel begins when a cargo ship sinks, leaving four survivors on a boat: a 16-year-old boy named Pi, a hyena, a zebra, and a tiger. Buy now: Rs 250

The Count Of Monte Cristo: In this 19th century novel, protagonist Edmond Dantes was wrongfully convicted and put behind bars. When he breaks free, he finds treasure and plans a revenge to destroy the life of those who destroyed his. The book is definitely better than the movie! Buy now: Rs 299

Also Read: Fantasy Books

Humans Of New York: Brandon Stanton started a photography project to capture the pulse of his city and its people on camera. His blog has now gone global and the photo stories and anecdotes of love, grief, accomplishments and everyday life have inspired many. Buy now: Rs 659

The Palace Of Illusions: Ever thought of reading Draupadi’s version of the Mahabharata? This fictional book takes you through the story from Panchaali’s point of view and raises never-thought-before questions. Buy now: Rs 246

The Namesake: Jhumpa Lahiri’s central character, Gogol, was born to Bengali parents but raised in America, where his name becomes his shame. An Indian-American struggling with an identity crisis, this story is the author at her best. Buy now: Rs 190

How To Be A Bawse: According to Lilly Singh, a BAWSE is a person who exudes confidence, reaches goals, gets hurt efficiently, and smiles genuinely because they’ve fought through it all and made it out the other side. Don’t you want to know what else she has to say? Buy Now: Rs 389

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind: The book asks the big questions about mankind and attempts to answer them with science facts. It enhances your understanding of what it means to be ‘human’. Buy Now: Rs 299  

Catcher In The Rye: You have to read this book if you’ve ever been a teenager. The teenage angst is so amazingly put that you’d be cribbing along with Caulfield, the main character. And what’s life without (a lot of) cribbing? Buy now: Rs 249

Pinball, 1973: Of all the Murakami books, this one is the most underrated. Take a journey with a man who obsessively thinks about a Pinball machine. Everything about this book is bizarre which is why it leaves you with a heavy heart. Buy now: Rs 450

We Need To Talk About Kevin: What do you do when your son murdered students in his high school? Were you a bad mother? Did you have anything to do with it? How do you live with the situation? Lionel Shriver hits it hard with this book. Buy now: Rs 556

The Secret: A highly controversial book, it gives you an insight to the Laws of Universe and how to make everything you want come true through the sheer power of faith. Buy now: Rs 354

A Christmas Carol: The cold-hearted Scrooge hates Christmas. On Christmas Eve, he gets an unexpected visit from his dead partner who is suffering in the afterlife. The spirits of Christmas make him realise that it’s not too late to make amends and share his love. Buy now: Rs 69

Gulliver’s Travels: The fantasy book has adventurous travels of Lemuel Gulliver, who gets stranded in strange places. Buy now: Rs 105

The Da Vinci Code: The amount of detail you’ll find in Dan Brown’s books is difficult to find anywhere else. A phone call at midnight completely changes how Robert Langdon, and we, see the secret societies and the teachings of the church! Buy now: Rs 234

1984: George Orwell’s most revered work tells the story of a dystopian era where everything you do is monitored and WATCHED by the government. If you are not impressed by the intriguing plot, maybe the heroic and crass protagonist will reel you in! Buy now: Rs 281

Jane Eyre: In your quest to read great books, you will come across many heroes and heroines. One of the most influential among them is Jane Eyre. Buy now: Rs 125

The Adventures Of Sherlock Holmes: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s books are better than all the movies and TV shows combined. Promise! Buy now: Rs 137

Around The World In 80 Days: An English gentleman goes around the whole world in a time when air travel wasn’t commonplace. Buy now: Rs 113

Neither Here Nor There: This humorous travel book takes you on an expedition of Europe as the author Bill Bryson retraces his college backpacking trip. Buy now: Rs 499

The Essential Rumi: The famous Sufi poet of the 13th century shares golden words of wisdom about love, life and spirituality. Buy now: Rs 323

The Complete Calvin And Hobbes: Bill Watterson’s popular comic strips illustrate the life of a boy and his imaginary tiger friend. You’ll learn many lessons from this young boy. Buy now: Rs 4,319

The Fountainhead: It’s hard to sum up this book in a few words. Ayn Rand uses the character (Howard Roark) to make the reader question ‘the establishment’. It’s not an easy read but it’s worth it. Buy Now; Rs 389

The Undomestic Goddess: The author of the Shopaholic series, Sophie Kinsella does it again with this delicious chick-lit. It’s the one you’d want to carry along on a beach vacay. Buy now: Rs 315

The Murder Of Roger Ackroyd: Arguably Agatha Christie’s best, and Hercule Poirot’s most difficult. A man who knew too much was stabbed to death, but who could it be?  Buy now: Rs 224

Shutter Island: If you haven’t watched the movie, you’re in for a treat. Buy now: Rs 399

After You: The sequel to Me Before You, After You continues the story of Louisa Clarke after Will’s death. A beautiful read, the book is about loving, losing and moving on. Buy now: Rs 246
100 books to read Mein kampf

Mein Kampf: Get inside the mind of one of the world’s most hated people, Adolf Hitler. Buy now: Rs 189

Pluto: There aren’t many poets who’ve left a mark quite the way that this impeccable man, Gulzar has. The poem titled Pluto (because he feels much like the neglected planet), is a personal favourite. Buy now: Rs 289

A Thousand Splendid Suns: Another story by Khaled Hosseini, set in war-torn Afghanistan, makes this list. This one features two women who support each other through the dark times. Buy now: Rs 255  

The Sonnets: William Shakespeare will always be the man behind some of the greatest pieces of literature. This is one of them. Buy now: Rs 190

Love & Misadventure: The original goddess of Instagram poetry, Lang Leav left us awestruck with her illustrations and heartfelt words. Buy now: Rs 464

Twenty Love Poems: And A Song Of Despair: One of the greatest poets of our time, Pablo Neruda understands misery perfectly. Buy now: Rs 114

We Should All Be Feminists: The literary piece is a powerful book-length essay, by the Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, aims to give a definition to 21st century feminism. Buy now: Rs 199

Mrs Dalloway: The story by Virginia Woolf revolves around the wealthy Clarissa Dalloway, who is planning a soiree. The narrative runs back and forth in time, as well as in and out of the party guests’ minds to shed light on Clarissa’s life and the inter-war social structure. Buy now: Rs 100

100 Days Of Solitude: Author Gabriel Marquez blends the natural with the supernatural to unfold the story of the Buendía family, whose patriarch found a fictitious town in the author’s native country Colombia. Buy now: Rs 328

The Bell Jar: This was Sylvia Plath’s only novel, written in 1963. It is the story of Esther Greenwood who wins an internship with a New York fashion magazine. What starts out as her dream of being a writer coming true, turns out to be anything but. Buy now: Rs 189

Split: A Life: Taslima Nasrin’s book on religious fundamentalism and women’s rights got her evicted from Kolkata and caused a four-million dollar-defamation lawsuit. Buy now: Rs 329

Difficult Women: A collection of beautiful stories by Roxane Gay reflects the modern day America’s women. Buy now: Rs 458

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings: The seven-volume autobiography of Maya Angelou gives you a glimpse of the world of a Black woman, her hopes, her dreams, her pains, and the discrimination she faces. Buy now: Rs 455

Twelve Days Of Christmas: Want to curl up with a sweet book on Christmas? Trisha Ashley’s book about a young widow starting anew will offer the warmth. Buy now: Rs 147

The God Of Small Things: This Booker Prize winner by Arundhati Roy centres around two sisters in Kerala and their dealings with caste system and political events that shape their life. Buy now: Rs 240

A Suitable Boy: India’s caste system also forms the theme of this 1500-page novel by Vikram Seth that talks about marriage and life in the country right after independence. Buy now: Rs 599

Love In The Time Of Cholera: Gabriel Marquez’s French novel is a story of two young lovers who are separated. They cross paths again but life has changed drastically for both. Will they reunite? Buy now: Rs 307

The Theory Of Everything: A brilliant theoretical physicist, Stephen Hawking talks about the beginning of the universe in this book. Buy now: Rs 178

The Notebook: Nicholas Sparks’s love story about a couple torn apart by circumstances is poignant. The book breaks your heart at times, but also soothingly makes you believe in the power of love. Buy now: Rs 215

The Opposite Of Loneliness: It’s all about your legacy. Even though Marina Keegan passes away at the age 22, she’s left behind an essay, The Opposite Of Loneliness, which goes viral and creates an impact nobody expected.  Buy now: Rs 1,180

Homegoing: This book chronicles the journey of two sisters – one married to the slave trader’s wife and one sold into slavery. And it doesn’t just stop there, the effects are felt by the generations to come. Buy now: Rs 479  

Exit West: Two ordinary people try to do the extraordinary and fall in love but in the times of the Civil War. Forced to leave their homes and motherland, all they are trying to do is look for their own identity and their place in the world. Buy now: Rs 300

Eleven Minutes: An almost erotica, this book is the story of Maria, a prostitute in process of sexual awakening, who finds love unexpectedly. Buy now: Rs 219

Tell Me Your Dreams: Ashley Patterson is a hard-working who gets along well with her co-workers Toni Prescott and Alette Peters but the girls are nothing alike. When she becomes a murder suspect, secrets slowly begin unravel – about her father and it’s nothing like you’d expect! Buy now: Rs 202

Dead Souls: An unusual literary masterpiece by Russian author Nikolai Gogol, a schemer buys dead serfs’ names from their landowners and tries to reinvent himself as a gentleman. Buy Now: Rs 399

Little Women: A forever classic, Little Women is the story of the four March sisters. Their father is away fighting in the Civil War so hard times befall the family. But nothing can stop the ladies from enjoying life and being each other’s support system. Buy now: Rs 179

Essays In Love: The book is a proof that you can find love anywhere. A man and a woman who bump into each other in a flight end up falling in love and experiencing everything that comes with it – the fights, tears and the joy. This one is for everyone who has ever fallen in love or wishes to. Buy now: Rs 299

Love Letters Of Great Men: The greatest writers of all times do have the most interesting things to say about love. A collection of the most private love letters, in this book, love has been described in various different and colourful ways from “delicious poison” to “a nice soft wife on a sofa with good fire, & books & music.” Buy now: Rs 1,872

Kuch Ishq Kuch Kaam Kiya: If poetry is your scene, Piyush Mishra’s book is the perfect read for you. Poetry about love, life and it’s wonderful twists and turns will leave you wanting more. Buy now: Rs 150

The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: Successful lawyer Julian, after a heart attack, realises just how shallow the material world is. A trip to India changes his perspective on life and he decided to live a more meaningful and fulfilling life. Buy now: Rs 160

Open: ‘A win never feels as good as a loss feels bad.’ Andre Agassi, inarguably one of the greatest tennis players, gives you a brutally honest account of how he reached the top. Buy now: Rs 250

All Things Shining: Academic literature was never this good. Hubert Dreyfus and Sean Dorrance Kelly read Wester Classic literature to find out the meaning of life and how to live it in the best way possible and it is truly enlightening. Buy now: Rs 1,604

The Winner Stands Alone: The world of glitz and glamour is nothing like we think it is, or so this book tells you. When Igor’s wife leaves him for Hamid, he goes on a killing spree to get her attention. The novel will leave you questioning the world as you know it! Buy now: Rs 202

Norwegian Wood: This work of literature by Franz Kafka Prize winner Murakami is set in Tokyo, during the 60s. With a backdrop of student movements and rebellion, the book tells college-going Watanabe’s story of relationships, loss and burgeoning sexuality from back when he was a student. Buy now: Rs 247

When Breath Becomes Air: From being the doctor and treating terminally ill patients to being one himself, this book chronicles the life of Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon diagnosed with lung cancer and days to live! Buy now: Rs 311

A post shared by J.R.R. Tolkien (@tolkienlife) on Jan 13, 2017 at 9:52am PST

Lord Of The Rings Series: There are two types of people – one who love Harry Potter and one who love LOTR. One of the best trilogies of all time, it’s about the quest for One Ring, the ultimate weapon to help you conquer the Middle Earth. Involving a quest, journeys, adventures, it’s all about the victory of good over evil! A MUST read. Buy now: Rs 1,348

The Alchemist: An international bestseller, it’s the story of a shepherd who travels a long journey to the pyramids of Egypt, after having a recurring dream of a treasure hidden amidst them. Buy now: Rs 258

Mummy Told Me Not to Tell: Reece, a seven-year-old kid, is the youngest of six siblings to be fostered. His aggressive and disruptive behaviour has seen him passed from home to home. Cathy, a social worker, wants to find the answers for Reece’s distressing behaviour, but he has been sworn to secrecy by his mother and will not tell them anything. Buy now: Rs 1,182

How many have you read?

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