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I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead: 15 Short Books For Busy People

Being busy is different for everyone. Some may use it as an excuse to get out of an event they don’t want to go to, some may actually be busy with commitments and everyday life, and some may be caught smack down in the middle. For the book lover, however, being busy can at times be hard to cope with because, of course, we want to be able to have as much time to sit back, relax, and read as much as we can! That’s where the good ol’ short book enters our life and changes our TBR forever….

 

1. Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin

Page Length: 200

Published in 1956, Giovanni’s Room follows the life of an American man living in Paris as he struggles to deal with his frustrations and relationships with other men.

short books

Source: Amazon

2. Breakfast At Tiffany’s by Truman Capote

Page Length: 176

Most everyone has probably heard of Capote’s classic novel, even more so the timeless film starring Audrey Hepburn, though many may not realize how short it is. Breakfast At Tiffany’s can easily be read in one sitting.

Short Books

Source: Amazon

3. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Page Length: 160

Hinton’s novel celebrated its 50th anniversary last month, which proves just how monumental this novel about unbreakable bonds of friendship is years after its initial release.

short books

Source: Amazon

4. Amsterdam by Ian McEwan

Page Length: 208

Taking on a darker tone of friendship, McEwan’s novel follows the relationship between a composer and a newspaper editor who make a terminal illness death pact.

short books

Source: Amazon

5. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Page Length: 216

Things Fall Apart follows a Nigerian warrior named Okonkwo who is haunted by the foolish and reckless behavior of his late father, Unoka. In order to build up and restore his village, Okonkwo sets it upon himself to take on every important role in the tribe, while also trying to ensure his lazy son, Nwoye, doesn’t end up like his grandfather.

short books

Source: Amazon

6. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Page Length: 208

Join leading man Arthur Dent, the last surviving human on planet earth, in this funny adventure through galaxy and space.

short books

Source: Amazon

7. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Page Length: 160

Shirley Jackson‘s personal life was surely a trying one, and readers can see shadows of her life experience through her stories. We Have Always Lived in the Castle is one of her most memorable works, and can easily be read on a long car ride.

short books

Source: Amazon

8. The Stranger by Albert Camus

Page Length: 152

I’ll let Camus himself explain the meaning and narrative of this classic:

“I summarized The Stranger a long time ago, with a remark I admit was highly paradoxical: ‘In our society any man who does not weep at his mother’s funeral runs the risk of being sentenced to death.’ I only meant that the hero of my book is condemned because he does not play the game.”

short books

Source: Amazon

9. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Page Length: 224

This is one of the few stories I loved reading while in school. Stevenson’s narrative follows a lawyer named Gabriel John Utterson who begins to pick up on the eerie similarities between his friend Dr. Henry Jekyll and the sinister Mr. Edward Hyde.

short books

Source: Amazon

10. Memories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel García Márquez

Page Length: 128

A 90 year old journalist, eager to add some excitement to his life, seeks out to have sex with a young prostitute who is selling her virginity to help support her family. However, love may win him over instead of lust.

short books

Source: Amazon 

11. In The Cafe of Lost Youth by Patrick Modiano

Page Length: 128

Originally published and written in French, this short book is told from the perspectives of four characters: a student, a private detective, the main character, Louki, as well as her lover.

short books

Source: Amazon

12. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Page Length: 112

George and Lennie are in dire need for work and set out together in search of it. Along the way, they speak of their dream to one day own their own land and live a life of simplicity and structure. However, when Lennie begins to face harsh obstacles and feelings of jealousy, that dream begins to slowly disappear.

short books

Source: Amazon

13. Drown by Junot Díaz

Page Length: 240

Drown is made up of ten individual stories that capture the struggles, cruelty, and perseverance of families in the Dominican Republic and New Jersey.

short books

Source: Amazon

14. Animal Farm by George Orwell

Page Length: 176

Animals begin to represent the sinister side of politics in this all too surreal classic by Orwell.

short books

Source: Amazon

15. Home by Toni Morrison

Page Length: 160

Morrison’s novel, released in 2012, follows 24-year old Frank Money, a black war veteran who has been recently discharged from an integrated military. Frank is soon forced to face the horrid realities of life back in his segregated home.

short books

Source: Amazon

May these books find a nice home on your TBR. What other short books would you suggest for busy folks?

First Published On #AmReading.com

Featured image via Indabaa 

h/t Penguin Random House

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