6 Books to Read Instead of (or in Addition to) the Classic Novel

It’s always a great experience to delve into classic novels, but if you’re in the mood for something new or want to explore different perspectives, we’ve got you covered. Here are six books to read instead of (or in addition to) the classic novel, presenting fresh ideas, engaging characters, and captivating plots that will whisk you away on exhilarating literary adventures.

1. “The Night Circus” by Erin Morgenstern

If you’ve ever been enamored by the magical worlds found in classics like “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” then “The Night Circus” is an enchanting alternative. Set in a circus that only appears at night, this novel tells the story of two young magicians who compete against each other in a dangerous game. With its imaginative setting and lyrical writing style, “The Night Circus” delivers a mesmerizing reading experience.

2. “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens

Fans of classic coming-of-age novels such as “To Kill a Mockingbird” will appreciate this modern masterpiece. “Where the Crawdads Sing” follows the life of Kya Clark, a girl who grows up isolated from society in the marshes of North Carolina. The book examines themes like prejudice, resilience, and the power of nature while crafting an atmospheric and captivating tale.

3. “Homegoing” by Yaa Gyasi

Familiar with epic family sagas like “One Hundred Years of Solitude?” Give “Homegoing” a try for its sweeping historical narrative that spans 250 years. The novel follows the descendants of two half-sisters from Africa; one is sold into slavery while the other becomes a slave trader’s wife. Through each chapter’s focus on a different generation, Gyasi expertly weaves together stories that discuss themes such as belonging, race, and identity.

4. “A Gentleman in Moscow” by Amor Towles

For those that enjoy classic novels with intricate plots and strong character development, “A Gentleman in Moscow” is a must-read. The book tells the story of Count Alexander Rostov, who is sentenced to house arrest in a grand hotel during the Bolshevik Revolution. Filled with wit, charm, and rich historical detail, this story is both entertaining and thought-provoking.

5. “Pachinko” by Min Jin Lee

A multi-generational family drama set primarily in Japan, “Pachinko” is an ideal alternative for fans of classics like “East of Eden.” Through exploring the lives and struggles of members in a Korean family forced to adapt to foreign lands and cultures, Lee’s captivating prose captures the hardships of immigrants while illustrating the importance of love and loyalty within family ties.

6. “Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel

Science fiction fans who enjoy classics like “Brave New World” should consider adding “Station Eleven” to their reading arsenal. The novel interweaves multiple narrative threads, following several characters before and after a devastating pandemic that wipes out most of humanity. Though it’s set in an apocalyptic world, this thought-provoking tale manages to be hopeful, exploring themes such as the power of art, human connections, and survival.
Craving new literary horizons? Give these six books a chance for exciting plots and engaging storytelling beyond the realms of classic novels. Happy reading!

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