100 Books You Can’t Put Down

Oh the joy of discovering a book you just… can’t… put… down. I have a profound memory of being 12 years old and reading the mystical children’s book, When Marnie Was There by Joan G. Robinson (now out of print). I tried to read it slowly to stretch out the adventure, but I couldn’t stop. And I will never forget how I cried when I was finished. I cried not necessarily because it was a sad book, but because the adventure was over.

I have been lucky to read many books I just can’t put down. Below is a list of 100 Books You Can’t Put Down, compiled from both your recommendations as well as suggested titles from our HPB Bibliomaniacs.

(1) The Road, by Cormac McCarthy (2) The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis (3) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J.K. Rowling (4) The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, by Stieg Larsson (5) The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown (6) The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls (7) The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins (8) The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger (9) The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini (10) The Help, by Kathryn Stockett (11) To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee (12) Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card (13) The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak (14) The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, by Stieg Larsson (15) A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving (16) The Fault in our Stars, by John Green (17) The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien (18) City of Bones, by Cassandra Clare (19) Storm Front, by Jim Butcher (20) 11.22.63, by Stephen King (21) Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon (22) The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky (23) The Giver, by Lois Lowry (24) Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradlez (25) Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, by John Berendt

 

(26) A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini (27) Night Circus, by Eric Morgenstern (28) Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen (29) East of Eden, by John Steinbeck (30) On the Road, by Jack Kerouac (31) Uglies, by Scott Westerfeld (32) Shantaram, by Gregory David Roberts (33) The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver (34) Tuesdays with Morrie, by Mitch Albom (35) Pillars of the Earth, by Ken Follett (36) Twilight, by Stephenie Meyers (37) Circle of Friends, by Maeve Binchy (38) Joy Luck Club, by Amy Tan (39) Game of Thrones, by George R.R. Martin (40) Life of Pi, by Yann Martel (41) The Red Tent, by Anita Diamant (42) Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert (43) The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein (44) Sarah’s Key, by Tatiana de Rosney (45) The Time Travelers Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger (46) Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell (47) The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams (48) The Good Earth, by Pearl Buck (49) Divergent, by Veronica Roth (50) The Devil in the White City, by Erik Larson

 

(51) Memoirs of a Geisha, by Arthur Golden (52) The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman (53) Someone Knows my Name, by Lawrence Hill (54)
The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd (55) The Other Boleyn Girl, by Phillipa Gregory (56) The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton (57) Big Stone Gap, by Ardiana Trigiani (58) Skinny Dip, by Carl Hiaasen (59) She, by H. Rider Haggard (60) The House on Mango Street, by Sandra Cisneros (61)
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou (62) Teacher Man: A Memoir, by Frank McCourt (63) Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck (64) And the Band Played On, by Randy Shilts (65)
Let the Great World Spin, by Colum McCann (66) World War Z, by Max Brooks (67) Under the Banner of Heaven, by Jon Krakauer (68) Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (69) History of Love, by Nicole Krauss (70) Girl in Translation, by Jean Kwok (71) Explosive 18, by Janet Evanovich (72)
Bossypants, by Tina Fey (73) The Leftovers, by Tom Perrotta (74)
Siddhartha, by Herman Hess (75) Catch 22, by Joseph Heller

 

(76) I Love Everybody (And Other Atrocious Lies), by Laurie Notaro (77) You Shall Know Our Velocity, by Dave Eggers (78) Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret, by Judy Blume (79) Me Talk Pretty One Day, by David Sedaris (80) The Man Who Planted Trees, by Jean Giono (81) The Princess Bride, by William Goldman (82) Bel Canto, by Ann Patchett (83) Confessions of a Counterfeit Farm Girl, by Susan McCorkindale (84) Halfway to the Grave, by Jeaniene Frost (85) Prey, by Linda Howard (86) The Thin Man, by Dashiell Hammett (87) The Crying of Lot 49, by Thomas Pynchon (88) High Fidelity, by Nick Hornby (89) A Walk in the Woods, by Bill Bryson (90) Deerskin, by Robin McKinley (91) Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn (92) The Perfect Storm, by Sebastian Junger (93) The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, by Michael Chabon (94) The Elegance of the Hedgehog, by Muriel Barbery (95) Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James (96) Dead Until Dark, by Charlaine Harris (97) Murder on Astor Place, by Victoria Thompson (98) Deadly Sins, by Lora Leigh (99) Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, by Hunter S. Thompson (100) Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging, by Louise Rennison

Do you remember a book you just couldn’t put down?

Susan is Production Assistant at Half Price Books Corporate.

77 Books You Wish You Could Discover Again for the First Time

I am always asking our 3,000 Bibliomaniacs for book recommendations, mainly because I’m always up for discovering a new book or author.  Knowing this about me, one of our bibliomaniacs decided to ask me a question this month.  She was in the middle of reading Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell and was already starting to lament the point when the book would be over, knowing the first read is always the best read.  So she asked me what book I would want to discover again for the first time.  Of course, I didn’t want to be the only one to think about this question, so I sent it out to my knowledgeable pool of bibliomaniacs. Here are 77 books they said they wished they could discover again for the first time.  I also added my book to this list, but I’m not telling which one it is.
(1) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, by J.K. Rowling (2) The Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien (3) The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis (4) Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman (5) Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn (6)  Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card (7) Hell’s Angels, by Hunter S. Thompson (8) Mediterranean Winter, by Robert Kaplan (9) Sophie’s World, by Jostein Gaarder (10) Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams (11) Fight Club, by Chuck Palahniuk (12)  The Princess Bride, by William Goldman (13) The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath (14)  The Neverending Story, by Michael Ende (15)  Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline (16) Fathermucker, by Greg Olear (17) Madame Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert (18) Iron Man, by Tony Iommi (19) The Electric Church, by Jeff Somers (20) The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Steven Chbosky (21) Sharp Objects, by Gillian Flynn (22) Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie (23) The Giver, by Lois Lowry (24) The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley (25) A Countess Below Stairs, by Eva Ibbotson (26) The Crystal Cave, by Mary Stewart (27) She’s Come Undone, by Wally Lamb (28) You Can’t Win, by Jack Black (29) City of Night, by John Rechy (30) All the Pretty Horses, by Cormac McCarthy (31) Eleanor & Park, by Rainbow Rowell (32) The Host, by Stephenie Meyers (33) The Club Dumas, by Arturo Perez-Reverte (34) Alanna: The First Adventure, by Tamora Pierce (35) The Invisible Man, by Ralph Waldo Ellison (36) The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde (37) The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett (38) Anne of Green Gables, by L.M. Montgomery

  

(39) The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins (40) A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula Le Guin (41) James and the Giant Peach, by Roald Dahl (42) Through the Looking-Glass, by Lewis Carroll (43) Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, by Roald Dahl (44) The Big Sleep, by Raymond Chandler (45) The Godwulf Manuscript, by Robert B. Parker (46) Be Here Now, by Ram Dass (47) Un Lun Dun, by China Mieville (49) The Twenty-One Balloons, by William Pene Du Buis (49) To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee (50) The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald (51) American Gods, by Neil Gaiman (52) Redwall, by Brian Jacques (53) Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell (54) Guilty Pleasures, by Laurell K. Hamilton (55) Geek Love, by Katherine Dunn (56)  Lamb, by Christopher Moore (57) The Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon (58) The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood (59) The Blind Assassin, by Margaret Atwood (60) The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver (61) The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Diaz (62) Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole (63) I Know I Am But What Are You, by Samantha Bee (64) Haunted, by James Herbert (65) Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (66) A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again, by David Foster Wallace (67) A Widow for One Year, by John Irving (68) Domu: A Child’s Dream, by Katsuhiro Otomo (69) Consider the Lobster, by David Foster Wallace (70) Choke, by Chuck Palahniuk (71) Bluebeard, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (72) Breakfast of Champions, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (73) Good Omens, by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett (74) Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, by Alvin Schwartz (75) The Truth, by Terry Pratchett (76) The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton (77) On The Road, by Jack Kerouac

Now, I have more books to discover. What about you? What books do you wish you could discover again for the first time? — Julie

 

Julie is Production Manager at Half Price Books Corporate.
You may follow her on Twitter at @auntjewey.

 

Summer Musts for Booklovers + Chance to Win a $25 Gift Card!

Booklovers don’t leave home without a book in hand. Especially when going on vacation.

This summer reading list has something for everyone! Perhaps you’re jetting off to the mountains, taking a leisure cruise to a tropical island, or dashing away for a 3-day weekend at a bed-and-breakfast. Or, maybe you’re “stay-cationing” this summer and need some entertainment to satisfy your wanderlust, an hour of escape while the kids are occupied, or just a few moments of solitude before bed.

No matter what your summer plans are, you need to check out these must-reads. Plus, you could win a $25 HPB Gift Card to stock up on books for your summer vacation. Keep reading below for details.

For a day at the beach: 1) Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell, 2) Let’s Pretend this Never Happened by Jenny Lawson, One Fifth Avenue by Candace Bushnell, 4) Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn; For a long, weekend getaway: 1) This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Trapper, 2) The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls, 3) If Jack’s in Love by Stephen Wetta, 4) The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes; For a week-long vacation: 1) Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, 2) The Bookman’s Tale: A Novel of Obsession by Charlie Lovette, 3) The Story of Sisters by Alice Hoffman, 4) The Secret History by Donna Tartt; For wanderlust at home: 1) Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed, 2) On the Road by Jack Kerouac, 3) Life of Pi by Yann Martel, 4) Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.

HOW TO ENTER: Tell us what book you’re reading this summer! Just make a comment below and you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to win a $25 HPB Gift Card! Use the hashtag #summerreads to tell your friends on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest what book you’ve got your nose in right now. Winner will be randomly selected from blog comments. Deadline to enter 4:00pm CST Friday, June 21, 2013.

Meredith is Associate Creative Director at Half Price Books Corporate.
You can follow her on Twitter at @msquare21.

Books Authors Read with Marie Lu

Editor’s Note: We are so excited to have Marie Lu at our Flagship Store in Dallas next week! She’ll be joining us Wednesday, April 24 from 7-9 p.m. for a book signing and Q & A; swing by if you can make it. We asked Marie to come up with a list of books she loves — thanks, Marie! We love these books too. — Kristen D. 

::

Asking me to make a list of what books I recommend is dangerous. It’s a little like asking me to make a list of all the movies I recommend, or all the foods I love to eat (okay this one would be REALLY dangerous). I picture myself in a room, happily blabbering away to a poor skeleton covered with cobwebs, “And then there’s ALSO this OTHER book…oh and then there’s THIS ONE TOO…” But behold, I’m making a list here! And I’m going to keep the list down to 10 titles! 

1. Ready Player One (by Ernest Cline): This contains so many of my favorite things–action-packed fun, video games, 80s nostalgia, all things geek, and sci-fi. A must read!

2. Code Name Verity (by Elizabeth Wein): Very few books can make me legitimately cry. This is one of them. A heartwrenching tale of friendship’s deep roots.

3. Shadow and Bone, Book 1 of the Grisha Trilogy (by Leigh Bardugo): One of my favorite fantasy series at the moment. The Russia-inspired setting is refreshingly unique, and the heroine Alina is strong and great fun to follow–as are the sexy boys she attracts!

4. The Girl of Fire and Thorns, Book 1 of a trilogy (by Rae Carson): Another favorite fantasy series! I absolutely devoured this first book, as well as the next two. Fantastic worldbuilding, fantastic characters. (The final one comes out this summer, so now is a perfect time to get started!)

5. Proxy (by Alex London): Proxy doesn’t come out until this summer, but I had the fortune of reading this early. What a dynamite sci-fi story! It’s a futuristic take on the whipping boy concept, and I absolutely loved all the main characters. You don’t want to miss this.

6. The Night Circus (by Erin Morgenstern): An adult novel that took my breath away with its beautiful, magical circus setting. Truly one of the most unique stories I’ve read in a while.

7. The House of the Scorpion (by Nancy Farmer): This dystopian world chilled me to the bone. Just wow. There’s a reason why it has won every award under the sun. Fantastic.

8. The Thief, Book 1 of The Queen’s Thief series (by Megan Whalen Turner): Can you tell I love fantasy? This story is so brilliant, and by the end I was totally in love with Gen. He’s so awesome.

9. If I Stay (by Gayle Forman): By recommending If I Stay, I am also simultaneously recommending its companion novel, Where She Went. Two beautiful, lyrical, and heartbreaking books about family, love, and loss. You can’t go wrong with Gayle Forman.

10. Unwind (by Neal Shusterman): One of my favorite dystopian tales, and set in another chilling world that echoes issues in our own reality. This kept me on the edge of my seat.

My list could go on and on, of course. I hope you get a chance to pick these books up if you haven’t already! I promise that they will all keep you up into the wee hours of the morning. — Marie 

— 

Marie Lu is the New York Times Bestselling author of Legend and Prodigy

You may follow her on Twitter at @Marie_Lu.

40 More Books You Won’t Be Able to Put Down: Customer Edition

We love hearing from our customers, especially when it comes to books.  So, we were ecstatic when we received such an overwhelming response to our blog post, “40 Books You Won’t Be Able to Put Down.”  We also received more than 200 suggestions for more books that were so engaging, so intriguing, so page-turning that our customers just couldn’t put them down.  However, this is a Top 40 list, so we could only take those books that the most customers commented about.  So, without further ado, here are 40 More Books You Won’t Be Able to Put Down.

         

(1) To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee (2) A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving (3) The Fault in our Stars, by John Green (4) 11/22/63, by Stephen King (5) Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon (6) The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky (7) The Giver, by Lois Lowry (9) A Voice in the Wind, by Francine Rivers (10) Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley (11) Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, by John Berendt (12) A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini (13) The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern (14) Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen (15) East of Eden, by John Steinbeck (16) On the Road, by Jack Kerouac (17) The Shack, by William P. Young (18) Uglies, by Scott Westerfeld (19) The Gunslinger, by Stephen King (20) Shantaram, by Gregory David Roberts

(21) The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver(22) Tuesdays with Morrie, by Mitch Albom (23) The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand (24) Pillars of the Earth, by Ken Follett (25) Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer (26) Circle of Friends, by Maeve Binchy (27) Joy Luck Club, by Amy Tan (28) A Game of Thrones, by George R.R. Martin (29) Life of Pi, by Yann Martel (30) The Red Tent, by Anita Diamant (31) Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert (32) The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein (33) Sarah’s Key, by Tatiana de Rosney (34) The Time Traveler’s Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger (35) Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell (36) The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams (37) The Good Earth, by Pearl Buck (38) Divergent, by Veronica Roth (39) Memoirs of a Geisha, by Arthur Golden (40) The Golden Compass, by Phillip Pullman

Others that got multiple mentions were Someone Knows my Name, by Lawrence Hill, The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd, The Other Bolyen Girl, by Phillipa Gregory, Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand, The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton, Big Stone Gap, by Ardianna Trigiani and Skinny Dip, by Carl Hiaasen.

 I think one customer put it perfectly, when she said, “I guess there is a book for every person and thankfully people have different tastes.  Otherwise, it would be a very boring world.”

 So, is your favorite on this list? — Julie

Julie is Production Manager at Half Price Books Corporate.
You may follow her on Twitter at @auntjewey.

Top 22 Books to Give for Birthdays

It is no mystery that Half Price Books is celebrating its 40th birthday this year — the big day is next Friday, actually! Since we have both BOOKS and BIRTHDAYS on the brain these days, we thought it would be fun to put the two together and round-up some recommendations specifically for a few hard-to-shop-for birthday boys and girls in our lives. 

 (Of course, HPB gift cards always make great gifts too, for the treasure-hunting loved one whose favorite activities include browsing HPB bookshelves.)  

For the sleuth little sister who loves chemistry, fingerprints, ballistics and magnifying glasses:  

   

For the macabre grandpa who shows a little too much enthusiasm for cats, opera, poisons and morgues:

 

For the aunt who likes everything in its place, including her stripes and her polka dots:

  

For the boy scout little brother who hopes that book smarts will save him from that bear over there:

   

For the college sophomore cousin who has just rediscovered fairy tales and fables in World Lit:

  

For the decorator uncle who loves books so much he has to have them on his walls too:

 

Any loved ones in your life you’d like book recommendations for? Let us know — we’ll be happy to help out 🙂 In the meantime, have you signed our birthday card on Twitter yet? You’ll be entered to win a $40 gift card! 

— Kristen D.