Best Books to Read Before You Travel to NYC


The ocean waves and mountain trails have been calling me away from my books lately. Anyone else find it hard to strike that balance between relaxing with a book and adventuring out into the world? I’m sure my world wanderers and armchair travelers can relate!

The lazy, hazy days of deep summer are upon us, and today’s list is embraces it in full. When I think of August in New York City, I can almost feel the dense humidity lulling the city to sleep. It may not be the best month to visit, but it’s a setting that’s so vivid and alive that I couldn’t resist creating a list for it this month. Without further ado, a few of the best books to read before you travel to New York City!

Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue. I picked up this Oprah’s Book Club in an airport of all places. It perfectly captures the strange world that is New York City, a city full of budding dreams and the dying ones. If you want to expand you perspective on the world, pick up this book.

The Futures by Anna Pitoniak. New York’s financial world is a mysterious, glamorous, engulfing world that has been at the center of so many blockbusters these days. This book follows a couple fresh out of college as they grapple with their involvement in it, and what it means for (you guessed it) their futures.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. This book doesn’t need much of an introduction if you ever attended 8th grade in the US, but give it a reread if you want to be transported to New York’s enchanting past.

Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger. This book transports me to a summer when I had $200 to my name, living on pancakes and PB&Js, and survived by visiting my local library at least twice a week. J.D. Salinger’s angsty short stories about the Glass family transported me from my sad, stiflingly hot summer to someone else’s New York story.

The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer. Following a group of privileged teens that meet at a 1970’s summer camp, this book is just, well, interesting. A little bit of scandal, a little bit of nuance and a lot of coming-of-age brilliance.



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