According to a recent survey from Kuntar Media, 51 percent of adults in the UK read at least one book in 2019. However, young adults under the age of 24 were 32 percent less inclined than older generations to read for pleasure. What’s more, just 23 percent of young people read ten or more books a year. This is not exactly a shock in the era of Fortnite, Netflix, Snapchat, YouTube and social media.

For uni students, reading might seem like the last thing you want to do when you’re studying and tackling coursework. But if it’s been a while since you last opened a book, there are several benefits you could miss out on.

Reading equips you to be more successful in academics and future employment, according to the report; A Society of Readers. In addition, this study found that reading can improve social connections, mental health, cultural enrichment, and even self-care. These benefits will help you both in the classroom and life outside of uni. 

So whether you fancy self-care books or juicy fiction, here’s a list of books to entice you into reading more.

Self-Care Books

Stressed about everything going on in the world? Need a digital detox after your lectures? Craving some “you time” or betterment strategies? Try one of these self-care books when you feel anxious to unburden your mind and balance your emotions.

  • Choose Wonder over Worry by Amber Rae: Dubbed the “Millennial Motivator,” Rae will show you how to confront limiting beliefs that you’re not capable, smart, talented, or brave enough. You’ll work on transforming those fears into curiosity about self-purpose.  
  • Atomic Habits by James Clear: Backed by neuroscience and accessible strategies, this book explains the power of micro-decisions. (For example, finishing that essay before turning on Love Island). Clear outlines how micro-decisions strengthen your sense of purpose, identity, contentment, and emotional well-being.

PS: Get some more mental health tips here!

Inspiring Memoirs

Reach for these books when you’re looking for that extra spark of motivation, resilience, and empowerment to forge ahead.

  • Remember This When You’re Sad by Maggy Van Eijk: In this honest, uplifting, and vulnerable account, London journalist Maggy Van Eijk chronicles her raw suffering and hopeful recovery from mental illness. This book will help you understand there can be a happy life after depression, anxiety, eating disorders, addictions or self-injury.
  • The Tour According to G by Geraint Thomas: He was an Olympic gold medalist. Still, for Welsh road cyclist Geraint Thomas, a Tour de France victory was his ultimate goal. For years it seemed just out of reach—until 2018, in which he writes about the perseverance and sacrifice it took to finally win.    

Young Adult Fiction

Don’t get turned off by the name; the YA (young adult) genre is not just for tweens. Some of these stories can captivate any age reader. 

These books are perfect for when you want a break from coursework. Unwind with a fun, suspenseful page-turner.

  • The Twin by Natasha Preston: Recently released, this much-anticipated thriller from bestselling YA author Natasha Preston delves into the complexity of a twin relationship, the trauma of divorce and death, and whether one of these twins just committed murder.  
  • Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay: If you have a passion for social justice and racial identity, this book will keep you on the edge of your seat. A Filipino-American teen returns to his birth country in search of answers to his cousin’s unsolved murder and how it’s linked to the nation’s political unrest. 

Classic Novels

Try one of these books when you’re in the mood to disconnect from social media and give those literary muscles a stretch.

  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou: Her name is revered in history as one of the twentieth century’s most influential voices in music, poetry and civil rights activism. Maya Angelou’s 1969 autobiography remains a powerful commentary on racism, injustice, exploitation, and human triumph.    
  • A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess: A forerunner to the modern dystopian genre (think pre-Westworld and Handmaid’s Tale TV series), this 1962 satire novel is a meta-analysis on freedom of choice versus the constraints of law and order. Its told from the viewpoint of narrator Alex, a ruthless and delinquent teenager, jaded by the prison system.    

Pick Up A Book! (…Or Listen to an Audio Book or Download on Your Kinde)

We challenge you to read one book not related to your courses! You can also listen to it on audio during your commute or at the gym. Or download on your tablet for a cheaper option. 

Whether you’re drawn to self-care books to manage stress or you’re interested in some YA fiction to unplug after a day full of lectures—these books are sure to help you find pleasure in reading.