Top 10 Books That Will Change Your Life

Top 10 Books That Will Change Your Life
Written by Oana Schneider

In an era where information always seems to be served on a plate, books have become more precious than ever. Reading books is one of the healthiest exercises for your brain, for your creativity, for your imagination. But even more than that, reading is an amazing way to make your life better – both on the short-term (when was the last time you were genuinely captivated by a book and left all worries and stress of your mundane life behind?) and on the long-term too.

The best books tell stories that touch us in one way or another – and they change our lives forever. Of course, there are thousands and thousands of amazing books to read – but we have gathered some of the top ones. La crème de la crème – as the Frenchman would say. The books that have changed millions of people before you – and that will change millions after you turn the last page too.

Read on, find out more and grab a book – it’s the best type of learning and entertainment at the same time!

1. One Hundred Years of Solitude

There aren’t enough words to actually describe this book. Rich, delicious, touch and overwhelming, One Hundred Years of Solitude is a true masterpiece of the postmodern world. This is the kind of book that will change something inside you – something you may not be able to actually word out, but something invisible and almost transcendental.

One Hundred Years of Solitude is the story of a family. It is the story of South America. It is the story of a story – the ultimate allegory for reading and how overwhelmingly amazing it can be. Even more than anything though, it is the story of the world ever since it was created, precisely because the story of the Buendia family is the story of humanity as a whole.

2. The Secret

Regardless of whether or not you have seen the documentary with the same title, reading the book is a must for anyone who wants to truly change their lives. For many people, The Secret felt very much like a hoax – but the truth behind it is much deeper than that. The Secret will tell you something you most likely intuitively thought of before as well – that change is in our brains and in our hands and that the human being has an amazing power. This is not magic and this is not a recipe for success – this is a book about how our minds work and how you can attract the best things in your life.

3. Middlesex

As of lately, we have all seen how the world has started to change its attitude towards gender and the stereotypes related to it. And if you want to understand better why this is so important for our evolution as mankind, you should definitely read Middlesex. This is a story about identity, family and biology at the same time – and it will be a powerful insight for those of you who want to  understand the gender issues that have been debated for quite some time out there. Why will it change your life? Because it will change the way you see yourself and other people too. It will help you understand why we are who we are and how society has shaped us into fitting the genders we assume.

4. Ada or Ardor

There’s no trace of doubt over the fact that Vladimir Nabokov is one of the greatest writers the world has ever seen. Lolita may be his most famous creation (and understandably so, especially considering the topic and how much the book has been “borrowed” into pop culture) – but Ada or Ardor is a truly special kind of book. At first, it will seem like an odd love story between two cousins – but as you go on with the reading you will discover that Ada or Ardor is about much more: it is about life and how time can change everything and nothing at all at the very same time. If that’s not mind-blowing, then we definitely don’t know the meaning of the term!

5. A Brief History of Time

Stephen Hawking is one of the brightest minds this planet has ever graced us with – and we can all agree that we are more than thankful for his presence here, with us. A Brief History of Time will not be an easy read – not even by far (after all it is written by one of the world’s most prevalent geniuses!). But every page will be well worth it. It may not change your life as such, but it will surely help you understand life in its grand scale more than you used to. It will help you understand time, the universe and our very nature too. This is a wonderful read, so make sure you get past the first couple of chapters to get to the “meat” of the genius behind it!

6. Crime and Punishment

Moving to another genius of the literary world this time, Crime and Punishment is without any kind of doubt a masterpiece of the human brain. Raskolnikov’s story will reveal you things about the human nature you probably never even thought of before – and that’s precisely what makes this book so popular even today, so many years after the moment it was released. Dostoevsky will make you feel frustrated, he will help you understand the nature of murder and of the human life and, trust us with this, he will change your life (or at least the way you see it – and yourself – right now).

7. How to Win Friends and Influence People

This is probably one of the very best self-help books that has ever been written. Exceptional for introverts and excellent for extroverts too, this book will teach you exactly what the title says – and it will do it in a way that is original and life-changing (for real). Once you turn the last page, you will feel that you now know how to make more friends not by trying to make them interested in you (which is probably what most of us would do), but by being interested in them. A truly unique approach that will reveal very important tips for everyone, regardless of what field of knowledge you may be active in!

8. Joy of Cooking

By now, you have probably realized that cooking your own food is the best and the healthiest alternative when it comes to diet and nutrition. And yet, many of us don’t do it and even more of us find constant excuses on why we don’t do it too (not enough time, we don’t know how to cook or simply cooking is not interesting for us). Joy of Cooking is a book that will make you see cooking in a different way. Not only is this book filled with all sorts of recipes, tutorials and lessons on how to cook even if you have never done it before, but it is a fun read too. It will actually make you want to cook something for yourself – and this will surely change your life in the most physical way possible. You will become a healthier, more active and happier self once you learn what the Joy of Cooking is all about!

9. The Alchemist

One of the most popular books released over the course of the last couple of decades, The Alchemist is a must-read regardless of whether you like Paulo Coelho (and his genre, for that matter). If we had to describe what this book is all about in just a couple of words, we would say it’s a book about pursuing dreams, making it through the obstacles and keeping yourself focused. No matter what your dream may be, The Alchemist will surely help you stay on the right path with it. Easy to read, insightful and full of positive vibes, this is the kind of book to read anywhere and at any time!

10.  White Noise

White Noise is not a book very easy to read – but it’s not very difficult either. Don deLillo manages to create novel that truly teaches the reader something about the nature of our society. Consumerism is at the very grounds of this book so it will surely help you see the world in which we live deeper and to understand how consumerism affects us all. Definitely a great read with many life changing things to learn from it!

As mentioned in the beginning, these are just some of the amazing books out there. Regardless of whether or not you are an avid reader, our list will surely inspire you not only to read, but also to change your life for the best as well. Make yourself a hot cup of tea, grab a book and enjoy it! These books will surely teach you one thing or two about life and how to change it – and if they don’t, at the very least they will be very entertaining and interesting.

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Top 10 Books That Will Change Your Life

About the author

Oana Schneider

Oana Schneider is a published author located in Chicago, Illinois, who currently works for as a communication specialist and blog editor. She writes about lifestyle, family budget, has a degree in Communications and advocates for women’s rights. Her future plans include getting a Labrador and losing a few pounds.


  • I’ve read three or four of these books, and I’d have to agree that they’re great literary works. I don’t know if they’ve changed my life, but I could see how a person could be changed or influenced by these incredible works, that’s for sure. Reading these books would never be a bad idea, and I’d have to recommend Crime and Punishment to anyone that’s interested.

    • Yes, I’ve also read a few of these books, but my outlook on life and my world view has definitely been changed. There’s something about reading these modern (well, some of these books are) masterpieces that really enlightens me. I’m always trying to find and read life-changing books such as these, since I don’t have much reading time anyway, and this is a great compilation. I’ll have to read a few more books on here that I haven’t heard of before. One of my favorites on here is probably Middlesex, and I highly recommend it: it really opened my eyes to human identity and the genders that define us, and plus it’s an exciting narrative. There’s also a book that I’ve really enjoyed that’s not on this list, but which I also highly recommend, called The Omnivore’s Dilemma. It talks about something that’s universal: food. I can guarantee that you’ll never look at food the same way again.

  • Great selection. If I might suggest a personal favorite: try reading The Armchair Economist by Steven Landsburg. It has a lot of insight to money matters and being financially responsible while not being overwhelmed by the complexities of the economics at the world stage. It’s a good read too, totally not dragging and boring, contrary to the subject matter.

  • Wow, the diversity is pretty great! I would actually not have expected to find The Secret with Dosto and Marcia Marquez, to be honest. I really have this knee-jerk reaction of “hoax! hoax!” like you say. How close are the spirit of the docu and the book?

  • I see there is some reading I need to do since many on this list I have not heard of. I found a copy of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” when I was in high school. I’m 35 today and still keep a copy available on my bookshelf to review when I’m having any difficultly with people. I have seen the documentary of “The Secret” and agree it is a mindset. I do have one suggestion and it is Napoleon Hill’s “Think and Grow Rich”. After you read the book you may find it interesting to listen to his recordings on YouTube. I swear this guy had life figured out and much of the information he provides can still be used today, despite the book being published in 1937!

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