Books to Read Before You Turn 30: 45 Life Changing Books to Read in Your Twenties

Reading books is one of the best things you can do for your mind, body and soul. I’m a total book lover, although there have been months (and even years) where I haven’t been consistent with reading new books. The thing is, I can always see such a difference in so many aspects of my life when I read books on a regular basis. If you feel the same, you’re going to love this post on books to read before you turn 30! 

Over the past year I have been really good with getting recommendations and reading new books! I was on a self development book kick for a while, and while I’ll continue to read them, I’m also excited to read more memoirs and fiction books this year. My goal is to read 30 books by the end of the year!

Do you have a reading goal for this year? Make sure to let me know in the comments and we can cheer each other on!

Why books are important to read

There are so many reasons as to why books are important to read at every age. As we grow up, we go through different phases of life and at each phase, it’s important we consume content that informs us, educates us and inspires us.

Apart from that, reading books offers benefits that nothing else can. Take a look at 7 reasons why books are important to read.

1. Increase Knowledge

One of the main benefits of reading books is increasing your knowledge. There are so many different books on every subject you can imagine and when you read a book on a certain subject it increases your knowledge of that subject.

Books are such an amazing source of information. They’re often written by experts who have rich insight on a certain topic, whether it’s a self help book, memoir or fiction novel. You can never read a book and not learn something new.

2. Reduce Stress

Reading books is also known to reduce stress. It has an overall positive effect on the body and brain, making you feel more calm and relaxed. Whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed, reading can help take your mind off the source of stress and lighten the weight of your emotional baggage.

3. Improve Memory and Brain Function

When you read, you’re keeping your brain functioning and stimulated. Never forget that your brain is a muscle and needs to be exercised and kept healthy. Reading is a great way to do that. It also improves your memory. When you read a book, you have to remember the plot and characters, etc. As you remember all this, your memory strengthens too.

4. Heighten Imagination

Books (especially fiction books) take us away to another place. It’s up to us to use our imagination and see the people and settings in the book in our own mind. The more you read, the more your imagination is heightened.  

5. Improve Vocabulary

Reading books introduces you to new words, writing styles, idioms, phrases and more. Make sure to look up any words you don’t understand when you’re reading so you can learn as you go.

6. Help You Sleep

Reading before bed is ten times better than watching a show or scrolling through social media. Reading relaxes you and makes you feel calm before going to bed.

Looking at screens, on the other hand, can sabotage your sleep and make you feel tired and groggy in the morning. The blue light emitted by screens halts the production of melatonin, making it harder to fall and stay asleep.

7. Increase Concentration and Productivity

You’re most productive when you’ve slept well and feel rested, and since reading books helps you sleep, it in turn boosts productivity. It also increases focus and concentration.

With so many distractions out there these days, our focus is pulled in every which direction throughout the day. Reading allows you to fully immerse yourself in the book, improving your concentration and focus in every area of your life.

Life changing books to read in your 20s

If you’re in your 20s, there are certain books you need to read! These books will help your personal development and teach you things about history and the world around you. Check out my list of life changing books to read in your 20s.

  1. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
  2. The Alchemist by Paul Coelho
  3. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  4. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
  5. The Miracle Morning by Hal Erod
  6. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini 
  7. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie 
  8. The Defining Decade by Meg Jay
  9. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
  10. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
  11. The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill 
  12. A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller 

Self help books to read before 30

If you’re looking for awesome self development and personal growth books, these are some of my favourite self help books to read before 30!

  1. The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
  2. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson
  3. Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis 
  4. You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero 
  5. The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson
  6. The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein 
  7. Nice is Just a Place in France by The Betches 
  8. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne 

 45 Books to read in your 20s: The Best Self help books for women about life, career and happiness. From fiction books to real inspirational stories, these are the books to read before you’re 30. #booklover #books #bookclub #bookstoread #selfhelpbooks

Best memoirs for twenty somethings

One of the best ways to learn about life is through other people’s first hand experiences. You’ll probably find that many people are going through the exact same things as you are (yes, even celebrities). I love reading memoirs and autobiographies because they’re always so relatable! Here are 5 of the best memoirs for twenty somethings!

  1. Everything’s Trash, But It’s Okay by Phoebe Robinson
  2. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling
  3. Bossypants by Tina Fey
  4. I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman by Nora Ephron
  5. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert 

Books every professional woman should read: 10 business books you must read

Your twenties is when you’re figuring out your profession and your passions and deciding what you want to do for a living. Professional development books are key at this age! Here’s a list of 10 books every professional woman should read!

  1. 52 Cups of Coffee by Megan Gebhart
  2. The Titleless Leader by Nan S. Russell 
  3. Secrets of Six Figure Women by Barbara Stanny 
  4. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
  5. Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg
  6. Think and Grow Rich by Napolean Hill 
  7. Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office by Lois P. Frankel 
  8. You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero
  9. Girl Code by Cara Alwill Leyba
    10. The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

What are popular books to read: What books to read now 

If you’re wondering what books to read now, you’re not alone! These next 10 books are popular books for 2019!

  1. Becoming by Michelle Obama
  2. Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwong
  3. The Water Cure by Sophie Mackintosh 
  4. Sugar Run by Mesha Maren
    5. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    6. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
    7. Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler
    8. Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur
    9. Make Your Bed (And Little Things That Can Change Your Life and Maybe The World) by William H. McRaven
    10. An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

Have any titles to add to this list of books to read before you turn 30? I’ve love to hear them!! Let me know in the comment section below!

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45 books to read for women in your 20s! These are the must read books in 2019, from self help books to professional development books to the best memoirs. #booklover #books #bookclub #bookstoread #selfhelpbooks

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  1. Reply

    Bry Jaimea

    January 23, 2019

    ooh great list! I would also recommend reading books like The Art of War or The Prince – gives an interesting insight into the way men’s minds work, especially when you translate these books into a more modern corporate setting!

    • Reply


      January 24, 2019

      Thank you so much for those recommendations, they sound awesome and I’m going to add them to my must-read list 🙂

  2. Reply


    January 26, 2019

    Fantastic list I am proud to have read many already but don’t know quite a few! Thank you I’m in my fifties and still believe in reading daily. Some autobiographies that are great Benjamin Franklin and Marcus Aurelius amazing thoughts and ideas. Also by Henry David Thoreau :Walden. Enjoy and keep adding reading materials.
    With great respect and appreciation, Elaine B.

    • Reply


      January 28, 2019

      Amazing! Thanks so much for these recommendations, will definitely add them to my list <3

  3. Reply


    February 3, 2019

    I am a book lover. Thanks for this amazing list.

    • Reply


      February 8, 2019

      You are so welcome!! Any books you would add?