Timeless Favourites


Hold onto your bookmarks, because we're about to dive headfirst into the literary love fest of a lifetime!

Picture this: a cozy evening, your comfiest pajamas, a cup of something warm (or, hey, maybe something with a bit of a kick!), and a book in your hands that feels less like paper and ink and more like a portal to another world. I've been on quite the adventure, frolicking through the forest of pages and swimming in seas of words to bring you my top-tier, drumroll-worthy, absolutely cannot-live-without them, favourite books of all time. These aren't just stories; they're the kind of friends who dance off the page, throw glitter in the air, and add that extra spice to your pumpkin latte.

Curious to know which literary treasures have stolen my heart and possibly some of my sanity? Buckle up, turn on your reading light, let's dive in!

The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater

This whole series is a rollercoaster ride through the misty roads of Henrietta, Virginia, where you'll meet a quirky quartet that's all kinds of peculiar but totally lovable. 
Picture this: a psychic's daughter, a group of prep school boys, and a quest to find a long-dead Welsh king (because, why not?). 
From eerie forests that whisper secrets to ancient kings who might just RSVP to their own search party, this series is where your logic checks its coat at the door, and your sense of wonder orders another round. If you've ever wondered what happens when you mix ley lines, love, and a lot of Latin homework, The Raven Cycle is your kind of wild, magical ride.

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

Step into the fog-draped streets of Victorian London where gear-clad angel warriors battle it out with demonic entities and the biggest threat isn't the demons lurking in the shadows but the severe risk of falling hopelessly in love with fictional characters.
Enter the chat: Will Herondale, a Shadowhunter with the kind of smolder that could give Mr. Darcy a run for his money and a tragic backstory you can't help but swoon over. Between his sarcasm, his deep, dark secrets, and his unfortunate habit of pushing people away, he's like catnip for anyone who loves a good "bad boy with a heart of gold" story. Yes, folks, I'm Team Wessa through and through, boarding this ship was the best decision of my literary life.
Whether Will is trading barbs with Tessa or brooding in the corner with a book, every scene he graces is a reminder of why we read - to meet characters who feel like lifelong friends and fall in love with people who live between the pages.
This is a trilogy that did the impossible: it grabbed hold of my emotions with a steampunk fist and refused to let me go.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Dive into the dark and delicious depths of elite academia, strap on your most intellectual-looking glasses and prepare to be seduced by a tale of classical studies, fast friendships, and the kind of moral ambiguity that makes you question not just the characters' life choices but maybe a few of your own.
Here we meet a group of eccentric classics students who would rather speak Ancient Greek than attend frat parties, led by a professor so charismatic he could probably convince you to read Homer just for fun.
The Secret History is not just a book; it's an experience - a rollercoaster ride through the beauty and horror of human nature, set against the backdrop of New England's elite. It's about how far you would go for enlightenment ... or perhaps just to belong.
Be warned: this book will keep you up all night, turning pages in a frenzy, both terrified and thrilled, and possibly contemplating taking up a course of Ancient Greek. 

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Euginides

Navigating the hazy, sun-drenched streets of suburban America in the 1970s, this book is not your ordinary stroll through the neighborhood but a tale that wraps you in the mystery of the Lisbon sisters - so ethereal and enigmatic, you'll find yourself obsessing over them just like every teenage boy on their block.
Imagine a story so strangely captivating, it's like watching a car crash in slow motion while eating popcorn - you know you shouldn't stare, but you just can't look away. Euginides doesn't just tell a tale; he paints a haunting portrait of youth, loss, and the voyeuristic lens through which we view other's tragedies.
The Virgin Suicides serves up a cocktail of dark humor, melancholy, and the surreal, daydream-like quality of those teenage years when everything feels like the end of the world, sucking you into the vortex of the Lisbon girls' world, a place where the grass is always a bit grayer and the sky always a shade too somber. And just when you think you've got a handle on it, Euginides flips the script, reminding you that life, much like high school, is full of unexpected twists and turns.

The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan

This collection of essays and stories is like that one friend who is unapologetically optimistic, sees the glass half full even when it's empty, and pushes you to apply for your dream job at 3 am. Keegan doesn't just write; she grabs you by the soul and shakes you awake to the dazzling possibilities of the "now" and "what could be."
Reading this book, I laughed, I cried, and then I laughed some more, only to end up staring at the ceiling, pondering my life choices and why I hadn't discovered this gem sooner. It's like a pep talk from a best friend and a slap from reality, all bundled up in pages that hum with the urgency to live, to love, and to never settle for the mediocrity of unchased dreams.
This collection - imbued deeply with the bright spark of Marina's talent, tragically extinguished in a car accident just as her adult life was beginning - serves as a powerful reminder of the fragility of our existence and the imperative to live each moment to its fullest.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Step onto the wild and windy moors where the drama outdoes any reality tv show you've ever seen, and even the weather's got an attitude problem. This is my kind of perfect classic where the gothic meets the passion, the revenge and a kind of love that makes Romeo and Juliet look like they were just having a mild disagreement.
Enter Heathcliff, the ultimate bad boy here - or villain, depending on how you squint - who's got more layers than an onion wearing a winter coat. Sure, he's got the brooding, mysterious vibe down to an art form, and okay, maybe he's not exactly the "bring home to your parents" kinda guy, but there's just something about him. Whether it's his smoldering looks or his complex personality, Heathcliff is like that ex you know you shouldn't text but you just can't help yourself.
Wuthering Heights isn't your typical love story; it's more like a love hexagon with side plots that could spawn their own spin-offs. Emily Bronte doesn't just invite you into the story; she drags you kicking and screaming into the tangled lives of her characters, where love and vengeance are two sides of the same well-worn coin. And through it all, you'll find yourself rooting for Heathcliff, because who doesn't love a dark, stormy, and slightly unhinged hero with a heart of... well, it's in there somewhere.

A Density of Souls by Christopher Rice

Venturing into the shadow-drenched realms of New Orleans with Christopher Rice makes you instantly realize how the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, because when you're the offspring of the queen of vampire lore, Anne Rice, you know a thing or two about crafting worlds so rich and characters so deep, you'll need a lifejacket to dive into these pages.
New to my list of favourites but securing its spot in the Olympus of my timeless favourite books, A Density of Souls is the literary equivalent of discovering a hidden speakeasy where the drinks promise tales of intrigue, secrets, and desire so potent, you'll feel them in your bones. This book isn't just written; it's woven with a tapestry of words so gorgeous, you'll want to live inside them, or at least visit on weekends.
Follow Stephen, our guide through this dangerous landscape of friendships, betrayal, longing and coming of age as intoxicating as New Orleans itself, Rice escorts us into the heart of darkness and secrets, where the storms are not just in the sky but raging within the protagonists themselves. 
Reading this book is like being invited to the most exclusive Mardi Gras ball, only to find out the masks aren't just for the guests but for their deepest secrets too.

The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafòn

A spine-tingling adventure that had me double-check the locks and maybe even sleep with a night light on again. This book, with its shadows deep enough to lose your fears in, is branded as middle-grade. The audacity, right? It's like finding out your favourite childhood amusement park ride was actually haunted.
Carlos Ruiz Zafòn, in his literary wizardry, crafts a world so entrancingly sinister that you'll find yourself pulled along but the current of his storytelling, into the depths where the Prince of Mist holds his court.
Reading this book is a bit like signing up for a ghost tour in a town you've never visited; exhilarating, a tad bone-chilling, and absolutely unforgettable. It's a testament to Zafòn's genius that he can take what seems like a tale for the young and weave in the kind of darkness that respects no age limit.
In Zafòn's world, the mist is never just mist, and bedtime stories aren't always for sleep.

Sleepwalking by Meg Wolitzer

This is the kind of book that sneaks up on you with its slippers still on, offering a poignant look at the lives of three college girls who are known as "The Death Girls" (because who needs cheerleaders when you can have a morbid fascination with poets who left the party early... if you know what I mean?). It's like walking into what you thought was going to be a chill book club meeting, only to find yourself in the middle of a soul-searching session that has you questioning the meaning of life, death, and everything in between. This is clearly not your standard college experience; think less about frat parties and more about an exclusive club for the intellectually and emotionally insomniac. 
Meg Wolitzer whisks you away into a world where the line between fascination and obsession is as thin as a page. Sleepwalking is a beautifully crafted reminder that sometimes, the most profound journeys we take are the ones that happen when we're not fully awake.

The Bellwether Revivals by Benjamin Wood

For those who reveled in the elitist, erudite ecstasy of The Secret History but wished it came with a slightly down-to-earth touch (or for those who side-eyed Donna Tartt's books as the highbrow hobby of literary snobs), this novel is your golden ticket to intellectual thrill without the pretentious frills. This book has it all: unrequited love, eccentric musical prodigies, and a healthy dose of psychological intrigue to keep you guessing. Imagine if The Secret History went on a British holiday and got itself tangled up in a love affair with a touch of psychological drama and a sprinkle of eerie music, that's The Bellwether Revivals in a nutshell. 
Set against the prestigious backdrop of Cambridge University, this novel invites you into a world where brilliance meets madness and where the line between genius and insanity is as thin as the pages. Cue a charismatic but slightly unsettling organ scholar, a mysterious group of Cambridge elite, and an ordinary townie who wanders into their lives only to find himself entwined in a psychological puzzle that is as compelling as it is cryptic. You might just end up loving it so much, you'll start recommending it to strangers on the street (or on a random book blog!).

These Fleeting Shadows by Kate Alice Marshall

Recently entering the grand library of my life and sprinting straight to the winner's podium of "Best Books Read so Far", this novel has stolen my heart, ghosted away with my sleep and left me gazing longingly out rain-streaked windows, wishing for more.
This book makes the Addams Family home seem like a sunny beachfront getaway in comparison. Welcome to the grand, gloomy halls of Harrow, a mansion with more secrets than rooms and a vibe that screams "Haunted House Makeover: Extreme Edition". Here, inheritance comes with a side of curses, and family reunions could double as ghost conventions. Our heroine, Helen, inherits not just an estate, but a labyrinth of shadows, where each corner holds whispers of the past, and the family tree is more twisted than a pretzel factory. This book is so gripping, it's like Nancy Drew decided do dabble in dark arts and got more than she bargained for.
Kate Alice Marshall has masterfully crafted a maze of family secrets, cursed legacies and the kind of atmospheric tension that makes you consider turning on every light in the house - just in case.