Long Books

The last long days of summer call for long, profound reads! Check out these books with 450 pages or more.

Americanah / by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (477 pages)
A young woman from Nigeria leaves behind her home and her first love to start a new life in America, only to find her dreams are not all she expected.

Life After Life / by Kate Atkinson (529 pages)
On a cold and snowy night in 1910, Ursula Todd is born to an English banker and his wife. Ursula dies before she can draw her first breath. On that same cold and snowy night, Ursula Todd is born, lets out a lusty wail, and embarks upon a life that will be, to say the least, unusual. For as she grows, she also dies, repeatedly, in a variety of ways, while the young century marches on towards its second cataclysmic world war. Does Ursula’s apparently infinite number of lives give her the power to save the world from its inevitable destiny? And if she can — will she?

The Robber Bride / by Margaret Atwood (466 pages)
Set in contemporary Toronto, The Robber Bride revolves around the lives of three fascinating women. Classmates from university, Roz, Charis, and Tony all shared the seductive and destructive experience of a past friendship with the flashy, sensuous, smart, irresistible Zenia. As the novel opens they are twenty years past their college days and have met at Zenia’s funeral. At lunch, after the funeral, they spot Zenia – not dead at all and up to no good.

The Luminaries / by Eleanor Catton (834 pages)
Arriving in New Zealand in 1866 to seek his fortune in the goldfields, Walter Moody finds himself drawn into a series of unsolved crimes and complex mysteries.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay / by Michael Chabon (639 pages)
In 1939 New York City, Joe Kavalier, a refugee from Hitler’s Prague, joins forces with his Brooklyn-born cousin, Sammy Clay, to create comic-book superheroes inspired by their own fantasies, fears, and dreams.

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell / by Susanna Clarke (782 pages)
The year is 1806. England is beleaguered by the long war with Napoleon, and it is hundreds of years since practical magic faded into the nation’s past. But scholars of this glorious history suddenly discover that one practicing magician still remains: the reclusive Mr. Norrell of Hurtfew Abbey.

Underworld / by Don DeLillo (827 pages)
A work combining fiction and history in a collaboration that encompasses fifty years gives readers a glimpse into the realities upon which America’s modern culture is based and explores the complex relationship between “waste analyst” Nick Shay and artist Klara Sax.

All the Light We Cannot See / by Anthony Doerr (531 pages)
A blind French girl on the run from the German occupation and a German orphan-turned-Resistance tracker struggle with respective beliefs after meeting on the Brittany coast.

The Name of the Rose / by Umberto Eco (579 pages)
In 1327, Brother William of Baskerville is sent to investigate charges of heresy against Franciscan monks at a wealthy Italian abbey but finds his mission overshadowed by seven bizarre murders.

Middlesex / by Jeffrey Eugenides (529 pages)
Calliope’s friendship with a classmate and her sense of identity are compromised by the adolescent discovery that she is a hermaphrodite, a situation with roots in her grandparents’ desperate struggle for survival in the 1920s.

The Corrections / by Jonathan Franzen (567 pages)
Enid Lambert begins to worry about her husband when he begins to withdraw and lose himself in negativity and depression as he faces Parkinson’s disease.

The Witch Elm / by Tana French (509 pages)
Left for dead by burglars while partying with friends, a happy-go-lucky charmer takes refuge at his dilapidated ancestral home before a grisly discovery reveals an unsuspected family history.

The Pillars of the Earth / by Ken Follett (982 pages)
During the building of a cathedral in the fictional town of Kingsbridge, the ambitions of three men merge, conflict and collide through 40 years of social and political upheaval as internal church politics affect the progress of the cathedral and the fortunes of the protagonists.

American Gods / by Neil Gaiman (625 pages)
The story of ex-con Shadow Moon, who emerges from prison and is recruited to be bodyguard, driver, and errand boy for the enigmatic Mr. Wednesday.

The Parisian / by Isabella Hammad (566 pages)
Studying medicine and falling in love in 1914 France, the son of a wealthy Palestinian textile merchant returns home to find his loyalties tested by conflicts between the British government and the independence-minded nationalists of his community.

Winter’s Tale / by Mark Helprin (673 pages)
Peter Lake – orphan, thief, mechanic extraordinaire – and Athansor, a flying Brooklyn milk horse, establish a reign of love and justice in New York City in the year 2000.

A Brief History of Seven Killings / by Marlon James (688 pages)
A tale inspired by the 1976 attempted assassination of Bob Marley spans decades and continents to explore the experiences of journalists, drug dealers, killers, and ghosts against a backdrop of social and political turmoil.

The Fifth Season / by N. K. Jemisin (498 pages)
Three terrible things happen in a single day. Essun, masquerading as an ordinary schoolteacher in a quiet small town, comes home to find that her husband has brutally murdered their son and kidnapped their daughter. Mighty Sanze, the empire whose innovations have been civilization’s bedrock for a thousand years, collapses as its greatest city is destroyed by a madman’s vengeance. And worst of all, across the heartland of the world’s sole continent, a great red rift has been been torn which spews ash enough to darken the sky for years. Or centuries. But this is the Stillness, a land long familiar with struggle, and where orogenes — those who wield the power of the earth as a weapon — are feared far more than the long cold night. Essun has remembered herself, and she will have her daughter back. She does not care if the world falls apart around her. Essun will break it herself, if she must, to save her daughter.

Tree of Smoke / by Denis Johnson (614 pages)
The lives of Skip Sands, a spy-in-training engaged in psychological operations against the Vietcong, and brothers Bill and James Houston, young men who drift out of the Arizona desert into a war, intertwine in a novel of America during the Vietnam War.

The Stand / by Stephen King (1,141 pages)
A monumentally devastating plague leaves only a few survivors who, in a desert world, experience dreams of good and evil in confrontation and, through their choices, move toward an actual confrontation.

Pachinko / by Min Jin Lee (490 pages)
In early 1900s Korea, prized daughter Sunja finds herself pregnant and alone, bringing shame on her family until a young tubercular minister offers to marry her and move with her to Japan, in the saga of one family bound together as their faith and identity are called into question.

Wolf Hall / by Hilary Mantel (532 pages)
Assuming the power recently lost by the disgraced Cardinal Wolsey, Thomas Cromwell counsels a mercurial Henry VIII on the latter’s efforts to marry Anne Boleyn against the wishes of Rome and many of his people, a successful endeavor that comes with a dangerous price.

Lonesome Dove / by Larry McMurtry (857 pages)
Chronicles a cattle drive in the nineteenth century from Texas to Montana, and follows the lives of Gus and Call, the cowboys heading the drive, Gus’s woman, Lorena, and Blue Duck, a sinister Indian renegade.

Cloud Atlas / by David Mitchell (514 pages)
A novel that recounts the connected stories of people from the past and the distant future, from a nineteenth-century notary and an investigative journalist in the 1970s to a young man who searches for meaning in a post-apocalyptic world.

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle / by Haruki Murakami (611 pages)
The saga of a mysteriously disintegrating marriage, suppressed memories of the tragedies of war, and a young man’s search for his personal and national identity is set against the turbulent backdrop of twentieth-century Japan.

Skippy Dies / by Paul Murray (661 pages)
After 14-year-old Skippy ends up dead on the floor of a local donut shop, a number of suspects emerge at Skippy’s school in Dublin, in a hilarious portrait of the pain, joy, and occasional beauty of adolescence.

An Instance of the Fingerpost / by Ian Pears (691 pages)
When a fellow of New College in seventeenth-century Oxford is found dead and a young woman is accused of his murder, four witnesses, each with his own agenda, tell what they saw, but only one speaks the truth.

The Overstory / by Richard Powers (502 pages)
A novel of activism and natural-world power presents interlocking fables about nine remarkable strangers who are summoned in different ways by trees for an ultimate, brutal stand to save the continent’s few remaining acres of virgin forest.

Mason & Dixon / by Thomas Pynchon (773 pages)
A novel that follows mismatched British surveyors Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon as they make their way through frontier hardships, Native Americans, warfare, conspiracies, and other perils of eighteenth-century, pre-Revolutionary America

Midnight’s Children / by Salman Rushdie (456 pages)
The life of a man born at the moment of India’s independence becomes inextricably linked to that of his nation and is a whirlwind of disasters and triumphs that mirror modern India’s course.

The Secret History / by Donna Tartt (559 pages)
Richard Papen, a relatively impoverished student at a New England college, falls in with an exclusive clique of rich, worldly Greek scholars and soon learns the dreadful secret that keeps them together.

Fingersmith / by Sarah Waters (511 pages)
Growing up as a foster child among a family of thieves, orphan Sue Trinder hopes to pay back that kindness by playing a key role in a swindle scheme devised by their leader, Gentleman, who is planning to con a fortune out of the naive Maud Lily, but Sue’s growing pity for their helpless victim could destroy the plot.

The Bonfire of the Vanities / by Tom Wolfe (685 pages)
Sherman McCoy, a young investment banker in Manhattan, finds himself arrested following a freak accident and becomes involved with prosecutors, politicians, the press, and assorted hustlers.

A Little Life / by Hanya Yanagihara (720 pages) Moving to New York to pursue creative ambitions, four former classmates share decades marked by love, loss, addiction and haunting elements from a brutal childhood.