What’s on Your Pandemic Reading List?

Pandemic Reading List Blog Post-01.jpgOne silver lining of being stuck at home during this pandemic is the ability to get cozy with a good book. We all have more time to dig into those hardcovers getting dusty on our bookshelf, revisit an old favorite, or read something new and thought-provoking.

While many local bookstores and libraries are closed, thankfully, many are still doing business online, making it easy to access books without ever leaving home. From e-books and audiobooks to buying hardcovers and joining reading subscriptions, the selection of at-home reading material is endless.

If you’re looking for inspiration on what to read next, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’re interested in reading stories of pandemics and post-apocalyptic societies, or narratives that offer you comfort and humor during these trying times, here are 10 books and series worth checking out.


  1. The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton

    In this techno-thriller novel, a group of scientists deal with an epidemic caused by an extraterrestrial microorganism — one that’s constantly evolving and has no precedent in human history.

  2. 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

    1Q84 is a dystopian novel written by Japanese writer Haruki Murakami, first published in three volumes in Japan in 2009–10. It covers a fictionalized year of 1984 in parallel with a "real" one. The novel is a story of how a woman named Aomame begins to notice strange changes occurring in the world.

  3. The Book of M by Peng Shepherd

    Set in a dangerous near future world, The Book of M tells the captivating story of a group of ordinary people caught in an extraordinary catastrophe who risk everything to save the ones they love. It is a sweeping debut that illuminates the power that memories have not only on the heart, but on the world itself.

  4. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez

    Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel García Márquez’s International Bestseller and literary classic, has been called one of the greatest love stories ever told. Through the exploration of death, decay and the idea of lovesickness as a disease, Márquez offers a lyrical escape to the sensual, sensory landscape of turn-of-the-century South America.

  5. My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante

    A New York Times Bestseller, and book #1 of The Neapolitan Novels, is a modern masterpiece from one of Italy's most acclaimed authors set against the backdrop of a Naples that is as seductive as it is perilous and a world undergoing epochal change, this story of a lifelong friendship is told with unmatched honesty.

  6. The Crazy Rich Asians Trilogy by Kevin Kwan

    Kevin Kwan’s New York Times bestselling series reveals the outrageous world of high net worth society with humor and heart.

  7. The Story of a Goat by Perumal Murugan, N. Kalyan Raman (Translator)

    From one of India's best-known writers and the author of the National Book Award-longlisted One Part Woman comes a charming and surprising tale of an orphaned goat and the family that decides to take care of her, despite the potential cost to them

  8. A Cook’s Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines by Anthony Bourdain

    The only thing "gonzo gastronome" and internationally bestselling author Anthony Bourdain loves as much as cooking is traveling. Inspired by the question, "What would be the perfect meal?" Tony sets out on a quest for his culinary holy grail, and in the process turns the notion of "perfection" inside out.

  9. The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

    A bookseller who prescribes novels to his troubled customers – but can’t heal his own heartbreak – is the hero of this wonderful novella. It was a huge hit across Europe and is a must-read for anyone who believes in the transformative power of books.

  10. Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

    Told through a series of emails and documents, this is the story of Bee and her madcap mum, who goes missing on a trip to Antarctica. Maria Semple’s novel is hilarious, hugely enjoyable – and truly original.

For additional books, check out Time’s list of 30 Books and Series to Read While Social Distancing.

Not sure where to look for your next novel? Order online and support these amazing independent book stores:


Papercuts is an award-winning, woman-owned independent bookshop located in the beautiful Boston neighborhood of Jamaica Plain. Shop their vast collection of books, puzzles, games, and activities.

The Silver Unicorn Bookstore

This humble little bookstore located in Acton, Massachusetts, has great selection of books for all ages.

Green Apple Books

Founded in 1967, Green Apple Books has perennially been voted the best bookstore in the Bay Area. With Green Apple, you can order e-books at affordable prices, browse curated selections, and receive personal bookseller recommendations.

Porter Square Books

Porter Square Books sells hundreds of thousands of books online, from current bestsellers to classics still in print.

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Just want to see if you are a robot.