While there a lot of things you need to know in order to navigate the complex world of college, the most important might be to know which books you should have in your dorm room. Think of it this way: the right book is like a trusty Swiss army knife: no matter what situation you’re in, it always gets the job done. With this in mind, check out the following titles:
- A Writer’s Reference by Diana Hacker. No matter what courses you enroll in, you’re going to have to write a paper or two. To make sure your writing is grammatically correct, logical, and reader-friendly, check out this book. It’s filled with guidelines and tips that will keep your professors from whipping out their scary red pens.
- Biology by Campbell and Reece. No matter where you go to school, you’ll likely need to fulfill a science requirement. Of course, probably the most accessible option will be a biology course, and by far, the most popular biology textbook is this one. So nip the biological necessity in the butt and order it today.
- 1984 by George Orwell. Like Biology, this book is essential if you plan on taking basically any English class. Written in 1949, it imagines a dystopian future in peculiarly haunting ways that somehow ring true, even now.
- The Social Contract by Jean-Jaques Rousseau. From the book: “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains.” Sure, it’s a little heavy, but there’s really no other title that taps into that college-aged angst. Get your hands on it while you can.
- The Republic by Plato. This philosophical text is literally ancient, but it packs a hefty punch. In short, it cuts to the heart of issues like how you should live your life and how society can best obtain justice. In other words, it’s the kind of book that if you don’t read in college, you never will.
- Letters to A Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke. This famous title was written in 1934, and it’s remained a classic ever since. (It’s a collection of letters about the writer trying to figure out whether to pursue his passion or a more socially acceptable career.) In other words, it’s one of those books that’s perfect for every student wrestling with their thoughts about the future. It’s more than a textbook. It’s a lifestyle guide.