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The Ideal Home Library. Must-Read Books of All Time.

  • person Shai Cohen
The ideal home library



The Ideal Home Library. Must-Read Books Of All Time.


And here we are again at Sweet Blog, the sweetest blog online.

The place to be for all fans of the 'Home Concept.'

Today, we will walk with you into the gates of your magical knowledge Kingdom - the place with the most significant educational and cultural impact on your home - your library.


Albert Einstein once said:


"The only thing that you absolutely have to know is the library's location."


As everyone usually knows, the dude above Knew a thing or two about what he was talking about, so let's do ourselves a favor and take from his words a certain perspective on the importance of our home library.

In this article, we will review certain aspects of your home library, starting with the type of books, which, in our opinion, a rich and family home library must contain, through design aspects, and end with suggestions concerning its ideal physical location within your home.


As always, a refreshing video summarizing its content will appear later in the article.

So, if you ever wonder what the must-read books of all time are/¬†the books¬†you should read at least once in your lifetime,¬†congratulations‚ÄĒyou've come to the right place.


'The ideal home library.'

Hop on!





1. Must-Have.


Marcus Tullius Cicero once said:

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."


So true.


As hinted at the end of our introduction, if you want your library to have a profound meaning and take your home one step further, you must ensure it contains a particular type of reading material, which, on the one hand, will grant your home the cultural and quality upgrade required, and on the other hand, will enrich your literary and social knowledge on a practical level. Moreover, we will divide those reading materials into sub-categories to make your reading flow easier (Mainly because it's more fun that way). 


'Must-read books of all time' - Let's get it started.


The classics.

The 'classics' are the ones that every culture seeker who takes their cultural development seriously must be familiar with. Therefore, these classic books should be found in any self-respecting library. By the way, we hope Mark Twain's amusing saying - "′Classic′ - a book which people praise and don't read" - does not characterize you.

Here is a partial list of the good ones:


Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.

Moby-Dick by Herman Melville.

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf.

The Call of the Wild by Jack London.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl.

Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt.

Persuasion by Jane Austen.

Ulysses by James Joyce.

The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis.

I Capture The Castle by Dodie Smith.

Another Country by James Baldwin.


Old but gold!Old but gold!home libraryOld but gold!



In order to create a quality library that culture lovers will appreciate, you must get your hands on those classics. They are undoubtedly among the must-read books list of all time.

Here, you can further enrich your knowledge of the matter.



Ralph Waldo Emerson once said:

"There are no true stories in the world except biographies."


The cultural importance of biographies cannot be overstated. It is about documenting history from a personal human prism.

Therefore, quality books from this category are essential for turning your library into a 'cultural temple.'

And it goes without saying there is no doubt that the best of the genre should also be included in the list of must-read books of all time.

Here is a partial list of the good ones:


Churchill: A Life by Martin Gilbert.

E = mc²: A Biography of the World's Most Famous Equation by David Bodanis.

"The Dead Are Arising: The Life of Malcolm X" by Les Payne and Tamara Payne.

The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson IV by Robert A. Caro.

Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" by Zora Neale Hurston.

Napoleon: A Life by Andrew Roberts.

Mao: The Unknown Story by Jung Chang.

Steve Jobs: by Walter Isaacson.

Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare by Stephen Greenblatt.

"A Song for Nagasaki: The Story of Takashi Nagai: Scientist, Convert, and Survivor of the Atomic Bomb" by Paul Glynn.

"Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg" by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik.

Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay by Nancy Milford.

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.

Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov) by Stacy Schiff.

Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo by Hayden Herrera.

Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.

Prince: A Private View by Afshin Shahidi.

Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" by Zora Neale Hurston.

Norman Mailer: A Double Life by J. Michael Lennon.

American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House by Jon Meacham.

Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser.


home book
Biography = History from a human point of view


History tends to be deceptive, and everyone has their own point of view about it.

Despite their pride in severe and uncompromising integrity, academic historians naturally tend to sneak in their own personal points of view and establish them as indisputable historical truths.

An honest biographer, however, is characterized by openly putting things openly on the table, telling his reader right from the start that what he is about to read is HIS subjective truth concerning the character in question, even though perhaps it is not all of the historical facts. That in itself is an honorable thing to do, hence its uniqueness.  

As mentioned above, no quality library will lack good biographies.





The eternal guardian of the knowledge and wisdom gates ‚ÄĒ Philosophy.


Plato used to say that philosophy is the highest magic. Indeed, without it, there is no fundamental understanding of any type of knowledge or human perception.

Philosophy serves as the gatekeeper of human consciousness and narratives. It provides us with the tools to discern what makes sense and what does not (Philosophy of logic), what can be articulated and what cannot (Philosophy of Linguistics), and even delves into existentialist philosophy, which explores the realm of sensations and emotions. These practical applications of philosophy make it an indispensable guide in our journey through life.

Therefore, high-quality philosophy books are essential for any home library.


As this genre has been around since the dawn of history (in one form or another), the amount of relevant books is enormous.

Rest assured, we have painstakingly curated a comprehensive list of the most important philosophy books, ensuring that you have access to the most influential works in the field.

Given the vastness of this field, we have organized our list of essential philosophy books in a way that transcends chronological or niche order, providing a more holistic view of the subject matter.


Here is a partial list of the good ones:

A History of Western Philosophy - Bertrand Russell.

Plato, the Dialogues (Gorgias, Meno, Theatetus, Sophist, Symposium, Phaedrus, Timaeus, The Republic).

Critique of Pure Reason - Emmanuel Kant.

Physics, Ethics, Poetics, Metaphysics, Categories, On Logic, On the Soul - Aristotle.

Beyond Good And Evil - Friedrich Nietzsche.

On the Genealogy of Morality - Friedrich Nietzsche.

Jacques Derrida, Spurs.

Essays - Montaigne.

Bertrand Russell, Logic and Knowledge.

A Treatise of Human Nature - David Hume.

Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus.

Sophie’s World - Jostein Gaarder.

Karl Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery.

Simone de Beauvoir The Second Sex.

Gottlob Frege, The Foundations of Arithmetic.

Spinoza, Tractatus Theologico-Politicus.

The Essential Epicurus - Epicurus.

Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, The Phenomenology of the Spirit.

Tao Te Ching - Lao Tzu.

Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws.

The Myth Of Sisyphus and Other Essays - Albert Camus.

Meditations on First Philosophy - René Descartes.

Meditations - Marcus Aurelius.

Analects - Confucius.

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. Yuval Noah Harari.

The Prince - Niccolò Machiavelli.

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance - Robert M. Pirsig.

Man’s Search for Meaning - Viktor Frankl.

Being and Nothingness - Jean-Paul Sartre.


The ideal home library

The gatekeeper to the realm of knowledge - philosophy!




The genre we were supposed to start with for intuitive reasons is also the best known - Novels.

And yet, You are only encountering it now since we prefer not to be so predictable.

Much more fun that way. Don't you think?!


Ursula Le Guin once said:


"The novelist says in words what can not be said in words."


This quote is so profound that anyone can interpret it in their own way. Let it sink for a second.

As with the other genres above, we will now present a list of novels that are important for you to know and critical in your efforts to read every book on the list at least once in your life.


Here is a partial list of the good ones:


Anna Karenina. Lev Tolstoy.

Pilgrim's Progress. John Bunyan.

Invisible Man. Ralph Ellison.

Clarissa. Samuel Richardson.

The Executioner's Song. Norman Mailer.

War and Peace. Lev Tolstoy.

Robinson Crusoe. Daniel Defoe.

Waiting for the Barbarians. JM Coetzee.

Madame Bovary. Gustave Flaubert.

Housekeeping. Marilynne Robinson.

Emma, ‚Äč‚Äčby Jane Austen.

Gulliver's Travels Jonathan Swift.

David Copperfield. Charles Dickens.

Dream of the Red Chamber. Cao Xueqin.

Notes from Underground. Dostoevsky.

Lolita. Vladimir Nabokov.

Lanark. Alasdair Gray.

Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote.

Things Fall Apart. Chinua Achebe.

The Charterhouse of Parma Stendhal.

Sybil. Benjamin Disraeli

Jane Eyre. Charlotte Bront√ę.

Tom Jones. Henry Fielding.

To Kill a Mockingbird. Harper Lee.

Tristram Shandy. Laurence Sterne.

Beloved. Tony Morrison.

Wuthering Heights. Emily Bront√ę.

Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont. Elizabeth Taylor.

The Black Sheep. Honoré De Balzac.

Mrs. Dalloway. Virginia Woolf.

The Tin Drum. G√ľnter Grass.

A Passage to India. E.M Forster.

The Picture of Dorian Gray. Oscar Wilde.

In Search of Lost Time. Marcel Proust.

Frankenstein. Mary Shelley

Dangerous Liaisons. Pierre Choderlos De Laclos.


beautiful and fun to read novels



2. An Important (But Not Mandatory) Addition.

As mentioned, the four categories presented above (classics, biographies, philosophy, and novels) must be found in your library in order for it to be of high quality.

But besides that, there are other components, which, while they will not be considered at the same level of importance, their presence will still contribute a lot to your library's quality.



Although it is a massive field with countless materials, we will do our best to present you with a partial list of some of their finest:

Mister Miracle.

Mind MGMT.

Maus: A Survivor’s Tale: My Father Bleeds History / Here My Troubles Began.

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic.

Flash Comics.

Castle Waiting.

The Plastic Man Archives.


Jonathan Hickman's Marvel Verse, 2008 to 2016.


Sin City.


Captain America.

From Hell.


The Sandman.

Doctor Strange.

Iron Man.

Doom Patrol by Grant Morrison & Richard Case.


Batman: The Killing Joke.

Batman: Year One.

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.

Batman: The Long Halloween.

Kingdom Come.



Black Panther.

Scarlet Witch.

V For Vendetta.



Comics tend to be fun



Children's Literature.

Here, too, children's literature is an addition, which, on the one hand, is not as necessary as the first four, but on the other hand, has the power to grant a little magic to your overall reading experience.

If you have children, no better gift will enrich their knowledge and ignite their imagination than some good and classic children's literature.


Here is a partial list of the good ones:


Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl

The Tale of Peter Rabbit, Beatrix Potter

The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham. Dr. Seuss

Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome

The Great Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, C. S. Lewis

Black Beauty, Anna Sewell

The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith

A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines

Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

Five Children and It by E. Nesbit

Mrs Pepperpot Stories by Alf Proysen

The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince), Antoine de Saint

Harry Potter book series. J. K Rolling.

Stig of the Dump by Clive King

Elmer by David McKee

The Water Babies by Charles Kingsley

A Traveler in Time by Alison Uttley

Heidi, Johanna Spyri

Winnie-The-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll

The Adventures of Pinocchio, Carlo Collodi

Anne of Green Gables, Lucy Maud Montgomery

The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Grimms' Fairy Tales by The Brothers Grimm

Charlotte's Web, E. B. White

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

Where the Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak

The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame


A tradition of knowledge and excitement




infographic for must read books of all times


Now, having gone over the books that are supposed to be in your awesome library, as promised at the beginning of the article, it is time to briefly introduce a few design elements of different types of libraries.

The best articles on the subject can be found here, here, and here. Do yourselves a favor and deepen in them.

And let us not forget the best source of inspiration out there - Pinterest. (While you're there, hop on to our stunning page). You will find over there the most up-to-date information on the subject.

With that being said, it's important to remember that even after intensely looking at those design sources of inspiration, you must still be authentic and embed your personal input into your home library. After all - It resides within your house.


We genuinely believe the above is the best list of every book that a good library should/would have, and we hope this article - 'The Ideal Home Library -' has helped you establish the perfect home library to some extent. And if you have any more questions on the matter, please feel free to reach out.



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