Speed reads; the best books to race through in an hour or less

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In celebration of Stylist’s Reclaim Your Lunch Break campaign, we’ve selected eight of the world’s best books that can be read in under an hour.

  • Soppy: A Love Story by Philippa Rice

    112 pages

    New for 2015, this touching comic book celebrates the little moments of love – such as sympathising when your partner’s tea goes cold, watching TV together and sharing a quilt – with gentle humour and surprising depth.

    Buy it here

  • We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

    64 pages

    Based on her 2013 TEDx talk of the same name, the best-selling author of Americanah employs her signature witty and observant style as she discusses what it means to be a feminist today.

    Buy it here

  • The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

    24 pages

    This literary masterpiece, first published in 1892, is a semi-autobiographical portrayal of a powerless Victorian wife and her fight for freedom after being imprisoned in one room. Feminism never goes out of fashion.

    Buy it here

  • Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

    80 pages

    Hailed as a modern classic since 1899, Conrad’s enigmatic short story is as relevant now as it ever was. The inspiration for Apocalypse Now, this countercolonial tale is packed with suspense that will stay with you.

    Buy it here

  • Loggerheads and Other Stories by Jonathan Coe

    74 pages

    This entertaining collection of seven short stories from the celebrated author is loaded with lovable, if slightly peculiar, characters. If you only have half an hour flick straight to the three stories depicting the history of a family in the Midlands.

    Buy it here

  • The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett

    120 pages

    When the Queen chases a rogue corgi into a mobile library parked at Buckingham Palace, she accidentally discovers a selection of novels that change her entire outlook on the world as well as making her question the role she has to carry out. Funny and fresh.

    Buy it here

  • The Old Man And The Sea by Ernest Hemingway

    112 pages

    Set in Havana, Cuba, this fable about an old man, a young boy and a giant fish scored Hemingway both the Pulitzer and the Nobel Prize for Literature. A dazzling and timeless blend of beauty and grief, this short story is a giant of modern literature.

    Buy it here

  • The Tiny Book Of Tiny Stories, Volume I by Joseph Gordon-Levitt

    88 pages

    Be inspired by this collection of crowd-funded creative projects compiled by the (500) Days Of Summer star. Just knowing there’s a haven for a generation of new talent will restore your faith in humanity.  

    Buy it here

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Stylist Team