20 Books to Read in Your 20s

I’ve compiled a list, 20 Books to Read in Your 20s, for the single and married twentysomethings in my church. I hope many of you (even if you’re not from my church and not in your twenties) benefit from this list.

For those of you who might quibble with some of the selections on this list, I understand. It was difficult to narrow recommended reading down to just twenty books. This list is simply this particular pastor’s studied, prayerful selection of recommended books for the people he cares for and does life with here on the busy, un-churched San Francisco Peninsula.

I appreciate the input many of you offered as I put this together.

Download a pdf bookmark of the list: 20 Books to Read in Your 20s

This Post Has 15 Comments

  1. having not looked at all the books in depth i found it interesting that there was little if not any fiction. fiction of meat, like the classics. and like you said this is a list that was prayerfully compiled by you the pastor to a community of people that you know, love and fight for. just curious as to where the classics are. it seems it was more a theological list of 20 as opposed to a list of 20 books. i still remember going book shopping with you at the little used bookstore on monroe in spokane, i am pretty sure you bought stott’s book on the cross if i am not mistaken. grace brother as you labor.

  2. Yo Cosby,
    Miss u man. Yes, you’re right–the lack of fiction, the meaty classics, on this list is a glaring omission. I ought to have mentioned that in the post. The reasons are, as you mentioned, due to what I think my peeps most need to digest. There might be a 20 Stories, or 20 Works of Fiction list in the works.

  3. I’ve read some of the books and they’re excellent, some of the others I’ve never heard of. The only suggestion is maybe some “Old” books or authors, like Spurgeon or J.C. Ryle, or maybe even older like Owen or Augustine’s confessions.

  4. I am assuming that this list presupposes that the reader is actively and systematically reading the Bible itself, preferably at least once, or even several times, per year. I am continually amazed by the number of “church goers” of all ages who have never once read the Bible in it’s entirety.

  5. good list!
    a couple suggestions that I think are readable and relevant for the average layperson in their 20s:
    Culture Making, Andy Crouch
    Death by Love, Mark Driscoll
    Simply Christian, N.T. Wright

  6. How about some books on racial reconciliation, God’s love for the poor, or missions? 20s is such an important shaping time I would love to see people reading books of these natures as well.

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