10 Great Books Under 200 Pages

Lightweight beach reads are too often labeled as fluff. Although, as you search for the perfect book to toss into your tote this weekend, just remember that the good reads don't have to weigh you down. That's what your industrial size bottle of sunscreen is for.

Whether you're into graphic novels or essays, strictly adult lit or YA, there's a quick read for you. These under 200-page volumes cover feminism, racism, and international politics. Some are funny and some are heartbreaking. There are award winners and titles from indie presses that are sure to impress even your most literary friend. There's even a book-length poem, a perfect indulgence for a lazy summer afternoon.

Click on for our selections. Bookmarks: optional.
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PHOTO: COURTESY OF RANDOM HOUSE
Persepolis By Marjane Satrapi

This beautiful graphic memoir about Satrapi's childhood in Iran, is the perfect book for someone who has always wanted more than a vague grasp on what's going on in the middle east — and more importantly, the recent history behind the present conflicts.
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The Awakening By Kate Chopin

Whether this piece of classic 19th century literature was part of your high school education, probably depended on how much of a feminist your English teacher was. Whether you're revisiting it or picking it up for the first time, the story of Edna Pontellier, a wife and mother trying to find an identity beyond those labels, is compelling.
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In Real Life By Cory Doctorow & Jen Wang

As you're sucked into an adorable graphic novel about a girl and her love of online role playing games, you're also given a crash course on the shadier side of the economics of online video games.
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Between the World and Me By Ta-Nehisi Coates

Possibly one of the most recommended books of the summer — it's on the President's summer reading list — landed author Ta-Nehisi Coates on the cover of New York Magazine and, of course was called "required reading" by Toni Morrison. It's basically covered in stamps of approval.
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Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

You can probably finish this quick read in less time than it takes to watch the 2008 film. But veteran young adult authors Cohn and Levithan still manage to pack in a serious NYC adventure and plenty of musical references.
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How I Live Now By Meg Rosoff

In less than 200 pages Rosoff tackles eating disorders, (quite literally) kissing cousins, and World War III. It's a rough book. Although, this makes the quieter moments — like when protagonist Daisy is able to drink in the English countryside, or bask in a new crush — even more gripping.
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Citizen: An American Lyric By Claudia Rankine

At times poetic, at times a straightforward look at the facts, Citizen is a fascinating look at race in America. The section on the racially fueled criticisms of Serena Williams is particularly gripping.
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Men Explain Things To Me By Rebecca Solnit

For anyone who has had to deal with mansplaining, Solnit looks at feminism and the general annoyance of having a male colleague go over a concept she already knew.
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Binary Star By Sarah Gerard

Eating disorders, alcoholism, and general consumer culture are all examined in Gerard's debut novel, which got plenty of love from the the internet — from Bustle to VICE.
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Interpreter of Maladies By Jhumpa Lahiri

Pulitzer Prize winner, Lahiri's collection of short stories achieves what the best anthologies do. Each story has a distinct narrative, but a theme threads them together into cohesive work.
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