Some books are about the characters, while others are all about the plot. However, nothing beats a book that has an exquisite writing style. This is one reason why classics hit you differently. Other than their social and cultural significance, it’s their writing that makes them immortal. Not only classics but many contemporary authors focus on their writing style, making them stand out from the rest. In this list, you will find some fantastic recommendations that will quench your taste for literary finesse.
Best Books With Exquisite Writing 📚
1. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
There is no way I can begin this list of recommendations without Oscar Wilde’s masterpiece, The Picture of Dorian Gray. This was one of the first few classics that I read in my initial reading journey. I was scared of picking a classic back then, but something pushed me to read this book, so I did. The moment I read the first paragraph, I was hooked. It was the first time that I found myself admiring a book’s writing style so much. The prose in this book is incredible.
It’s a philosophical book, and although it starts with a chill English Summer, eventually, the book explores dark themes. The characters are incredibly layered, and the writing makes them come alive. The best part is that even though the book’s writing style is rich, the language continues to be simple. You won’t have to fetch your dictionary or use your dictionary app after every sentence. That’s why I recommend this book to those who want to start reading classics but are too scared that they may not understand them. If you are one of them, then definitely pick this book for your next read. You can get the book here! 📖
A list of books about their beautiful writing style, and Jane Austen is not in it – is that even possible? Well, not in my world, at least. Every Jane Austen book is equally good, so yes, it was difficult for me to pick one. I am choosing Pride and Prejudice because of Mr. Darcy. You will find many people make fun of Jane Austen’s books by calling them books where people visit each other’s houses. And I mean, that’s somewhat true. However, that’s how society worked back then.
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Just like now, people sit in a room and scroll on their mobile screens. There are plenty of reasons to read Pride and Prejudice, but the primary reason has to be the writing style. The irony in the dialogue is not just sharp as a sword but also unconventionally funny. Austen’s writing is real yet romantic. It has its softness yet cuts bluntly when exposing the double standards of the social systems. A Jane Austen novel is an institution in itself. With every read, you will discover something new. You can get the book here! 📖
3. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
When I read Rebecca for the first time, it felt like I was in a dream. And in my dream, I wandered around the cold castle called Manderley, where Maxim de Winter’s new young bride is loitering, trying to find answers to some uncomfortable questions. It felt like Manderley was still brooding in the shadows of de Winter’s first wife Rebecca’s death. Rebecca is not just a one-time read. Once you finish reading it, you have to come back to it again to taste its magic. Daphne du Maurier’s writing is so incredible that it brings Manderley alive. You can feel the characters breathe into life.
The prose is lyrical and poetic. There is a certain rhythm to her writing and a deep melancholy throughout the book. The best part is that the narrator, who is also the book’s protagonist, is unnamed. She is the lead character with the characteristics of a sidekick. She is easily forgettable. There is nothing special about her except her obsession with Rebecca. In all honesty, describing this book is like telling a scent or a flavor. You will only truly understand it unless you smell and taste it. Thus, make sure to add this book to your wish list. You can get the book here! 📖
4. Call Me by Your Name by André Aciman
When talking about exquisite writing style, it would be criminally wrong not to mention Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman. The movie was a massive success because of its stunning cast and gorgeous cinematography. But the book is a must-read. It’s one of the most beautiful literary pieces that I have ever read. The book will instantly transport you to the Italian Riviera, where the summers are all about loitering around the fields, cycling to hidden water bodies, relishing the sweetness of fruits, and obsessing over your lover’s remarks. This book follows Elio and Oliver’s summer together.
It’s about exploring one’s identity and place in the spectrum. The writing style is prolific. It’s one of those books that makes you escape reality with its beauty and intensity. Since Elio narrates the story, we only get to know his point of view. The narration is vivid, poetic, lyrical, and passionate. Passion is the central theme of this book, and you can sense it in the writing. However, the intense prose doesn’t make the book a difficult read. On the contrary, the language is simple and serene, which makes it an even more fantastic read. You can get the book here! 📖
5. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery
People may categorize The Little Prince under the Children’s books section, but I think it’s a fable for adults. The book beautifully shows us the gap between how children and adults perceive the world. More often than not, children are infantilized and asked to keep shut when they try to share their views, which is honestly cruel for a kid who wants to quench her thirst for curiosity by asking questions. As an adult, I found this book endearing because a child perceives the world with a pure heart and empty of prejudice. The writing style is poetic and so simple. It’s a perfect book for a beginner as the language is exquisite and very easy. You can get the book here! 📖
It’s only natural to include a Murakami book in this list, as he is the master of magic realism. Magic realism is one of my favorite genres, and the way Murakami pulls it off is phenomenal. My favorite Murakami book is Killing Commendatore because of so many reasons, but the primary reason I love this book is because of its writing style. The writing in this book is immaculate. It’s incredibly descriptive. I read this book a long time back, but the moment I think about the book, I am instantly transported to the protagonist’s cabin in the mountains.
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The sense of mystery and wonder in the book keeps the reader on his toes. But for me, the climax of the book didn’t matter much. I was so in love with the characters and the premise that I wanted the story to continue. By the way, the book is a thick one, and yet it felt like I couldn’t get enough of it. In my opinion, Killing Commendatore is an underrated gem, and only those who have a thing for literary finesse will be able to admire it completely. You can get the book here! 📖
7. Latitudes of Longing by Shubhangi Swaroop
The proper metaphor for this book would be a French dessert. It’s immaculate, smooth, layered, fancy, yet supremely simple. This book is divided into four parts where the stories intersect yet manage to sustain their individuality and independence. This book is a written representation of the relationship between humanity and Earth. It captures love beautifully between the bays and valleys of emotions. It also explores social issues without sounding like an essay. The writing is like butter. It’s smooth and glides on easily. I recommend reading this book while being around nature. Sit under the cool shade of a tree and read this book. Experience the connection between your surrounding and your soul. For me reading this book was a spiritual experience. You can get the book here! 📖
Well-written erotica has the power to make your heart pound the hardest. Now, I picked this book solely because of how pretty it looked! Yes, that’s how shallow I am sometimes. But boy, was I surprised by the writing of this book. The writing in this book is passionate, intense, vulnerable, and so powerful at the same time. The book covers the moments and conflicts of a couple in a complicated relationship. It beautifully captures the passion and chaos of a complex relationship. The writing is provocative and graceful. You can get the book here! 📖
9. By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept by Paulo Coelho
More than the plot of Paulo Coelho‘s books, I love his writing style. His books take you on vacation to these distant lands, where you come across enigmatic characters and spend time knowing their stories. In this book, the story revolves around a woman named Pilar on her journey to find herself. I love books based on self-discovery, so this one became a quick favorite. She is then reunited with her childhood friend, who is on a spiritual journey and has spent years learning about different cultures and religions.
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Together they talk about various topics related to God and society’s construct of God. I loved how they talked about possibilities. The writing is so sublime. It has a constant melancholic shadow throughout, yet you will feel hope on the horizon. The way Paulo Coelho describes the places makes it an even more beautiful read. It’s one of those books that will quench your thirst for travel without really traveling. After The Alchemist, this book is my favorite Paulo Coelho novella. You can get the book here! 📖
10. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
Donna Tartt took eleven years to write this book, so if it takes you a whole week to read this book, I don’t think that’s too much. Some books deserve your time, and this one indeed does. The book follows the story of a thirteen-year-old boy Theo. He survives a terrorist bombing at an Art Museum, but his mother gets killed. He lives at his friend’s house as his father has abandoned him. Apart from the trauma of the bombing sight, he has a painting called ‘The Goldfinch’ that he took from the debris at the Museum.
The book explores multiple themes, but what touched my heart was how beautifully the author captures grief. The author spent eleven years writing this book, and it shows. You can feel and experience the layers of grief and sadness throughout the book. Since the book is written with first-person narration, the events hit you on a very personal level. The writing is incredibly dense. There are details everywhere. I am a massive admirer of authors who give you lots of information. Visualizing each tiny detail makes the story seem like a movie. You can get the book here! 📖
If you have any questions regarding these books or if you want to start a conversation about the writing styles, then you can quickly create a post on our Facebook group BookWritten. It’s a beautiful community of bibliophiles always up for a discussion around books.
Sneha Banerjee has been writing for half a decade now. She is also a professional copywriter and has worked for many businesses. She is a voracious reader, and her ultimate dream is to turn everyone into a reader.