6 Books to read set in New York City

Helloooooo bookish friends!!

I am finally back with a new post for you!! It’s been a crazy week with our move. But we are starting to feel settled and everything is coming together well. We are loving our house and our new neighborhood. And I’m finally feeling settled enough to write again. It’s exciting!

When I compiled all my book lists into one place, I realized I haven’t shared too many lists focused on settings (actually, just one about circus settings). So I want to add to that list. 

Today I’m sharing a fun list of books set in New York City.

Now there are a lot of books set in NYC. In fact, there are several that we all know–The Great Gatsby and The Catcher in the Rye for example. But I’m not a big fan of either of those books. I reread The Great Gatsby for The Classics Club and didn’t love it. But I know many people who do. I want to focus my list on perhaps a few lesser known novels (especially middle grade, one of my favorite genres).

I have only visited New York City once. And on that same trip I visited Boston. I have to admit, I enjoyed Boston more! Ha. But there is just something about New York City, right? Hopefully I will get to go back again one day and experience more of it for myself. For now, I enjoy exploring this city in the pages of some great books.

I hope you enjoy this list!

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead // This is potentially my favorite Newbery winner I’ve read to date. Jackie B and I had so much fun buddy reading this one last year. It’s simply fascinating and has a great plot following the story of Miranda, her friends, mother, and a mysterious kicking man. I can’t say more because I don’t want to spoil the experience. But read it now!!

The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street by Karina Yan Glaser // I love this middle grade novel about 5 siblings determined to save their home in an old Brownstone in New York. I love the characters and the lovely message about home and family and forgiveness. Plus, there’s already a sequel out and another one coming this fall!

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer // I’ve never read anything quite like this novel. Oskar is such a compelling narrator whose stream of consciousness style takes readers on an engaging ride searching for a lock to a key Oskar believes his father left him before his death on September 11, 2001 in the twin towers. It’s a compelling story of loss, family, and discovery.

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg // This book is such a fun experience. When Kendra convinces her brother Jamie to run away with her to the MET in New York City, they become fascinated by a mystery surrounding a new statue that may have been sculpted by Michelangelo himself.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith // I have only read this book once–for high school summer reading years ago. But I remember it being beautifully written, tragic and triumphant, and a truly compelling story about family and New York. Perhaps it’s time for a reread.

A Daring Venture by Elizabeth Camden // Elizabeth writes about unique time in American history–often with fascinating details about historical events I didn’t know about. This novel set in turn of the century New York follows the journey to provide clean water to the city of New York when people fought against and for chlorination. This is fascinating! I love everything I read by Elizabeth!

A few bonus movie favorites of mine:

  • You’ve Got Mail – possibly my favorite movie period. I love Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks in this one!
  • It Could Happen to You – Nicholas Cage at his best. I feel nostalgic just thinking about watching this movie as a teenager with my grandma.

And a few TBR bonuses:

  • Stuart Little by E. B. White
  • The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

What are some of your favorite books set in New York City?

book list visual (1)

Check out my full group of book lists here.
What would you like to see in future book lists? Leave a comment below!

16 thoughts on “6 Books to read set in New York City

  1. Pingback: August Wrap-Up and September TBR – greenish bookshelf

  2. Jess@ABookworm'sTales

    What a great list! Whenever I see NYC and Books in the same sentence, I INSTANTLY think of the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan! Have you read it?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a nice post! I love A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, and the mixed-up files is and always will be a favorite of mine! I do want to read the Vanderbeekers and the Rebecca Stead book too. David Levithan has a couple of YA books set in NY that are really fun in how they incorporate the city’s personality… and I’ll have to think, because I know there are plenty more!

    Liked by 1 person

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