10 Novellas for Readathons

10 novellas for readathons

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon is next Saturday! Who’s excited!? I’m still fiddling with my readathon stack, I never manage to read that much, but I like to have a good selection. It’s always motivating if you manage to finish a few things and so comics and novellas are really ideal reading material if like me, you are not one of those amazing speed readers. So, if you’re still looking for readthon books or you just love shorter works, here are 10 novellas you should put on your tbr:


1.Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

I read this last readathon and fell utterly in love with Okorafor’s imaginative writing. Binti is the first of her people to attend Oomza University, but to go there she has to leave behind her community and be among strangers with different customs and an ongoing war with the Meduse.


2.The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson

More TOR, I’m a huge fan of their novellas. This one is on my readathon stack even if it’s apparently tragic and a romance. Caravan brothers, Black demigod love story, lots of play on language

every heart a doorway

3.Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire

McGuire’s newest work just so happens to be a novella and deals with a home for children who have been returned from magical lands and only wish to return. Which is just such a cool turn on the usual entering other worlds things.

red station

4.On A Red Station Drifting by Aliette De Bodard

Okay, half of this list is fro my tbr 🙂 Prosper Space Station is at a crossroads with its AI’s mind ravaged by disease and many of its people called to the long war against the Dai Viet Empire.


5.Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord

Leaving her fool of  husband, Paama is given the Chaos stick by the djombi. Unfortunately one djombi with indigo skin wants the stick for himself. A trickster tale, a modern fairy tale, a Senegalese folk story. This promises to be epic and sounds like a great Once Upon a Time read, too.


6.The House On Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

Cisneros’ story of Esperanza and growing up poor Mexican in Chicago is always good for a reread. This is basically a collection of vignettes but oh so readable.


7.We Have Always Lived In The Castle by Shirley Jackson

No list without one of my favorites 🙂 Creepy thriller, plot twist included, you won’t be sorry to try Jackson’s story about sisters Merricat and Constance Blackwood after the deaths of most of their family.

emperors soul

8.The Emperor’s Soul by Brandon Sanderson

Shai the forger is the empire’s only hope. Sentenced to death for trying to steal the emperor’s sceptor, she is given the chance to redeem herself by copying the emperor’s soul. Sanderson has been on my list for ages, a novella seems like a great way to start.

ghost summer

9.Gost Summer by Tananarive Due

Yes, this is a short story collection, but the titular story Ghost Summer is actually a novella. Don’t read this late at night, Due is brilliant at scary horror, I learned this the hard way!


10.The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid

Hamid’s now probably classic story of the young Pakistani-American Muslim Changez, identity, belonging and fundamentalism in the wake of 9/11. Always good for a reread, too, to evaluate how far things have gone since then.

What are your favorite novellas? And are joining the readathon next Saturday?

25 thoughts on “10 Novellas for Readathons

  1. I was so looking forward to this post, Bina. For my last readathon, you recommended ‘Binti’ and ‘Chess’. I loved them. And, you know how much I adore ‘We Have Always Lived in the Castle’. I am looking forward to buying a couple of books from this list for the Dewey’s. Excited to participate with you. 😀

    1. Yayyy, readathon buddies! 🙂 Oh I hope you’ll enjoy some of these books here. I know that TOR novellas aren’t too expensive luckily and they are also available in bundles. So excited for readathon!

  2. Most of these I’d never heard of before! Very interesting recommendations. 🙂
    Binti sounds amazing, added that to my wishlist. I would love to heard a bit more about The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps. x

    1. Yay glad to be adding to your tbr 🙂 Binti is so wonderful, it made me want to read all of Okorafor’s works! I’m reading The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps for readathon, very excited to try it.

  3. I’m saving this. Glad for the recommendations. I just picked up Every Heart a Doorway. I debated purchasing it while in the store because I didn’t realize it’s a novella, though the first review of it I saw did say it is a novella but all others said novel. I was so confused.

    1. Yay, I’ve enjoyed McGuire’s works so far, so looking forward to her newest. Hope you’ll enjoy it! Hmm as far as I now it, it comes out as part of TOR’s novella program but perhaps the category can be debated. At least it’s short enough to count 🙂

  4. I love this list!
    I’m really intrigued by Binti, and I’m wayyy overdue to read something by Okorafor–I can’t believe I haven’t read any of her books yet!
    I definitely recommend Every Heart a Doorway as being perfect for the Readathon–I just finished it, it only took me a couple of hours and it’s perfect for fantasy/fairy tale fans. I enjoyed Redemption in Indigo too 🙂

    1. Thanks for stopping by! Oh yes her works are amazing, it took me too long to read them, too. But now you have so many of hers still waiting for you, which is lovely as well 🙂
      So glad to hear you can recommend Redemption and the MacGuire! It does sound perfect for the readathon then!

  5. Great list of novellas!

    I will be joining as a cheerleader. I think I would have a lot more fun cheering others on Twitter and on their blogs. I get distracted too easily, so reading while other people cheer me on would mean I get zero reading done! lol

    1. Thanks 🙂 Oh yay that is awesome, cheerleaders are so wonderful especially in the later hours when we all get pretty tired 🙂 Hahaha, I have to admit I just read and then take social media etc breaks where I update and check the phone, otherwise I would definitely be distracted too. I’ll be cheering on a few friends who are participating, if that works I might sign up as cheerleader too next time.

        1. Heh oops corrected that, it’s only on the cover in huge letters 😀
          Is that a good start to his works? Don’t want to stumble into a series and have no idea what’s going on.

          1. It is set in the world of his first novel, Elantris. But it’s in a different country and the magic system and politics have nothing to do with that other novel. So yes, it’s a good start.

  6. I thought We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson was great; I really must re-read it. Other novellas I’ve loved are The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams and Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.

    1. Yes I’ve reread it a few times and it hold ups well even after you know the twist 🙂 Ooh I love the Hitchhiker’s Guide! I have to remember to reread the other books not just book1 all time time.

  7. I’m pretty new to novellas, so it’s great to have some more to add to my list. I haven’t read any of these yet. Binti and Every Heart A Doorway sound especially good. I Have Always Lived In A Castle is one of those books that has been on my list forever. One of these days…
    Have fun readathon-ing! 🙂

    1. Thanks! Hope you’ll enjoy these novellas! I adore Binti and I Have Always Lived in the Castle is brilliant especially of you’re looking for a twisty book 🙂

  8. I tell myself that one day (maybe when my kiddo is in high school and doesn’t want to hang out with me anymore?) I will participate in one of those Readathons! I wasn’t aware of their existence back when I was childless. I’m a bit jealous. But I know my time will come someday. Enjoy yours! Looks like an excellent list.

    1. Haha yes I can imagine that it is much more difficult with kids, some participate anyway no idea how they do it! I’m sure you’ll enjoy readathons all the more for the wait 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s