It's no secret why so many authors have written books about New York City. It's a magical place, brimming with energy and light and love and hope. Before I moved to NYC three years ago, I had only been to the city a handful of times. But I felt like I knew this place almost as well as I know myself. I'd read so many books about it, and I'd seen so many movies. It appeared to me that New York was the place where things happened — the place where dreams became reality. You move to New York, and all of sudden you're not just a person, you're a protagonist.
New York is a city that offers adventure around every corner. Even just going to the grocery store can turn into an unforgettable experience. And while of course it isn't always sunshine and daisies, sometimes about being in this city makes you feel like you're always on a journey to something incredible.
These books will bring the city to life for you, with all of its special New York sparkle. Before you know it, you'll be packing your bags and buying your one-way plane ticket to The Big Apple.
1'Tuesday Nights in 1980' by Molly Prentiss
The writing in this book is intoxicating and vibrant, just like the city it depicts. Set in SoHo, in (you guessed it) 1980, this book is a lovely tribute to the arts scene of New York City.
2'Humans of New York' by Brandon Stanton
New York City wouldn't be New York City without the people. Brandon Stanton transformed his incredibly popular Humans of New York Facebook page into a coffee table book that encapsulates the magic of New Yorkers.
3'Afterworlds' by Scott Westerfeld
In this book, the main character, Darcy, gets a book deal for her YA novel, moves to NYC, and becomes friends with a group of up-and-coming YA authors. Um — isn't that the dream? Oh, and what makes this book especially cool is that it alternates chapters between Darcy's life and the (quite excellent) paranormal romance she's written.
4'Never Can Say Goodbye: Writers on Their Unshakable Love for New York' Edited by Sari Botton
This is a city of writers, and so of course writers have a lot to say about it. This collection features original essays by an array of writers on their love for NYC.
5'Sweetbitter' by Stephanie Danler
Tess is a twenty-two-year old woman who just arrived in New York. Working in a famous restaurant in Union Square, she's drawn into the alluring world of the city, forging deep and unique relationships with two of the people she works with.
6'The Lightning Thief' by Rick Riordan
OK, so the New York City of the Percy Jackson series is ruled by the Greek gods, complete with an elevator at the Empire State Building that goes all the way up to Mount Olympus. Even though NYC isn't quite as fantastical IRL, this fun book will definitely give you a hankering for some New York adventure.
7'Food and the City' by Ina Yalof
If there's any reason to come to New York, it's the food. In this excellent book, Yalof dives into the vast world of NYC's food culture. You'll be drooling at the food, and you'll be fascinated by the stories of people who make it.