Benefits of a Summer Reading List - Geneva College, a Christian College in Pennsylvania (PA)

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College Preparation
June 27, 2016

Benefits of a Summer Reading List

Summer has arrived and you are eager to get caught up on all the Netflix shows you've neglected while writing papers and studying for exams during the school year. There's nothing wrong with a little relaxation, but if you return to school with nothing more than a new dent in the couch, you'll be filled with regret.

From spiritual self-help guides to classic novels, the right books can help you grow in your faith and become a more well-rounded person. Need more convincing? Here are a few great reasons to put down the remote and pick up a book:

Remaining In Practice

You just want to veg out after spending an entire semester with your nose in textbooks. But regular reading could make your return to college far easier, as your ability to retain and comprehend information can be lost quickly if not put to good use. Challenge yourself with rich, complex books during the summer, and, when the fall semester arrives, you'll have no trouble making the transition -- and you'll complete reading assignments with astonishing ease.

Faith-Based Understanding

Christian-centered books are great, but you can also learn a great deal from examining the motives and behaviors of the classics' finest subjects. Fiction humanizes all kinds of people and makes it easier for Christian readers to understand and empathize with them, while not necessarily condoning their actions. This sense of understanding can remind you of the humanity you share not only with the characters portrayed in the novels you read, but also the real-life figures who share personality traits with these characters.  Examining the behaviors you identify with as well as those you disagree with helps you understand different individuals from all walks of life.


With all the stresses of college hanging over your head, you've likely forgotten just how fun self-guided reading can be. Few things in life are as enjoyable as reading what you want, when you want, and at whatever pace you want. Lose yourself in a good book and you'll emerge more satisfied than you ever could while idly watching television reruns.

Reading Suggestions

Whether you spend the day at your local library or load up your Kindle, the possibilities are endless. This summer, consider checking these essentials off your reading bucket list:

  • Paradise Lost by John Milton
  • The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom
  • The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
  • The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan
  • A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  • Hamlet by Shakespeare
  • Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  • The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene

Did you know? Pilgrim's Progress and Paradise Lost, are both depicted in the stunning stained glass in McCartney Library.

This summer, put down the remote and pick up a good book. These months away from school can be a time of growth and renewal, but only if you make a commitment to further exploring your faith away from the Christian academic setting. After a summer of reading and exploring human elements, you will return to Geneva ready to once again tackle your Christ-centered studies.

For more information on how Geneva College can help you pursue your academic and career goals, contact us at 855-979-5563 or