16 Books You'll Want to Read in One Sitting

Posted by Hayley on March 24, 2017
Some books demand your undivided attention…even if you need to go to work, attend class, hang out with real people, or just sleep. If you're in the mood for one of those types of stories, you've come to the right place. We asked Goodreads members to share the books they've read in a single sitting. The top answers are below!


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
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Wishful Drinking
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Exit West
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A Thousand Splendid Suns
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Ready Player One
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Night
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The Hobbit
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Tuck Everlasting
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The Handmaid's Tale
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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
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The Captive Prince
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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
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A Monster Calls
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A Thousand Splendid Suns
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The Bridges of Madison County
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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
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How often do you read books in a single sitting? Let's talk in the comments!

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Comments Showing 1-50 of 89 (89 new)


message 1: by Siobhan (new)

Siobhan I seem to single sitting read more often than not nowadays (although how with how busy I am, I'll never understand). Oddly, enough, I have only read a couple of the books on this list - and they weren't single sittings for me. It appears as though I may need to do some investigating and see whether any of the others will fall into my list of single sitting books.


message 2: by Antonio (new)

Antonio Gallo As far as single sitting read is concerned, I've done it many times, but not with the books shown here. It very much depends on what kind of reading I decide to have: close reading, distant reading, skimming, scanning, intensive, extensive ...


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

A Thousand Splendid Suns?? It WAS a great book but I couldn't read it in one sitting. Sometimes I just had to put it away and cry! (I haven't cried for a book after that... not that I did before...)


message 4: by MrJ (new)

MrJ I don't think I could ever single sit these let alone any book :(.


message 5: by Rob (new)

Rob Read A Monster Calls and And Then There Were None in one sittings. BTW, I rated 9 of these 5 stars...quite a list of books.


message 6: by Jordan (new)

Jordan The only book that I have ever read and not been able to put down is Lincoln in the Bardo. It's completely different from anything else I've ever read. Captivating, distinct, fulfilling. Easily the best book I've read this year.


message 7: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Jordan wrote: "The only book that I have ever read and not been able to put down is Lincoln in the Bardo. It's completely different from anything else I've ever read. Captivating, distinct, fulfil..."

Thanks for this comment, I just put it on hold at the library for myself :)


message 8: by Luc (new)

Luc I read Aristotle and Dante and A Monster Calls in a few hours! Both of them 500 pages long! I RELATE TO THIS! Thank you, guys!


message 9: by Francesco (last edited Mar 24, 2017 01:22PM) (new)

Francesco Wait a moment, Ready, Player One in a single sitting?
Are you serious?
Really?


message 10: by Lanie (new)

Lanie I read a Lot in one settings, but they're mostly small books, like manga volumes, middle grade, and short stories. I've read most of "a series of unfortunate events" in one setting reads.

But my specialty has recently become squeezing in whole chapters of reading on my 10 minutes breaks at work. Thank the book gods for kindle apps. :D


message 11: by Sally (new)

Sally It is possible to read The Bridges of Madison County in one sitting but it is a dreadful book. One case where the movie is better than the book.


message 12: by Chelsea (new)

Chelsea I read a lot of manga books in a single sitting (sometimes several volumes of a series in a row) but other than that I usually end up taking breaks and reading my books over at least a couple of sittings.


message 13: by Ryan (new)

Ryan Pfeiffer Black Sunday. It literally says on the cover "Do not begin this novel unless you are prepared to finish it in one sitting...."


message 14: by Nancy from NJ (new)

Katz Nancy from NJ Sally wrote: "It is possible to read The Bridges of Madison County in one sitting but it is a dreadful book. One case where the movie is better than the book."


message 15: by Nancy from NJ (new)

Katz Nancy from NJ Nancy from NJ wrote: "Sally wrote: "It is possible to read The Bridges of Madison County in one sitting but it is a dreadful book. One case where the movie is better than the book.""

I actually liked the book better than the movie. I though Meryl Streep was miscast. And while I know this was very soapy, the writer I can' stand is Nicholas Sparks. Gave up on reading him after his third book.


message 16: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten The Girl With A Dragon Tattoo in ONE sitting? Are you kidding???

Thumbs up to the reader who made the point of having to put Splendid Suns aside to have a good cry.

The books I read in one sitting are the In Death books by J.D. Robb or the Lady Georgiana books by Rhys Bowen.


message 17: by Sarina (new)

Sarina There have been many times, the most memorable was when I bought a copy of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at midnight the day of its release, and, after deluding myself that I was only going to read a few chapters, stayed up until 5 am to finish it.

A lot of the time I'll start reading a book, read halfway through it, then shrug and decide "I guess I have to finish it now."


Zombieslayer/Alienhunter {comatose with common sense} Oh my God some of these blow me away XD

The Hobbit took me almost two weeks (keep in mind I was about thirteen) and Ready Player one took me about three days.

Some books I've read in one sitting are Daughters Unto Devils, The Great Gatsby and Animal Farm.
My speed-reading with The Great Gatsby and Animal Farm stem from the fact I needed to turn in papers on them within two days.

I'm much more likely to start a book on a Friday afternoon or evening, and be finishing it by Sunday evening.


message 19: by Sophie (new)

Sophie Quist I'm finding I don't enjoy reading books in a single sitting. I like taking breaks to process, digest and (if it's a really good one) savor them. That being said, some of my favorite titles are on this list -- I worship both The Hobbit and The Handmaid's Tale.


message 20: by Alexis (new)

Alexis I'm a slow reader, but the fastest I remember reading a book is on that list and that's Captive Prince. I also never re-read books. Apart from that one which I have read three times it's just that good.


message 21: by Barbara (new)

Barbara Ferrara Just read Tribe by Sebastian Junger in one sitting. Very satsfying.


message 22: by Samantha (new)

Samantha I read Night Film in one sitting; it's thrilling and demands to be finished quickly. And The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them, laughing out loud all the while.


message 23: by Beth (last edited Mar 24, 2017 07:53PM) (new)

Beth Roberts My eyes won't let me read a book in one sitting. I guess I don't read as fast as most people. I, too, loved Night Film, but not in one sitting. And there's work.

And I agree, The Bridges of Madison County was awful.


message 24: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Maloney Not as much as I used to, unfortunately. Just don't have as much time to read as I used to have.


message 25: by Ryan (new)

Ryan Hixson Off this list I've only read A Sorcerer's Stone and And Then There Were None. Now if this list had Goosebumps, I finished almost everyone in one setting.


message 26: by Ryan (new)

Ryan Hixson Francesco wrote: "Wait a moment, Ready, Player One in a single sitting?
Are you serious?
Really?"


Right! I couldn't do it. It was great but there was so much going on I stopped to watch War Games after that scene.


message 27: by Jen (new)

Jen With a young puppy-son and my own aging body, I find it no longer possible to read any book in truly "one sitting." But I come close when reading certain books by Jayne Ann Krentz, Nora Roberts, Jennifer Crusie, and Ilona Andrews. :-)


message 28: by Josiah (new)

Josiah I don't understand the appeal of reading a novel in a single sitting. If it's good, I want to take time to savor it over a period of days. I love reading, but plowing through hundreds of pages without taking a break would exhaust my brain. I'll gladly read Mo Willems or Dr. Seuss in a single sitting (and get a lot out of it), but never a novel.


message 29: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Francesco wrote: "Wait a moment, Ready, Player One in a single sitting?
Are you serious?
Really?"


I wound up staying up all night to finish it. It's doable!


message 30: by Mary (new)

Mary Amanda wrote: "Jordan wrote: "The only book that I have ever read and not been able to put down is Lincoln in the Bardo. It's completely different from anything else I've ever read. Captivating, d..."

Me too. Thanks very much.


message 31: by Mary (new)

Mary I've read six of these books and The Hobbit I've read at least once a decade for five decades. I read The Return of the King in a single sitting. Also various thrillers, several Diana Gabaldon books (it sucks going to work after no sleep), a Dorothy Dunnet (on a weekend), Nora Roberts type books, and others. But in my 50s I'm not finding any books that would keep me up all night. I do still read lighter books and some thrillers in one sitting occasionally though.


message 32: by Vernice (new)

Vernice I listened to the audio of The Martian in a single sitting (on a day off mind you). It was just so thrilling and exciting I couldn't stop! Mostly I take a couple of days though...


message 33: by Jen (new)

Jen Josiah wrote: "I don't understand the appeal of reading a novel in a single sitting. If it's good, I want to take time to savor it over a period of days. I love reading, but plowing through hundreds of pages with..."

If a book is heart-stoppingly good, I could read it in as close to "one sitting" as I get nowadays. And if I really love it, I buy it for rereading. Then when I reread it, I can take my time to savor it over two or three days. (Just last week I reconnected with my favorite book: Absolutely, Positively by Jayne Ann Krentz. I read it for the umpteenth time in "one sitting" on Monday; and then I read it again more slowly from Wednesday through Friday.)

:-)


message 34: by Jen (new)

Jen Vernice wrote: "I listened to the audio of The Martian in a single sitting (on a day off mind you). It was just so thrilling and exciting I couldn't stop! Mostly I take a couple of days though..."

I listened to that book in one sitting, too! Sooo good! But I don't think it counts as a true "one sitting" book because I was driving from Houston toward Tucson when I listened to it. . . and what else was I going to do? ;-)


message 35: by Felisia (new)

Felisia Listiarini The Alchemist is the book you just can't put down once you read it :)


message 36: by Lia (new)

Lia Sally wrote: "It is possible to read The Bridges of Madison County in one sitting but it is a dreadful book. One case where the movie is better than the book."
Agree. Meryl and Clint were brilliant.


message 37: by Chathurika (new)

Chathurika I used to read book after book on single sittings, forgetting to eat even at times. Nowadays with life getting in the way it's much less but lately I have been getting back to it. Which others say gets in the way of life. :D


message 38: by Ariadni (new)

Ariadni I remember when I bought the harry potter books I read one book a day in one sitting! I finished all books in a week.


message 39: by Mariah Roze (new)

Mariah Roze I feel like I only sit and read a whole book if it is a middle school level book and under 300 pages. I have a hard time getting through a whole book in one day…


message 40: by Cassie ♠ (new)

Cassie ♠ Justin wrote: "I don't think I could ever single sit these let alone any book :(."
Thought I was the only one you cannot single sit.. I have read only one book in less than 3 hours and that's because I has do to so for school. I like taking my time wth a book. Thinking about everything the the story reminds me of, drinking a nice coffee. Not to mention the fact that I am a slow reader.. :p


message 41: by Andrea (new)

Andrea I read 4 of these suggested books. Didn't finish any of them in one sitting. Short stories and/or poems would be preferable instead of novels.


message 42: by Sumeet (new)

Sumeet Mahendra Added every single of them to my bucket list...!


message 43: by Phoenix2 (new)

Phoenix2 I've read Hobbit in a single sitting, but none other after that... I guess everyone wants to keep reading an interesting book, but you can never have enough time...


message 44: by Elaine (new)

Elaine The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in one sitting?!?! lol


message 45: by Yanny (last edited Mar 25, 2017 07:35AM) (new)

Yanny Zhu I read two of the listed books here and these two aren't really the ones I can finish in one sitting... Though there were some fantasy novels that I definitely COULD NOT put down, like Angelfall, Legend,Six of Crows(the best book ever), currently looking for my next great read


message 46: by Comical (new)

Comical Lobo For some of the books mentioned here, one sitting would rather be near impossible. Even if the book is interesting one can never have enough time.


message 47: by Suzi Evelyn (new)

Suzi Evelyn I rarely read books in a sitting. Two sittings, however, is another story. Everything, Everything is the only book I can remember reading in a single sitting.


message 48: by Josiah (last edited Mar 25, 2017 09:52AM) (new)

Josiah Jen wrote: "If a book is heart-stoppingly good, I could read it in as close to "one sitting" as I get nowadays. And if I really love it, I buy it for rereading. Then when I reread it, I can take my time to savor it over two or three days. (Just last week I reconnected with my favorite book: Absolutely, Positively by Jayne Ann Krentz. I read it for the umpteenth time in "one sitting" on Monday; and then I read it again more slowly from Wednesday through Friday.)"

It makes sense to want to keep reading an excellent book because you want to find out what happens, but I resist the urge. I want to make sure I'm not impulsively rushing the experience. It's true that I can always go back and reread an extraordinary novel, but you only get one first read of a book, where the surprises hit you full force, and I never want to waste it.


message 49: by Ivan Crnic, Jr. (new)

Ivan Crnic, Jr. The wording and desc is weird here... I think it's a list of books you'd WANT to read in one sitting... which just means any good book.


message 50: by Shay (new)

Shay This list is a great idea even if I don't think all of these are in-one-sitting books. I can appreciate the delight of both an up-all-night-page-turner and a tale to be savored. Maybe that's why I've been known to reread my favs. The list and the comments have given me some good "to-read" books!


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